All your team want for Christmas is…
The winter months are a challenging time for businesses when it comes to maintaining employees’ morale, motivation and engagement. Not only are there many distractions as we prepare for the festive season and celebrate with loved ones, but so many of us experience end-of-year fatigue as the impact of the busy period takes its toll.
For those reasons, many businesses look for ways to give their team a boost in December – a token of gratitude that not only demonstrates the business’ appreciation of individual efforts but gives them an opportunity to reflect and celebrate on the hard work they’ve put in.
While this year is no different, it comes with unique challenges as we navigate the continued impact of the cost of living crisis. In the same way that employers had to react to the conditions of Covid when rewarding their teams, once again it’s crucial that HR and Reward professionals really tap into the mood of their colleagues to show appreciation in a way that’s valuable, meaningful but sensitive to the needs of individuals.
So, what do your team really want for Christmas? Let’s find out.
Valuable financial support
With the cost of living crisis continuing to threaten the financial stability of millions of people, employers are under pressure to react to the current climate and provide adequate financial support. Offering salary increases is the first and most obvious avenue of support, but it’s simply not viable for businesses having to contend with their own tight budgets and increasing costs. So, what can you do?
One option is to cut your business’ usual Christmas costs back and use that budget to provide employees with a financial reward. Interestingly, research from CareerWallet has revealed that 94% of people would rather their employer use the budget for a Christmas party on staff bonuses instead.
But there are other, more effective and long-term ways to provide that all-important financial support to your employees to help them through this difficult period and beyond.
Provide powerful saving opportunities with an employee discounts scheme
Employee discount schemes create fantastic money-saving opportunities for individuals that make a real difference year-round, let alone during financial crises. With access to thousands of discounts and cashback offers at top retailers and brands, employees can make valuable savings on their everyday spending and make their salaries go further.
At peoplevalue, we’ve seen a huge increase in the amount of cashback being earnt through our discount schemes in recent months. Savings are up 18% versus last year and are projected to soar even further as we head towards the busiest time of the year!
Users can save on their groceries, tech items, homeware, clothing & shoes, meals out and more so there are plenty of opportunities to cut back on costs. They can even earn cashback on top of offers being run by retailers, which means that there are even bigger savings to be made on Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
So, while introducing an employee discounts scheme isn’t a traditional way to reward your team at Christmas, it’s a relevant way to demonstrate that your business cares about its employees and truly taps into people’s needs. Read our e-book to find out more about how employee discount schemes provide effective financial wellbeing support – not just at Christmas – but year-round.
Relevant, meaningful rewards
Rewarding your employees at the end of the year is a great idea, but the type of reward you deliver makes all the difference. As we mentioned earlier, the current financial climate should be considered when you make your decision this year because reward relevance is key.
It’s tempting to go for the traditional option of hampers or chocolates, but will your employees truly value such a gift this year? While they’ll likely appreciate the sentiment, will the gift truly have the desired impact? Ultimately, only you and your HR / Reward colleagues will be able to gauge the mood of the wider business, so it’s important to factor that in when making a decision about your end-of-year rewards.
Give the gift of choice to deliver personally significant rewards
Delivering gifts to employees is certainly a fantastic way for businesses to say “thank you”, but giving the gift of choice is often far more powerful and results in individuals choosing a reward that’s relevant, meaningful and therefore personally significant – and that’s what rewards are all about! Also, as an added bonus, it takes away the pressure of getting your business’ end-of-year reward right, because the power of choosing the reward is put into the hands of employees.
Our Festive Rewards solution gives employees the freedom to choose a reward that matches their needs and interests. With an online catalogue of fantastic products ranging from foodie treats to tech plus a selection of digital vouchers, employees use their reward points to buy an item of their choice. Vouchers in particular are a great reward option this year because individuals can use them towards something practical to ease their finances or treat themselves to something on their wishlist.
Still need to organise your business’ festive rewards? Find out more about how we can help.
Personalised, authentic recognition
In the final months of the year, the pressure for employees truly ramps up and everyone mucks in and works hard to hit targets, serve customers and fulfil the business’ goals. It’s at these busy times in the workplace that taking a step back and saying “thank you” is exactly what people need and want to hear.
Recognition doesn’t always need to have a value associated to it – a personal, authentic “thank you” can go a long way and be just as impactful as a reward if delivered in the right way. We see this all the time through the reward & recognition schemes we deliver for our clients.
Create a culture of appreciation
Some businesses opt to add a message of thanks from the business’ CEO to their reward & recognition platform, others decide to send out a branded Christmas card that contains a message of gratitude. What’s key for your business is making the recognition personal and authentic to the way you choose to do things.
Beyond delivering a “thank you” message from the business, it’s essential that the Managers in your business are also flying the flag of appreciation in their interactions with their team members. Taking the time to recognise an individual’s efforts, in a way that they know will be meaningful to them, is a fantastic way to show employees that they’re truly valued and appreciated.
Everyday recognition is something we’re truly passionate about here at peoplevalue. Not only do we facilitate it for our clients through our technology, but a key part of our culture is saying “thank you” to our colleagues for their actions and achievements. Small and simple acts of appreciation truly unite our team.
It’s all about feeling truly valued and appreciated
At the crux of everything we’ve mentioned is the ultimate human need to feel valued. Now more than ever, people want to feel adequately supported and rewarded by their employer. With the job market so buoyant and individuals setting increasingly high standards when it comes to choosing their next employer, it’s essential that businesses regularly demonstrate gratitude and human appreciation for the people that make the magic happen. Plus, like many things, saying “thank you” is not just for Christmas! Creating a strong culture of appreciation is what will make your business competitive and help it meet the needs of employees year-round.
If you haven’t yet arranged your business’ end-of-year rewards, discover our Festive Reward solutions.
Want to elevate your business’ reward & recognition activities into a smart, branded platform? Get in touch and let’s discover how we can support your business.
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