25 Employee Recognition Gift Ideas for Your Team in 2021

There is a clear connection between recognition and employee retention. Showing your team appreciation for their work can go a long way toward improving productivity, morale, and making them stay. 

According to a survey by Bonusly and SurveyMonkey, 82% of people consider recognition as an essential factor to being happy at work. Happier employees are more present and driven to work harder as they know their efforts are appreciated.

How Do I Make My Employees Feel Recognized?

There are a lot of ways to make your employees feel appreciated. It can be a simple thank you or giving them a large bonus at the end of the year.  

But sometimes, your team deserves something more. A simple present can be a great way to show how much you value your team and their contributions.

What are Good Employee Appreciation Gifts?

Even though finding the right gift can be challenging, the best employee appreciation gift comes from the heart.  We’ve created a complete list that will help you find the appropriate appreciation gift for any employee. 

  1. Journals and notebooks

Though more people are taking notes on their smartphones, many still appreciate the thought of receiving a journal. Doing it the old-fashioned way is more convenient when you are jotting down ideas during a brainstorming session. 

  1. Engraved pens and stationery

For your salesperson, engraved pens may be the most classy employee appreciation gift. Not only are they practical, but a quality pen engraved with their initials also puts the company’s generosity on display. 

  1. Stress relief toys and fidget gadgets

Some workdays can be stressful. Every employee deserves a desk toy to help them relieve stress or unwind when they are stuck making a decision. 

  1. Bottles and drinkware

Water bottles and cups can also make great gifts for employees. They can use them at work or at home, and they can be made into more than a token gift when you customize it.

  1. Assorted tea packs

Self-care does not have to come with a hefty price tag. Share the gift of drinking tea with your employees to help boost their immune systems and prevent damage by free radicals.

  1. Food and snack box

Nothing beats munching on snacks to supercharge throughout a busy workday. Preparing a food box with a mix of different snacks like sweets and crackers can be a fitting gift for all your employees. 

  1. Sportswear 

Giving your employees a sports jersey is another excellent idea. Everyone wears sportswear, no matter if it is for exercising or casual wear. Plus, you can go the extra mile with a design that has personalized names and numbers to bring out your employee’s workplace pride.

  1. Sweatshirts and hoodie

A hoodie or sweatshirt is extremely useful when the office gets cold. You can also customize it with a special message or brand it with your company logo.

  1. COVID-19 essentials 

The pandemic is not going away anytime soon, so send your employees a gift pack of COVID19 essentials like hand sanitizer or ergonomic face masks to show that you care.

  1. Humidifier 

With most teams working from home, humidifiers can be a practical gift option. It adds moisture to the air and can lower the risk of coronavirus transmission while boosting their immune system. 

  1. Lunch box and utensils

A lunch box paired with utensils is a perfect gift for your employees who like to bring their lunch to work. Additionally, you can get them heat-insulated lunch boxes to keep their food warm. 

  1. Lifestyle gift cards

Giving your employees a gift card is another thoughtful option because it gives them a gift of choice, and they can use the money on whatever they want.

  1. Bags and tote bags

A functional gift for everybody — you can give anyone a bag for practical everyday use. You can even go for a custom tote bag and print a special thank you message for your team to show your gratitude.

  1. Umbrella

An umbrella for rainy days is always an appreciated, useful gift.

  1. Eye massager

Pamper your employees with a relaxing eye massager. An especially great present for your team members that are always staring at the computer. 

  1. Tech accessories 

Tech gifts like glass power banks or washable keyboards are always incredible for your team to become more productive or have more fun at the office.   

  1. Laptop stand 

A laptop stand is an essential part of any functional, ergonomic workspace. Getting one for your employee can help make sure they are working in a comfortable position, boosting productivity and allowing them to concentrate without any discomfort. 

  1. Coffee beans

For remote employees who miss coffee at the office, you can give them a specialized cold brew machine or roasted coffee beans to provide them with that hot cup of joe every morning. 

  1. Smart wearable and devices

Smart wearables like a fitness watch can be an excellent way for your employees to stay active and fit. Not only does it track your heart rate and steps, but some also remind you to stay hydrated and even guide you on how you can accomplish your fitness goals. 

  1. Earphones or headphones

Earphones or headphones are one of the most popular gifts most employees appreciate. You will be able to listen to your favorite music during work, commuting, or any occasion.

  1. Acrylic awards 

Nothing shows more appreciation than having it printed on an award. Acrylic awards make the perfect gift for moments where you are awarding someone for their achievement, like being the best employee of the year. 

  1. Scented candle

Show your employees they are sensational with a fun scented candle. This is a beautiful gift to add more aesthetic and fragrance to their space.  

  1. Classes or workshop

A class or workshop for employees is absolutely unique. They can try something new, and this activity is an excellent opportunity for employees to engage with each other in a relaxing setting outside work. 

  1. Travel accessories

Speaking of practical gifts, travel accessories is another. You can gift them a memory neck pillow or travel adapter. Employees who regularly travel for work are sure to like this gift.

  1. Vacation getaway 

Treating your employees on a trip is the best opportunity to say thanks and build a personal connection between the team when you all create a new shared experience together. 

What Should Employees Be Recognized For?

Now that you’re inspired by the employee recognition gift ideas, here’s when you should recognize your employees.

  1. Giving recognition during a project

Think about the difference between receiving appreciation upon finishing a project versus getting praise weeks or months later in your performance review. 

Showing timely appreciation by giving a gift can be imperative to letting your employees feel recognized and boost their morale. 

  1. Show support for personal goals

Giving recognition doesn’t always have to be work-related or about achievements. Given that you spend over 40 hours together every week, your team is as good as your family. 

It’s vital to show encouragement and support for your team in their personal goals. Giving a gift for celebrations and during personal hardships will make you more connected with your team.

  1. Work performance and anniversaries

Last but not least, it’s essential to give your employee a present during events and milestones. It can be something like completing a significant project or celebrating five years in service

Thoughtful and timely gifts can create a memorable and meaningful moment that will help make them feel that they are seen as a person.

Key Takeaway

Employee recognition should be a habit. For companies, this is one of the most affordable and powerful ways to keep your talents in your company and build a happy team. 

It can all be done through a simple act of giving appreciation gifts for employees to show that you actually care.