4 Effective Ways To Introduce New Employees To Recognition


October 21, 2019


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Most organizations try to promote employee engagement and commitment in some way. Whether you're introducing recognition software, monetized rewards, or custom incentive programs, here are just 4 ways to make the transition more effective.

Woman introduces two new hires to Kudos, and all of its benefits.

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Most organizations try to promote employee engagement and commitment in some way. Whether you're introducing recognition software, monetized rewards, or custom incentive programs, here are just 4 ways to make the transition more effective.

Organizations use tools like recognition to encourage the behaviours and attitudes of their ideal team.

By recognizing employees for behaviours and attitudes that align with the organization's core values, leaders inform everyone on the team how to be the best player.  

More organizations are introducing recognition as part of a workplace culture strategy because employees care about organizational culture, job satisfaction, and the relationship they have with both their teams and company.

Various studies find a positive correlation between recognition and job satisfaction, the quality of work produced by teams, and motivation.

That’s not all. Other research shows that recognition not only boosts morale, but also encourages participation in key decision making. It can also make teams more enthusiastic about their work and organization.

As reflected in the research, many companies may even prioritize recognition over rewards.

When introducing new team members to your recognition strategy, you may find yourself struggling to explain the ‘why’ behind workplace recognition.

So, how can you get new hires on board with recognition?

Start by making recognition part of your onboarding strategy

Ensuring new employees know of and can relate to your organizational culture is a key part of any onboarding process, which begins long before their first day. It makes sense to introduce a new team member to your recognition program or software ahead of time.

When we hire someone to join our team here at Kudos, we keep in touch with them for several weeks leading up to their first day. We provide them with materials and resources ahead of time, so they can get to know our organizational culture.

At this stage, we also demonstrate how we use our recognition software here at Kudos.

By introducing new employees to your recognition program before and during their onboarding, they can explore recognition and be comfortable actively participating.

Communicate, communicate, communicate

Before any employee can hop on board with your recognition program and participate themselves, they need to know the 'why' behind your organization's use of recognition. This is where communication comes in.

Communicate to new hires what the program is, the goals of the program, and why it is being used to recognize peers and leaders within your company.

First, provide new team members with an overview of the program or software. This will give them context as to what the program does and which features they’ll be able to use.

Then, explain the 'why' behind your company's use of the program. For example, maybe engagement in your organization is low, so you use recognition as a tool to boost morale.

It's also essential to describe the purpose of recognition in your workplace – what are your goals?

If your teams use recognition to achieve specific goals, such as motivating employees, encouraging cross-department collaboration, and improving organizational morale – communicate those goals clearly to new employees.  

Without communicating the ‘why’ behind your recognition program, new hires may not understand its purpose or what you hope to achieve by implementing it.

Pair new employees with recognition ambassadors

Team members that have daily practice with your recognition program are the best ambassadors.

Consider pairing new employees with existing ones who know the program, and can explain its features in a way that is simple and user-friendly.

Here at Kudos, we pair new team members with a work buddy as part of our onboarding process. This work buddy introduces new team members to the Kudos platform. In doing so, new employees gain familiarity with the program and witness it in action. Some even send recognition the very same day they start their new role.

Having recognition ambassadors champion your team generates excitement, and encourages both new and existing employees to get on board with your initiatives.

Allow new employees to experiment and give feedback on your recognition strategies

The best way to know if your teams appreciate and use the recognition system is to measure the results. Of course, those results should always be accompanied by feedback.

With Kudos, you can measure the engagement and health of your working teams using our KQs and deep analytics. As always, ask your teams for direct feedback.

The response from your teams should always be taken into consideration; otherwise, a recognition program can swiftly become underutilized and underappreciated.  

During the onboarding process, take the opportunity to review your recognition initiatives with new hires. Their feedback is valuable because they are more objective about your program.

For example, after giving new employees 2-3 days to try out the recognition program you use, consider asking them a few key questions, such as:
  • ‘Do you find it easy to recognize fellow employees using the program?’
  • ‘Does the program or software make it easy to send, check, and keep up-to-date with recognition across departments?’
  • ‘Is the program simple to navigate?’
  • ‘Which features of the program do you like the most?’
  • ‘Which features were you expecting to use, but don’t have access to?’

Keep in mind – the way you communicate the goals of your recognition program will impact the participation rate of new and existing employees.

You should listen to feedback from the teams actively participating in the program, and check in with them often. By doing so, you can continuously streamline your recognition program and ensure its practical and user-friendly.  

Interested in discovering even more tips and tricks for deploying recognition in your organization? Our nifty white paper on recognition can be downloaded here!
We can help you build a stronger culture

We can help you build a stronger culture

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About Kudos

Kudos is an employee engagement, culture, and analytics platform, that harnesses the power of peer-to-peer recognition, values reinforcement, and open communication to help organizations boost employee engagement, reduce turnover, improve culture, and drive productivity and performance. Kudos uses unique proprietary methodologies to deliver essential people analytics on culture, performance, equity, and inclusion, providing organizations with deep insights and a clear understanding of their workforce.

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