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What Modern Years of Service Platforms Must Include

published: October 30, 2019

Over the last 20 years or so, the nature of a workplace half-life has changed entirely. Businesses are struggling with attracting and retaining employees. Still, the problem runs even more profound, whereas what used to inspire people to remain loyal to an organization, i.e. 5-year or 10-year service awards, no longer apply.

In today's modern businesses, recruitment has become turn-style-like with people coming in for as little as three months, and who plan on leaving as soon as their one year is over in favour of a different workplace that offers better benefits, pay, recognition, and rewards.

According to a study by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average tenure for salaried employees has dropped dramatically. It was stated that workers aged between 25 to 34 years of age tend to only stay at the same job for an average of 2.8 years, causing Years of Service Programs (generally beginning at the 5 -year mark) to become obsolete.

Millennials are now the predominant generation in the job market. And are fully aware of their importance; currently having the upper hand in negotiating benefits with employers, are choosing to work for businesses that offer a better work-life balance, service recognitions, and healthy living initiatives.

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A Modern Years of Service Tenure Track

A modern Years of Service (YOS) programs need to adjust their celebrated milestones to suit the quicker turnover ratio better that employees are committed to in today's market. Here's our suggestion:

  1. Start strong by recognizing employees on their first day. This doesn't need to be a gift, or costly by any nature, but at least a note of recognition for joining the team and a "welcome aboard" message.
  2. Celebrate the first five years of an employee’s tenure. In today’s reality, it is important to celebrate an employee’s work anniversary every year, especially during the first five years of employment.
  3. Celebrate smaller milestones (optional). For instance, celebrating the completion of a training period, or the end of the probationary period at the beginning of a new contract (this could be three months, or six months depending on the contact). While this is entirely optional, you would incur much more engagement overall.

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It’s About More Than Just Tenure

Modern Years of Service (YOS) programs can no longer only celebrate tenure, as employees are no longer satisfied with simply being present in a work environment. Employee contributions, accomplishments, and relationships need to be celebrated as well to keep employees engaged and loyal to your business.

The new generation no longer wants to be recognized for simply staying at their companies any longer - Engagement Trends

Effectively, any YOS program you initiate needs to focus much more on the day to day engagement and recognition opportunities.

Beyond simply rewarding your employees for having filled a seat in your organisation, Millennials want to be recognized for their work. In addition to the tenure award system, it's time for managers and leaders to get to know their teams, be aware of the work they produce, and as a result, reward them accordingly for their good work.

Businesses now need a place where managers can recognize employees, where employees can recognize each other, and some kind of way for employees to be rewarded not only for their tenure but also for their continuous hard work & achievements.

Like the usual awarding system with YOS programs, the same approach can be taken for recognition awards. Start with the initial first welcome message. In association with a public demonstration of thanks and recognition for good work, the gifts are also scaled up for the value of each recognition given.

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Is a Service Awards program right for you?

Download: Why Every Company Needs a Modern Service Awards Program

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The Value of a Modern YOS Initiative

Including a modern YOS and Recognition Program in today's Job Market is fundamental to attract and retain employees, as well as ensure that their engagement level contributes to increasing the productivity and profitability levels of an organization.

This means that it's essential for businesses to look at ways to keep their employees engaged and loyal to their places of business. The inclusion of a rewarding and recognizing program, in addition to your YOS program, is critical to maintaining the loyalty of all your employees. You can see what the value of recognition platforms can have on your business in The Value of an Employee Rewards Program.