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    5 Tips for Planning Employee Bonuses

    on 6 November 2017


    Posted by Karen E Eubanks
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    If your company plans to distribute holiday or end of the year bonuses, your planning is probably well underway. Here are considerations you might have missed. Beyond your company’s official bonus policies, there are other ways you can make the most of your bonus budget.

    1. Insight

    To employees, bonuses can sometimes feel arbitrary. The point of bonuses is to reward good performance and encourage even greater efforts next year. Resentment about the fairness of the bonus received will nullify the good intentions behind them. Being able to document any missed deadlines or particular achievements can help employees better understand how their bonus was determined. Our project management software gives managers insight into their team members’ activity, the time they’ve invested in each task, and the ability to track individual contributions to whatever project being monitored.

    2. Transparency

    Your company may have a system for calculating bonuses or at least the pool of money used for bonuses. This system may be fair but if your employees don’t know the system or understand it, the fairness may not count for much. Providing transparency well before bonuses can make a tremendous difference in how bonuses are received. If there is a limited budget this year, let employees know. This will enable employees to adjust their expectations so that they are more appreciative when they receive their bonuses. Equally, if there is a larger budget available, utilise this fact as a further incentive for your team to produce their best work.

    3. Feedback

    Everyone appreciates money received as a bonus, however, work satisfaction is based on more than financial compensation. Along with the bonus, it is important to provide positive feedback. Often the employee evaluations used as part of the bonus allocation planning can focus too much on identifying problems and setting goals for the coming year. It is important to go beyond that and give positive feedback. Employees will probably remember your thanks and positive feedback far longer than they will the details of their bonuses.  

    4. Public Recognition

    A gathering during the festive season is the perfect time to publicly acknowledge your employees’ hard work over the year. You might want to single out a few high achievers, but it is important to make everyone feel appreciated. You don’t want to monopolise employee holiday events with talk of work and business. Focus on providing positive thanks, an upbeat view for the coming year, and perhaps even a little humour wouldn’t go amiss.

    5. The Big Picture

    Bonuses do not happen in a vacuum but often employees are unaware of the broader issues surrounding the company. Keeping staff informed of and engaged in the challenges successes of the company can go far in terms of their sense of belonging to the group. With a greater understanding of the business at management level, individuals can become more invested in achieving something as team. They might feel motivated to develop creative solutions that would otherwise go unconsidered. Perhaps they’ll help to generate a greater team spirit in and among themselves. You may find that with a more developed understanding of what the company currently faces and its goals for the future, people are more encouraged to perform to their potential, and approach the New Year with a greater sense of purpose.

    So why not take advantage of this time of year to properly review with staff not just their own performance, but also that of the organisation as a whole? Let them see how their contributions have been felt; how what they are doing on a daily basis positively influences not just the company, but also their colleagues. This could even help your team better understand the bonus system, and hopefully why they’ve so deserved theirs.

    Finally, consider that the bigger picture works both ways. What more could you be learning about and from your staff? Want your team members to be more motivated – to come back to work with renewed vigour? Then perhaps some would appreciate more flexible working hours over the Christmas period or the chance to work from home. Glasscubes makes working together simple – wherever you are. Use our team collaboration software to help your staff stay in the loop, make positive contributions, and stay incentivised throughout the festive season.


    Glasscubes is a user-friendly collaboration software for teams. Connect everyone that you work with in an online workspace that improves the way you share files, manage projects and communicate with each other.

    For more information, contact us by calling +44 (0)20 3274 2310 or email us at

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