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Something for everyone: The benefits of offering inclusive employee rewards

Written by
Maja Orsic
Maja Orsic

Let’s talk about inclusive employee rewards.

Your organization should be committed to diversity and inclusion, especially when it comes to your hiring practices, professional development policies, and leadership philosophies. After all, 67% of job seekers consider workplace diversity an important factor when considering employment opportunities. 

As it stands, more than 50% of working people want their employers to do more to increase diversity.

A powerful way to improve diversity and inclusion at your organization is by expanding the scope of who and what gets recognized and, you guessed it, offering a broader, more inclusive selection of employee rewards. 🤩

Why recognition and rewards go hand in hand

When we first launched Bonusly, we gave our customers a choice: they could use the platform to give bonuses with real-world value or they could use it to give bonuses without a monetary value.

Overwhelmingly, we found that Bonusly bonuses with real-world value were given more frequently and by more people than bonuses with no monetary equivalent. In other words, the opportunity to earn rewards encourages people to start and continue using Bonusly for employee recognition.

One possible explanation for this correlation is that bonuses with real-world value help Bonusly users conceptualize the impact of participating in the program. Another possibility is simply that people like rewards! 😁 

Over time, we’ve found that the more brands we offer in the Bonusly Reward Catalog, the happier Bonusly users are with the program. As one Bonusly user writes, the “feature that makes everyone happy is that they can choose rewards that they are interested in instead of [our company] choosing something that will never be used.”

What makes Bonusly rewards inclusive

Keeping employee voice and choice in mind, here are a few things that make employee reward offerings in Bonusly enticing, inclusive, and impactful:

Trips are great, but travel options are better

What’s your organization’s paid time off policy like? If it’s designed to help employees battle burnout, take care of their mental and physical health, and find a happy work-life balance, the travel and experience reward options in the Bonusly Reward Catalog can support everyone’s unique wants and needs.

Without being prescriptive or assuming what kinds of rewards will mean the most to your employees, you can offer gift cards to numerous airlines, hotels, and cruise lines in addition to consumer brands and cash-out and donation options. It’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey, so let your employees decide which route to take! ✈️🚙🚢

Custom Rewards to get excited about

The best Custom Rewards are affordable, desirable and exciting, and aligned with your culture. 

To make your organization’s custom rewards more inclusive of everyone’s desires, ask your employees which nonprofits and businesses they’d like to support that aren’t available in the default Bonusly Reward Catalog. Encourage them to think of local and minority-owned businesses, especially. Based on their feedback, create Custom Rewards that they actually want.

You can also create Custom Rewards to augment how your organization celebrates cultural events like Black History Month, Women’s History Month, Pride Month, and Hispanic Heritage Month. 

If your organization has committed to eliminating bias in the hiring process, for instance, you could offer a Custom Reward to facilitate donations to the National Society of Black Engineers, an organization that’s committed to helping black engineering college students succeed, during Black History Month. 

There are no limits to how creative and inclusive you can be with Bonusly’s Custom Rewards. If you have an example or suggestion you’d like to share, let us know in the comments!

Want to learn more?

Request a product demo to find out how Bonusly engages people at small, mid-size, and enterprise organizations around the world with inclusive employee recognition and rewards!

See Bonusly in action, request a demo

Originally published on February 25, 2020 → Last updated February 26, 2020

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Maja Orsic

Maja's background in writing, fine art photography, and visual design informs her work for Bonusly. She's motivated to create welcoming digital spaces and make work better for everyone.


Bonusly is a fun, personal employee recognition and rewards platform that helps people feel engaged and successful at work. ✨ Learn more about us.