Buying Employee Awards Online
Buying awards for your employees can be fun and easy if you have a plan. Any carefully crafted awards program needs an equally thoughtful award buying process. The goal is to purchase something that is...
- In an acceptable price range
- Suitable for the program you've constructed
- Appreciated by your employees
- Produced and presented on schedule
Doing all of this simultaneously is a cinch if you follow our step-by-step guide.
1. Establish a Budget
For big programs like yearly or quarterly award ceremonies, it's critical to budget an amount that reflects the importance of the event. However, you're likely offering more than one trophy or plaque to a single employee. That's why it's important to construct a budget beforehand.
First, decide how many awards you would like to distribute.
Consider what would be most appropriate for the occasion. Would you like to give first, second and third prizes for the top three employees? Would you like to give supplemental awards to workers with positive attitudes that don't necessarily perform as highly? Do you want to recognize employees that consistently receive good customer feedback?
If you want to do all of the above, the budget will have to reflect this. First, solidify the number of awards and what each will signify.
Second, make a rough estimate about how much you would like to spend on each particular reward.
There are few scenarios when you would want to spend the same amount on each item. A first place employee awards is conventionally more valuable than a third place award, and you may regard top performers differently compared to workers with positive attitudes.
With that in mind, don't merely divide the budget by the amount of awards. Pick specific price points for each. Here's an example based on a $1000 budget:
- First prize top performer award: $250 ea.
- Second prize top performer award: $150 ea.
- Third price top performer award: $100 ea.
- General recognition awards: $50 ea.
If you are awarding many employees who have reached the same level of achievement, establish an overall budget and divide by the number of recipients. This should be done for Year of Service awards (which are distributed when an employee reaches an anniversary milestone such as 5 or 10 or 25 years) or when sales associates all exceed their. For example, all employees that are approaching the 10-year milestone should receive an award over $100.
Once you have these rough estimates, it's time to see what you can afford.
2. Look for the Most Appropriate Awards
There are hundreds of different gifts you can give to your employees, and you can stretch your dollar pretty far if you know what you're looking for.
Start by picking what type of award you would like to offer for each category. Should the top performers receive a plaque, trophy, certificate, medallion, frame or a different kind of personalized item? What about the outstanding customer service winner? Should the item be showcased on the office wall for everyone to see or is it a gift for the employee's trophy case at home? Check the price range between these items and pick something suitable.
Then, compare specific materials and designs in that category. Typically, an award can demand a different price based on how elaborately it's constructed and what it's made out of.
The most relevant example pertains to glass, acrylic and crystal trophies. While they may look similar, the material varies in quality. Acrylic is typically cheaper and more durable. Glass is a little more fragile and pricey. And crystal normally is at the top of the price spectrum, being the most brilliant in quality and requiring the most expertise to craft.
3. Personalize the Award
Making an award unique to your employees is a necessary step in the process. A blank award without a name or a particular message could mean anything. By adding a personalized message and the name of the recipient, you're directly recognizing their achievements and expressing your gratitude as well as the company's. You'll have to keep a few things in mind, however.
Certain awards have character restrictions.
Not every trophy has a lot of surface area to use for a message. If you want to say a lot, find something with a large flat surface. Then again, you can open up your options with a pithy message. Write what you're going to say – and this may vary for employee to employee – and then sort through what's available.
Adding your company logo requires a certain file type.
Engraving a logo is tricky business. It requires a file that can stretch the art without becoming blurry. This vector format is usually a .eps or .ai file. If you only have a .jpg image of your company logo, don't fret! Other formats can be converted for a nominal fee, and we'll hold onto the new vector file for any of your future orders.
Personalizing awards comes with a time commitment.
We want to get everything right. If you have a custom message or logo, your award may go through a proofing process so you can approve the personalization before your order is sent. Of course, this takes a little bit of time – typically 2 days for set up and 5 days for production, large quantity orders may take more time, so budget respectfully.
Organization is critical.
With multiple reward recipients and various personalized messages, it can be a struggle to get everything in order. Design a spreadsheet that coordinates the specific award with the specific message and the particular employee's name. It will make processing your order easier for both you and us.
4. Always Follow a Timeline
Finally, all of this needs to be completed following a schedule so that you know the award will be ready and delivered in time for the ceremony. Here's a rough outline of how your timeline should look starting from the moment you're ready to place your order.
Decide the award winners and design the appropriate personalizations, and send the logo file, message and your choice of awards to us. To stay on the safe side, this should be done at least two weeks before the ceremony.
Personalization takes two days, and you will be sent a proof immediately afterward. Review and approve your proof quickly (but accurately) or make suggestions so production may begin.
Production can take up to five days. This is when your order will be shipped.
Depending on your location, pick an acceptable form of shipment. Standard and expedited shipping orders are available if necessary.
As a rule of thumb, say your event date is one day earlier to ensure your awards are received in advance.
If shipping to an event location such as a hotel, be sure to have a contact at the event space that will receive and put your shipment in a safe location, so that the day of the event doesn't have the added stress of tracking down your awards.