Human Resources Blog - Spark Hire

How Recognition Programs Attract Top Talent

The decision to find a new job is a complicated one, almost always driven by a combination of factors and various strains of dissatisfaction. That said, there are a few pervasive themes that employees point to as culprits for resignation, and a prevailing one is lack of recognition. In fact, 79% of employees who recently left their job say that a major reason was a lack of appreciation. 

Knowing this, it makes sense that communicating regular recognition is a fixture of your company’s culture to prospective new hires is a great way to attract the kind of top talent your team needs to thrive.

Why Recognition Attracts Top Talent

From increased engagement and productivity to stronger peer-to-peer relationships, there are a vast array of benefits that come with a successful employee recognition program. Two of these benefits are particularly relevant when developing strategies to attract top talent. We discuss them below:

Recognition Programs Demonstrate a Stand-Out Employee Experience

One important thing to keep in mind when trying to attract top talent is the candidates you’re working with are likely evaluating more than a few job offers. If they’re really at the top of their respective fields, it makes sense that successfully hiring these individuals is a competitive feat. 

Take a moment to consider things from the candidate’s perspective: with so many offers to choose from, they are able to maintain rigorously high standards which apply to more than just salary and job function. Increasingly imperative in top talent’s job evaluation process is the quality of the employee experience at any potential new company.

In the interview process, this factor can be as difficult for employers to speak to as it is important to the candidate’s decision. Having a formal recognition program in place allows you to point to something that clearly demonstrates your company’s commitment to an outstanding employee experience. While many employers speak vaguely about company culture, those who can clearly show that they invest in prioritizing this element of the employee experience will be able to attract top talent much better.

Recognition Makes the Interview Process More Memorable

Another key element of any effective strategy to attract top talent is making the hiring process memorable. You can think of it as a kind of sample, from the candidate’s perspective, of what working at your organization long-term would be like. 

With this in mind, if you want candidates to think of your company as a place where recognition is a defining element of company culture, it’s a good idea to send them some kind of recognition following the interview.

At this early stage in the employer-employee relationship, simple recognition is best. Thank the interviewee for taking the time to speak with you and your team, and let them know you found your conversation enjoyable, insightful, thought-provoking—whatever the appropriate descriptor may be. If you can, send a small gift like flowers or a small gift card to accompany the note. 

This kind of personalized recognition, coupled with smooth interview processes, will help create a memorable candidate experience that differentiates your company and attracts top talent. When you’re competing for the best and brightest job candidates, it’s critical to have above-and-beyond strategies in place to help send the message that your company can offer the kind of employee experience they’re looking for in their next employer.

About the Author

Katerina Mery HeadshotKaterina Mery is a marketing specialist at Fond, a rewards and recognition company dedicated to building places where employees love to work. She authors articles about how to leverage recognition programs to drive company success. Learn more at

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