From working with dozens of companies to develop and run employee recognition programmes, we have learned that every company is different, and yet the process for launching a successful programme is always the same.
These 10 steps should be taken in sequence as a company looks to design a recognition programme that will work for their specific company requirements, and for their employees. For Part 1 of this Blog: 10 Steps to Successful Employee Recognition (Part 1)
6. Set the Programme Mechanics
This is the nuts and bolts of any programme, and it is absolutely essential to get right to ensure the smooth and systematic functioning of the programme. It has a lot to do with measurement – what will be measured, how will it be measured, how often will it be measured, who will measure and report, how often will this be translated into rewards,who will approve rewards, how often will rewards will issued, how will rewards be sent and redeemed.
This part also incorporates any technology integrations that might need to happen between the company systems and the external reward programme (eg synching the employee database for reward nominations).
The key is simplicity – if the mechanics are too complicated for employees to understand, or HR to administer, the programme is doomed from the start.
7. Develop Branding
What will the programme be called and how will be it marketed to employees? This is important to maximise engagement and effectiveness. Coming up with a creative brand that reflects the company’s own branding, and which captures the spirit of the programme, can make all the difference.
And of course the programme branding will be incorporated in all communications and interactions (eg reward websites and eZines etc) for possibly years to come, so the time to get it right is before launch.
8. Plan the Launch
It is vital to use the launch of any programme to hit the ground running with both employees and managers. Everyone needs to be aware of the new programme and needs to know how it is going to work. More than that, though, the launch of any programme affords a great opportunity to generate momentum and a real buzz among staff.
An employee reward programme launch plan could include: branded gift boxes for line managers, direct mail to all employees, training for line managers, internal communication channels like CRM, town hall meetings, internal presentations, marketing material at all sites, use of internal electronic screens, company social media, launch party or event etc
9. Prepare & Ongoing Comms Plan
Communication is not only critical to the success of any recognition programme, it can also deliver a highly valuable dividend on its own, increasing positive intra-company communications, and amplifying the programme for even greater engagement. But it doesn’t just happen on its own.
A study of 154 successful incentive programs in a one-year period found that 69% percent of the successful programs allocated 7% or more of the amount of the awards budget for print communications and/or training promotions. This study also showed that the clients who enjoyed successful results made the commitment to communicate frequently with their participants, using a campaign consisting of program-specific communications.¹⁹
Allgo implements an ongoing communications plan on all its managed programmes, based on regular programme-branded, personalised eZines, which regularly achieve open rates of 60%+.
10. Review & Refine
Of course, from the very inception, the programme needs to have a structured way of tracking progress, and measuring the results so that HR can feed this back to the business (and to employees) and the ROI can be established. In some cases like Irish Distillers Barrrelmen Rewards, the results will ultimately be measured in the annual employee survey.
Allgo also provides all clients with a quarterly management report to highlight engagement stats and results on the programme as part of its managed services.
All feedback should of course be used to make incremental tweaks to the programme to constantly improve it and keep it fresh and engaging.
From programme idea to concept development to launch and beyond, following these 10 steps will ensure you get the most effective, tailored employee recognition programme possible for your company.
These steps can also be used to assess and refresh your existing programmes.
For Part 1 of this Blog: 10 Steps to Successful Employee Recognition (Part 1)
If you would like to talk to Allgo about putting in place an employee recognition programme to engage you staff, don't hesitate to contact us today.
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