Fun Employee Benefit Programs Ideas

While many bosses feel that a hefty pay check or an increase is the best way to reward an employee, employees prefer to feel that their hard work is appreciated through employee benefit programs. The great thing about such programs is that you can get creative without having to spend a lot. Experiment with different rewards and you’ll love how much more productive your staff become.

Happy employee
Image by Steve Wilson

Ways to Reward Employees Without Increasing Salaries

Employee benefit programs offer a wonderful way to reward your staff.

Gift cards — these are a classic and not something anybody turns down. Whether it’s for a restaurant, the mall, a specific storem or even for gas, if they don’t like it, they’re definitely boons.

Extra off days — no matter how much time off you give your staff, everyone wants more. Make their dreams come true by awarding outstanding staff with additional paid leave days to with as they wish without having to pretend they’re ill.

Certificates — remember in primary school when your teacher presented you proudly with a certificate? Well, these never go out of fashion. Make a big deal out of handing them out at company functions or monthly meetings and be sure to sign them yourself as opposed to using a generic stamp.

A made-to-order meal — sometimes, it’s nice to add a personal touch to a treat for your staff. Why not pass out menus to your performing employees once a month and let them choose what they want for lunch. Then literally make a meal of it by setting up the canteen or a meeting room with good crockery and having a sit down together.

Cyber praise — how much fun is it Googling your own name? Many of us do it. There’s something so satisfying about finding yourself online, provided it’s all positive. Every couple of months, feature a few of your performing employees on your website. You could include a picture and biography for each person.

Thank you craft
photo credit: Jen Collins

Seminars and courses — studying is costly and not everyone is a fan of shelling out for it, no matter how much they want to progress. Surprise your staff with paid up courses or training programs. Just be careful of forcing staff into studying something they don’t want to.

New titles — nothing says “we appreciate you” more than a new job title. Of course, a promotion is first prize, especially if it comes with a salary increase. But if it doesn’t, customise the job title to make your employee feel a little more valuable.

Tickets to events — surprise your sports loving staff with tickets to a big game. Be sure to include a few extra for their friends or family. Tickets might be expensive but in the long run they’re cheaper than a permanent increase and work well for employee benefit programs.

Bonuses — help your staff avoid debt and overdraft fees by awarding them a well-deserved cash bonus when they’ve done a good job and helped the business grow. Remember to make sure that all departments are eligible for bonuses — each and every staff member does contribute to the company and the job just wouldn’t get done without everyone’s help.

A mystery prize — you’re never too old to choose a prize out of a box and nor are your colleagues. Fill a box with fun prizes like all the above mentioned items for employees benefits programs and include a few others too like “taking an extra half an hour lunch break” or “leave two hours early today”. As the amount of prizes decreases you’ll notice the employee’s enthusiasm increasing. A touch of recognition for a good job goes a very long way in an office environment.

As the saying goes, “take care of your employees and they will take care of your company.”