The Best Gift Ideas for Employees who Work from Home

12 Dec 2022

In 2022, 84% of employees who had to work from home due to the long-lasting effects of the coronavirus pandemic said they planned a hybrid mix of remote and office working in the future. According to a Forbes report, the many benefits of remote working include more productivity (home workers tend to work between six and seven extra hours a week), a swifter return to work following illness, and 30% believe they accomplish more in less time.

Yet, working from home isn’t entirely problem-free. The lack of social interactions in a solo working environment can be a hard adjustment to make for many remote employees who feel out of touch with their colleagues. As a result:

Our own research found that 74% of employees working from home said it was important to receive rewards from their company. As well as acknowledging that rewards show that their employer values them, remote employees said incentives such as gift card rewards encouraged them to work harder. 

Whether you’re looking to reward your remote employees during the holiday season or at any time throughout the year, it’s important to give thoughtful gifts that match their interests. So, here is our guide to the best gifts for employees working from home. From savoury snacks and scented candles to remote office accessories and gift cards, read on to discover the perfect gifts for your remote team.

What gifts do employees who work from home want?

Having helped numerous clients reward their remote-based teams, we’ve seen first-hand what staff members want when it comes to employee gift ideas.

The number one requirement is to give your employees a choice. With a diverse, multi-generational workforce, one size will rarely fit all. That’s why it’s important to offer a range of rewards that appeal to a variety of employees with different interests.

Beyond offering freedom of choice with your gift ideas, our research found that employees prefer to receive individual rewards over group incentives and that rewarding little and often is the best way to boost engagement and morale.

Taking all of that into account, here are the top 6 gifts for remote-working employees.

1. Home office gifts

When your employees are working from home, anything you can do to make the experience as comfortable and organised as possible will prove popular. Particularly as 27% of remote employees work from their living room and 17% work from their bedroom.

So, you could consider the following desk organisers and desk accessories:

  • Desk lamp
  • Lap desk
  • Coffee maker
  • File organiser
  • Aromatic candles
  • Noise cancelling headphones
  • Wireless chargers
  • Air purifier
  • Calendar planners

2. Fashion gifts

With more people working from home than ever before, do you need to introduce a strict work-from-home dress code? According to science, the answer is a resounding no. Letting your remote employees choose clothes that fit their home environment can help them be more engaged and productive.

That’s why offering your staff a gift card that is redeemable at a variety of apparel and clothing stores is a meaningful gift, as it allows them to express themselves via their personal fashion statements.

3. Food and drink gifts

Sending your remote employees a gift basket of snacks, artisan coffees, or herbal teas can provide a welcome boost to their working day. The opening of the gift box can even become a social activity during a zoom meeting where teams can bond over their hot beverages, turning the gift into an effective stress reduction kit.

For inspiration, here are some highlights from the most popular snacks that Brits working from home just can’t resist:

  • Mid-morning snack: McVitie’s Chocolate Digestives
  • Lunchtime: Pringles
  • Anytime: Cadbury Dairy Milk, Walkers Salt & Vinegar crisps, Galaxy Smooth Milk  

One thing to consider if sending food and drink to your remote employees is to check for any food allergies or intolerances.

4. One-off experiences

Microsoft’s 2022 New Future of Work Report found that remote work can result in employees feeling socially isolated. Plus, over a quarter of remote workers struggle to unplug at the end of the day.

That’s why gifting your remote employees an experience that removes them from their working environment can work wonders for their self-care and wellbeing.

Our Envy packages provide your staff with a choice of real-life experiences, such as relaxing spa sessions and short breaks – just the tonic for employees looking to address their work-life balance.

As well as having the freedom to choose from over 5,000 unforgettable experiences to suit every price point, they can choose to enjoy it at a time to suit them.

5. Treat the whole household

With 30% of those working from home finding it hard to separate their home lives from their working lives, choosing team gift ideas that acknowledge that your employees have a life outside of work can make a huge difference.

For example, gifts such as age-appropriate games, activities, and books can keep children entertained whilst their parents or caregivers are working. And treats and toys for your employees’ pets are not only thoughtful gestures, but could help cut down on unexpected (albeit cute) interruptions during online meetings.

6. Gift card rewards

Our research found that employees want gifts that give them choice and flexibility. Delving deeper, we discovered that an overwhelming majority of 84% of staff prefer rewards in the form of prepaid and gift cards.

When it comes to remote employees, virtual gifts such as electronic gift cards offer a hassle-free method of recognising and rewarding your teams. They also carry very high appeal across all age groups as they give your employees what they want.

Our most popular digital rewards include:

  • One4all – digital multi-retailer gift card that can be used at more than 130 popular retailers
  • Select – A platform that sends unique digital codes that your staff can redeem for their choice of gift card

Ready to recognise your remote employees with digital rewards that offer flexibility and choice? To discuss our range of employee incentives get in touch on 020 4517 5862.

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