Employee Appreciation Day is an official holiday created more than 25 years ago by author and management consultant Dr. Bob Nelson. What started as a way to celebrate the publication of his book, “1001 Ways to Reward Employees,” Employee Appreciation Day is now a way for employers everywhere to show their gratitude to their hard-working employees. The national holiday falls on the first Friday in March every year, and this year it’s Friday, March 4, 2022.
Why Employee Appreciation Day is Important
There are many reasons why celebrating Employee Appreciation Day is important. For one, it increases job satisfaction. A 2016 Harvard Business Review study shows that 82% of U.S. employees want more recognition from supervisors. On top of that, millennials, a generation that now comprises more than a third of the workforce, expect to be praised or recognized on a daily basis.
As employees continue to work through another year of a pandemic, it’s no doubt that they need some extra appreciation and gratitude in 2022. Good thing showing your employees some appreciation doesn’t have to break the bank. Below are 10 budget-friendly Employee Appreciation Day ideas to consider for 2022.
Employee Appreciation Day Ideas
1. Provide lunch
Everyone needs to eat, so why not treat everyone to a nice meal? Consider catering lunch from a favorite restaurant of employees and don’t forget to get it delivered for your work-from-home folks.
2. Mail a care package
Send out a fun package filled with gifts like snacks, candy, and company swag to show your workforce you care.
3. Give extra time off
Whether it’s a full day of PTO or a half day, give some well-earned time back to your employees so they can spend it with their family and friends.
4. Send everyone gift cards
Gift cards give employees the freedom to pick out something they like for themselves. Take the guesswork out of giving a gift that employees will truly value and give them a gift card that’s sure to be of good use instead.
5. Post a company-wide recognition
Share a heartfelt Employee Appreciation Day message to the entire company on your employee recognition platform and recognize your employees for all their hard work.
6. Dole out extra reward points
Give all your employees some extra reward points so they can redeem them for anything they’d like as part of the company employee reward program.
7. Offer a special discount
Provide employees corporate discounts on things like movie tickets, theme park tickets, and consumer products for them to enjoy outside of work.
8. Throw a virtual party
End the workday a little early so employees can have some fun. There are so many different virtual party ideas—you can do a virtual game night, virtual happy hour, or even a virtual escape room!
9. Invest in their development
According to LinkedIn’s 2018 Workforce Learning Report, 93% of employees state that they would stay longer at a company if it invested in their careers. Show that you’re actively interested in their success over the long haul by paying for a subscription to an online course, footing the bill for a conference of their choosing, or offering a learning stipend.
10. Donate to a charity
Have each of your employees choose a charitable organization they support and make a donation in their name.
Employee Appreciation Day is a great occasion to recognize your employees, but employee appreciation shouldn’t be just limited to one day a year. This year, make it a point to show some type of appreciation to someone at your company every day.
Giving out frequent recognition is easy if you have an employee recognition platform. Fond’s platform enables employees to recognize each other seamlessly and send points as part of an employee recognition program. Employees can then redeem their points for rewards from the Fond rewards catalog. Learn more about how Fond can help create a culture of employee appreciation at your organization not just for one day but all year round.