5 Ways to Convince Executives to Fund A New Recognition Solution
February 12, 2024
February 12, 2024
When you know you need a new recognition solution but aren’t sure your leaders agree, one of the most important things you can do is get executive support before you start your search for a new provider. Prepare a solid business case for why a new recognition solution is necessary and getting those precious resources approved will be infinitely easier.
Here are 5 questions executives want answered before they support the purchase of a new recognition solution.
Just starting your search for a recognition partner? Check out our buyer’s guide for practical advice, useful tools, and valuable insights to help you prepare and search confidently.
Reasons for needing a new recognition solution are often unique to an organization but should always be tied to something bigger than simply employee recognition.
Whatever the reason for your employee recognition search, communicate the “why” of recognition (and the cost of not doing recognition well) to your executives. Tie employee recognition to business goals and outcomes.
Ask yourself: How does recognition help with your executives’ biggest business issues? Some executives understand the importance of recognition in building a thriving workplace culture and keeping employees engaged, productive, and loyal. Others need more convincing (see question #2 below). Connect the dots on what recognition will do for your organization, and what will happen if employees don’t feel appreciated and valued at work.
For example, perhaps executives are struggling with how to engage and connect their hybrid or remote workforce. Help them see how frequent recognition helps hybrid and remote workers feel more engaged, included, and a stronger sense of purpose, opportunity, and success.
According to Gartner, the top priority for CEOs is growth, followed by tech and workforce issues like retention, hiring, and DEI. As you present your business case to executives, be sure to include data and stats like the ones below on how a recognition solution can help with these issues.
“[Recognition] is the greatest retention tool in the world.”
— Russell F. Cox, President and CEO, Norton Healthcare
When recognition is an integrated part of an organization’s culture, employees are:
Organizations with highly integrated recognition are:
TD Bank Group: Both giving and receiving recognition has a moderately strong correlation to lower attrition rates.
GE Appliances: Overall risk of attrition was reduced by 58% when an employee received recognition in the prior month.
Ohio Living: Recognition leads to lower hospital readmission rates, lower nursing and staff turnover, lower infection rates, better patient outcomes, and higher market share.
Norton Healthcare: Engagement survey results went from the 55th percentile to 83rd in the healthcare market and overall retention is in the top 70th percentile.
Find more recognition ROI stats and ways to measure impact for your business case.
Chances are, you aren’t approaching your executives without first doing some research on what type of recognition solution you want to implement. Show them you’ve put a lot of thought into the best tools for your organization.
Here’s a checklist of recognition features that are a must-have for your solution:
“Our CEO is a big sponsor of the MomentMakers program. He engages with it, holds leaders accountable for recognizing, and is a strong advocate for the program. His support helps make MomentMakers so successful in creating a culture of belonging, inclusivity, and caring at CIBC.”
— Jackie Goldman, Senior Vice President, Rewards, Recognition, and Performance, CIBC
See how CIBC updated their recognition solutions to create an award-winning recognition culture.
Learn more about essential features for your recognition solution.
You could. But it would take a lot of work, and resources you may not have.
Talk to your executives about the recognition that is currently happening at your organization. Are employees recognized often? In a meaningful way? That connects them to your purpose, accomplishment, and one another? For demonstrating your company values? Without a robust solution, it is often hard to track what recognition is happening, how it is being given, and how much is being spent.
Recognition outside of a centralized solution can also be very manual, using precious people resources to track, administer, and deliver recognition. Think about the ramifications of not having a new recognition solution. Does it hinder the employee experience and put undue stress on people leaders or HR teams, who could be spending that time on other culture-building activities?
Before upgrading their recognition solutions, Capital One took an inventory of all their associate recognition programs and solicited feedback from their business units to learn best practices they were doing and what additional support they needed. Armed with this data, the team began to create a recognition strategy and vision that gained a high level of executive support.
Says Kelley Lynch, HR Director at Capital One, “I've had some meetings with leaders who weren't fully bought in and one of the first things I asked them is tell me about a time when you felt really impacted by recognition or appreciation. Everyone has a moment. So, if you put that moment with data and tell this story, then it's a much easier road to convince folks, especially in finance and other areas, why this is important.
How does this tie back to actually improving your return on investment? Because the power of recognition and appreciation can impact engagement. It impacts attrition, it impacts net promoter score. There is a business return when you do it the right way.”
The answer to this will depend on when in the buying process you are soliciting executive support. You may already know the cost if you’ve found a partner, or need to provide an estimate if you are just beginning your search. Either way, you can use the following guidelines for recognition spend:
One final note: make sure you are getting the right leaders involved. If you are working directly with your CEO it can be easier to get a yes, but it may be an executive team you plead your case to:
Looking for a recognition solution that your executives and employees will love? Check out Culture Cloud.