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Top 10 Remote Employee Work Anniversary Ideas and Gifts

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Work anniversaries can be challenging to keep up with and celebrate, especially on a growing team that is remote. Here are the Top 10 Work Anniversary Gifts that your employees will actually want and love.

If you’ve suddenly found yourself having to move your business to a remote working platform, you probably might forget or forego attending to your remote employee’s anniversary celebrations. We strongly suggest that you make the effort to recognize and provide work anniversary gifts for employees when such a milestone comes around – and with good reason.

Creating a Culture of Employee Anniversary Recognition

Research shows that passing up on the opportunity to provide work anniversary gifts for employees (and even for work anniversary gifts for boss) can be costly because you are passing up on a chance for your employee to improve on his work performance. This is because of the connection between human emotions and actions. There is a directly proportional relationship between how we feel and how we act as a result. In the business scenario, this simply means that an employee who receives work anniversary cards and gifts will naturally demonstrate better performance soon after. The sense of optimism and gratitude that often come with receiving work anniversary cards and gifts are strong drivers of employee performance.

A Special Focus on Anniversary Gifts for Remote Employees

While all employees who celebrate work anniversary milestones deserve a token of recognition (from something as big as 30 year work anniversary gifts or even employee anniversary gifts by year 1), you should not forget to pay special attention to your remote employees. Remote employees are sometimes easy to overlook because of the “out of sight, out of mind” idea, but they work just as hard (or in many cases, even harder) than co-workers who report to the physical office. Remote employees aren’t as visible, but they work steadily in the background to provide an undeniable contribution to your company’s success no matter which department they come from.

Basically, remote employees also deserve well-thought-of employee anniversary gifts by year 1 and beyond. Your work anniversary gift ideas for remote employees must take into consideration their individual profiles and remote work situation.

Virtual Celebrations: Going Beyond Remote Employee Anniversary Message and Gifts

If the Coronavirus pandemic is keeping your team on a work from home setup, you can still organize a virtual celebration in honor of a remote employee’s work anniversary. Here are some ideas to get that up and running:

1. Organize and schedule a group Zoom call or Google Meet for the celebration.

Find a common time among your team for when you can all gather virtually for the celebrant’s “party”.

2. Arrange for drinks and food to be delivered to their respective homes.

An across-the-nation food delivery service is your best friend for this. Choose a restaurant or food chain that has branches in all of your team’s locations and get busy ordering the same food and drinks for them to receive. This is a great way to bring the party feel to their homes, even if they do have to eat it alone. Don’t forget to add a bottle of booze or two, if you are looking to virtually toast the celebrant.

3. Don’t forget the games!

Google Meet, Zoom, and other online video conferencing software often have features that allow you to play virtual games. A party isn’t a party without a game, right? Therefore, plan even just one game for the group to engage in that afternoon or evening. Make sure that everyone knows the mechanics so the gameplay goes smoothly. Online bingo, quiz bees, Taboo, and other popular party games have online versions that you can play together.

4. Give out virtual prizes.

Upping the ante on the competition with games is easy when you have virtual prizes (which you can give instantaneously). These can be in the form of e-vouchers or electronic gift cards. You can even create one of your own, such as a Friday Free Pass where the winner is given a precious day off from work to enjoy a three-day weekend.

5. Prepare a package of work anniversary gifts for bosses or employees.

Have a box of physical gifts delivered to your celebrant so he has a surprise to open in front of the team. This is a fantastic way to make the virtual event feel even more special because his co-worker friends can share in his pleasure in real-time.

6. Be ready with your “speech”.

As the host of the virtual celebration, it’s only proper that you begin or end the event with a speech in honor of the celebrant. A few words to communicate your appreciation is enough!

Planning 1 Year Business Anniversary Gift Ideas and Beyond

One of the easiest ways to put together the best 1 to 10 year work anniversary gifts is by choosing them from a catalogue. An employee anniversary gifts catalog is a one-stop-shop where you can select several items that will communicate your appreciation for your employee’s work anniversary. If you are wondering where you can view the employee anniversary gifts catalog, this is readily available in a corporate gifting company such as Gemnote. Gemnote has a growing collection of high-quality corporate gifts that suit different budgets and needs. Handpicked by experts in the field of corporate gifting, the selections assure careful thought, consideration, and research on what most employees really love receiving.

This is useful if you like to make the task of choosing the best 1 to 10 year work anniversary gifts more time-efficient while knowing that your choices are sure winners.

Top 10 Suggestions for Remote Employee Work Anniversary Gifts


1. Affordable Wireless Headphones: IQ Sound, Sony Bluetooth Earbuds, iLuv Wireless Earbuds

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Wireless headphones are super popular with remote employees. Many work employees turn to use wireless headphones or earbuds to create a distraction-free audio environment so they can focus on their work. When working remotely, one often has to contend with sounds in the environment that interfere with the ability to focus and work. These gift ideas will help with that.

2. Noir Candle Set

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A home-centered work anniversary gift for the remote employee is always a win. Anything that can make the home (aka the remote work environment) more effective to the needs of the remote employee is great! This Noir candle set will do exactly that. Choose from three different scents to create the perfect mood for the current situation, whether it is summoning the will for utmost concentration as you write your latest pitch, or switching off “work mode” for relaxing and de-stressing, and everything in between.

3. The North Face Apex Gym Duffel

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The North Face Apex Gym Duffel bag isn’t as commonplace as you might imagine. One look at this bag and you’ll just know it’s a premium pick from a reputable brand. Tough as nails with enough pockets to load even the kitchen sink, it’s a piece of great luggage that every remote employee will appreciate. Use it for quick getaways or even for heading out to the gym for a quick midday work break! Plus points go to its sophisticated, minimalist aesthetic that can really turn heads, too.

4. Vitruvi Diffuser, Vitruvi Essential Oils

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Who wouldn’t be delighted upon receiving such a posh gift? The Vitruvi Diffuser comes in three attractive colors that will suit any home. It’s both an equipment for delivering an indulgent home scent (the included essentials oils all guarantee a heavenly-scented environment, once diffused) and eye candy. Any remote employee who receives the Vitruvi Diffuser will wish that more people actually came over so they can appreciate it as well!

5. Modern Sprout Indoor Plant

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The Modern Sprout Indoor Plant is a refreshing deviation from the usual early years of work anniversary gifts (mugs, t-shirts, and the like). If there is an opportunity to gift better gifts like this one, go ahead and take it! The indoor plant is also a great symbol that goes perfectly well with your early year’s employee gift, as you communicate the idea that with careful nurturing something can grow to become truly remarkable (plus, you can put the basil on your food too).

6. Hasami Porcelain Tea Set

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This Hasami Porcelain Tea Set communicates both elegance and style thanks to its simple yet thoughtfully designed aesthetic. It’s a functional gift that many remote employees will reach out for several times a day – as they prepare tea to go with their breakfast, take a reflective midday break, and create a relaxing ritual for turning it at night. Giving a tea set as a work anniversary gift sends the message that you want your remote employee to take a few minutes of time out in his day to recharge and unwind before resuming to tackle the day’s task or getting in the ZZZs needed for the night.

7. Stylish Backpack: Topo Rover Backpack, Timbuk2 Tuck Backpack, Patagonia Arbor Backpack, Rains Water Resistant Backpack

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It’s never surprising to find out that many remote employees often roam the city in search of an effective place for them to sit down and pound away on the keyboard. These four great backpack options are durable, stylish, and offer space and protection for your remote employee’s working must-haves like a laptop and a tablet computer. City-slicking remote workers will love the comfortable straps and how surprisingly lightweight each backpack model feels when first picked up – a lightness that doesn’t compromise durability.

8. Areaware Stacking Planter

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We’ve got cure work anniversary gifts covered, too – and this Areaware Stacking Planter proves that. There’s nothing like a cute, Instagrammable plant to perk up one’s day, especially that of a young wide-eyed new employee. It’s the perfect addition to your first work anniversary gift box.

9. Wool Blanket: Woolrich Wool Blanket, Faribault Woolen Mill Blanket, Custom Sweatshirt Blanket

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Here’s a wonderfully cozy gift that works well for work anniversaries of your remote employees. Wool blankets deliver a lot of comfort on those long nights of working overtime (even while working remotely) and can transition from keeping a remote employee warm and cozy form his work chair to his bed. The design of these wool blankets makes them the perfect finishing touch to a lot of couches. Simply throw them over the seat of a sofa and you’ve done a little bit to upgrade it, style-wise. Made from the finest material, it’s a gift that anyone will take pleasure in.

10. Patagonia Blackhole Fanny Pack

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Fanny packs have seen a resurgence in the last couple of years, so these good-looking options for Patagonia work well for gifting. Ideal for early years anniversary, fanny packs are not too heavy on the budget but deliver that great first impression to an employee unboxing one from his work anniversary package. Patagonia’s offering delivers a lot, style- and storage-wise, to become any remote employee’s go-to accessory when he suddenly has to run outside for a quick errand, hands-free.

Tips in Choosing Work Anniversary Gifts: A Guide Throughout the Years

Choosing work anniversary gifts should be strategic.

It’s more than just selecting options that make you say “Oh, this is something that any remote employee will love to get.” Careful selection is necessary so you 1) don’t upset your corporate budget, 2) make the perfect match in terms of length of service and corresponding gift, and 3) target the right gift to meet the needs and wants of most remote employees. 

Tip 1: Identify your budget.

No corporate budget is the same, so it’s important to understand how much is allocated per type of remote employee gift or rank of a remote employee. Note that employee remote gifts go higher in value the longer your remote employee stays employed in your business. You may have to prepare fewer high-value gifts at the same time because the tendency for employees to stay longer in a company thins out as time goes by.

Tip 2:  Study your current numbers.

Prepping the right remote employee work anniversary gifts will include analyzing profiles of individuals who will be celebrating their milestone work anniversaries for the current fiscal year. For example, if there are more five-year work anniversary celebrations coming from your company’s remote IT department than your marketing department, you may prepare more tech-related gifts for this particular group and just a few gifts that marketing team gifts.

Tip 3: Get a reliable source for all your remote employee work anniversary gifts (and more).

Having just one place to purchase your work anniversary gifts is a true time-saver because you know that your options are some of the best gifts around. Options are plentiful, quality is double-checked, and there are options for additional services like selecting pre-packaged collections or customizing items and packaging.

Tip 4: Take note of particular details that you can factor in when choosing a specific work anniversary gift.

Sometimes there are differences in the personal and professional lives of your remote employees that can be accommodated or celebrated. For example, a remote employee who is a new mom and celebrating a work anniversary might delight in a remote employee anniversary gift that has a wellness theme to it. A diffuser with essential oils, lactation treats, and drinks, a comfy blanket to cover herself when she’s feeding her infant – these are great picks to celebrate both the work anniversary and her status as a brand new mom. Make use of opportunities where you can hit two birds with one stone and you’ll never go wrong.

Tip 5: Ask around.

Sometimes there are people in your office who may be more privy to the lives of their co-workers, and they can be a good source of information that will help you choose the perfect remote employee work anniversary present. A quick email to the rest of the team (except to the celebrant, of course) inquiring if they have any ideas on what the celebrant might be into or is currently in need of can help guide your remote employee gift selection process. It would be really nice to see how delighted your remote employee will be when he opens up his present to find something that he really wants, appreciates, and needs.

Tip 6: Something useful is always a safe choice.

If you don’t have a lot of information about the celebrant to work with, always go for something that a lot of people will find useful and still be impressed with. A wireless Bluetooth speaker or a Bluetooth key navigator are great examples of gifts that “wow” and are used straightaway. We’re hard-pressed to find someone who wouldn’t mind receiving a Bluetooth speaker (even if he already has one, then this simply means he can put the Bluetooth speaker gift in a different part of the home for convenience) or the key navigator (which is super helpful when you’re frantically looking for your keys and have forty seconds to get out of the house).

Other Ways to Make Your Team Feel Appreciated

Apart from these remote employee anniversary ideas (whether they are 10 year work anniversary gifts or not), here are some strategies that you can employ to make your remote team feel appreciated:

  • Find time to call them and say hello.  Checking up on your employees through multi-modal communication is not new, but this time you might want to do a quick check-in to see how they’re doing or if there’s anything they need help within their setup. You just might surprise yourself to find out how much remote employees appreciate the gesture almost as much as they appreciate receiving happy work anniversary gifts.
  • Schedule time-out to see them in person.  Checking in with your remote employee isn’t just limited to a call. You can block out an in-person meeting with them so as to maintain human connections. For this suggestion, you might want to choose a coffee shop or café that’s near your remote worker’s residence so he doesn’t take so much time off his workday to see you. And as for your meeting agenda, anything goes! You can take the opportunity to discuss work, have a conversation about your personal lives, or anything in between. Just make sure that this happens infrequently so you don’t disrupt the work from a home model that he operates on.
  • Recognize their achievements, anniversaries, and other milestones through email that’s CC’d to the rest of the team. When great news is shared with many who also cheer for you, it’s sure to deliver a great confidence booster to your remote employee. Add that to his happy work anniversary gifts and you will really make a lasting impact that translates into improved remote employee performance.
  • Periodically schedule team night outs that include your remote employees. An opportunity to get together with the team or department outside the context of work is always a good idea – and something that many remote employees are happy to join. Team night outs (bowling, Korean barbecues, movie premieres, etc.) allow your employees to kick back and relax with the same people that they have a professional relationship with. This helps to foster team relationships, creating stronger bonds that cement commitment to steering the group towards greater professional heights.

Saying Thank You With Employee Anniversary Gifts By Year

At the core of all these work anniversary gift ideas is the concept of extending your gratitude to individual employees for their commitment to work. Saying “thank you for doing your best in our company” with 1 or 10 year work anniversary gifts is a gesture that is always appreciated, especially when you deliver it in a heartfelt manner. The knowledge that their individual contribution to furthering your overarching mission and vision will stay with them, whether they are receiving their 30 year work anniversary gift or their very first one.

Showing appreciation for your remote employees on their work anniversaries doesn’t need to be paused just because most of the world is quarantined due to the pandemic. If there’s a will, there’s a way! Take advantage of the technology and services that are at everyone’s disposal to set up a work anniversary celebration that your celebrant (and your other employees) will truly feel – even if it includes peering through a screen to see the faces of the people they work with. At the end of the day, a celebration is a celebration – no matter the form that it takes!

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