Creating Service Anniversaries That Inspire Everyone

September 29, 2014 Darcy Jacobsen

I am so excited today, to tell you that we have officially launched our newest product innovation: Service Timelines™.

Click here if you want to watch the video.

This video, more eloquently than I ever could, really gets to the emotional heart of Service Timelines—because that is really what it is, an emotional heart.  This is an actual video of an actual service anniversary that our own head of HR recently experienced. (And we even had to cut some of the most moving and personal stuff out!) It deeply affected Niamh, and it deeply affected and inspired everyone who participated and viewed her award.

Compare that to the service anniversaries you’ve experienced. I’m going to guess they haven’t had this power. Most companies have some sort of service award programs in place, but for decades those awards had not really changed at all. Chances are your five, ten, fifteen, twenty-five year milestones have come and gone marked only by pens, pins and certificates and letters addressed to “Dear valued employee”.

And if that’s the case, you aren’t alone. In our most recent Workforce Mood Tracker report, here’s some of what people had to say about their programs:

  • “Anniversaries are only recognized with a card and pin mailed to the employees’ homes.”
  • “My company acknowledges it via email and their department takes them out to lunch.” Very anti-climactic, nobody shares any stories. Sometimes they don’t figure it out until later and then they scramble to come up with something.”
  • “We were given a 10 year pin (when) we were at the opening of a new property. I think we may have deserved something a little extra.”
  • “Consistency across the years would be nice. Some get recognized and others not. When the manager changes every year or two it is difficult to keep consistent.”
  • “I received an email from an airline recognizing 25 years in the flyer loyalty program, but not a peep from the company I worked from.”
  • “The list is generated through human resources and signed with a stamp.  It is not personalized at all and the management doesn’t know who we are, It really doesn’t mean much when it has no warmth behind it. It is very impersonal.”
  • “Only some people are recognized on their anniversary.  It makes those that are not all the more depressing.”
  • “I worked for a place for 10 years and no one said a word to me on my 10th anniversary. I also worked at another place for 7 years and was not acknowledged either.”
  • “For a work anniversary, the only acknowledgement is from an automated system that says, “Today is your (blank) anniversary.” when you clock in for the day.”

Transforming service anniversaries into something that inspires employees.
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It’s a sad indictment of the status quo, really.

But from today all that has changed. Service Timelines actually reinvents years of service programs through personalized stories and videos from employees’ closest colleagues, the relationships that have mattered most over the years. This results is a deeply personal and memorable anniversary experience that reminds your employees of all of the ways they have inspired others at work.

Here’s what our CEO Eric Mosley, has to say: “Service Timelines unleashes the power of real human relationships in the workplace. Every company is a collection of communities, of human beings, bonded by their connection to each other through their work.  We’re moving service anniversaries from an antiquated approach into an inspiring, rich tapestry of human experiences.”

And here are what the analysts are saying:

“Our research shows that employees prefer recognition that reflects their unique contributions.  By enabling an employee’s social circle to collectively share their favorite memories, products such as Service Timelines give employees a chance to reflect on the experiences and impact they have made with their colleagues and customers. Such a service can transform the age-old service award into a living, breathing celebration of a person’s professional contributions and personal experiences at work.” ~ Stacia Sherman Garr, vice president, talent management research, Bersin by Deloitte, Deloitte Consulting LLP

“The relationships we have with our co-workers has a proven effect on our level of happiness. Globoforce has invented a product that truly captures the importance of these relationships and their impact on individual and company achievements. Companies that recognize the potential in reinventing years of service programs by incorporating more social and personal methods of honoring a person’s career will be rewarded with a more motivated and dedicated workforce.” ~ Madeline Laurano, vice president and principal analyst, Brandon Hall

“With Service Timelines, Globoforce has created a product that taps into the hidden potential of service anniversaries and the power of peers—leveraging colleague relationships to increase both individual and organizational social capital—and in turn helping to promote a culture of collaboration, mutual support and innovation.” ~ Michael Moon, research director, HCM at Aberdeen Group

“Changing the way years of service awards are celebrated is a welcome disruption in the HR industry. Current approaches to honoring service anniversaries are failing to meet their potential in terms of energizing employees. Collecting stories, videos, and past recognition moments from an employee’s colleagues is a game-changing idea that can change the way people view years of service programs.” ~ Holger Mueller, vice president and principal analyst at Constellation Research

“Celebrating someone’s work anniversary in a way that truly reflects their achievements and relationships is a black hole in HR. With Service Timelines, Globoforce is empowering employees to thank each other for the role they play in their everyday and work lives. I highly recommend HR leaders take a closer look at this innovative program if they seek a real business return on their years of service programs.” ~ Laurie Ruettimann, HR consultant, influencer, and author

“Recognizing the milestones of employees is a critical component to helping organizations in the mission of employee satisfaction. Globoforce enables a new generation of software to engage employees that will improve loyalty and contributions of every individual in a company.” ~ Mark Smith, CEO and chief research officer, Ventana Research

“New social techniques and SaaS innovations are rejuvenating legacy HR processes long in need of change. HR leaders have a unique opportunity to rethink how they approach the redesign and improvement of service programs. The use of video and crowdsourced recognition can make an impact on employee morale, retention, and amplification of your organization’s culture and brand values.”  ~ R “Ray” Wang, principal analyst and founder at Constellation Research

I strongly encourage you to request your own demo of Service Timelines today to see it for yourself!

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