April 30, 2024
January 25, 2022

Awardco at HR Tech London: Fostering Connection and Driving Success

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In the fast-paced business landscape of today, the true value of recognition cannot be overstated or oversold. It serves as the crucial link between employees, fosters connections, and drives organizational success. 

In this blog post we’ll discuss the following, which is a condensed version of our presentation at HR Tech London with subject matter experts Laura Shanley from Okta and Sandy Shuring from Deloitte:

  • The importance of recognition in today’s workplace, and key metrics that showcase the benefits of recognition.
  • Global considerations with recognition to ensure the success of your worldwide programs.
  • How to formulate a recognition strategy that integrates with and enhances your business objectives.

The Importance of Recognition

Employee recognition is more than an afterthought. It is the key to every successful organization. In fact, recognition’s benefits in the workplace are many. Besides reinforcing and driving positive behaviors, recognizing employees is crucial to the wellbeing of your people and your business. Regular recognition can:

  • Lower turnover by 31%
  • Increase productivity by 14%
  • Increases engagement by 43%
  • Increases employee loyalty by 3X

If it’s THAT important and that beneficial…why is employee recognition overlooked? Because too many organizational leaders see it as fluff, or nice to have but not absolutely crucial, despite the game-changing benefits listed above

The truth is, fostering connection is why recognition is so important in any organizational strategy. Recognition acts as a bridge between individuals, validates their efforts, and fosters a sense of belonging. It's not just a checkbox—it's a fundamental driver of business outcomes.

The data supports the transformative impact of recognition. Studies show that recognized employees are more engaged, productive, and less likely to leave their organizations (see above). 

The real question is, can you afford not to recognize and appreciate your people regularly?

Global Recognition Considerations

While recognition and its benefits can be readily understood, many organizations face challenges in implementing a global recognition strategy—and this is another reason why specific recognition programs and strategies are not as prevalent in the workplace today. The barriers to implementing a global recognition program, including administrative complexities and compliance issues, leads many to disregard recognition as a driver of business outcomes. 

Essentially the perceived challenges outweigh the benefits in many leader’s minds.  

Tax implications and varying regulations across countries further complicate the process of putting together a global recognition strategy. However, the importance of establishing a recognition philosophy and engaging stakeholders early in the process can help overcome these issues.

Here are some ideas on how to get everyone aligned:

  • Audit existing programs. Many organizations have recognition programs scattered across the company that are run by different business units. Auditing and consolidating these will help understand needs. 
  • Position programs in a way that facilitates buy-in across the company. Help people understand the goals of your programs, and get better adoption as a result. 
  • Unite your recognition strategy under one roof. Whether it be with a software or a dedicated person/team, uniting recognition can create a cohesive, value-driven strategy that will build momentum.

As you build your recognition program, keep in mind that successful global recognition programs require a balance between global consistency and local customization. There is a strong need for a holistic approach and to integrate online platforms for social recognition while fostering offline recognition behaviors to accommodate everyone in the workforce. 

Keeping these considerations in mind will help guide you to success.

Recognition Strategy as the Solution for Larger Problems

A solid recognition strategy plays a crucial role in attracting and retaining top talent, enhancing the employee experience, and developing effective managers. However, the reluctance of managers to recognize their employees highlights the need for comprehensive training programs—especially if organizations are beginning a new program and need good adoption.

Here’s how to develop a strong recognition strategy:

  • Get buy-in from leadership by showing the benefits of a holistic recognition strategy. Tell the story of how recognition enhances the employee journey at every level and how it drives business outcomes. 
  • Create touchpoints at every step of the employee journey. Consider recognition at onboarding, throughout the year, to celebrate milestones, to appreciate success, and more. 
  • Consider global implications, but don’t let them overwhelm. Be locally focused first, then expand your efforts as recognition gains traction. some text
    • Be locally focused first
  • Adapt programs to individual culture and company. This makes recognition more personal and genuine, and will help with adoption.
  • Utilize technology to facilitate and automate efforts. Doing so saves you administrative headaches and gives you the confidence to move forward with additional initiatives.

Integrating recognition into the fabric of organizational culture is essential. Recognition should not be viewed as an isolated program but as a strategic initiative aligned with organizational values and goals—and one that truly drives ROI in every outcome. 

Why You Need Recognition

Recognition is more than just a feel-good gesture—it's a strategic imperative for organizations looking to drive engagement, productivity, and retention. By fostering a culture of recognition and implementing thoughtful strategies, organizations can cultivate meaningful connections across borders, driving employee satisfaction and organizational success.