10 Best Welcome Back Gifts for Employees & Staff

February 9, 2022

Get inspired with the 10 welcome-back gifts and treats your employees will love!

The best gifts for coworkers and employees are the ones that make your team feel valued and appreciated. And, let’s be honest, it’s been quite a year! From health crises and a slow down in shipments and supplies to high staff turnover and employee burnout, companies across the board are seeing the importance of motivating and recognizing their hard-working employees. 

While many employees were able to transition to remote work during the pandemic lockdown, more and more workers are returning to the workplace. As you welcome back to the office your teams whether, on a full-time or hybrid basis, you’ll want to reward them for their continued support and dedication. Creative welcome back gifts for employees are one way your company can help ease the transition back to work. 

10 Best Welcome Back to Work Gifts & Ideas for Your Employees

1. A Clean Space

Regardless of where we are in the Covid-19 timeline, no one wants to return to a dirty, musty workspace. When it’s time for your staff to start commuting once again, gifts for office workers that promote a healthy space will be used and appreciated. 

Colorful, moisturizing hand sanitizers like these from Touchland make inexpensive, motivational gifts for employees. Pair it with a Portable Air purifier, like this one from Homedics, and you’ve got welcome home ideas for their workspace and home. 


Shown: Touchland Sanitizer

Shown: TotalClean® 4-IN-1 UV Portable Air Purifier

2. Hunger Busters

There are definitely pros and cons to working from home. On the plus, no commute, working in your jammies, bring your dogs (and kids, cats, ferrets) to work day is everyday, and let’s not forget easy access to the fridge. The downside? Work life balance meshes together into an around the clock, always on, cycle that makes breaking away even harder. To help the transition from bed head to actual grooming, good-for-you snacks and totes are a great way to help your staff feel like they aren’t missing out on everything. 

For easy welcome back ideas, you can’t go wrong with healthy options like Noble Oat Granola and a customized MiiR Lunch Tote. For welcome back to work funny ideas, why not include a personal note detailing out why “jammies” are not conference call material, but casual Friday’s (or at least on an ad hoc basis) could include bringing one furry coworker to the office.   

Shown: Noble Oat Granola

Shown: MiiR Lunch Tote

3. Customized Jackets & Vests

For welcome back to the office gifts that not only keep them warm but also make your employees feel valued and appreciated, custom name brand outerwear will not go unnoticed. We love The North Face for it’s high-quality materials, cool styling and durable warmth.  

Tip: If you have a corporate event coming up, customized gear like The North Face vests and jackets are perfect for team uniforms. 

Shown: North Face Ladies Everyday Vest

Shown: North Face Castle Rock Soft Shell Jacket

4. Tumblers & Mugs 

Looking for customized gifts for office workers that are both sustainable and stylish? These tumblers and mugs put the fun in functional. For starters, they beat one and done plastic bottles that end up polluting the oceans and filling up our landfills. They also offer a professional vibe you’ll be proud to customize with your company’s logo. 

For an on-trend yet timeless style, you can’t go wrong with earthy hues and patterns found in nature. Or, flex your marketing power by incorporating your brand colors. Talk to a Gemnote rep to see all the ways you can customize your drinkware for maximum brand exposure. 

Shown: Corkcicle Tumbler


Shown: Kinto Mugs

5. Sweatshirts & hoodies

You’ll probably agree, the best gifts for coworkers are every bit as stylish as they are practical. When it comes to sweatshirts and hoodies that make the cut, quality and comfort is never overrated. 

That’s why Marine Layer and Alternative Apparel sweatshirts are some of our top choices. Not only do they offer the style your employees crave but they also foster the durable design you want for the perfect welcome back swag that holds up wash after wash. 


Shown: Marine Layer Lined Hoodie


Shown: Alternative Apparel Sweatshirt

6. Backpack & Briefcase 

Just as making the switch from sweats to apparel with actual zippers can be liberating, having a stellar backpack or laptop case to stay organized can uplift their spirits. When it’s time to head to the office, they’ll love having professional, quality gear to make their commute easy. 

For hardworking gear that won’t let you or your recipient down, you can’t go wrong with the Incase A.R.C. backpack or their modern laptop case.   

Shown: Incase A.R.C. Backpack

Shown: Incase Laptop Case

7. Office Supplies

For fail-proof welcome back to the office gifts that are sure to be used from day one, do not overlook the power of quality office supplies. Remember the nostalgic feelings of having new notebooks, pens, and folders from grade school? Gift it to your employees in the form of elevated office supplies. 

For extra points, customize it with your company’s logo, website or tagline. From pens and bookends to paper products like notebooks, spirals, files and folders, your Gemnote rep can help you create a perfect welcome back to the office kit filled with items your teams will actually want to use. 

Shown: Poketo Slim Pen

Shown: Poketo Everyday Notebook

8. Cool Tech

Ready to pile on the appreciation? With welcome home ideas that include cool tech, you’ll have the marketing swag your staff will be talking about for seasons to come.  Not to mention they’ll love using it on repeat at home and in the office. 

For the ultimate tech swag ideas, the Native Union Air Pod Pro Charger and Orbit Key Tracker are sleek, useful, and ultra modern. Ask your contact at Gemnote about customization ideas that include leather embossing.  

Tip: Add a quality key finder like this one from Orbit to your welcome back gifts for employees packages for instant appreciation. 

Shown Native Union AirPod Pro Charger 


Shown: Orbit Key Tracker

9. Accessories

Functional accessories like, bags, socks, caps, tech-friendly gloves and the like also make inexpensive motivational gifts for employees. When it’s time to welcome back your hardworking team, why not create a welcome back package that offers customized products like socks and caps and pair it with healthy snacks? 

Your Gemnote rep can help you create welcome back kits and boxes within your budget that are sure to make your employees smile. And for a welcome back to work funny idea, why not add create a team building workshop that coordinates with your welcome back swag accessories? 

Shown: Escuyer Socks

Shown: Nike Cap 

10. Waist Pack & Duffel 

Another struggle for those going back to work is keeping track of all your gear. From keys and ID badges to gym clothes and your laptop, some days are definitely harder than others and can make even the most dedicated employee feel a bit frazzled. Help your employees get off on the right foot each morning with welcome back to the office gifts that help them keep their essentials together and organized. 

Whether it’s a durable waist pack (or shoulder pack) that keeps keys, phones, and more in easy reach or a branded duffel for all of their gear, these bags and packs are a practical necessity. 

Shown: Carhartt Waist Pack

Shown: As Colour Duffel 

When it come to helping your employees feel appreciated for their hard work and dedication, high quality branded marketing swag is always a favorite. Not only will customized gear help them feel valued but it’s also a great reminder of your company. 

A key takeaway from a survey conducted by Slack iterated that employees wanted a choice when it came to how they work, with 72% preferring a mix of remote and in-office time. If this hybrid approach is not be an option for your company, you will definitely want to help your employees transition back to the office in an easy and efficient way. 

While marketing swag is one way tooffer welcome home gifts (for their home away from home), companies can also offer flex hours, work from home days, team building outings, or even provide attendance to special conferences or trainings employees may be interested in. 

By creating an environment that shows you care for your staff’s well-being and recognizing their need for a work-life balance, you are creating a positive company culture that will not only benefit the employees you have now but attract new employees in the event you need to expand. 

Employee turnover is a costly expense for companies. From taking the time to interview, and train new employees to the effect turnover has on the current staff’s morale, high employee turnover is always a setback. Whether your company is looking for ways to welcome remote workers back to the office or even help with onboarding kits, your Gemnote rep can help you every step of the way. 

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