34% of Christmas reward budget is wasted

Colin Hodgson

A failure by employers to effectively plan and deliver end-of-year recognition leads to around a third (34%) of Christmas rewards being wasted, according to research by Edenred.

Its Reward and recognition at Christmas 2014: How to give an impactful end of year ‘thank you’ to employees report, which surveyed 1,000 employees, found that 34% of respondents have either lost, discarded or not received a Christmas reward from their employer.

One in three (30%) respondents have never received a Christmas reward and a further 9% of respondents could not remember whether their employer gave them a Christmas reward in 2013.

However, 37% of respondents received a personal thank you from their employer when a Christmas reward was given.

The research also found employee attitudes to Christmas reward differ depending on their age.

Among respondents aged 18 to 25, more than half (56%) expected a reward from their employer, compared to 34% of respondents aged 55 and over.

But 7% of respondents said the idea of a Christmas reward is outdated.

Colin Hodgson (pictured), sales director at Edenred, said:“The major finding from our research is the ‘Christmas reward gap’ between the things we know that employers should do and what they are actually doing.

“The first of these is the widespread absence of personal recognition when reward is given to employees: saying thank you in person isn’t just a vital element in the effectiveness of Christmas reward but any recognition programme.

“The second area where many employers are falling short is by failing to give a reward which will have a positive and memorable impact for employees.

“With a third of reward being discarded by employees, it is clear employers need to think how they can incorporate personalisation and choice in what they give.

“If there is one clear message from our research it is that every employer could make a substantial improvement to the effectiveness of their investment in end-of-year reward by looking again at how they plan and deliver their activity.”