Easy Ways to Reward Your Employees on a Budget

Everyone likes to be recognised for a job well done. It’s more exciting when the thumbs up come with some type of bonus or other financial compensation. But, is money the only way to reward an employee? If you are worried about how much money will go into rewarding your employees, you’re not alone. During difficult financial times, most companies face challenges with recognising employees’ efforts and performance.

Rewarding employees and motivating them to improve their performance does not always have to be financially stressful. If you were to ask your employees what would motivate them to work better, the answers would surprise you. Below are reasons why you should create a program that rewards employees for a god work done, and pitfalls to avoid.

Why You Need an Employee Reward System

Your ultimate purpose for creating an Employee Reward System is to help develop a result-oriented company team. Your goal is to create some acknowledgment and motivation among your employees. Rewarding your employees motivates them to meet their target and helps the company to achieve it objectives as well.

How to Determine The Best Reward Scheme

1. Identify What You Want to Reinforce

Creating an employee reward system and recognition program can be overwhelming at first. You need to take time to identify the activities that you seek to reward. This can either be job performance, such as meeting sales targets, rewarding exceptional customer service, teamwork or leadership. Getting the right reason for rewarding your employees will make it easier for you to come up with a good reward structure. An effective reward or recognition program can only be developed when you really understand what you want to reinforce. Do you want to reward individual employees or the entire team?

2. Include Your Employees in the Planning Process

In establishing your rewards program, your goal should be to promote loyalty and team spirit. You want your workplace to be the kind where your workers feel appreciated. Part of making them feel appreciated is getting to know what motivates them. Of course, the issue of financial compensation and bonuses will not be ruled out of your discussion with your company team.

That is why it is important you inform them when your budget is tight. As they share what motivates them with you, it will help you determine what types of rewards to offer. If you have budget constraints, let employees know so that they are more creative with their suggestions.

3. Choose What Works for Your Company

There’s no point in starting a recognition program that won’t motivate employees and also help achieve business goals. Remember, it is a two-way street. Once you decide to create a reward system to make your “troops” happy, it should work for the good of your company. That’s why you must carefully select the best methods of recognition to use and learn how effective they are to meeting business goals. What works for one company may not work for another.

The Different Types of Rewards

You may choose to go with the traditional practice of rewarding exemplary employee behaviour such as bonuses, raises, stock options and other types of financial remuneration. But money is not the only way to recognise employees. If your worry is how you’ll execute a budget-free reward scheme then here are some ideas you should look at;

1. Give More Opportunities

Sometimes the most meaningful form of recognition involves giving the deserving employee some privilege or opportunity as proof of being valued by the organization. For instance, give the employee an invitation to sit on a panel discussion on your behalf or an educational or mentoring opportunity.

2. Praise Good Works

Everyone loves to be praised after a job well done. Words as simple as “well done” or a thank you note to an employee can leave a lasting impression. Remember, thank you is very powerful and memorable.Your employees will want to do more once they know that their efforts are not in vain.

3. Expose Deserving Employee to Experiences

One of the most sincere forms of flattery one can get is being trusted with more challenging work. This could be giving your employee a new task or taking on the most challenging customers. Sometimes all the recognition that an employee needs is your trust with new challenges. Another form of experience is to take your employee on a vacation trip or expose a deserving employee to important clients in your field.

4. Use Gift Card rewards

A simple card with very few but powerful words can also work magic. With your limited budget for employee rewards, you can get a series of gift cards to acknowledge their effort when they do something noteworthy. Use gift cards to reward your employees and see tremendous results in your employees’ efforts.

It doesn’t always take a lot of money to motivate your employees. If you want to get the best out of them, create an employee reward system that allows you to; build a team environment, stimulate employee interest, and create an avenue where positive behaviour thrives.

Do you have budget-friendly ideas on employee reward system? Share your thoughts with us in the comment section below.


Nelly Sadongo-Bawa
Social Media and Community Marketer at Jobberman Ghana || Blogger || Motivator || Radio host || "Knowledge is like a garden. If it is not cultivated, it cannot be harvested."
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