Why rewards matter now

What is the rate of staff churn at your organisation? How much does this cost you? Your staff might get stressed, burned out, unmotivated or poised to jump ship. How can you develop and retain high performing staff whose knowledge and experience contribute to your organisation’s success? Finding ways to reward your staff and strengthen their loyalty to you doesn’t have to break the bank.

What is the rate of your staff churn?

Ways to rewarding staff 

1. Reward them with responsibility

Rewarding employees with responsibility shows that you believe in their capabilities. It demonstrates that you take their career goals seriously. The important thing is to give them a platform to shine and showcase their skills.

The measurable reward:

  • Additional roles and tasks – These could be tasks to support their team leaders or supervisors. It could include a role in your team building activity planning. The tasks should challenge them and place them out of their comfort zones a little bit.
  • Committee or project to spearhead – It may be leading your organisation’s health and safety committee; or spearheading a review of existing processes. It’s important for them to realise that not only managers can lead. They can be leaders themselves.

The immeasurable reward:

  • Empowerment – Staff become empowered when they are given opportunities to lead and to make judgement calls.
  • Trust – It shows that you trust them to take on a more important role within your organisation.
  • Opportunity to practice leadership – Some people are born leaders. They just need to be given the opportunity. You have staff that are eager, willing and capable to step up.

The reward for your organisation:

  • Potential new leaders – You’ll be preparing your organisation’s future leaders. Who best to lead your organisation than those who have worked up the ladder?
  • Motivated staff – Staff with more responsibilities are more likely to be motivated and driven to succeed.

2. Reward them with small events or celebration

Celebrating the achievements and success of your staff need not be expensive. Throw a small break room celebration every few weeks. Celebrate monthly birthdays and organisation anniversaries. Celebrate the achievement of your organisational goals and meeting targets.

The measurable reward:

  • Meal or a cake– A catered meal is always welcome to celebrate your staff. A cake, iced with employees’ names, is a great way to show your appreciation. “Our staff regularly organise morning teas where we share our home baking. These are often inspired by a theme such as Christmas treats or pink baking for Pink Ribbon day. We get great numbers to these and they don’t cost Careerforce a thing.” – Tarsh Hill, HR Coordinator
  • Team day-out – It could be a team BBQ in the park or team day out to the beach where everyone can just relax and let their hair down.

The immeasurable reward:

  • Appreciation – Celebrating special occasions and acknowledging staff achievements show that your organisation appreciates them.
  • Time to relax – Let them know that they can relax. There are no supervisors or managers here today, just colleagues celebrating together.
  • Chance to socialise with colleagues – Sometimes colleagues don’t have the time to interact with each other. Gathering them in a celebratory atmosphere allows them to get to know their colleagues outside of work.

The reward for your organisation:

  • Stronger team – When staff are able to interact, they form a stronger bond. They will likely look after each other and support each other at work.
  • Dedicated staff – Staff are more dedicated to keep on bringing results for your organisation when their contributions are being celebrated.

3. Reward them with incentives

Incentives are any form of flexible payment tied to employee performance. They may be tangible or intangible. They may or may not have monetary value.

The measurable reward:

  • Certificate or trophy – Incentives can be a recognition that is acknowledged with a trophy, certificate, plaque or pin. They serve as lasting reminders of staff’s achievement. An incentive could be a certificate of complete attendance; a trophy for meeting team targets; or a certificate for long service.
  • Branded merchandise – Branded items mark achievements and can range from shirts, bags, to the more expensive engraved jewellery.
  • Perks – These may be low to no cost incentives. For example: reserved parking, early finish on the eve of public holidays, or an extra day off work. You may also think about partnering with other companies to provide perks for your employees. They could be in the form of discounts for eye checks, massage therapy, on-site health checks, etc.
  • Financial – Gift cards or gift certificates are popular incentives. It gives staff the chance to pick what they want and have your organisation pay the bill.

The immeasurable reward:

  • Sense of pride and achievement – Tangible incentives bring a sense of pride and achievement to your staff. These are things they can display to show their families and friends.
  • Job satisfaction – Sharing the unique incentives your organisation provides with friends and family strengthens the pride your staff have in their workplace.

The reward for your organisation:

  • Motivated staff – Incentives help motivate staff, and motivated staff enhance your organisation productivity.
  • Loyalty – Staff who feel positive towards their organisation tend to stay for longer. This helps you retain motivated and engaged staff.

4. Reward them with training

Training is a critical part of your organisation’s success. More and more, organisations are using training to show how much they care about staff. Consider training as a reward. Let them feel that you want to train them, not that you have to train them. Reward high performing staff so they can progress. Reward loyal staff to show your appreciation. Reward new staff so they can be successful in their role. Training is the best reward that benefits your staff, your organisation and your clients. Consider workplace training that allows your staff to learn while they earn. Your staff learn and get assessed on the job. They don’t need classroom time or time off work. They will learn relevant skills needed for their role.
Read more about: How workplace training works

The measurable reward:

  • Recognised qualification or certificate – When you train your staff, they get a recognised qualification or certificate that affirms their competencies.

The immeasurable reward:

  • New skills and knowledge – Developing staff to have new skills and knowledge benefits everyone. It benefits staff, your clients and your organisation.
  • Coaching time – They get professional coaching time that gives them the support they need to build their skills and confidence.
  • Opportunity to progress their career – You may be looking at your new team leaders, supervisors or managers. Training them now prepares your organisation for the future.
  • Stepping stone to further studies – Training can stir up aspirations. You’re giving employees the foundation into further studies. You help them realise that they can achieve.

The reward for your organisation:

  • Increased productivity and efficiency – When you train your employees they learn: new skills, new knowledge, best practices, processes, upcoming trends and technology. All these can contribute to your organisation’s increased productivity and efficiency.
  • Engaged staff – Training challenges employees’ thinking which keeps them engaged and tuned in.
  • Loyalty – Employees tend to be loyal to organisations that invest in them. They feel valued. They know their employers look after them and their future. Loyalty lowers your turnover rate and reduces your recruitment cost.
  • Customer satisfaction –New skills and knowledge can be applied immediately to their role. This leads to better service and your customers and organisation will ultimately benefit from trained staff.


Careerforce is the industry training organisation for the following sectors: Aged support, Cleaning,  Disability support,  Healthcare services, Home and residential services, Mental health and addiction support, Social and community services, Urban pest management, Youth work. We work with employers nationwide to create and implement customised New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA) recognised workplace training programmes.

How can we help you reward your staff with training?

Contact Careerforce to discuss how we can help you reward and recognise staff through training. Give us a call at 0800 277 486 or leave us a message to have a Careerforce Advisor get in touch with you.
Find out what New Zealand Qualifications are ready for enrolment.


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