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The Value in Recognition

For employers, creating a warm, welcoming brand allows doors to be opened. Doors to new employees, but also doors to new business ventures. Investing in a comprehensive, multi-channel recruitment and employer branding strategy can have lasting positive effects on your organization’s bottom line.


Taking it a step further, investing in programs that offer brand recognition and also programs that offer employee recognition is crucial for organizations to demonstrate their value and legitimacy. According to Energage, workplace culture awards are not only something to celebrate internally, but offer additional benefits such as credibility, media exposure, improved employee recruitment and better employee engagement and performance.


As more than 35% of U.S. workers are millennials, recruitment and branding campaigns must be partially or wholly tailored around this demographic as they are both the present and the future of our country’s workforce. These individuals want to make a positive impact on their organization, they place great emphasis on how they are treated on a personal level (not just as an employee) and they value working for organizations who are leaders within an industry and leaders in cultivating company culture.


However, retaining this demographic of workers can be a challenge. The U.S. economy loses roughly $30.5B every year due to millennial turnover. For organizations looking to not only hire for hard-to-fill positions, but retain these employees as well, they must consider their recruitment messaging and branding as well as placing greater emphasis on employee onboarding, professional development, position benefits and employee recognition to avoid negative impacts to an organization’s bottom line.


At the Times Union Media Group, we recognize the need for employers to both hire and retain top talent – perhaps now more than ever! As such, through our Top Workplaces award program and through Empire’s Whole Health Heroes Awards, the Times Union works to do its part to award top workplaces in the Capital Region and assist in awarding companies and individuals committed to the safety, wellness and revitalization of the region. Below, we’ve highlighted a handful of elements of both programs and the benefits associated with employer awards and employee recognition awards.


Empire Whole Health Heroes Awards


In partnership with the Times Union, Empire is presenting the 2021 Empire Whole Health Heroes Awards, honoring area companies and individuals committed to the safety and wellness of our community and a revitalized Capital District.


Candidates must demonstrate how they have influenced or are affecting one of the below categories with the goal to rebuild the Capital Region:


  • Improved patient quality of healthcare or long-term healthcare access and/or affordability for area residents with the goal to get the area back to safety
  • Improved physical or mental wellness for employees with the goal to return to their daily lives or offices, or provide a feeling of safety working in their line of business
  • Helped companies shape their response to ensure the safety of their employees as they return to their workplace
  • Improved conditions for the safe return of the community


After the nomination period ends on Monday, November 8, a total of 25 honorees will be selected through a judging process that culminates on November 25. The honorees will be celebrated in a virtual event and featured in a special section in the Times Union.


For Capital Region companies who employ those within the healthcare, business or essential services verticals and sectors, recognizing your employees who have made a difference can help to retain top talent, increase employee engagement and further facilitate and encourage high performance. According to a study conducted by O.C. Tanner, affirmation, feedback and reward were the most effective manners to motivate employees to do their best work.


In addition, studies have found that employees who do not feel recognized struggle to articulate the elements that make their workplace a great one. This leads us nicely into our next awards program designed to recognize workplaces in the Capital Region who go above and beyond and are considered the “top” in the area!


Times Union Top Workplaces


In its 11th year, the Times Union Top Workplaces is more than just an awards program. It aims to provide helpful feedback to employers, no matter where they rank.


Any organization with 35 or more employees in the greater Capital Region is eligible to participate — including public, private, nonprofit and government workplaces. Eligible counties are Albany, Columbia, Fulton, Greene, Hamilton, Herkimer, Montgomery, Rensselaer, Saratoga, Schenectady, Schoharie, Warren, and Washington.


Employers then will be ranked in small, medium and large categories. The winners will be announced in a special report to be published in April 2022.


For area organizations looking to glean information from their employees about company culture and more, Top Workplaces is a great opportunity to do just that. Employee engagement surveys allow internal teams to make better informed decisions to improve an organization for both the short and long term. In addition, for the organizations that win a Top Workplaces award, the recognition helps companies appeal to top talent, differentiate themselves in a very competitive hiring market and boost current employee morale.


We encourage all local organizations to learn more about the Top Workplaces award program and participate to learn more about your company, its employees and continue on a path toward continued evolution and improvement.


In Conclusion


Through a multi-channel marketing and branding approach, organizations will not only attract quality candidates, but also create a company culture that aligns with overarching business goals.


Get in touch with us today to learn more about how our product and special events can assist your organization earn and retain top talent!




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