Employers are shifting the way that they recognise and reward loyal employees due to staff now remaining with a single employer for significantly less time than before.

According to figures from XpertHR, businesses are more inclined to offer monetary rewards for long-serving staff, instead of company memorabilia.

This shift in reward system comes as employees are spending significantly less time with a single employer, with 2020 OECD data showing that employees are staying less than ten years with an employer, averaging 8.6 years.

ONS data has shown that that young workers, aged under 35, were the most likely to change role between 2000 and 2018.

The rewards system currently most popular is recognising employee longevity with the offer of a long-service award, implemented by two thirds of organisations (66 per cent).

The concept of ‘long service’ is not universal, and the figures from XpertHR show variation in when this is awarded.

One in four organisations (42 per cent) wait five years to acknowledge service, which was the most popular timeframe after which to recognise employee loyalty.

This was followed by waiting for 10 years of employment for the same organisation, with 30 per cent of companies surveyed stating that loyalty to a business is rewarded after this time.

One in eight (13 per cent) require an extensive 25 years before recognising employees, and only one organisation survyed rewarded employees after one year of service.

In terms of methods of reward, gift vouchers were the most popular, worth an average of £100 for five years of service.

The survey found one organisation gave up to £5000 after a decade of loyalty from an employee.

In particularly rare cases, where some employees made it to 50 years’ service, a handful of organisations gave payments between £1000 and £5000.

Sheila Attwood, XpertHR pay and benefits editor, said:

With the length of service dwindling, especially amongst younger workers, it’s important to recognise those employees who are in it for the long haul.

But employers can’t rely on a carriage clock being an appropriate recognition of such dedication and loyalty. Instead, many are realising the impact a financial reward can have for their people, providing an opportunity for their team members to treat themselves.

However, employers shouldn’t wait for the 10- or 20-year marks to recognise hard work and dedication to their organisation. Regular recognition and rewards are crucial to creating and maintaining employee loyalty and engagement at all times.

*In order to obtain this data, responses were received from 180 organisations, collectively employing more than 262,000 people.





Megan McElroy is a second year English Literature student at the University of Warwick. As Editorial Intern for HRreview, her interests include employment law and public policy. In relation to her degree, her favourite areas of study include Small Press Publishing and political poetry.