All employers know how hard it is to find employees right now. It’s not because there are no good workers. It’s because employees no longer feel valued.
How can you show new and current employees that you appreciate the work that they do for your company? That’s right, employee incentives.
We’re here to talk all about the benefits of employee incentives and offer a few ideas to get you started. Read on to learn more.
Benefits of Employee Incentives
Many misguided bosses don’t understand the importance of employee incentives. After all, aren’t you already incentivizing your employees by paying them?
At the moment, employers are largely fighting for new talent, not the other way around. As Suzanne Clark says, “The state of American business is competitive.” If you’re not offering what other businesses are offering, you’re going to fall behind.
Employee incentives motivate employees. Employees will want to do better, work harder, and be more innovative if you’re showing your appreciation for them. If you’re trying to figure out how to motivate an employee, words of praise are no longer enough.
Employee incentives can cost employers money, but with the boosted productivity, the return on investment is worth that upfront cost.
First: Ask Your Employees
When you start looking for employee incentives, consider taking a poll or creating an anonymous portal where employees can input their thoughts. Because these incentives are for the benefit of the employees, it makes sense that you’d choose something that they requested.
Make sure that the notes are anonymous. You don’t want any of your employees to feel “called out” or too nervous to submit their ideas.
Incentivize (Almost) Everything
Many employers think that incentives should only be for employees who go so far above and beyond that they’re doing the work of multiple people on their own. While those employees do deserve rewards, it’s unrealistic to expect that from all of your employees.
If you want your employees to work harder, incentivize any and all good behavior.
Any time your employees meet their goals, innovate, help other employees, or make great sales, they deserve incentives. You may think that these things are just “part of their job,” but if you’re trying to get your employees to feel more motivated, they still deserve rewards.
When you offer small incentives to your employees for small “wins,” you’re encouraging them to work harder for larger incentives in the future.
Potential Employee Incentive Ideas
So how exactly should you incentivize your employees? If you’re looking for ideas beyond what your employees recommended, we have a few suggestions.
Here are our favorite employee incentives examples that you can try bringing into your workplace.
Health and Wellness Incentives
Health and wellness are huge right now. More and more people are paying attention to their health since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. They’re trying to get fit, eat well, and stay healthy.
Why not include health and wellness as incentives?
Aside from a strong employee health insurance plan, you could start offering stipends for your employees that go toward health and wellness costs. For example, the stipend could go toward a gym membership, a dance class, or workout gear.
Produce subscription boxes make great employee incentives as well. You could also start bringing healthy food into the break room when your employees are, as a team, staying productive.
An Employee “Store”
Employee stores are growing in popularity in 2022. Instead of offering small trinkets, stores allow employees to choose their own rewards.
While “store” is in the title, employees don’t have to spend their own money on their incentives. Instead, you award employees with points when they meet or exceed certain goals.
Employees can spend those points right away on smaller items, like office supplies, or wait until they accumulate enough points for larger items. Larger items may include clothing, small appliances, and more.
There are several employee store options available on the web, so find one that works for you and your employees.
Offering your employees schedule flexibility or the ability to work in a hybrid workplace is a huge incentive, but it’s also a huge commitment. Make sure that all of your employees are capable of being productive in this type of environment before you offer it.
Hybrid and flexible schedules allow employees to create a better work/life balance. Employees can work when they’re most productive instead of on a traditional schedule.
Schedule flexibility and a hybrid workplace will also attract other potential employees, so you’ll have an easier time finding qualified workers.
Ample Time Off
Offering extra paid time off is a great incentive for hardworking employees. You may think that it will cause employees to “abuse the system,” but this isn’t true.
When employees know that they’re able to take time off when they need it, they’ll be more motivated to work so they can earn extra time. Because they’re not experiencing burnout, they’ll also be more productive when they come back from their days off.
Cost of Living Raises
This is one of the best incentives that you can offer your employees. When you’re offering bonuses or raises to high-performing employees, try to match the cost-of-living increases.
While small raises may seem like great incentives, it’s no longer enough if you want to retain your best employees. Make sure that they can’t get better benefits elsewhere by giving them the compensation that they deserve.
Offer the Best Employee Incentives Around
If you want to retain your best employees, start offering employee incentives! Your employees deserve to be recognized and rewarded for their hard work. Let them know how much you value them by incentivizing good behavior.
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