Best Ways to Show Employees Appreciation (without parting with extra cash)

BlogBusiness EvolutionHR Advice Posted: Tuesday 20th March 2018 by

Last week, we wrote a post about how to retain your best employees. Retention, especially amongst your best performers and most loyal members of staff, is critical for succession planning business sustainability.

On a similar theme, we are often asked about rewarding employees in the workplace. Many businesses want to focus on incentives, without offering a financial reward.

Here are top five ways to show your employees appreciation, without a pay rise.

Say thank you

It sounds obvious and simplistic because it is. Your best employees will often be the ones that show up early and will never be the first to leave. They will be the ones that work hard, day in and day out, and will put in the extra hours if a project needs finishing.

And, they never ask for a word of thanks.

Yes, you pay them for the work they do, but a simple thank you lets them know that their efforts are not taken for granted. More importantly, it lets them know that you have noticed their efforts and are grateful for them.

Take them out for lunch

Almost everyone likes to be treated to lunch.

One on one time to show your employees appreciation over a shared meal is the perfect way to build loyalty. Dining out somewhere casual, such as the local pub or coffee shop, will also help your staff to feel at ease.

Provide opportunity

As we mentioned in our post, promoting from within is an excellent way to provide opportunities for advancement. However, you may have an employee that is not ready for a bump up the ranks but demonstrates potential. Providing a way for internal progression — for example, allowing a capable junior employee to take the lead on company project — reflects your trust and faith in their abilities.

Employees are always pleased with the opportunity to progress, even in small stages.

Be creative with rewards

Rewards do not need to be in the form of cold hard cash. Pay heed to creative places of work with excellent employee retention schemes.

For example, ‘Googlers’ who work at the search giant, Google, have constant access to a supply of free food. They are fed, for free, with breakfast, lunch and dinner, with nutritious choices on offer. This alone means that Googlers are spending less time preparing food for themselves and more time working. Plus, they don’t ever need to worry about skipping dinner because they’re working late.

Google is also a pet-friendly workplace. Allowing your employees to bring their beloved pooches to work, means that they are not stressing about being there to let the dog out at home. It also provides an emotional outlet and physical outlet for other members of the team.

Meanwhile, travel company, Skyscanner, has negotiated deals for its employees with local pubs and beauty salons. Swinton Insurance gives all staff a day off to go Christmas shopping. Fashion retailer, Asos, provides a whopping 40% staff discount. And, The Body Shop pays its team for up to five days of community volunteering.

Flexible hours and remote working

Although it may not suit the needs of every business, providing your employees with the option to work from home, or work outside of the scope of regular business hours, encourages greater loyalty and productivity.

Employees with elder care and childcare commitments often stress about the demands on their time. By allowing them to operate more flexibly, you could significantly reduce stress for your staff, with positive outcomes on their level of productivity.


Whatever the size of your business, you can show your employees appreciation in many creative ways without forking out for extra bonuses or salary raises.

For support employee engagement and developing your people, talk in confidence to the expert HR team at Human Results.

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