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Employees Expect Less So Offering Year-End Rewards Need Not Be Costly

Small business leaders need to consider the value of year-end tokens of appreciation.

Sometimes a little token reward can go a long way to build employee morale.

With the holiday season approaching, many employers are thinking about year-end bonuses and rewards.

For many companies without formal incentive systems, year-end rewards can be a real morale booster and are not as costly as managers might think.

Parago, an incentive and rewards provider, offers these interesting highlights from their just completed employee survey.

  • Holiday incentives are still not expected: 69% of employees do not expect their employers to give end-of-year rewards or holiday gifts this year, which is the identical response from 2011.
  • A little reward goes a long way: This year employees are satisfied with even smaller rewards. 61% of employees said it would take just a $25 prepaid card to meet their expectations, up from 55% in 2011. Additionally, 85% of employees reported that an end-of-year reward of a prepaid card valued at $100 or less would meet their expectations, up from 84% last year. 
  • Rewards will boost morale: 83% of employees said a reward would make them feel either appreciated, motivated to work harder or more loyal to the company, up from 81% in 2011. 82% of employees said that receiving an end-of-year reward would mean that they had done a great job and worked hard or that their employer appreciates and/or values them, up from 79% in 2011.
  • Prepaid cards are preferred: When given the choice of a $50 Visa or MasterCard prepaid card or $50 worth of gift cards as an end-of-year reward or holiday gift, 81% would choose a prepaid card.  When asked about their favorite features of prepaid cards, the majority of employees pointed to the fact that prepaid cards can be spent anywhere the card brand is accepted and at multiple retailers.

The survey of 600 employees was conducted for the second time by the company.  It revealed little changes from a comparative study done in 2011.

“This data shows a huge opportunity for employers to foster a loyal environment and maintain a productive workforce, because employees are satisfied with smaller holiday rewards and feel even more appreciated and motivated when they receive them,” said Juli Spottiswood, President & CEO of Parago. “This is positive news for employers still struggling in the tough economy, because it reveals simple ways that they can keep employees loyal and thereby maintain a productive and competitive business.”

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