Employee Recognition

Recent research claims that over 80% of companies have an employee recognition program in place.

For the most part, employers recognize the many benefits that employee recognition programs have to offer, such as decreased turnover rates, higher job performance, and enhanced workplace morale.

Unfortunately, all too frequently, good companies that provide recognition programs fail to establish a program that delivers the most benefits. 

Moreover, businesses often make many blunders while establishing their recognition program, and these mistakes can often have a negative impact rather than a positive one.

To avoid the common problems with employee recognition programs, these are the top ten common mistakes that firms encounter while designing them.

1- Companies Lacking Transparency

Employee Recognition

The effectiveness of a company-wide employee recognition program depends on the fairness and transparency of the award system. If the system appears to be based on favoritism, the entire process will be deemed faulty, negating the point of it altogether.

To grasp how the process works and how to be acknowledged, everyone must understand the entire process. Making this obvious demonstrates your gratitude for the employees’ hard work.

2- Ignoring Some Employees

Employee Recognition

Recognizing and rewarding top achievers can increase morale and drive other workers, but it may have the opposite effect and demoralize those who were not recognized. 

As a result, their overall productivity diminishes, and they will add even less effort. On top of that, people who are left out may feel alienated from the rest of the workforce, and it’s also possible that they may set up factions among their colleagues, which are both vital concerns.

There is a straightforward cure for this kind of issue in nearly all firms: workers feeling excluded need to be recognized for their contribution, even if that means implementing a multi-layered recognition program.

3- Failure to State Clearly Defined Goals

Employee Recognition

If you do not establish clear objectives for your personnel, the process will be unpredictable. Your employees will be unsure of which parts of their performance to enhance.

Therefore, establish clear goals from the start to offer your workers a direction for performance improvement.

Alternatively, you can define and convey important performance metrics affecting the recognition program throughout the organization.

4- Having Annual Awards Only

Employee Recognition

Because employee recognition improves morale, having simply an annual program restricts its usefulness. You want your employees to be motivated and dedicated all year.

Weekly, bimonthly, or monthly employee appreciation programs are good. You can analyze the program’s effectiveness while keeping staff motivated.

5- Rewards Merely Based On Performance


An ideal employee should have integrity, timeliness, and great communication abilities. Employee recognition programs that just promote achievement tend to discourage other attributes in employees. It would imply that only performance matters.

Encouraging employees to develop desirable attributes will underline their relevance to the organization’s aims and objectives. Using an employee appreciation program to foster these traits can pay big dividends.

6- Rewarding Every Employee the Same Stuff

Reward Strategy

Even though all your employees are working toward the same goal, it is critical to identify and address their particular characteristics. Not everyone enjoys the public spotlight associated with getting awarded, which could lead to more problems than solutions. 

Although small personal presents and non-custom appreciation letters can be beneficial, you should invest in custom-written letters of appreciation, as they are a more thoughtful way to say thank you.

Moreover, when trying to reward employees with tangible advantages, you may wish to survey your employees to find out what benefits they prefer and dislike. It will make the award more meaningful if you go the extra mile to find out what attracts your gift recipient.

7- Not Sticking To The Program

Reward Program

When an employee recognition program is put in place, keeping it running smoothly can be a huge barrier to overcome. And, in the absence of a clear plan for curating this project, it is prone to fading into obscurity.

This oversight, on the other hand, has a negative impact on employee morale and productivity. Employee recognition programs, as a result, must be carefully evaluated and maintained on an ongoing basis.

Executives should keep their employee recognition programs up to date on a regular basis to avoid them becoming obsolete. The key to sustaining a recognition program is to make adjustments to meet the needs of both new and existing employees.

8- Making It Just About The Money


When it comes to employee recognition, concentrating entirely on monetary compensation is a lousy idea. If they are working just for the money, you risk losing your top staff to competitors if they are offered a higher salary elsewhere.

Other incentives, such as exclusive movie tickets, family holidays, and meal vouchers, will go a long way toward satisfying your employees. 

Once again, the incentive must be something the employee desires. Offering a couple’s retreat to a divorcee, for example, may come across as myopic.

 9- Inconsistency


A recognition software that is inconsistent is the last thing you want to design. 

Employees may become frustrated if some managers and supervisors use the application while others do not. In fact, it may give your staff the impression that the program is unfair, reducing its effectiveness. Regular promotions and ensuring top management’s acknowledgment is constant might help to foster a culture of recognition inside the organization.

10- No Follow-Up

Follow up

While implementing an employee recognition program may seem like a good idea, it requires the dedication of your entire staff to succeed. 

The first step is to develop the program; the second is to persuade management to take action.

Moreover, leaders within the organization should set an example by regularly utilizing the recognition program.


Employee recognition programs offer several benefits and, when implemented properly, may help a business run smoothly. Employee engagement in the workplace leads to an atmosphere where people want to work.

The mistakes described above are the most frequent and easiest for firms to commit. While avoiding these errors may appear to be a time-consuming endeavor, the long-term advantages greatly outweigh the drawbacks.

Moreover, if you want to know how BRAVO can help your improve your employee recognition programs, click here.

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