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How to use Bonusly Data to Look Back at the Year

Vanessa Kahn
January 12, 2023
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How do you measure a year at work? In performance reviews, emails sent, hours worked, or team birthdays celebrated? While all of those metrics help us reflect, our favorite way to look back at the year is with data. We’re going to help you use Bonusly data to tell a story about your organization and prove the ROI of your employee recognition program. Let’s begin! 📕

Recognition Analytics

How to get there: Navigate to Analytics → Recognition → Recognition Received

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This section of Bonusly's Analytics helps organizations identify trends, monitor changes, and prove efficacy of their employee recognition program. You’ll get insights on how often your employees are recognizing one another, how many points they’re receiving, and the breakdown of peer-to-peer recognition vs recognition from awards. Use this section as a barometer to measure how your organization’s peer-to-peer recognition program is trending over time and to better understand the ROI of your program. 

What to look at: 

  • Look at the breakdown of peer-to-peer recognition vs recognition from awards. Though a robust award program can have a positive impact on recognition rates overall, it’s a good indication of adoption and engagement to see peer-to-peer recognition increase over time.
  • Filter the dashboard to your desired time range and export the recognition received chart to add to a presentation. Peer-to-peer recognition should account for the majority of your chart. Did recognition overall increase or decrease throughout the year? Were there any cultural or programmatic changes that you made that could have impacted recognition rates (e.g. layoffs, acquisitions, decreases in employee allowances, etc.) 

Now that you have a general understanding of the ecosystem of recognition at your organization, let’s contextualize the numbers using recognition rates. 

Recognition Rates

How to get there: Navigate to Analytics → Recognition → Recognition Rates

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Recognition rates help you understand the average rate at which employees in your organization are giving and receiving recognition over time. You can compare your company's recognition rates to those of other Bonusly customers using the Bonusly Benchmark or the average rate at which other companies using Bonusly are giving and receiving recognition. 

What to look at: 

  • High recognition rates indicate robust adoption of your peer-to-peer recognition program which leads to higher employee engagement and satisfaction. If your giving and receiving rates are higher than the Bonusly Benchmark, that’s a good indication that your organization is bought into your recognition program. 
  • You can establish your own yearly benchmark by summing all of your recognition rates for each month of the year and dividing by twelve (the number of months). Once established, you can set a goal with your team to surpass your own benchmark in the coming year. 
  • If recognition rates fluctuate throughout the year, you can cross-reference changes in recognition rates with organizational shifts like layoffs, engagement survey feedback, or holiday time off. 
  • You can make recommendations to boost recognition rates by implementing award programs, encouraging managers to recognize their direct reports, and connecting your Bonusly instance to your preferred chat tool to boost visibility of recognition and encourage add-ons. 

Speaking of add-ons…

Add-on Analytics

How to get there: Navigate to Analytics → Recognition → Add-ons

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Add-on Analytics allow organizations to better measure the rate at which recognition is being seen, engaged with, and echoed. If the rate of adding on is high, you have a strong culture of recognition where an employees' success is regularly seen and echoed by their peers.

What to look at: 

  • Compare your organization’s add-on averages to the Bonusly Benchmark to understand how much recognition is being echoed at your organization compared to other Bonusly users. 
  • If your add-on rate is below the Bonusly benchmark, consider tapping mangers to add-on to recognition more frequently or consider increasing employee allowances to allow for more opportunities to add-on to recognition. 
  • If you have a strong add-on rate and see it increasing over time, it’s a good indication that day-to-day recognition is being seen by employees throughout the organization, which means you’re following the best practice of recognition being visible. 

Hashtag Analytics Company Values

How to get there: Navigate to Analytics → Recognition → Hashtags → Company values

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Hashtag Analytics give HR teams an immediate expression of which core values their employees are exemplifying over time. Hovering over each of the bars in the chart will show a granular breakdown of how often employees were recognized for each value in the selected month.

What to look at: 

  • Measure the adoption of your company values. Understand if there are values that have trended down over the year that may need programming support from the HR team. Were there key events that can be tied to those declines? 
  • Inversely, if certain values have increased throughout the year, which actions or events may have driven their increases? 

Hashtag Analytics All Hashtags

How to get there: Navigate to Analytics → Recognition → Hashtags → All hashtags

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Navigating to All Hashtags will show you just that: the top hashtags your employees used to recognize their peers throughout the year. This section is great for monitoring emerging trends that might not be included in your company’s existing core values.

What to look at: 

  • Navigating to all hashtags is a great way to understand any emerging values for your organization that are manifesting in day-to-day recognition, but have yet to be documented in your organization’s handbook. Keeping a pulse on these emerging trends will help signal when it’s time to make some updates to your organization’s values. 
  • Compare your company’s quarterly goals or OKRs with the trending values throughout the year. Which programs had the largest influence on increasing value hashtags used in recognition? 

Compare Rate Analytics

How to get there: Navigate to Analytics → Recognition → Compare Rates

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Compare Rates analytics enables HR admins to visualize how different segments of the company are embracing recognition over time. HR teams can focus their time and energy on the teams or departments that aren't giving or receiving recognition at the same rate as the company average. Inversely, they can glean insights from people leaders whose teams give or receive at higher rates.

What to look at: 

  • Compare the recognition giving and receiving rates of different departments, teams, and locations. Identify business segments that are below average to quickly identify engagement issues. 

Participation Analytics

How to get there: Navigate to Analytics → Participation

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Monitor participation over time to track employee engagement, Participation Analytics can be segmented by departments, locations, or roles to see how different teams have varying levels of engagement. 

What to look at: 

  • Did participation go down or up throughout the year? Filtering the data will help you understand if there are departments, teams, or locations driving the increase or decrease. 
  • Managers are key to driving participation among your organization. Filter the data by manager’s teams to identify a few low participating teams to connect with.

Pro tip: If you’re curious about the difference between Participation Analytics and Recognition Analytics, Participation Analytics tracks who participated in your program whereas Recognition Analytics tracks how much they participated. All that to say, participation rates pair well with recognition rates, we recommend you consume them together. 🍇🧀


How to get there: Navigate to Analytics → Leaderboard


The leaderboard gives companies like yours a good understanding of who is receiving the most recognition for the entire company and who has been recognized most for a specific company value. The leaderboard is ideal for companies who are interested in reporting on top performers in Bonusly or giving out awards.

What to look at: 

  • Look at the top receivers for specific values throughout the year. For instance, who was the leader of the #honesty value for this year? You might consider recognizing them with a special award. 
  • Then, you can look at top receivers overall. You can pull the top receivers for the entire year and look for any patterns: are they in the same department? Are they working with customers consistently? 

We hope this blog post will help transform your people data into actions that will impact your organization's bottom line. If you’re not a current Bonusly user and you're interested in experiencing our Analytics for yourself, you can take a tour of the new and improved analytics or sign up for a demo with one of our employee recognition experts. If you're ready to start sharing your people data with your leadership team, we have a free presentation template you can use. 

Happy analyzing!


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