Boosting participation

A few best practices from the Bonusly team for improving participation

Updated over a week ago

The Bonusly Analytics Participation report shows you how many employees are giving and receiving recognition on a regular basis. Ideally, most of your employees will be recognized on a regular basis. This article will give you suggestions for increasing the percentage of employees being recognized within Bonusly. 


Boosting participation across the company

Bonusly uses thoughtful notifications and reminders to encourage employees to recognize each other regularly, but there’s a few ways you can proactively boost participation:


Fun fact: Bonusly customers with an active Slack integration experience participation rates 5% - 10% higher than those without. 📈


  • Ensure rewards are valuable and meaningful for employees. If you aren't giving your employees a high allowance, consider supplementing the catalog with valuable Custom Rewards that are within your employee’s reach.

  • Customize your Bonusly experience by adding your company’s core values, Custom Rewards, Custom Awards, and more!


💡Pro tip: Employees are more likely to use the platform if it aligns with your company’s purpose and reflects your unique company culture.


  • Train managers to recognize their direct reports during onboarding and regularly remind them during people manager meetings. Managers set the tone for your recognition program as a whole and are key to creating a culture of recognition.

  • Remind employees that they can recognize their colleagues, even if they run out of points. Commenting on recognition within Bonusly can be given without points attached! Separately, remind your employees that even if they run out of points to give away, they can redeem the Points Boost reward to keep the recognition rolling. They’ll be in good company, Points Boosts are the third most redeemed reward for all Bonusly users!

  • Align work holidays (like Employee Appreciation Day) with Bonusly and even consider giving employees an extra budget to celebrate their peers during months with holidays celebrated by your company.

  • To encourage users to spend their monthly allowances, create a Manual Award and give it to anyone who spends 100% of their monthly allowance by the end of the month. You can also celebrate the recognition rockstars on a quarterly basis; create a “Recognition Champion” Custom Award and award the top recognition giver.

  • Promote the use of the tagging feature when giving recognition: encourage team members to tag relevant members of their team and tag managers for added visibility on successes and learnings that make an impact.


Going from good to great participation

Still not at 100% participation? That’s okay! Though it will vary by company, we see, on average, about 85% of employees both giving and receiving bonuses in a month. Who’s the 15%?  Let’s take a closer look because this is an important insight. 

Sometimes, there's a whole team that hasn’t engaged with Bonusly. With Compare Rate Analytics, you can compare giving and receiving rates across multiple segments, including manager teams!


💡Pro tip: We recommend reaching out to their team lead to see why they're not adopting Bonusly and then asking someone to champion the program.🏆


If you find individuals are not participating, there’s a few potential situations:

  1. Their role may be isolated. If their role isn’t collaborative, they won’t have peers to recognize them. If this is the case, it’s important for their manager to take a more significant role in recognizing them. This might also be an indicator that an employee could use more collaboration opportunities.

  2. Another reason might be that the employee is a member of the executive team. Though most executives love using Bonusly, some executive management don’t want to receive recognition from their employees.

  3. This number may be slightly affected during times when employees are on vacation or extended leave.

Don’t forget to take these factors into account and remember that your participation goal may not be 100% participation.


Questions? Send us a note to [email protected]; we'd be happy to help!

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