Who doesn’t like an unexpected gift or freebie? Most of us would agree that there’s something about receiving a gift, giveaway, or reward that makes us feel happy and gratified.
That feel-good emotional response is the superpower behind employee kits: Well-designed employee kits say a lot about your company or brand without uttering a word or making a pitch. They make a tangible, emotional connection with the recipient that lasts well beyond the unboxing experience.
Why use employee kits?
Most of us associate employee kits with the onboarding process. And there’s a good reason for that: Employee welcome kits are a highly effective tool in creating a positive onboarding experience, which is good for business. Research by Brandon Hall Group found that organizations with a robust onboarding process improve new hire retention by 82 percent and productivity by over 70 percent.
Employee kits offer many opportunities to connect with, reward, or incentivize employees and reinforce company culture. In addition to onboarding, custom employee kits are also ideal for recognizing employee milestones, kicking off campaigns, and as incentives or holiday gifts.
What should you include in your employee kit?
Your employee kit is an extension of your brand, so make sure it meets your brand standards. The items you choose to include should not only align with your brand values, mission, and purpose; they should also be functional, high-quality, and desirable (give your people what they want most!).
A well-curated employee kit can make a positive brand impression on your team and give them some feel-good swag to proudly rep your brand beyond the workplace. Here are the latest on-trend items to include in your employee kits.
1. Branded Swag.
Branded apparel and accessories are among the most popular items things employees want now. Topping the list are t-shirts (basic or long-sleeve crewnecks during the cooler weather months). Plus, hoodies, beanies, or baseball-style caps. Fun and funky socks are also on-trend this year.
2. Desk Items.
Whether your team is working from home or back in the office, the everyday work items or supplies that will be used again and again are today’s employee kit essentials. Include notecards, notepads or journals, pens, stickers, coffee mugs, and water bottles.
3. Tech Tools.
Including technology tools in your kit doesn’t have to break the bank: Choose useful items such as microfiber cleaning cloths, a wireless speaker, or a rechargeable power bank. On the higher end, some companies provide laptops to new employees—so accessories like a wireless mouse and mousepad, camera cover, and Bluetooth earbuds make practical companion gifts.
4. Eco-Responsible Stuff.
Let your team know they can represent your brand and be kind to the environment. On trend now are environmentally friendly gift items such as reusable straws and utensils, bamboo fiber lunchboxes, cork and glass mugs, and organic snacks.
5. Work-From Anywhere Items.
With flexible work arrangements in place for many, encourage productivity—from wherever your employees are logging in: Popular now are duffel bags, backpacks, laptop sleeves, journals, wireless earbuds, crewneck sweatshirts, blue light glasses, and power banks.
Don’t overlook the packaging
You never get a second chance to make a first impression. So, putting equal thought into both the contents and the outside of your employee kit is a must. Choose a custom box with branded graphics or a stock box with a printed label or seal—either option can create a beautiful presentation.
Use a custom insert or packaging material inside the box that protects and presents gift items in their best light. And don’t forget to include a personal note—it’s a simple touch that makes an immediate connection with the recipient.
Employee kit examples that check all the boxes.
Our team at Shamrock creates custom kits for our clients – onboarding kits, campaign and special event gifts, and more. Here are some examples (from other designers and us) that got it right.
A final thought about employee kits
If you’ve ever received a spot-on personal and uniquely “you” gift, you get it: That thoughtful and intentional connection is powerful. At Shamrock, we work to make those connections for our clients, whether they’re reaching out to their teams, new employees, or their clients or suppliers. If you’re thinking about creating a custom-branded kit for one of your audiences, reach out. I’d love to help. email@example.com