All too often employee appreciation is viewed as a “nice to have,” an optional extra that companies can employ to keep their people engaged. However, for the HR team at RED choosing the right rewards and recognition program was an essential tool that helped to revamp a beat-up culture and bring about organizational change.
Formed in 2005, RED is a California-based camera manufacturer working at the cutting edge of today’s entertainment industry. Known for its leading camera tech, the company has offices and studios across the globe including London, Shanghai, Singapore, Hollywood, New York City, and Miami.
“The company culture was pretty beaten up. There had been a lot of leadership changes and unfortunately some layoffs. One of the things that was missing was appreciation.”
When she first joined RED in 2019, HR Director Masha Empringham realized something was missing. The company had gone through a period of change and the culture had suffered as a result. Put simply, the existing model of bonuses and occasional recognition simply wasn’t working.
After spending time speaking to people within the company Masha quickly realized that employee appreciation had to be front and centre. People were hungry for recognition, but with busy schedules and a global team, finding the right solution wasn’t easy. RED needed something customizable and something that would slot seamlessly into peoples’ routines. But above all RED needed an employee recognition and rewards program that would help to build a better culture within the organization.
That’s when they turned to Bucketlist.
“Working with the customer service team was very, very easy. There was a lot of flexibility, and we knew that Bucketlist was there to help us set up a program in a way that made sense for RED.”
Masha knew that when it came to finding an employee recognition and rewards platform she needed two things. First, the solution needed to be easy for RED’s people to use. And second, it needed to be customizable to the company’s specific needs. After exploring the market and meeting with more than five different providers, she chose Bucketlist.
According to Masha Bucketlist’s easy-to-use interface was a big draw. The platform was intuitive so there was no barrier to people getting involved. The Outlook integration and easy sign-in were also crucial to eliminating any frustration employees might feel when adjusting to a new platform.
Bucketlist was the perfect match and quickly the platform became engrained within peoples’ routines, a healthy habit that 99% of employees enjoy each and every day. Not only did the platform deliver everything that RED needed, but the customer service team also went above and beyond to help Masha and her team implement the new program.
“The customer experience has been tremendous. We have busy schedules and when we need something, we need it now. But Bucketlist was right there from the very beginning, helping us to change or tweak the program whenever we needed their help.”
Getting everyone involved
“We’re all humans, we tend to be lazy. We don’t always like to try new things and we’re reluctant to change. That’s why it’s important to invest a little extra time to promote the platform, not just launch it. Otherwise, it’s not going to succeed.”
One of the biggest challenges that RED faced when it came to rolling Bucketlist out across the organization was getting buy-in from their team members. After all, people are naturally wary when it comes to adopting something new, so Masha and her team worked hard to make the platform part of peoples’ routines from day one.
That began with training where the entire company wasn’t just shown how Bucketlist works, but how to integrate within Outlook so that it seamlessly slotted into their day-to-day lives. But Masha knew for the platform to succeed they couldn’t just launch Bucketlist, they had to actively promote it.
To that end RED encouraged managers to drive uptake within their teams, they also rewarded early adopters within the company – creating a virtuous cycle where the simple act of recognizing someone was itself recognized.
“Any kind of meeting that we had. At any training and any town halls, Bucketlist was always part of it.”
Bucketlist became an intrinsic part of RED’s culture. From newsletters to team meetings and even employees’ birthdays, the platform was incorporated into every aspect of communication. The key was to drive engagement. Masha knew that the more people got engaged with the platform the more they would get out of it.
And we mean everyone
“Bucketlist ensured that no one felt left out.”
With a global team spread across countries as far afield as Turkey, India, the UK and China, one of the biggest challenges facing RED was implementing an employee rewards and recognition platform that would work anywhere in the world.
RED wanted everyone to be able to engage with the platform. But they also wanted everyone to feel rewarded. That’s where Bucketlist came in. Because the program can be customized to deliver everything from gift cards and experiences to unique company swag, RED could ensure that employees can enjoy rewards no matter where they are in the world, creating a truly global solution.
“That’s a pat on the back for you guys. Because Bucketlist provided the tool that we needed in that moment.”
While the feedback from within RED itself has been fantastic, the company’s implementation of Bucketlist has also won acclaim from the industry as a whole. Masha has proudly shared the story about the platform’s adoption as a speaker at conferences, she even wrote a case study mapping out how Bucketlist has helped to boost engagement across the entire organization.
The rollout has been so successful in fact that RED even won an industry award to recognize their engagement efforts, an achievement that proves the impact that employee appreciation can have on company culture.
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