18 Ideas for Employee Compensation and Recognition

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18 Ideas for Employee Compensation and Recognition

An employee recognition and rewards program is the best way to make your employees feel valued. An employee that feels valued will want to do their best work, which would, in turn, benefit your company. Engaged and recognized employees are key to business growth. This also enables them to thrive in a rewarding work environment.

What is Compensation Management?

Compensation management is the distribution of monetary value or its kind, to reward an employer. The reward is usually for exceptional work and is done according to company policy. It is crucial for employee motivation and human resource management.

Compensation management influences the decision of potential employees to join the organization. It also guides the employee-employer relationship after the employee has joined the company.

What is an Employee Rewards and Recognition Program?

The employee rewards and recognition program means employee appreciation. This is usually meant for high-performing employees for their achievements or hard work. Celebrate your employees for a job well done by giving out incentives or corporate plaques to encourage them and others. You can have a program for your employees where you can set a portable stage. It would also improve employee engagement and increase productivity.

18 Employee Compensation Ideas

Recognition makes people feel good about themselves. They will want to push themselves even further and be better at their work. Positive reinforcement shows employees what work the organization values the most. It then encourages them to do better. It’s even more rewarding if there’s compensation involved.

A cash gift, coupon, or a free or subsidized service can go a long way in improving employee engagement. You may also consider corporate gift basket orders.

These are easy and meaningful ways to show appreciation to high-performing employees.

1. Say Thank You

Saying thank you for a job well done goes a long way in making the employee feel appreciated. Call the employee to your office and offer a heartfelt thank you for a job well done. We all like to feel appreciated and valued, and that’s exactly how they would feel by your gesture. A hand-written or vocal thank you can do wonders.

2. Make it Public

Better yet, a public thank you feels even better to an employee. Publicly recognize the employee’s hard work or achievements during a general company meeting. You can also send a general email appreciating the employee. This public high praise will also encourage other employees to do better.

3. CEO for the Day

Reward a hard-working employee with CEO for the Day title as employee compensation. On this day, let them influence business for the day (if it is company-productive). They can declare jeans day or work-from-home day.

4. Chair Massages

To reward a big group of employees, opt for 20-minute chair massages from a masseuse. It is more cost-effective instead of paying for individual massages. This enjoyable treat would help loosen up stiff necks and back joints. Comfortable employees improve productivity.

5. Bring Your Pet Day

Allow your employees to bring their pets on Pet Day. Pets help to relieve stress and increase productivity. It would also make them friendlier, thereby creating and maintaining a non-toxic work environment.

6. Certificate of Recognition

Give high-performing employees a certificate of recognition as employee compensation for their achievements. You can do a little ceremony where you award the certificate and the whole office witnesses it. The certificate would act as a motivator for all who see it in the office.

7. Time Off

Offer some hours off work to employees that have been putting in extra hours and working hard. One way to do this is to hand out time-off coupons of about 15 minutes each. They can collect these coupons over time and use them when they have accrued a significant number of hours.

8. Employee of the Month/Year

For compensation management, award the title Employee of the Month or Year to the exemplary employee. Make it a monthly/yearly event to encourage healthy competition among your employees. Attach some attractive benefits to the position as an incentive.

9. Remember Dates

Make the effort to remember birthdays and work anniversaries in your employees’ lives. On their birthdays, have the office staff sing the happy birthday song to the celebrant. You can provide cake and other treats if possible. These kind acts would further help employees to feel valued and appreciated.

10. Peer to Peer Recognition

Peer to peer recognition among staff has a unique value. Since the staff work alongside each other, they notice qualities that the manager may not. To find out who they hold in high praise, conduct an anonymous survey among employees. You can then reward the one with the highest number of votes.

11. Custom Office Paraphernalia

Reward outstanding employees with a custom notebook or coffee mug to recognize their dedication and hard work. They might proudly display it on their desk as a reminder that their hard work is recognized and valued.

12. Gift Cards

As employee compensation, you can give out thoughtful, yet inexpensive gift cards like from a local grocery store or coffee shop, for example. You can also choose to give movie or game tickets or even corporate hampers to an exemplary employee.

13. Surprise Treat

Get your staff a surprise treat to appreciate and encourage them for putting in extra time. If they have sealed that mega-deal, or doubled profit for example, appreciate them. Reward them by bringing them all coffee or ordering donuts for all.

14. Company Swag

Gift your outstanding employee with a company swag package as employee compensation. This could contain an office T-shirt, mug, water bottle, stickers, socks, and pens, all with the company branding logo. Those who are looking for wholesale glass bottles may check out sites like https://glassbottlewholesale.com/.

15. Promote Wellness

Sitting at the office all day can have a negative effect on one’s mind and body. The stress of work might accumulate and affect productivity. One way to counter that is by promoting wellness. Help your employees stay on top of their health by giving them a subsidized gym membership. They, and your productivity levels, would thank you for it. In addition, if you have questions regarding employee benefits, you may visit sites like https://www.edenhealth.com/blog/what-are-employee-benefits/ or check out Benepass to learn more.

16. Customer Praise

Create a brief customer survey to find out which of your employees give the best customer service. They can do this anonymously. You can give them a plaque to present to the employee, who can then exchange it for a cash gift or any other reward. This not only shows that you recognize their work but also encourages great customer service.

17. Meet VIPs

Introduce your hard-working and exemplary employee to the VIPs in the organization. This could be a top-ranking member of the company. It sends a clear message which says, this is a high-performing employee who is one to watch out for and encourage more.

18. Extra Day-offs

Surprise your high-performing employee with an impromptu day off. They would appreciate and value it because everyone needs time to rejuvenate themselves. This will help them maintain a work-life balance.


A thoughtful recognition or reward given at the right moment increases employee engagement. Employee compensation tells the employees that their hard work is seen and appreciated. And it does this while helping the company productivity too.

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