Future of Work

Third of UK workers denied Christmas bonuses

The nationwide study by Hawk Incentives found that 33% of British workers have never been given a Christmas bonus by their employer.

Nearly three quarters (73%) are not expecting a financial boost this year, with seven in 10 believing the Christmas bonus will soon be a thing of the past.

The study found that 40% of people believe that this is down to constant cutbacks in their industry, and 36% say that companies only care about profits. Almost a third of respondents believe that employers just don’t care enough to reward them at Christmas.

According to the data, even if you are lucky enough to receive a Christmas bonus, you might not get very much. Three years ago, the average amount people received was £792, a stark contrast to the £363 expected in pay packets this year.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, nearly nine out of 10 workers (89%) believe they deserve a bonus. On average people think that they deserve a reward of £864 – but it doesn’t appear that the value is the key factor in the reward. In fact, 95% of employees said they would be delighted with a £50 shopping voucher.

In fact, 60% of the 1,500 polled said they would be absolutely delighted to receive any “token of goodwill” from their employers – no matter how big or small – as it would show they are valued and appreciated for the work they do. Over a fifth said that if they received one it would make them work even harder.

Chris Ford, Senior Director, UK Sales at Hawk Incentives, says: “This research sadly reveals that so many UK employees believe that Christmas bonuses are a thing of the past. It also shows how morale boosting a bonus of whatever size can be for an employee. Many businesses are unaware that you can give up to £50 to each of your employees, tax free, each year as a trivial benefit.

“It’s hugely important to make the bonus standout and not to try to second guess what an employee would want, instead why not make sure that the bonus has instant choice and appeal. High employment engagement is a constant theme we see in the highest performing businesses across the UK. A small token of appreciation at Christmas time, or any time, can go a very, very long way.”

In Edinburgh, 76% of people have had a Christmas bonus. Plymouth was the city with the most festive bosses, where 78% of people had received presents from their managers compared to the hard-done-by workers of Cambridge where only 50% had been gifted.

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