Employee recognition goes beyond a simple pat on the back, and a ‘well done!’ called across the office. Recognizing the great work your team does is vital to keeping them happy and engaged.
Taking it one step further, recognizing them for sticking around is another way to ensure your employees feel appreciated and valued, setting a good example for the newer staff.
Thinking about suitable gifts for your long-standing team members that they will actually value can be challenging. That’s exactly why we’ve put together a list of some ideas for 25th work anniversary gifts.
Before we dive into that, though, let’s first look at the advantages of an employee recognition system to offer your people awesome rewards.
Your employees are your most important resource. They are the lifeblood of your company, and showing appreciation for their hard work, dedication, and years of service is a must.
Celebrating your employees’ hard work is especially important when they achieve milestones like 20, 25, or 30 years with your organization. These employees have demonstrated loyalty for many years and have surely contributed to your company’s success and growth.
It’s also important to personalize gifts at this level. Generic gifts don’t say much when an individual has been with the organization for an extended period and can come across as disingenuous. By putting in a little extra effort, you’ll show your team the appreciation they deserve.
Now, let’s take a look at some fun and creative 25th work anniversary gift ideas for your awesome employees.
Many people rarely take proper breaks during the day. Studies show that since remote work has become the norm, US workers work an average of 48.5 minutes more during the day. This means your people’s workday is becoming longer, they’re taking fewer breaks, and they’re at risk of burning out.
So, a paid lunch at a fancy restaurant may be highly appreciated by your employee, especially if they’ve been with the company for a long time.
Alternatively, giving them dinner for two at a fancy restaurant, where they can take their partner or a friend for a nice evening out, is also a great way to celebrate the employee. GIving them the opportunity to spend extra time with a loved one at no personal cost shows that you appreciate their hard work, time, and loyalty to the company.
Paid time off is always appreciated. In the US, it’s known that workers are overworked, hardly taking time off for a well-deserved vacation.
Offering your more tenured people extra paid time off, whether a long weekend, a paid week off, or a short-term sabbatical, will definitely go down well.
If you really want to make your staff feel special, celebrating their loyalty to the company with a party says it best. An in-office gathering with great food, music, and the entire team present is a light and fun way of showing your appreciation for an honored staff member.
Alternatively, you could opt for a more formal event to honor some of your loyal employees - especially if a few staff members are celebrating higher-end work anniversaries.
An excellent way to incorporate this into your employee recognition system is to honor these staff members at an end-of-year function or large company event, where all employees celebrating major work milestones can be recognized. Think of it as an elite awards evening where everyone gets their moment in the spotlight.
Nothing says you care, like a care package. Gift baskets have come a long way in the past few decades, from simple fruit baskets to fancy hampers. However, for 25th work anniversary gifts, you might want to take it up a notch.
Creating fancy gift baskets with whiskey, bourbon, or an expensive bottle of wine shows you appreciate and value your staff. Coupled with a few vouchers and some edible contents, your employees will definitely get a warm, fuzzy feeling unwrapping the hamper.
Customizing a gift is a great way to show appreciation. Whether it’s an engraved trophy, watch, or monogrammed wallet, personalizing gifts makes them far more special and gives your employee something meaningful.
Sometimes, gifts don’t have to take the form of a tangible item - especially if your staff enjoy trying new things or traveling.
If your employees have worked at the company for a long time and are celebrating their 25th work anniversary, you probably know them quite well. In this case, give them a wonderful experience, like a weekend away to wine country, or something more adventurous like a hot air balloon trip, or skydiving adventure.
We’ll say it again; when a staff member has worked for a company for over 20 years, it’s definitely something to celebrate. So, giving the recognized individual a voucher of their choice, with a high value, is a great way to treat them.
It could be a travel voucher, a virtual Visa card that they can spend at a retailer of their choice, or it may be a voucher for their favorite upscale store. Whatever it is, be sure not to skimp the price tag. After all, they chose to stick around with your company for 25 years!
Whether it’s a weekend away to a local spot, or a week-long trip up to a mountain resort, your staff will definitely appreciate the effort, money, and thought that goes into arranging a paid trip.
Gifts like this also serve as inspiration for your younger staff members, where they’ll aspire to reach that level of loyalty.
Related: 50 Year Work Anniversary Gifts: Ideas for A Major Milestone
There’s swag, and then there’s SWAG. Gifting your staff a hamper of really awesome company swag is a super cool way of showing appreciation.
Some great examples of things you could include are branded laptop bags, headphones (for all those Zoom meetings), a winter coat, or even Bluetooth speakers. Just be careful not to only include things that could be construed as cheap.
People spend a lot of time at work (whether in the office or remotely). So gifting your employee a date night with their partner at the fancy new restaurant in town at the company’s expense is a lovely way to treat them. They’ll feel appreciated with this 25th work anniversary gift, and so will their spouse.
Families are your staff’s support system. They are the people that motivate them outside of work. A sound support system at home makes for a well-rounded and motivated employee. So, treating the family, or particularly the partner of your employee, is a great way to show that you care about their well-being.
Presenting an employee with a customized service trophy is a wonderful way to highlight their achievements and celebrate milestones. You could host a formal event and present trophies to all your tenured staff, or you could present the trophies to them as part of a gift basket.
A trophy is something tangible that they can keep forever, display at home, or keep in their office. It’s an honor to receive a customized trophy for one’s contribution to a company, and your employees will feel proud to have an item that represents their dedication and hard work.
Giving your staff a social media shout-out is the 21st century equivalent of publishing an article in the local paper about their special achievements. It makes people feel valued and special and puts them on a pedestal (in a good way, of course).
Creating social media campaigns around your tenured staff reaching milestones in the company is a really special way to recognize your employees’ hard work while also showcasing your company culture and employee loyalty.
Upskilling your staff provides a great benefit to your company in that they’ll become more valuable and will bring a new perspective to their team.
Additionally, offering to pay for a course for reaching a milestone in the company is a way to show your staff that you care about their career progression, ambitions, and personal goals. After all, people want to feel valued in every aspect of their lives, from their professional to personal goals.
If you really want to give something thoughtful, donating to a charity of your staff’s choice is a perfect idea for 25th work anniversary gifts.
Your employee could be super passionate about animals, so offer to donate to an animal shelter of their choice. Or, if they’re particularly involved with a local youth center, perhaps you could donate a generous amount to the center.
It’s a gift that shows you care about their interests and projects.
If your company, like many others, has moved to a remote or hybrid-remote work environment, your staff will be working from home. A great way to show your tenured staff you care is to surprise them with a home office makeover.
It could be a voucher to shop for all the necessary home office furniture items, or it could be to actually purchase everything on their wishlist. Either way, this is a great gesture of thoughtfulness and appreciation towards your employees.
If any of your staff are celebrating 25 years with your company, chances are they’re thinking about further investment opportunities that can help them retire.
Offering stock options or shares in your company is a thoughtful way to ‘pay it back’ to your tenured staff. It will show that you value their contribution to the company and want them to share in the rewards too. It’s far more meaningful when the offer is substantial enough to present as an award for celebrating 25 years at the company.
Offering up a special (and rather substantial) bonus is the perfect way to show your staff that you value the long-term contribution they have made to your company.
It’s also an effective motivating factor for your younger employees as it lets them know that there are some great financial benefits to sticking around.
The bonus can be added to their paycheck at the time of their 25th work anniversary, or it can be paid out at a different time as a special bonus. These are things you may have to clear with your payroll department, but either way, it’s a special gift to present to your tenured employees.
If you have a large organization, sometimes the mid-level employees don’t feel like they have a particularly meaningful impact on the company’s direction. Honoring long-term commitment and loyalty can mean offering up time with the CEO, or one of the C-Suite executives, for lunch or dinner.
It is essential to show that you recognize your long-standing employees and value their thoughts and opinions, particularly if they’re celebrating a milestone like a 25th work anniversary.
Making your staff feel appreciated and recognized takes commitment and should be considered an investment. Think of it as an investment into one of your most valuable resources - your people.
Recognizing special achievements that your staff may be celebrating, like a 25th work anniversary, shows how much your company values its people .
Driving a people-first culture is what sets so many organizations apart from their competitors. It may sound cheesy, but if you take care of your people, they will take care of your business, so it’s well worth it in the long run.