2023 Employee Gift Guide for HR Managers

The holiday season is around the corner, and who doesn’t love receiving sparkly presents wrapped up in satin red bows? As an HR manager, you may be wondering what the best gift that you can give your team is. Step aside flat screen TVs, fancy coffee makers, and waterproof car mats—we’ve created a gift guide of what your employees really want.

The best part? These gifts keep giving long after you’ve packed up the holiday lights and garland, and will help:

  • Increase employee productivity
  • Improve employee retention
  • Attract new talent

The Gifts Your Employees Want (and Need)

1. Culture Open to Speaking About Mental Health

Employee Gift Description: When mental health issues are not taboo, employees feel more open talking about mental health, prioritizing mental health, and taking actions to support their mental health, such as going to therapy or making time for self-care.

How to Give the Gift: As an HR/Benefits leader, you can set the tone by encouraging managers to be advocates for mental health and establishing a safe space. As long as managers feel comfortable, being open about their mental health and having regular conversations goes a long way to reduce the stigma. This will also help inspire employees to get the support they need and know this is not only normal, but important.

2. Culture That Supports Work Life Balance

Employee Gift Description: Employees are people, and life doesn’t stop just because they’re at work. Many employees can have a difficult time juggling their personal life and the demands of their work. Finding that equilibrium is key to ensuring employees are more content and productive.

How to Give the Gift: To help establish this balance, there are a few different ways to approach this. Your organization can offer flexibility with work from home options, such as hybrid schedules or remote Fridays. You can also help support employees with flexible hours so they can deal with childcare, doctors’ appointments, car maintenance and more without needing to worry about missed time from work.

3. Leadership That Encourages Use of Paid Time Off Without Guilt

Gift Description: There are employees who feel as though they cannot use their PTO or sick days and therefore will come into work when they feel unwell or skip using earned vacation days out of fear that they will be penalized for it. This toxic culture causes employees to live in a place of intimidation and does not allow them needed time to recover and reset, which is damaging to their mental health and leads to low work satisfaction.

How to Give the Gift: As an HR leader, re-evaluate your company’s current PTO policies. There are 52 weeks in a year, and typically only a few weeks of vacation time—which everyone needs. Ensure you and managers are taking well-deserved time off as well to set an example for their teams.

  • Does your PTO policy require employees to submit their request an excessive 2+ weeks ahead of time? Or is it flexible and easy for employees to utilize their time off?
  • What is your company’s average usage of PTO versus unused time?
  • Are managers denying PTO requests?
  • Are there any teams where PTO is less utilized than others? Why?

4. A Company That Offers Paid Parental Leave

Gift Description: Having a baby is an exciting time, yet many expecting parents, especially mothers, can feel overwhelmed and worried about how they can afford to take time off to care for their newborn and stay afloat financially. Some may be deterred from starting a family for this reason. Or, in some cases, mothers will feel the need to rush back to work soon after giving birth, which is detrimental to their mental health, and takes critical time away from their children.

How to Give the Gift: Employees should feel supported. Wondering whether their parental leave plan is comprehensive enough should never be a worry. If your organization doesn’t already have a generous paid parental leave package, this is a priority to update to support and retain employees.

 5. A Workforce Where Everyone Feels Safe and Respected

Gift Description: As an HR leader, you may not always see toxic culture happening, or employees may feel as though they shouldn’t mention it because it will be seen as complaining.

How to Give the Gift: To help establish a safe environment, make it clear when onboarding and in regular meetings and manager trainings that all forms of harassment, including bullying and sexual harassment, are not tolerated. Encourage employees to speak with you with any concerns, and that this will not put their jobs in jeopardy for speaking up, regardless of the status of the perpetrator.

6. Colleagues That Support Connection

Gift Description: Everyone wants to feel included and accepted. And the positive social aspects that can come from connections at work should not be overlooked. Having supportive friends at work can increase employee happiness and well-being, as well as job satisfaction.

How to Give the Gift: As an HR manager, make it a priority to create opportunities where employees can be social and mingle, such as department team building outings or company-wide holiday events, or talk around the coffee counter. Consider events where different departments can get together socially to promote engagement across the whole company.

7. Culture that Normalizes Using The Employee Assistance Program

Gift Description: Over the past few years, the need and demand for mental health resources has changed dramatically. Implementing and promoting a robust Employee Assistance Program (EAP) is no longer a nice to have – it’s a necessity to support today’s workforce.

EAP’s can support employees and their families in a myriad of critical ways. Through offering mental health counseling, employers can get the support they need for anxiety, depression, LGBTQIA+ support and more. In addition, a comprehensive EAP should offer work-life resources to supply employees with the resources they need for financial wellness, eldercare, childcare, legal and more.

When employees have the support they need from their employer, this results in increased satisfaction and productivity and less missed time from work, which increases your ROI.

How to Give the Gift: Partner with a proven EAP provider that is established in the industry, and offers a robust program with a people-first approach.

A Gift to HR in 2024: Carebridge Can Help Increase Your Employee Satisfaction and Retention

As an HR professional, your job is incredibly important and challenging. Dealing with rapidly changing times and demands can be overwhelming.

That’s why Carebridge is here as your partner to provide a proven and holistic approach to support your employee’s wellbeing, create a mentally healthy workforce and increase your ROI.

As a comprehensive employee assistance program, Carebridge provides:

  • Mental Health Care
  • Personal Growth & Training
  • Leadership Support
  • Critical Incident Response
  • Work-Life Services
  • Legal Guidance
  • Financial Education
  • Mindfulness Practice
  • Life Coaching
  • Virtual Support Groups
  • Goal Setting
  • Emotional Wellbeing
  • Behavioral Health

Are you ready to see how a robust EAP program can transform your workforce? Click here or feel free to give our sales team a call at 800.893.9578 .