The COVID-19 pandemic and lockdowns have changed everything about the way we work. The majority of the workforce is working remotely today. This has put forward a new set of challenges for employees and employers alike. Working away from the office and colleagues, our employees need to feel recognized and rewarded for their efforts now more than ever.
According to research, 64% of employees say that recognition and rewards are more important while working remotely. Yet only 26% of employees can claim that their company has come up with new ways to reward them during the lockdowns. Proper acknowledgments and rewards are shown to increase employee productivity, engagement, and overall well-being. It is time we adapted our employee recognition efforts to cater to remote employees. Let’s have a look at the top 10 ways to reward remote employees during the lockdown.
Top Ways To Reward Remote Employees
1. Hold virtual celebrations
When employees worked out of the office, it was easier to celebrate achievements together. Accomplishments such as the closing of a sale could be greeted with a round of applause, a loud cheer, or a team lunch. Now that the employees are working remotely, conduct virtual celebrations on video conferencing apps like Zoom or Skype to celebrate such achievements. Your employees can interact informally with colleagues, rejoice over triumphs, and recreate that workplace feeling they could be missing at home. Also, the time spent with colleagues can help relieve the isolation remote workers often feel.
2. Acknowledge on Public Channels
Make sure that recognition is done publicly and company-wide to celebrate successes. This includes acknowledging employees in your company chat on Slack, or on a platform that has a social feed where everyone can see the acknowledgment. Urge other employees to engage with the acknowledgment as well. When performed publicly, recognition can be a massive motivator for employees, and peers participating in the celebration can only encourage motivation even more. Company-wide recognition also encourages your new remote employees to feel more like a part of the team, allowing them to socialize with the rest of their colleagues.
3. Provide Opportunities for Skill Development
A productive way to reward employees during lockdown is by presenting them with skill development opportunities. Confined to their homes, now is the ideal time to take on new projects, learn and develop new skills. With zero outdoor activities going on, we have more spare time than ever to focus on our professional skills. Present discounted or free online courses through platforms like Skillshare, Coursera, etc… So employees can progress professionally in a period when the world is at a standstill.
4. Technology perks
The tools your employees use for work can have a huge impact on their job satisfaction. Having an additional monitor, a tablet, better quality headphones, a better laptop, or access to premium apps might seem trivial, but these things are important. Top companies invest in giving their employees top-of-the-line tools to work with. Give proper care and attention to your employees and they will take care of your business. So consider rewarding your remote employees an annual technology allowance.
Read more on Best Remote Work Software Tools in 2021
5. Workspace upgrades
We put considerable effort into designing the ergonomics of the office. Using the right chair and desk for work is also important for remote employees. While your office workers benefit from working in top-class facilities, you can offer your remote team rewards to upgrade their home workspaces. Employees might prefer a stand-up desk, a proper office chair, or even gaming chairs for their remote workspace. Improving the workspace of remote employees will also directly impact their productivity and wellbeing.
6. Give Employees Local Treats for Accomplishments
Did your remote employee smash their monthly target? Accomplish a challenging task? You don’t have to spend a lot of time or money to give them a meaningful reward. Little rewards can also feel highly personal and rewarding. For instance, look for gift cards at a restaurant near your remote employees or send a gift basket from a local shop. Using local businesses will make the reward seem more personal to them. This can be especially true in cases of remote employees working from far away locations.
7. The gift of wellness
With the lockdowns going on and having to work alone, away from colleagues, the physical and mental wellbeing of employees could be at an all-time low. A study has revealed that 76% of Americans have gained over 16 pounds since the lockdowns started. Since gym memberships are worthless since all the gyms are closed, rewarding your employees through digital wellness programs can help them take control of their health. It also shows them you value the well-being of your employees.
8. Award an Employee of the Month
The employee of the month award is not a brand-new idea. But it is rarely used productively. When recognizing your remote workers, you must use an adequate method to decide the winners. The employee of the week or month program should be based on your team size. The more possibilities for recognition, the better. But the awards should not lose value also. You could let employees nominate each other and use team surveys to choose a winner. This will build the team mentality among remote workers.
9. Acknowledge the small wins
Did you have a video meeting where everyone joined on time? There were zero technical difficulties? Do a sly acknowledgment as the meeting finishes. Adapting to remote work has been difficult for everyone. Staying light-hearted about it and recognizing these small achievements will bring a smile to your employees’ faces. Most of the time we ignore these small wins. But by recognizing and celebrating them, our teams can realize the joys of teamwork and continue to grow.
10. Let Your Employees Pick a Subscription
Letting your employees choose a subscription service for their reward is very practical in the current scenario. It also works as a continuous reminder that you appreciate them. Make a list of subscription alternatives and let your employees pick the one they prefer. Considering that there are subscription services for almost everything now, the options can be endless. Physical gifts would make the reward more memorable than electronic subscriptions.
Rewarding your remote employees during the lockdown can be challenging. But by making the most of technology, we can still show that we appreciate them. These are the top 10 ways to reward remote employees during the lockdown.
To properly reward remote employees, we must appropriately evaluate their performance. Use an employee time and productivity tracking software like Desklog to monitor the performance of your remote employees to reward them adequately.