Hamilton approves anniversary gifts for employees

Hamilton officials have approved a program that will allow city government to thank employees with small gifts on their anniversaries that are multiples of five years. FILE PHOTO
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Hamilton officials have approved a program that will allow city government to thank employees with small gifts on their anniversaries that are multiples of five years. FILE PHOTO

The city council has unanimously approved a program to mark city employees’ anniversaries with small gifts to mark their longevity in multiples of five years.

Marcos Nichols, an employee of the city’s Human Resources Department, which was created in 2016, noted one department objective is to help develop “a well-qualified and motivated workforce.” As part of that effort, the department has been implementing “best practices” to engage city workers.

Employees will be honored for uninterrupted service for every multiple of five years with gifts that are $2 or less for each year of service — $10 or less for five years; $20 or less for 10 years; up to about $70 or less for 35 years serving Hamilton’s residents, under the program, which is budgeted to start in 2018.

City officials have estimated that based on current employees, the program over the next five years will cost a total of $19,720, with the lowest being in 2022 ($3,440) and highest in 2021 ($4,580). If employees all would keep working for Hamilton, 192 would celebrate their 5-year-anniversary during the period, 124 would mark their 10th year; 118 would have a 15-year anniversary; 101 would mark 20 years; 75 would be with the city 25 years; 42 would be city employees 30 years; and 21 would be with Hamilton 35 years.

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Such programs may seem trivial, but can make a difference for morale and employee retention, wrote Amy Newbanks Letke of Integrity HR Inc, on her human-resources blog.

“Employees remember their hire date.” she wrote. “It’s the career equivalent of a birthday (and who doesn’t love birthdays?) You know who else remember employees’ hire dates? Great managers, that’s who.”

Possible gifts she recommends are anniversary cards signed by coworkers; inscribed trophies, plaques or pins, and cake. She recommends against cold cash because that seems like the employer is simply meeting a financial obligation.

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