Staff recognition leads to more cohesive workplace

As part of Launceston City Council’s aim to create a ‘one organisation’ culture among its staff, employee recognition events were introduced in 2007.

The events acknowledge employee achievements and length of service on Council and aim to recognise individuals who have made a significant contribution to the organisation, or who have shown outstanding commitment to their work.

Years of Service Milestones are awarded to employees when they achieve a ten year milestone, and every five years after that.

On reaching the milestone, employees receive a gift of their choice to the value of the number of years multiplied by $10. For example, ten years is equivalent to a $100 gift and 50 years is equivalent to a $500 gift.

The gift is presented at a morning or afternoon tea in the presence of their colleagues.

In addition, employees are presented with a Years of Service Milestone certificate at an official Recognition Event, held in June and November each year.

Attendees include awarded employees and their guests, Mayor and Aldermen, the Executive Management Committee and Department Managers.

A DVD outlining the achievement of each staff member is produced, played at the event and then given to each employee to take home.

Recognition of Individual Significant Achievement also occurs twice yearly at the Recognition Events.

Nominations are submitted by Directors and/or Department Managers to the General Manager.

Examples of Significant Achievement include completion of study that directly relates to the employees’ role at Council, or an award bestowed by an employee’s peer group.

Since the launch of the policy in 2007, Council has recognised 21 employees for Significant Achievement and 238 employees for Years of Service.

Ten employees were recognised at the most recent Recognition Event in November for significant achievements. Among these were Jacquie Leonard, Craig Williams and David Jones, who successfully completed the Public Sector Management Graduate Certificate Program.

In completing the 18 month course, each staff member undertook a project that will benefit Council and other councils across Tasmania.

Council assisted each participant throughout the course through registration fees and time off work to attend each of the four units’ week long workshops.

Launceston Mayor Albert van Zetten said recognition is an effective and tangible way for Council to show its employees they are valued and appreciated.

“It also shows them that the contribution they make to the organisation and its customers is important and recognised,” he said.

“Recognising and celebrating employees’ achievements formally has increased employees’ knowledge of one another – knowledge about where they work, what they do, how long they have been there, and what they have achieved.

“This shared understanding improves morale and fosters a more cohesive workplace.”

Feedback following the introduction of the policy has been very positive, with staff enjoying the formal recognition and developing a stronger sense of pride in their achievements.

For further information contact Jim Burden, Manager Organisational Development, on (03) 6323 3000.