Reward & Recognition

Putting purpose and values at the centre of your reward and recognition strategy


Aligning your benefits, reward and recognition strategy with your values – and those of your employees – can help you attract, engage and retain top talent.

Strong workplace communities come from a sense of shared purpose and common goals. These communities can create a sense of belonging and motivate employees to succeed against those goals and values. Employees have a stronger commitment to organisations that support their values, – they are more engaged and productive in their roles when they feel part of something bigger than themselves. Our Great Expectations research found that a third of employees think their employer’s benefits provision could be improved if it was better aligned to their values and 83% want a stronger sense of belonging and community. Your people need to see and feel culture – and your reward and recognition programmes are the place to bring your values to life.

Start with values

Focusing on company values that employees can align themselves behind can have a huge impact on how engaged employees are – and your ability to attract and retain top talent. By aligning employee benefits, reward and recognition with company values, you can bring those values to life and give employees the opportunity to live them every day. Employees don’t just know the problem; they know the answer too. In our Evolution report, 50% of employees believe people should be recognised for embodying the values of the company. This need for recognition is particularly important in a remote or hybrid working environment, where traditional means of demonstrating and celebrating values may not be as feasible.

Sustainability and inclusivity in the spotlight

Sustainability and inclusivity are two important areas of corporate purpose that employees are increasingly assessing their reward packages against. More and more, consumers looking for brands with strong eco credentials, and employees are no different. 72% of over 40s and 81% of under 40s say a commitment to sustainability is important when choosing a new employer.

And employers are starting to take action. For example, as part of Benefex’s commitment to sustainability, with each marketplace benefit selection our customers’ employees make, our partner Furthr will plant a tree in a global reforestation area. This not only helps restore areas of forest, but also demonstrates our commitment to sustainability, and helps allay employee’s eco-anxieties.

Two thirds (66%) of employees state that their employer’s approach to DEI now has a significant impact on how they feel about staying in their current role. When reviewing your benefits from an inclusivity perspective, you can assess your benefits through two lenses: accessibility (who is the benefit available to) and flexibility (how can it be applied). At a top level, this means ensuring your benefits are open to all, and that selection and eligibility criteria and communications don’t inadvertently exclude anyone. Does your benefit scheme support people across all life stages? Does it reflect all types of modern families? Are your benefits truly flexible so people can make changes when they need to?

Taking action in 2023

How well an organisation aligns with an employee’s values can be the difference between them staying or seeking an alternative employer with a better culture fit. HR and reward leaders are in a unique position to highlight their company’s standing on sustainability and inclusivity, and this means reviewing not just the benefits and reward you are offering, but also the processes you have in place and the providers you are working with.

HR and reward leaders have already started bringing the values of the organisation and its people into the heart of their function, and we’ll see this continuing with gusto for the next 12 months.

To explore the other 5 trends from our brand new report, 6 themes that will make or break your benefits strategy, download your copy here.

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