Recognition and remote working: the why and how

It has been long-muted that remote working would become the future of the workplace. Whilst a tipping point for this change has been long coming, no one would have foreseen that a pandemic would force businesses to send employees home, laptops in tow.

By: Paul Heaton on

Scrolling through LinkedIn and there does seem to be a balance though. Some loving being able to crack on without the commute and with four-legged friends eagerly watching every email typed. Others though have realised how they’re more social than they thought and already miss the buzz of the office.

Yet whatever the working world looks like after coronavirus is overcome, the fundamentals of maintaining motivation, great culture and employee engagement remain the same - and recognition has a critical role to play. In fact, for a newly-distributed workforce going through the same massive changes that their organisations are, it’s likely more important than ever.

Why recognition is key for remote workers

Whilst the increased focus on strategies to improve employee engagement has been great to see over the past decade, many organisations still fail to grasp just how important it is to ensure their people know they’re appreciated.

But even before the current pandemic, 65% of employees said they hadn’t received any form of recognition within the last 12 months according to research from Gallup. Even for teams who have great leaders more adept at saying thank you, moving remote will naturally reduce the face-to-face opportunities to give thanks.

During times of change and upheaval, it’s critical that employees know their efforts are appreciated, and receiving recognition can go a long way to supporting mental wellbeing and psychological safety right now too. Being recognised frequently has also been shown to be highly motivational and the most effective single method of increasing engagement.

And beyond productivity and wellbeing, companies that have worked hard to develop fantastic working cultures built on widely-shared values won’t want to see that good work fail to transpire across a distributed workforce.

How to ensure recognition remains part of daily conversation

Employee recognition programs that empower employees to lead the recognition conversation, that link back to core values and share successes for all to see are the perfect antidote to the issues that a sudden switch to remote working can cause. It creates a space entirely dedicated to sharing positive vibes, connecting colleagues to say thanks and to see all the great things happening from across an organisation - wherever your people are now based.

Just like with our own Fanhub recognition platform, all gratitude shown is linked back to a core value, ensuring the foundations of thriving company cultures are maintained.

Read more: Long-term measures of a successful employee recognition programme

But it’s also key that any new recognition facility easily integrates with the new digital, daily conversations your teams will be having. Engagement activity that exists in isolation can see limited uptake and monthly usage. However, platforms that integrate easily with email and now ever-popular chat tools such as Slack and MS Teams perform best. They ensure recognition activity is available for all to see - as and when great things happen.

Learn more about our employee recognition solutions here.