How to Show Employee Appreciation in Your Office (And All The Reasons You Should!)

Ana Gotter
November 28, 2022
23 Unique Ways To Show Employee Appreciation In Your Office | Hoppier

We all want to feel appreciated and valued in all areas of our lives, and there’s significant proof this is particularly important in the workplace.

Letting your employees know you value them as individual workers and that the work they do helps keep office morale, productivity, and employee retention rates high. This isn’t something you should put on the back burner or save only for Employee Appreciation Day.

Instead, employee appreciation should be a frequent affair, woven into the very fabric of your company culture.

Not sure how exactly to do this in ways that feel authentic and that your employees will love? We’ll share 23 creative ways you can show employee appreciation, but first, let’s look at some data that explains exactly how important it is to celebrate key milestones like work anniversaries or just a job well done.

How Showing Employee Appreciation Benefits You 

Employee appreciation ideas are fairly straightforward. From something as simple as saying, “Great work,” or more complex gestures like creating an internal awards system, it doesn’t just benefit your team—it also benefits you.

Employee appreciation increases employee morale, which is tied to lower churn rates. You can attract the best people when they hear about your incredible company values, plus you can keep them for much, much longer.

A GlassDoor study found employers will retain half of their employees longer if they practice staff appreciation every day. The same study found that 81% of employees will be motivated to work harder when their boss shows appreciation for their work, which is significantly higher than the 37% who say they’re motivated to work harder because they fear losing their job, or the 38% because of their demanding boss.

When employees feel valued and satisfied, they're also more productive. In fact, promoting employee engagement can lead to a 21% increase in profitability.

Despite employee appreciation and recognition being so valuable, it still isn't a common practice. Case in point—only one in three workers received recognition for work well done.

The same case study found the most memorable (and often impactful) recognition came directly from the employee’s direct manager, showing you don’t need to have complex systems in place or ritually award ‘Employee of the Month’ titles. Even simple gestures like a shoutout on social media or a handwritten note work just as well.

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How to Express Employee Appreciation In Meaningful Ways 

There are a vast array of ways that you can express to your team members that you’re grateful for the work that they do, letting them know that they’re valued. It will typically be best to incorporate as many different options into your company’s mix as possible, ensuring that everyone feels recognized on a regular basis.

Let’s take a look at some of the best ways to demonstrate employee appreciation.  

Offer perks for remote and in-office workers

It’s hard to say no to office perks, but today's remote workers aren't hanging around the water cooler. Instead, consider ways you can send snacks and beverages to your employees at home, which will make them feel valued (and fueled) for the day.

1. Provide healthy eats for free. Healthy snacks that everyone likes to eat is a small perk that can go a long way in showing that you value your employees. Hoppier has you covered here

2. Maintain a clean office. Sending a cleaning crew to clean employee home offices prevents your team from needing to worry about vacuuming, dusting, and organizing. Instead, they can get to work and save time while thinking clearly and creatively in a fresh space.

3. Provide your team with quality office supplies. It’s a small thing, but not having to equip your own paper clips and sharpies can go a long way. Charging docks, headphones, and journals are also great accessories for the at-home office and make great corporate gifts.

4. Offer collective meals on occasion. Have delivery sent to your employee's doors on a regular basis. Perhaps it's pizzas once a week, coffee twice a month, or even a food truck to the company parking lot where employees can safely gather. It’s hard not to feel appreciated when you’ve got amazing food to munch on as proof. 

5. Cover their parking or transit. I’ve had a job where I was required to pay $70 a year for a parking permit just to get into the office. That doesn’t make you feel so great, so cover a yearly parking pass, or consider covering transit to meetings or conferences. 

Express gratitude in more ways than one

Sometimes, all employees need to hear to know they’re appreciated is “Good work on that project.” Here are some great one-on-one feedback and appreciation ideas you can try:

6. A thank-you card. Especially if someone has really gone above and beyond, a personal thank you card could be in order. There's nothing more special than getting a nice, personalized message in the mail.

7. Go out of your way to recognize each employee. Everyone has a strength they bring to the table, and together, everyone shines. Host an awards ceremony where you call out everyone's shining light. We recommend recognizing everyone together to foster a sense of gratitude among the entire team and encourage teamwork.

8. Incorporate more positive feedback into the employee review process. Hold regular employee reviews. Train your management staff to incorporate positive feedback and a few words of thanks to each employee. You can also have each employee write a nice note about an employee's skills and work presence, to show how valued they really are.

girl happily drinking cocktail on beach on blue background

Create a culture of appreciation and advancement 

Employee appreciation efforts are most impactful when they’re integrated into your company culture. Embrace this fully, offering opportunities for career advancement or employee services like the ones listed below.

9. Offer regular training. Equip your people with the necessary skills and education to do their job well, and see them excel. Have them take time out of their schedules to learn about cutting-edge technology, tools, and research. You can also offer the chance for employees to learn a creative pursuit, like cooking or creative writing, on Masterclass.

10. Set up mentorship programs. Offering career advancement opportunities and mentoring are sure to excite your best employees. Create one-on-one mentorship programs with higher-level employees that teach your staff new skills coming straight from someone they admire.

11. Cover educational conferences. Conferences are an excellent place to learn new skills, but they’re also a strong networking opportunity. Covering one or two conferences a year (including a hotel stay if possible) is a good way to show appreciation for your team.

12. Provide employee services like tax days. Think about it: no one likes doing their taxes, and the more complex they are, the more we fear getting audited. Services like employer-sponsored tax support during tax season are a huge asset. 

13. Set up employee recognition programs. These are formal programs that you can use to facilitate peer-to-peer recognition, often with financial rewards received as a perk for participants.

Do something fun 

At the end of a busy period or during a slower season, take some time to do something fun for your team. This counts as going above and beyond in a way that your team may recognize.

14. Get everyone personalized coffee cups. This gives you a chance to pick something each team member would personally like and even add some humor, which is good for morale. Plus, they'll provide a fun talking point on Zoom.

15. Throw a work party. End a Friday afternoon a little early and have an in-office or virtual party with food, drinks, and games. Think: Mario Cart tournaments at the end of every project period for positive team building, or take-home cocktail kits for the perfect zoom happy hour.

16. Take everyone out to lunch. Taking your teams out for lunch is a proven employee recognition ideas to show you care. Pick a fan-favorite restaurant everyone will love. Be mindful of those with allergies or eating restrictions if possible.

17. Give tickets to a virtual event. What if you could make it easy for employees to tune into events from anywhere? Whether it's a live concert, a broadway production, or a comedy show, Hoppier is one of the best virtual gifts out there. You can set up a Hoppier gift to pay for a range of live events through different vendors. Then, the recipient can choose from whatever specific events they'd like to see.

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Back it up with financial rewards 

It’s time to put your money where your mouth is… literally. While a day off is great, employees are (unsurprisingly) heavily motivated by financial rewards. Also, well-paid employees stay longer, reducing the costs associated with high churn and going the extra mile for your company’s success.

18. Offer bonuses. If your team knocked it out of the park and you’ve got any room in the budget to give bonuses, do so. Even $100 a person makes a big impact. You can get more creative with bonuses by offering sales challenges as part of a sales kickoff.

19. Use paid time off as an incentive. One more vacation day or 8 more hours of PTO? Very few people will turn their noses up at that. Offer this perk to show just how much you value employee's hard work.

20. Distribute gift cards. Order gift cards in bulk, and pass them around to team members at the end of a big project or during the holidays. Keep a few on hand for birthdays and events like weddings or baby showers. 

Promote employee well-being at all times

Healthy employees are happy employees, and taking time to invest in how your team feels can go a long way for everyone. The good news: wellness is becoming more accessible than ever, so you can easily create a corporate wellness program for remote employees, too.

21. Introduce a fitness perks program. A recent trend that's received quite a lot of popularity, fitness perks give employees the chance to stay healthy mentally and physically without the extra cost. Provide a monthly stipend for fitness, and you can even offer group classes online so that employees can stay motivated together.

22. Make mindfulness accessible. Mindfulness can make your employees happier, less stressed, and more resilient. Give your team members a mental health stipend that can be used towards talk therapy, meditation classes, yoga, and more. You're guaranteed to see a difference!

23. Offer free coaching services. Health coaches can help people learn to incorporate better habits into their lifestyles, whether it's improving sleep, cooking healthier, or walking daily. Give your workers a chance to access the expertise of health coach so they can focus on goals that matter to them.

Conclusion 

Employee appreciation can be easy to show, and even small changes in your company culture to focus on recognizing your workers can increase productivity significantly. You’ll also keep your most skilled workers longer, making your business more successful. Plus, it can cut down on the amount of time you spend finding, hiring, and training new team members. 

For best results, incorporate a mixture of different tactics to demonstrate employee appreciation into your company culture, ensuring that employees are shown appreciation on multiple fronts. This is a low-cost and high-reward strategy that will easily pay for itself before you know it. Visit our other posts for more gift ideas that say "thank you" to your employees!

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