Employee recognition programs are extremely important in the workplace. Companies have often failed at keeping employees engaged due to a lack of recognition. According to recent research, a company loses one entry-level employee per month, primarily due to lack of raises or other recognition. Companies are losing money on these employees because it costs much more for the company to replace an employee than it does to offer him more compensation.

So how do you fix this turnover issue? Companies are starting to think smarter when it comes to engaging their employees early in their career. It’s not all about money either. With a stronger and more active millennial workforce, understanding how recognition works and when it’s appropriate will save your company headaches down the road. Programs that recognize employees early and often can save your company millions while decreasing turnover and improving your company culture. Here are three easy steps you can take to create an early recognition program in your workplace.

Create a mentorship program

When a new employee is hired, connect them instantly with a mentor. This allows your employee to engage in one-on-one feedback and encouragement from someone who wants to see them succeed. Fostering this type of environment will allow you to use mentors to promote early recognition of their colleagues.

Foster a collaborative environment

Another way of providing early recognition in a cost-effective way is to create a collaborative work environment. This way you’ll have not only peer feedback, but a collaborative environment that creates ongoing feedback for each individual involved.

Introduce gamification into the workplace

Incentive ideas like gamification introduce games and friendly competition into the workplace. Competition in the workplace allows employees to be recognized by their achievements, which increases their visibility to their employers. Gamification is successful in HR, recruiting, and hiring for a number of reasons, first and foremost the fact that it taps into the innate human nature that pushes us to win, succeed, and go further.

Millennials have become a generation that is all about being rewarded and recognized for each little thing they do. Since four out of five employees will be millennials, it’s important to foster this type of environment by implementing one or more of these suggestions. In doing so, companies can see long-term rewards such as lower turnover figures, happier and more productive employees, a stronger workplace culture, and the opportunity for a better look at how their company interacts with and develops their employees.

Jessica Miller-Merrell

Jessica Miller-Merrell, SPHR, is an author, speaker, Human Resources professional, and workplace social media expert who has a passion for recruiting, training, and all things social media. She is the president and CEO of Xceptional HR, and a leader in the HR community with more than 12 years of industry experience. The author of Tweet This! Twitter for Business, Jessica was named by HR Examiner as the second most influential recruiter on the Internet and the seventh most powerful woman on Twitter. She is a columnist for both SmartBrief and The Huffington Post, in addition to Blogging4Jobs and Human Resources One on One. Jessica has been interviewed for professional articles in CIO Magazine, Entrepreneur Magazine, SHRM’s HR Magazine, and on CBS. Jessica earned a Senior Professional in Human Resources designation in 2008, and holds a bachelor’s degree in Anthropology and Business from Kansas State University. Originally from a small town in Kansas, Jessica currently lives near Oklahoma City with her husband, Greg and daughter, Ryleigh.

3 Comments

  • Avatar Helena says:

    Every employee needs to be appreciated, but millennials are the generation that needs the most recognition. A combination of rewards, acknowledgement, and a positive company culture is the best recipe for improving employee retention. Decreased turnover will reduce recruiting costs and increase the company’s productivity.

  • Avatar Nelson Harris says:

    Developing a positive organizational culture based on recognition may be difficult, but the advantages bring growth and tangible benefits to a company and its employees. It’s essential that managers do not underestimate the power of employee recognition because the support and involvement of employees throughout the company is critical. Employees should be rewarded and kept loyal to the values of the company.

  • Avatar Darrel Tyre says:

    Recognition is a useful tool for HR and managers. There are many ways to ensure the employee’s engagement and motivation, such as getting them involved in significant tasks or discovering all their skills and talents in order to use them as much as possible. By discovering other skills besides those from the resume, employers can use them to create a creative, cooperative, and positive work environment.

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