Spring has finally arrived. This winter was particularly tough for your team. Many had to switch back to remote work, and they may be feeling the effects of lockdowns. They might be craving social interaction or missing friends and family.

They could also be feeling the strains of remote work. They might find it hard to collaborate, and trust in their coworkers may have eroded to a degree. Stress, lockdowns, and other factors are no doubt affecting the continued productivity decline for many Canadian employees.

As an employer, you’re probably wondering what you can do to help reverse this situation. Motivating your employees can be as simple as showing them you see their contributions and appreciate them.

So, how do you give employees the recognition they deserve, especially when they’re working in a remote environment? We pulled together a few ideas.

Use an HRIS

The first step to making sure employees receive their deserved recognition is to keep tabs on how they’re doing. A human resources information system is perfect for that purpose.

The HRIS lets you keep track of employee time, both on a schedule and project- or task-by-task basis. You can see both how much they’re working and how much they’re accomplishing. It could help you see how long certain tasks take, which makes it easier to estimate time in the future. It also means you can see who is struggling. Is there a task that always slows someone down? It might be time to check in with them.

The HRIS also lets you see who is succeeding and where. You can examine productivity and see who is getting the most done on a project or a daily or weekly basis.

The HRIS could also be used to set goals and track progress towards them. That, in turn, can let you and your employees know they’re on the right track.

Check-in with Employees and Offer Congratulations

Handing out recognition can be as simple as dropping an employee a note to let them know you see how hard they’re working. Saying “thank you” or otherwise indicating your appreciation goes a long way.

The HRIS lets you visualize progress and keep tabs on where each employee is succeeding. You should be checking in with them regularly, especially to address challenges and issues when they come up.

Don’t forget to note the positives to the employee when you have these check-ins. Focusing on positives, such as having completed a big job or a tricky task successfully, can help employees feel appreciated.

Recognize Outstanding Contributions in Meetings or Chat

Next, you can use that HRIS information to create a list of employees to recognize in meetings or chat groups. This is as important as recognizing employees privately. This helps their peers recognize them as well.

If you hold an update meeting on Mondays, then recognize the “top performers” from the week before. Don’t forget to get creative with what a “top performer” looks like. Someone who completes a big project or handles a difficult task may not have been the most productive, but they’ve still accomplished something important! Even someone who shows up with a sunny, can-do attitude and regularly inspires the team may be worthy of recognition.

If you use a chat app like Slack, then you could make a weekly announcement there. You could also make this interactive. Use the HRIS data to select “top candidates,” then have the team vote. Or flip that on its head and have the team nominate their teammates.

Create a Formal Awards Program

The final step you can take here is to create an award or reward. Can you offer the “top performers” of the week a sort of prize or even an emailed certificate, recognizing their achievement?

Again, the HRIS can help you select the candidates and keep track of performances over time. With the right technology, you can give your team the recognition they deserve.