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11 Employee Appreciation Ideas for Remote Workers

06 August 2021

One major bombshell that 2020 dropped on us was the remote workplace. Many businesses didn’t see it coming. 

Who would have thought that a pandemic would change the workplace so massively? 

But life goes on, right? Despite the lockdown frenzy, work had to continue. Due to this development, an array of workplace issues has sprung up. Amidst these issues is the need to develop ways to appreciate “laborious” remote workers.

We can’t underplay how important it is for businesses to appreciate and recognize their employee efforts. This appreciation isn’t limited to the traditional office setting; it also extends to virtual workers. After all, they are still employees, and they need motivation. And the good thing is that there are virtual appreciation gifts to boost your worker's effectiveness. 

The best way to go about this is executing a hybrid of free and paid incentives ideas in ways that encourage employees to work hard. 

So, do you need riveting ideas to set the ball rolling? This article will enlighten you on creative ways to make your remote workers burst at the seams with motivation. Ready to inspire your employees? 

Read up.

Provide workstations for their home offices

Provide workstations for their home offices

Working from home comes with unique stressors. Often, these stressors cause low back pains, neck pain, and carpal tunnel. With these notorious throbs on the loose, an employee’s health erodes over time. But a surefire way to prevent this and equally boost your morale is providing ideal office workstations.

Moreover, workers get demotivated when forced to settle for uncomfortable office furniture. Believe it or not, having an ideal workstation handy fires up remote staff members. 

But beyond prepping your physical office, it might do your business some good if you help your employees with ergonomic office equipment.

You can formulate different strategies to gift remote employees sit-stand desks and ergonomic office chairs. For instance, you could curate a list of affordable office equipment that you would like to buy for your employees. And ask your workers to pick a workstation from the list you compiled.

If your business can’t bear the expenses, you may offer a discounted price for any office furniture of their choice. That way, you can pay only half the price and still make your workers feel appreciated and valuable—it’s a win, win.

Or better still, you could give them a loan to buy the equipment and have them pay back in bits later. The point is to make your staff members feel wanted and appreciated. You can get creative with ways to make ergonomic workstations available to them. 

Send out flowers

Send out flowers

Well, you know what they say, “Flowers don’t tell, they show.” So, show your employees you have them in mind by sending them flowers to mark a special occasion.

Besides hefty pay, nothing excites employees better than an employer that remembers every little detail about them. This appreciation tactic is suitable when your worker is celebrating a milestone like a work anniversary. You may send flowers for an employee’s remote birthday as well.

Marking achievements at home alone could be unremarkable, regardless of how exceptional the feat is. But a thoughtful gesture, like a flower from a company, can tramp all feelings of isolation and leave a sense of fulfillment in its stead. 

Flowers may seem inconsequential, but in this situation, they can send your employee's productivity trajectory on an upward climb.

Offer discounts

Offer discounts  

One of the most potent remote appreciative ideas is giving out discounts or coupons. Who doesn’t love discounts? I know this raises the question of how to get coupons. As a company, you can work out deals with a restaurant, in favor of your staff. 

A coupon at their most frequented restaurant can work wonders. It will help them save money and stay positive about work. So, work out an arrangement that will benefit your business, the third-party establishment, and employees.

This appreciative idea is an indirect payment that creates a sense of belonging in your remote workers, despite the isolation from the physical workplace. 

Long weekend breaks

Long weekend breaks

The monotony of the virtual workplace takes a toll on remote employees. Not to mention the stress some remote workers go through to balance their work, chores, and childcare.  

You will agree with me that an occasional Friday off can ease up built-up stress. It also offers them more alone time with their family. When your employees believe their employer is thoughtful enough and looks out for them, the work culture forges stronger. 

Besides, it’s a way to reward the workers for their hard work. So, workout a malleable schedule that includes a few breaks occasionally, your remote workers will feel well appreciated.

Remote award events

Remote award events

Award ceremonies are one of the few online appreciative ideas that require planning. A remote award ceremony gives employees recognition for outstanding performance. 

This good gesture will be limited to diligent workers, but it pushes other employees to perform better.

You must reward the award winners with a gift during the event. However, you can organize your remote awards in two different ways.

The first way is presenting a physical and electronic award. Here’s the deal. All your employees will join the virtual event and watch you give out the digital version of the award. Afterward, you will send the physical gifts to awardees. 

Alternatively, organize a virtual and physical award ceremony. Ensure only the awardees are present with proper adherence to social distancing rules while other staff members watch virtually.

Remote shout out

Remote shout out

Appreciating your staff doesn’t cost a fortune. This idea is an indication that you can motivate your workers immensely without spending a dime. 

Like the remote award, a virtual shout-out is a form of performance recognition. All it would cost is a little time to recognize the impressive accomplishments of some staff members.

This act doesn’t just build a positive reinforcement strategy for your workers but creates exemplary acts for others to imitate.

Wanna know who loves recognition? Everyone! Including your employees. 

Organize game nights

Organize game nights

Unwinding after a stressful day could be daunting—especially after working virtually for several hours. A virtual games night can help communicate how much you care about your employee’s wellbeing. Plus, it leaves them refreshed and ready to get back to work the next day.

Remote after-hours hangouts are an easy way to create an encouraging environment for virtual workers. Because all employees can hang out online over a glass of wine and their favorite snacks while they discuss interesting extra-curricular activities or play games. 

You don’t need physical presence to enjoy collective games. You can surf the internet for classic games that colleagues can play together. 

When you encourage games night and virtual hangouts, you foster interaction and a less tensed work environment. 

Send personalized appreciative messages to commend hard work

Send personalized appreciative messages to commend hard work

Still playing along the recognition lane, this is yet another appreciative reward. And it can spur an increase in employee productivity. 

It’s general knowledge that you need to be specific while recognizing a worker. So, this appreciative idea, requires that you send a personalized appreciative mail-in recognition of an employee, who has been on top of their work since they started working remotely.

However, to make this special, you may use a recognition and reward website like a fond reward. With this website, you can customize an appreciation message addressed to your employee and publish it on a social media feed. 

Alternately, the recognition could remain private; either way, it’s crucial to state that all the attributes that attracted this special recognition. After all, the idea is to fuel these positive traits and groom it until it becomes your employee’s trademark. 

Moreover, you could award some reward points which your worker can exchange for a gift or discount.

Organize virtual development programs

Organize virtual development programs

With the abrupt end to in-person relations in the work setting, employees tend to get stuck in a rut concerning their professional development. It’s understandable, but the question is, what can you do about it? 

Sincerely, investing in your employee’s development is an innovative appreciative idea. In short, you can introduce an online development course that can help them develop personally and professionally.

You may even ask the employees to choose online courses within their area of interest. This is to ensure that you don’t force them into taking a course that wouldn’t be of use to them in the long run. 

To this end, you may consider online development courses from SparkitivityDesignlab, and other similar websites. 

This appreciative idea can trigger boost your remote worker’s skills immensely.

Send spa care offers

Send spa care offers

Your employees may sometimes feel stuck with their ergonomic desk all day. This can affect the mental well-being thereby causing a hitch in the productivity flow. 

But if staff are aware of how invested you are in their wellbeing-- it would keep them perked up. Consequently, a home spa care deal is a real mood lifter. But a spa coupled with some aromatic candles and other relaxing therapeutic essentials can set your employee on cloud nine for a whole week.

For an appreciative idea, this hits deeper and sends the right messages to your workers.

Give longer vacation

Give longer vacation

Recognition ideas are phenomenal when appreciating an employee. But approving an elongated vacation period could be a pleasant surprise. It might facilitate alone time with family or rekindle an estranged family tie.

Besides, vacation provides adequate break time from work to ensure the worker comes back refreshed. Trust us; a refreshed employee is way more productive and creative. So, if you are looking to create a raving appreciation reward, extend the employee's vacation time—it works like magic.

Final words

These appreciation tips are mere thought starters; there are one thousand and one ways to appreciate your employees. But if you try these tips, you will have a bunch of fired-up employees on you had in no time. 

Remember, your workers are looking up to you to keep their morale high during this unprecedented work isolation season. Letting them down isn’t an option. It’s about time you got to work