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Reward and Recognition

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Employee Recognition Program Handbook

Department of Human Resource Management September 2000

DHRM 01/30/2001

TABLE OF CONTENTS INTRODUCTION............................................................................................ 2 RECOGNITION/REWARD............................................................................. 4 PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT ....................................................................... 7
KEY POINTS TO REMEMBER - ELEMENTS OF SUCCESSFUL PROGRAM ............................................. 7 STEP- BY-STEP GUIDELINES............................................................................................................ 9

IDEAS TO HELP MEET YOUR BUDGET ................................................ 17
NO/LOW COST RECOGNITION IDEAS............................................................................................ 17 MODERATE/HIGHER COST RECOGNITION IDEAS........................................................................... 18

APPENDIX A ................................................................................................ 18
RESOURCES ............................................................................................................................. 19
Web Sites ................................................................................................................................................................................19 Magazine/Internet Articles.................................................................................................................................................20 Books………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….2 0 Sample Programs……………………………………………………………………………………………………………21

APPENDIX B…………………………………………………………………….23

APPENDIX C…………………………………………………………………….26

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The Task Force on Employee Recognition, in conjunction with the Department of Human Resource Management (DHRM), revised Policy 1.20, Employee Recognition Programs for all full-time and part-time classified, restricted, “at will” and hourly employees. This policy promotes programs that recognize employees’ contributions to the overall objectives and efficient operation of State Government. Agencies shall develop and implement recognition programs. The Governor of Virginia, the Governor’s Cabinet and Agency Heads support programs within the agencies and State Government to recognize the contributions of their employees. This handbook serves as a guide to agency management in developing individual agency Employee Recognition Programs in accordance with DHRM Policy 1.20. The handbook provides: information on the importance of recognition and rewards; program development that links to the organization’s mission and values; steps to assist agencies in developing a successful program; ideas to consider within your budget; and includes an Appendix of various resources and tools. This handbook also provides an opportunity to: § § § § § § § § § Stimulate new thinking Assess your organization’s current rewards/recognition program Learn innovative approaches Think differently about current circumstances Better define and focus on areas that need to be changed Plan implementation approaches Select indicators and/or measures for success Plan internal customer feedback surveys Set improvement goals through assessment and reassessment

The role of the Department of Human Resource Management is to: § § § § § Provide policy review and interpretation Initiate training for supervisors/managers in the delivery of recognition programs Work with central agencies on funding strategies and statewide contracts for recognition items Serve as a resource and advocate to agencies on employee recognition programs Communicate and promote recognition programs to agencies

Agency Heads shall ensure availability of funds to support costs incurred by employee recognition programs that acknowledge employees’ contributions to the effective
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operation of an agency or of state government. Agencies should develop procedures for employee recognition awards to enhance good employee relations, develop programs that raise morale for all employees in the agency, and improve agency and state government operations. Agency Heads are encouraged to: § § § Develop a plan for employee recognition programs that links with the agency’s mission and goals Allocate resources to implement the programs and provide internal training for the programs Promote and serve as an advocate for agency employee recognition programs

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Employees not only want good pay and benefits, they also want to be valued and appreciated for their work, treated fairly, do work that is important, have advancement opportunities, and opportunities to be involved in the agency. Recognition and rewards play an important role in work unit and agency programs to attract and retain their employees. It is the day-to-day interactions that make employees feel that their contributions are appreciated and that they are recognized for their own unique qualities. This type of recognition may contribute to high morale in the work environment. So, it’s extremely important that managers, who communicate the agency goals to employees, are included in the development of recognition programs. WHAT’S MOST IMPORTANT IN A RECOGNITION PROGRAM? TO SENIOR MANAGEMENT: ♦Increases productivity ♦Produces Return On Investment (ROI) ♦Improves attitudes ♦Builds loyalty and commitment ♦Generates positive feedback ♦Empowers the workforce ♦Assures efficiency TO MANAGERS OF PROGRAM: ♦Includes efficient administration ♦Excites employees ♦Creates pride ♦Pleases management ♦Involves all employees ♦Develops a partnership with the workforce

TO EMPLOYEES: ♦Satisfies recognition needs ♦Creates positive recognition experience ♦Provides a wide selection of attractive, personalized awards ♦Provides timeliness of recognition ♦Guarantees quality of award


♦Fosters open communication of appreciation O.C. Tanner, 2000

The organization that can differentiate between, and effectively fulfill, all three levels of concerns (senior management, employees, and managers of the program) may achieve levels of performance they may never have thought possible. In addition, an effective recognition program should meet several essential criteria:
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(a) The recognition program does not exclude any employee (b) The employees know exactly what should be accomplished in order to earn recognition and rewards (c) The manager's success is tied to the employees' success Recognition is a leadership tool that sends a message to employees about what is important to the leaders and the behaviors that are valued. Managers can use this tool to help employees understand how their jobs contribute to the agency’s overall goals and how their performance affects the achievement of those goals. Often people have come to accept the notion that an employee is paid to do their job. So why should they be praised for doing what they’re paid to do? Praise of an employee reinforces, recognizes and motivates behaviors that you, as the manager, want to see. Recognition can be delivered in a number of ways. Think about just saying “Thanks.” What does praise cost? Praise is inexpensive. If it only takes a few minutes to reap days worth of increased productivity and morale, isn’t it worth it? This doesn’t mean that meaningless “warm fuzzies” are going to work, however. Use Jim Brintnall’s description of “What Makes a Good Reward?” (See Resources section for authors and articles.) Jim says it’s got to be SMART! That means that rewards should be: • • • Sincere. Above all else, a good reward should reflect a genuine expression of appreciation. Token acknowledgements leave something to be desired. Meaningful. To endure a motivating influence, rewards should be aligned with the values, goals, and priorities that matter the most. Adaptable. The diverse workplace demands alternatives. Consider creative options to keep your program fresh. No single reward format works for everyone all the time. [Recognition should be adapted and valuable to the receiver.] Relevant. Some personal dimension is essential to a good reward. No matter how formal or informal, expensive or affordable, the relevance of any recognition will be improved with a personal touch - - it’s a little thing that makes a big difference. [Recognition should be provided by someone of significance to the receiver.] Timely. It is important that rewards respond to the behavior they are intending to reinforce. Don’t let too much time pass or the reward may be devalued and credibility eroded.

To ensure that employees tie recognition into the work unit or agency’s strategic goals, be certain to tell employees what they did right and how it interacts with the goals. Include supervisors and employees in the development of your recognition program to represent the values and goals of a diverse cross-section of the work unit or agency. Provide the
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opportunity for recognition to come from a variety of sources. Peer-to-peer recognition usually is highly valued by employees. It can be used to develop a supportive work environment. For many employees, recognition received through the expression of genuine appreciation for the work they do is a reward. Being involved in a project or receiving special training may be another’s reward. Make no mistake, however, that most employees would not turn down a monetary, non-monetary or recognition leave reward! We have compiled a list of no, low, moderate, and higher costs options that agencies may consider. (See Section on Ideas to Help Meet Your Budget). In developing a program incorporating gifts or prizes, cash, and leave, remember that some employees are recipients and some are non-recipients. Pay careful attention to your goals and determine if a particular program works well in your work unit or agency. It is possible to cause more harm through competitive contests than to provide some form of recognition that rewards a greater number of your employees. Also, consider whether the recognition and reward program focuses employees more on the gift or prize than on the underlying goals of the program. Bear in mind that if your work unit or agency has problems with trust, you may need to work on improving those relationships prior to implementing a recognition program.

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Before you begin building a new recognition program, determine why your current recognition methods are not sufficient. It may be a lot simpler to change parts of your current program rather than create an entirely new program, especially if the current program is providing some positive results. You should understand and be able to communicate to employees how the recognition program ties into the agency’s vision so employees know what behaviors and goals that the agency values. Be certain to include your supervisors and employees or form a focus group to make recommendations for changes in the existing program or to assist in the design of the new program. These individuals can tell you how and why recognition is important to them. Ask them what they value in recognition and rewards and listen to their responses. Take particular notice of the cash, non-cash, and leave rewards that employees value and do not value. For example, an employee with low leave balances may value recognition leave more than the monetary or non-monetary reward. Key Points to Remember - Elements of Successful Program A. Link behaviors that are to be recognized and awarded to the organizational mission. In order for a rewards and recognition program to survive and be cost effective, it should contribute to the accomplishment of the organizational mission. Organizations spend time and money to implement a rewards and recognition program so that it will make a difference in how well the organization performs against its mission—its very reason for existence. Otherwise, if the behaviors rewarded are not linked to the organizational mission, behaviors that are not valuable to the organization could be reinforced, and lead to ineffective programs. In addition, a successful program that emphasizes the organizational mission should produce a positive effect on the work unit or agency. So, when managers see a direct contribution to the "bottom-line", it is more likely to sustain their interest in the effective use of rewards and recognition throughout the organization. Involve as many employees as possible in the design and development of the program. Although all parts of the program are important, the design and development of the program is probably the most important. Certainly, in the beginning it may take some time to design and develop a recognition and rewards program that meets the work unit, agency and employee needs. In attempting to design and develop an effective program, it is helpful to remember that the wants, desires, needs and values of the entire employee population are not identical. Steer clear of developing and designing a program that assumes that every employee wants the same rewards for a job well done, even though there are significant differences in their jobs, work locations, and work environment.
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Several elements constitute a good program. • Design the program so employees receive recognition and rewards as soon as possible • Use a variety of rewards: a mix of monetary, non-monetary, and recognition leave • Provide many opportunities for reinforcement • Find items that are motivating to a wide range of employees in the organization or provide employees with various choices B. Train all levels of management. Some managers are a natural when it comes to the elements of recognition and rewards. Others need to acquire skills related to recognizing employee’s contributions and giving effective feedback and positive reinforcement. Thus, all managers and supervisors should be trained on: • • • • • • Stressing the importance of the program and how it can impact the bottom line Providing employees an understanding on how they can impact the organization's goals and drive the business to success Discussing the approach for managing and rewarding both individual and team performance Explaining how the program works and how employees can receive recognition Learning ways to motivate and inspire others Learning how to communicate needs, expectations, and goals clearly

Ideally, training should begin as high in the hierarchy as possible and produce results that prompt involvement by executive management. The lack of participation by upper management may not prevent others from achieving significant results, but it may take longer to obtain results and they may be harder to maintain. C. Communicate the program's existence. Deciding how to communicate the the program depends largely upon the culture of the organization and the various types of media readily available--training, staff meetings, policy and procedures, intranet, email, newsletter, fliers. It is also important, on an on-going basis, for managers and supervisors to reconsider the options available to them to recognize various types of employee achievement. Plan a time to meet with employees and review the program's progress and solicit verbal feedback on how the program is working. It is a rare program that works without some changes in the design or process. Use the meeting to find out if employees truly understand how the program works and whether or not the rewards currently being used are indeed of value to the recipients. Also, a review meeting could serve as an opportunity to discuss means of improvement by identifying supporting behaviors other than those already included in the program. D. Evaluate the program’s effectiveness. All programs should be evaluated at least on an annual basis in order to ensure that the program's goals and objectives continue to be effective, are fresh and align with the work unit or agency objectives. You may want
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to consider surveying employees about the programs and requirements to determine how well the programs are known and received throughout the organization. (See Step 8, Evaluate the Program, in the Step-by-Step Guidelines Section).

Step-by-Step Guidelines This section provides step-by-step guidelines to assist managers in the development and assessment of recognition programs that are beneficial and meaningful to your employees. These steps are elaborated further in this section and may be followed out of order. The steps were obtained from, which provides a wealth of information. Below is a list of the steps. Good luck!

• • • • • • • •

Step One – Target Your Audience Step Two – Choose the Goal Step Three – Build a Budget Step Four – Develop Criteria Step Five – Choose the Awards Step Six – Communicate the Program Step Seven – Present the Award(s) Step Eight – Evaluate the Program

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Target your audience! Sometimes when managers and supervisors think about recognition, they may automatically assume that one plan fits all. Although each agency has strategic goals to accomplish, each work unit within the agency has distinct groups of employees who generally require different motivational strategies. First, you need to determine which part of your work unit or agency that needs to be motivated by achieving goals within the work environment. Each work unit should have a specific audience to target. Also, as the manager, ask yourself: • • • • • • • • What type(s) of work and jobs are in your audience? How many employees? Who are they? What motivates each person individually? Do we provide team, individual or both types of recognition? How are recognition programs communicated? What are our employees recognized for? How do our employees receive recognition?

Consider what should be accomplished. Only then can you design an efficient and effective program. Ask yourself, “What are my objectives and how do they fit within this work unit or agency and with these employees?”



In looking at the specific audience, also target a specific group of behaviors you want to improve. Is your goal to improve employee morale, reduce turnover, increase teamwork, or all of the above? Target behavior that has an impact on your bottom line. It also should be measurable, such as an increase in productivity or decrease in costs. Make a list of your expectations and hopes for employee recognition efforts. Focus on the particular challenges and objectives within your work unit or agency. What are the most pressing needs? Focus on the exact requirements of the top one or two. With this information, you should be in a better position to develop the program and set the goals. Find out why the goals have not been met in the past , and then determine whether the goals are truly what is needed. Also, consider the nature of the problem and if a recognition program is what you need.

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Are your current recognition methods sufficient? Determine if you need to redesign your existing program or design a new one. Include supervisors and employees, or use a focus group, in your determination. Identify the types of rewards (monetary, non-monetary and recognition leave) that employees value. Be specific in your objectives and state them plainly so that employees understand the “line of sight”. Focus on one or two goals. More than that may make the program cumbersome, difficult to understand, and from the employee’s standpoint unachievable. Can the goals be accomplished? What happens if a large number of the participants cannot attain the goals? Are there any other factors, which could hinder the desired outcomes? Is the proposed program directly related to work unit or agency goal? Are the goals difficult or expensive to measure? How do these goals interact with the agency’s vision? Will the program be in conflict or affected by any agency policies? Below are a variety of recognition and reward programs that you may want to consider for your work unit or agency: • • • • • • • • • • • • • • Safety achievement Honoring separating employees/long-term employment Exemplary attendance Productivity Creativity in new and innovative methods and procedures Excellent customer service Superior performance Employees of the week, month, quarter, year Positive attitudes High levels of skill Team players Initiative to get the job done Volunteering to represent the agency/work unit in the Combined Virginia Campaign Virginia Public Service

Once you have completed this step, carefully craft a statement regarding the purpose of the program that can be clearly understood by employees. Determine a suitable name for the program that is compatible with the work unit and/or agency culture.

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When developing your budget consider the following items in your estimate: • • • • • • • • • The costs of the promotional materials The potential number of recipients The costs of the awards The presentation type (formal/informal; location) The number of people expected to attend the award presentation The costs of food, facilities, decorations, equipment , etc. The costs for the presentation ceremony The costs related to administration The costs of training managers and supervisors



These are the criteria, usually written, that participants need to meet to succeed in the program. Be sure to include specific and straightforward goals that have some stretch, because it is unlikely that all employees will achieve the goals. Agencies have the option to set program limits on the number of award recipients and may want to consider different levels and types of awards. Consider surprises, such as two people tying for the reward. Be specific about the timeframe for which the goal must be completed. However, if you ask your target audience to reach too many benchmarks, the program may “turn off” employees. Also, you may want to create an atmosphere that excites employees so they are having some fun as a participant in the program. Focus on one or two goals. Consider how you will measure progress on an on-going basis. Create a measurement system that is understood by employees, viewed as fair, and quantifiable. You may consider using a focus group and ask for feedback on how specific jobs are measured. You could use measurements such as the number of customers served, safety, or positive customer service comments. Consider how often progress is reported (daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly). Send reports on a regular basis to keep interest levels high.

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Based on completion of the budget step, you may determine whether multiple choices are available to the recipient. Look at a variety of options within a certain price range that provide a good opportunity to meet the individual’s interests. Even a budget with few dollars can still afford a personal thank you for a job well done. (See Section on Ideas to Help Meet Your Budget). Choosing awards is one of the most important steps in the success of your program. If the reward chosen does not motivate or inspire employees to achieve the stated goal, the program may have less participation and not achieve the level of success expected. By taking into consideration input from the supervisors, employees, and/or the targeted audience, you should be able to determine the rewards that do or do not have meaning. Variety is important because recipients have varying tastes and interests. There are a wide range of awards that include monetary awards, non-monetary awards, and recognition leave. Non-monetary items may be purchased through the state contract held by the Division of Purchases and Supply or through other vendors.



Program communication is essential from the start up and should be ongoing. Rationale and results of the new program should be clearly communicated. There should be a clear link between what the target audience is rewarded for and the work unit or agency’s priorities. Ensure that everyone understands the relationship between his or her improvements and rewards. Ask employees to compare old and new programs. Follow up with employees so they know they’re being listened to. Make sure your front line supervisors understand the program and support it. By involving employees and supervisors in the development of the program, you already are well on your way! Use input from your target audience to develop a catchy theme for your recognition program and use it on your awards, promotional items, letterhead, labels and envelopes. Make sure the message is relevant and in accordance with your agency’s image.

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Teasers are a great way to pique the interest of your employees. If you can develop an interactive type of teaser, such as a puzzle, it may make the initial promotion more fun. Something in an unusual shape or bright color also catches attention more than a plain flier. Be creative! Have a kick-off meeting to provide full details about the program, criteria, awards, and target audience. Plan on having kickoff materials available to build momentum and excitement about the program. Tie the reward into the kickoff meeting. For example, if one of the rewards is a plaque or certificate, have one available. If your agency is scattered throughout the state, be certain to send materials to field offices and help them develop a kick-off meeting for their location. A video of the original kick-off meeting distributed to the various locations would be useful. Use promotional materials often to remind and reenergize employees participating in the program. Fliers, posters, brochures, bulletins, and your Intranet site are some other considerations. During the program, provide status updates via mail, E-mail or Intranet to the employees. Be certain to keep senior management up-to-date with reports of the program’s success or need for fine-tuning.



Generally if something is worth recognizing, it’s worth publicizing. Make sure your presentation matches the significance of the recognition. You may choose to use formal or informal means of recognition. However, as a manager, you need to consider the additional financial impact of a formal presentation. Take the opportunity to let employees know what their individual achievements or team accomplishments are and the type of rewards available. This can be accomplished by verbal, written, E-mail or Intranet communication: • • • One-on-one with the employee In the immediate group or work unit In an agency-wide meeting

You can present during potluck lunches (zero cost to agency), low cost (doughnuts, cake, ice cream), moderate cost events (box lunches), and during higher cost events (catered picnic, restaurant dinners). Remember to factor in the range of costs from tips, deliveries, tents, paper supplies, decorations and utensils to rewards and entertainment.
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It is important to consider whether the recipient prefers to participate in a public presentation or in a less formal setting. Why wouldn’t they want to attend the presentation if it’s all about recognition? If they are shy or introverted, they may feel uncomfortable with the attention. By having your program fully developed and clearly communicated, it can be easily conveyed that the presentation is part of the program criteria. Consider carefully the potential impact this may have on those exemplary employees who do not “like a fuss.” Above all, make your presentation to the employee worthy of the reason that you are recognizing the employee!



It’s important to measure the success of your recognition program by considering both tangible and intangible results. Ask for feedback from upper management, and your supervisors and employees (participants and non-participants). Distributing an employee assessment survey prior to and during the program initiative also may be worthwhile. Also, reviewing turnover rates and attendance/tardy records should provide some indication of success of your program as well. Consider conducting a survey of your customers that may indicate the success of your program. Formal surveys or informal customer feedback can provide the basis for your evaluation. Consider developing a survey or informal set of questions using the information listed below. After you have completed your evaluation, you can then begin the process of fine-tuning. Employee Reaction • Did employees clearly understand the program and its objectives? • Was the workgroup excited about the program? • Did employees like the rewards or activities provided? • What did employee participants and non-participants like/dislike about the program? How well is the program understood? • Did the program clearly explain how and why you should recognize others? • Were the guidelines clear and communicated well? • Was the nomination and award process understood? • What were the results, broken down by work unit, region, agency-wide? • What was everyone’s favorite part of the program?

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How has behavior changed? • Are recognition tools being used more often? • How frequently do you, as a manager, and your supervisors recognize their employees? • Did we meet our less tangible goals – improving morale, fostering loyalty, and inspiring suggestions? • Is an appropriate level of recognition given for the behavior? • How often and to what extent is recognition a part of the work unit or agency’s communication vehicles? Overall • Did the program meet your expectations? • How is the new or modified program better than the previous program or activity? • Are there areas for improvement? • What would the results have been without the incentive program? • What did you like/dislike about the program? • Would you recommend continuing the program next year? • What percentage of employees participated, and what percentage were nonparticipants? • How did the participants’ performance measure against the nonparticipants? • How many and which participants did or did not succeed and why? • Were your budget calculations adequate?

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Surveys and studies over time have shown that employees want to be acknowledged for the work they do! Providing timely recognition for a job well-done costs very little, but may reap the manager big rewards. Think of it this way - if it only took five minutes of our time to produce five days of increased productivity, most of us would jump on the bandwagon. Just a quick thank you to an employee shows that their work is appreciated and recognizes them individually. Also remember that a blanket “Thank you” – thanks for doing a great job – is too broad for the recipient to attach very much meaning. Tell the employee what you’re thanking them for – “You really handled that customer well” – and why – “Our goal is to provide good customer service and sometimes that’s not easy with a difficult customer.” If someone in the agency thinks another employee has done something well, have him or her send you an E-mail. Then if you personally forward the message to the recipient, include your “Thank you” note. It’s a great way to let employees know that others think they do a great job and that you, as their manager, appreciate them, as well. What is important to employees is being appreciated for the work they’ve done, being kept informed about things that affect them, and having a manager who takes the time to listen to them. Taking the time to provide recognition that is unique to that individual is more meaningful and memorable for the employee. Managers, if you receive recognition yourself, recognize the contributions and support of your staff, as well. This sends a clear message to your employees that “We’re a team.” No/Low Cost Recognition Ideas These ideas are limited only by your own imagination and creativity. Here are a few ideas that are low cost to implement. • • • • • • • Personal thank you, thank you notes or emails – good deed awards Post on ‘recognition board,’ bulletin board, newsletters, web site Hall of Fame – pictures of your employees Submit article to Intranet for agency viewing Submit article to local/regional/national newspaper regarding employee’s achievement Scrapbook with pictures of achievements throughout the year Ask a senior manager to attend your staff meeting when you recognize employees for their achievements

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No/Low Cost Recognition Ideas (continued) • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • Recognition lunch Informal party – coffee/Danish or cookies/drinks or ice cream Gift certificate to restaurant Traveling trophy (and how about a photo of the manager congratulating the award recipients) Certificate or plaque Mugs, pens, tee shirts, etc. with team or agency logo Inexpensive gift related to employee’s hobby Flowers Certificate for CD’s or Books Movie Tickets Inclusion in special project Alternate work schedules Opportunity for cross-training Recognize outstanding skill or expertise by allowing employee to mentor another Rotate the responsibility for being the unit representative at meetings Include employee in goal setting and work planning Having employee attend ceremony or opening upon the completion of a special project

Moderate/Higher Cost Recognition Ideas If you are in the fortunate position of having funding to spend on recognition and rewards, only your available budget and creativity limits this category! These suggestions tend to be more expensive and in some situations more time consuming. Be imaginative when thinking about developing rewards that your employees will value and appreciate! • • • • • • • • • • • Savings bonds Gift Certificates Trophy Clocks Cash bonuses Time off Jewelry Enrollment in seminar or additional training Catered lunch Annual Picnic An excursion for the department – night out for dinner, bowling, sports event, etc.


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RESOURCES Appendix A provides a compilation of research on recognition and rewards to aid you in your search for information on recognition programs (web sites, books, articles and sample programs). Your research can be enhanced by the wealth of information available at your fingertips by accessing the Internet. The listings below were used in the development of the manual and contain more in-depth material that you may review. Web Sites National Association for Employee Recognition Incentive Magazine Workforce Online Dr. Kudoz Foundation for Enterprise Development Meaning At Work Nelson Motivation, Inc. International Personnel Mgmt. Assn. Society for HR Management WorldatWork, formerly American Compensation Association Arizona Department of Administration Penn State University Southwest Airlines’ Star of the Month Department of Transportation’s Awards/ Recognition Program U. S. Coast Guard’s Reward & Recognition Handbook U. S. Department of Agriculture’s Guide for Employee Recognition University of Texas @ Austin’s Reward & Recognition Program

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Vendor Web Sites Cardex Incentives Flooz Gift Certificates GiftPoint Bennett Brothers, Inc.

Gift Certificate Center Co. Motivation Online The Miller Company

Magazine/Internet Articles
“What Makes a Good Reward?” by Jim Brintnall, Debbie Gustafson, Bob Nelson, Recognition News, Vol. 2, Issue 2. “Middle Management: Your Lifeline to Recognition Buy-In,” by Kimberly Smithson, Recognition.Org. “Six Secrets of Successful Recognition,” by Kim Smithson, “Self Actualization and Self Esteem are the Highest Order of Incentives, by Frank C. Hudetz, “Build Intrinsic Motivation Into Your Incentive Programs,” by Bob Nelson, “How Can the Web help Employee Recognition?” by Todd Raphael, “The Power of Delivering People-Pleasin’ Praise,” by Kimberly Smithson, “Value of Impact on Recognition Programs,” by Kim Smithson,



USDA Guide for Employee Recognition 1001 Ways to Reward Employees by Bob Nelson 1001 Ways to Energize Employees by Bob Nelson Work & Rewards in the Virtual Workplace: A “New Deal” for Organizations and Employees by N Fredric Crandall, Fredric Crandall and Marc Wallace Getting Employees to Fall in Love With Your Company by Jim Harris Recognition, Gratitude & Celebration by Patrick Townsend and Joan Gebhardt Rewarding and Recognizing Employees by Joan Klubnik
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101 Recognition Secrets: Tools for Motivating and Recognizing Today’s Workforce by Rosalind Jeffries Secrets of a Successful Employee Recognition System by Daniel Boyle Workplace Recognition: Step by Step Examples of a Positive Reinforcement Strategy by Sue Glasscock and Kimberly Gram Rewarding & Recognizing Employees: Ideas for Individuals, Teams and Managers by Joan Klubnik How to Recognize and Reward Employees by Donna Deeprose Innovative Reward Systems for the Changing Workplace by Thomas Wilson and Rosabeth Kanter Employee Suggestion Systems: Boosting Productivity and Profits by Charles Martin and Robert Bassford Maximizing the Impact of Recognition: An Approach to Rewarding Employee Contributions (Building Blocks in Total Compensation) by Donald Hay You Made My Day: Creating Co-Worker Recognition and Relationships by Janis Allen and Michael McCarthy Managing Reward Systems by Michael Armstrong

Sample Programs Included are state agencies, counties and cities, companies, and other organizations who have developed recognition programs. Web sites, where applicable, have been included for your convenience. State Agencies • Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services • Department of Conservation and Recreation • Department of Criminal Justice System • Department of Transportation • Department of Housing and Community Development • Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation • Department of Taxation • Virginia Commonwealth University - • George Mason University - Virginia Cities and Counties • Chesterfield County • Fairfax County • City of Hampton Companies/Others Universal Pitt State Employee of the Year Atlantic County ERP Business Express Airlines Cal State University, San Marcos
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Companies/Others Continued Case Western Reserve University Daylight Design GeophysicalInstitute Hennepin County ERP National ER & Awards Ohio State U. Physical Facilities Petco U. of Cal, Ag & Natural Resources University of Memphis University of North Carolina

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The following is an example of a survey for distribution to employees to assess your work unit or agency’s current climate concerning employee recognition programs. Sample Employee Recognition Program Survey Dear Employee: The results of this survey will help us to assess current and potential employee recognition programs. This survey should take no longer than ten minutes to fill out. Your individual responses will be used to improve how {Name of Organization Here} recognizes and rewards its employees. Your responses will be kept strictly confidential. Instructions: Please indicate your response to the following questions by filling in the appropriate square with a dark pen. OVERALL EMPLOYEE OPINION
1. How important to you personally is each of the following? Not at All Important Receiving formal recognition for your efforts in making a difference Being recognized by management for your efforts Being recognized by peers and co-workers for your efforts Receiving recognition for team accomplishments Feeling that your work is valued and appreciated Feeling a spirit of teamwork and cooperation among coworkers Knowing that {name of organization here} treats its employees fairly AGENCY PERFORMANCE 2. In your experience, how well does {name of organization here} perform in delivering each of the following: Not at all Well Giving formal recognition for employee efforts to "make a difference” Management recognizing employees whose efforts make a difference Co-workers and peers recognizing employees who are making a difference Recognizing individual team members equally for their efforts 23 DHRM 01/30/2001 About Average Extremely Well Some Importance Extremely Important

Building a spirit of teamwork and cooperation among co-workers Demonstrating that your work is valued and appreciated Treating employees fairly

OVERALL EMPLOYEE RECOGNITION 3. How would you rate your overall satisfaction with the current rewards and recognition programs offered by {name of organization here}? Very Satisfied Neither Satisfied or Dissatisfied Not Satisfied



Have you ever received an award from {name of organization here}? Yes, if yes, what for? No


Have you ever nominated someone for an award at {name of organization here}? Yes, if yes, what for? No OVERALL EMPLOYEE RECOGNITION


Thinking about the employee recognition program at {name of organization here}, to what extent do you agree or disagree with the following statements? Stronly Disagree Neither Agree or Disagree Strongly Agree

The criteria for the recognition programs has been clearly explained to me I am aware of the procedures for nominating an employee for an award It does not take much time and effort to nominate employees for an award The recipients of the employee recognition awards are adequately publicized The recognition programs are fair to all employees 24 DHRM 01/30/2001

Recognition programs are treated the same by all departments/cost centers I am aware of the gift awards associated with the program I can select an award, if recognized, that will have value to me

Employee(s) of the Month awards should be issued 7. In your experience how well does the current recognition and programs perform in delivering each of the following: Not at All The criteria for the recognition programs has been clearly explained to me Recognizing a special project and/or achievement Recognizing outstanding achievement individually or as a team About Average Extremely Well

Recognizing employees who consistently follow the organization's mission Recognizing employees who have demonstrated extraordinary achievements


Please rate the importance of the following criteria as qualifications for an award: Not at All Important Average Importance Extremely Important

Outstanding performance Focus on innovation Consistently doing a good job Exceeding performance objectives Cost savings to {name of organization here} Exceeding service expectations Demonstrated team work

25 DHRM 01/30/2001

GROUP INCENTIVE PLANS* Agencies have an opportunity to develop Group Incentive Plans based on the revisions made to Policy 1.20, Employee Recognition Programs. These plans are developed to achieve specific goals that support the work unit and/or agency’s mission and goals. Examples are increasing productivity, new innovations, and improved customer service. The rewards granted link to the levels of performance and improvements achieved by a group/team over a specified period of time. The major advantages to these plans include: encouraging teamwork; linking pay with the level of performance achieved; focusing on a specific goal(s); and sharing the success amongst the group/team. As stated in the Employee Recognition Programs handbook, goal setting and measuring progress is key to the results and outcomes of any recognition program/plan. Sample Plan Statement of the Problem: The XYZ Unit has significant problems with their internal customers because they are not delivering services in a timely manner. The process for routing forms to Unit XYZ is manual, includes several handoffs, and customers find the forms difficult to complete. Goal 1: Customer Service Excellence • Measure: Survey internal customers on their satisfaction of services delivered 90% rating of customer satisfaction based on quarterly survey data over a 12 month period Goal 2: Process Improvement • Measure: Major project management plan for forms design and electronic routing 95% of form design and conversion to electronic routing process is completed and tested within a 12 month period Employees impact these measures by: 1. Developing project plans for surveying internal customers 2. Developing project plans for designing/converting/testing/routing forms 3. Meeting customer satisfaction through timely/quality delivery of services 4. Meeting customer satisfaction through testing electronic forms 5. Project completion dependent on availability of resources
26 DHRM 01/30/2001

Available Awards: • Monetary award (bonus based on team’s overall level of performance/improvement and available funding) and/or • Up to 5 days of Recognition Leave (based on team’s overall level of performance/improvement • Awards granted after the Finish Date Available Funding: $1,000 Plan Participants: 4 Plan Start and Finish Date: Award Distribution: Goal 1. – Customer Service Excellence 90% rating - 100% 85% rating - 75% 80% rating - 50% Below 80% - 0% Calculations: $1,000/4 = $250 (100%); $750/4 = $187.50 (75%); $500/4 = $125 (50%) And/or Goal 2. – Process Improvement 95% completion – 5 days Recognition Leave 85% completion - 3 days Recognition Leave 75% completion - 1 day Recognition Leave Beginning and end of Fiscal Year

* WorldatWork[formally American Compensation Association], and International Personnel Management Association course, Public Sector PS201, New Strategies and Applications for Public Sector Compensation.

27 DHRM 01/30/2001

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