Want to improve your employee recognition awards? Put down the plaque.

Employee Experience 2 min read

Although employee awards and appreciation programs have come a long way in recent years, some companies can’t seem to let go of one outdated approach to them.

Employee recognition plaques.

Sure, companies mean well with plaques, but in today’s workplace there are better ways to recognize the Employee of the Month or celebrate 10 years at an organization than by placing a plank of wood on someone’s desk.

To get more from your employee recognition awards, put down the plaques and use the tried-and-true tips we’ve listed here.

When it comes to employee recognition awards, put down the plaque.

Tip #1: Integrate appreciation

Standalone employee recognition awards can become demotivating. For admins, they take a lot of effort to coordinate. For employees, they can fall flat.

An employee who sees an “Employee of the Month” award land on their desk with no understanding of why they received it will not truly understand the meaning and impact of the award. Plus, those who didn’t get it don’t understand what behaviors led to the decision — or worse, they may feel left out.

Employee recognition awards can be so much more. When tied to core values and reinforced with recognition they play a key role in effective employee award and appreciation programs.

Tip #2: Empower employees with nominations

When we were developing Awards & Nominations for the Kazoo platform, we discovered three major problems with “plaque” style awards recognizing things like Employee of the Month:

  • For admins, creating awards and creating a list of nominees takes too much time.
  • Boosting awareness of awards is difficult, meaning participation is low.
  • Without participation and awareness, awards are less meaningful.

To solve all of these problems, the feature we developed empowered employees by opening up the nomination process within Kazoo — a platform our customers’ employees already use and interact with often.

See a Demo of Kazoo

Suddenly, admins saved time dealing with employee recognition awards by having others create nominations, overall participation in the process saw a big boost, and award winners saw the thoughtful recognition that went into their nominations, making awards incredibly meaningful.

Tip #3: Socialize your delivery

It isn’t enough to integrate appreciation and include the why behind employee recognition awards — you have to socialize the delivery of it.

In the Kazoo platform, employee recognition awards such as work milestones or Awards & Nominations appear in the company’s activity feed in real time. This is an easy way to socialize the event across the company and amplify its impact.

Even without an employee experience platform like Kazoo, there are plenty of ways to spread the word about employee recognition awards. Think intranets, company newsletters, all-hands meetings, or other areas that grab employees’ eyes.

So cancel that next order of cheap plaques or ornate glass sculptures being delivered straight to employees’ desks. By integrating appreciation, empowering employees with nominations, and socializing your employee recognition awards, you will make them much more meaningful.


About Kazoo
Kazoo amplifies company culture through its award-winning employee experience platform that delivers engagement, retention, performance management, and improved business metrics. As a dominant force in the HCM market with an industry-leading retention rate, Kazoo partners with more than 400 global organizations to build high-performance cultures and engaged workforces. Founded in 2013, Kazoo continues to revolutionize the employee experience with its platform based on the science of motivation, rewards, and recognition. To request a demo, visit info.kazoohr.com/demo-request