· Insights

Updating reward and recognition for a borderless world

As the world of work becomes more dispersed, it’s never been more important for businesses to adapt their people strategy. High on the priority list must be addressing reward and recognition.

Every business knows how important building a culture of appreciation is — it drives motivation, productivity and engagement. But, building it in a borderless world requires further thought.

Time zones, exchange rates, working cultures and language barriers are all hurdles to expressing appreciation and rewarding employees in various locations around the world.

Traditionally, a manager may have thanked employees by taking them for an impromptu lunch – but this isn’t an option for those with global teams. Additionally, budgets don’t often stretch to sending out individual gifts to people.

And even when budget isn’t an issue — how do you know what is suitable to send someone to a different country? What works in one country won’t necessarily work in another.


Delivering value through technology

The pandemic sped up the adoption of digital technologies by several years. The leap over the past two years has been, and will continue to be, integral to delivering the best possible employee value proposition.

Now, as teams become increasingly dispersed, HR teams must be creative in how they build a culture of appreciation to help drive motivation and engagement. Perkbox’s Celebration hub supports that.

It enables leaders to visibly recognise the achievements of their teams whether they are in HQ or working remotely across the globe.

Celebrating success drives motivation and loyalty, binds employees together and aligns people to purpose. This kind of regular recognition and praise can be crucial in attracting and retaining the best talent.

Recognition alone can be a powerful tool, but when coupled with desirable rewards the results can be exponential. We know from our customers that rewards can be challenging – particularly when dealing with a global workforce.

Not only is it hard to find the right brands that people value but managing rewards globally can be cumbersome and require hours of manual processing.


So, how do you reward in a borderless world?

Ultimately, the days of one-size-fits-all rewards are long gone. Instead, your employee offering needs to be as broad as your workforce.

That’s why we launched our Global Reward tool. It’s a currency agnostic, fully borderless, points-based reward system that allows managers to allocate rewards as points to employees anywhere – instantly.

Employees can then choose how to spend these points – with options such as meal delivery services, coffees or even exercise classes.

The pioneering system empowers people to choose the rewards that bring them the most value and positive impact on their lives – no matter where they’re based.

It also helps to create a sense of fairness across locations, which is instrumental in establishing and maintaining a strong and engaging culture.

The platform makes it easier to drive budget decisions and activities by cutting through the red tape of navigating tax obligations and exchange rates.

This means that every employee can access a consistent rewards and benefits experience, without endless manual work for HR teams.

Meanwhile, managers have a hassle-free way to reward their teams in real-time, wherever they are.

Global Reward also removes the confusion around what value a reward has in different markets, making the process quick and seamless.

When becoming borderless, businesses must look for efficiencies and harmonise wherever possible. So being able to reward everyone fairly, without creating more work for yourself, is a HR gamechanger.

Embracing inevitable change

If you’re not already aware of and adapting for borderless working and culture, it will be hard to avoid for much longer.

It’s becoming increasingly prevalent and will shape the way businesses operate, as technologically enabled remote and hybrid working make location an incidental factor in filling many job roles.

A powerful reward system is one of the building blocks of any good people strategy, but the traditional methods are fast disappearing.

Tools such as Global Reward — that create equity for employees across all locations — are the foundation of an EVP fit for a global workforce.

Ignoring the role of reward and recognition in borderless environments isn’t an option. Now, more than ever, candidates have the power of choice. They will be more than happy to look for pastures new if they feel underappreciated.

If, however you manage to invest in a consistent and personalised global reward and recognition programme you can ensure that employees feel seen, motivated and loyal to their organisation no matter where they are.         


Gautam Sahgal is CEO of Perkbox