This year has been particularly hard on employees. Constantly having to adapt to new regulations, work models, and with ever-increasing co-workers quitting their job, to say the new normal has been challenging is an understatement. In fact, a survey reported that 71% of employees aren’t engaged at work; only 19% of them are satisfied with their job, and a measly 10% look forward to work each day. However, 85% of employees surveyed said that being “meaningfully recognized” by their bosses would inspire them to go above and beyond their basic job duties.

As a leader, you should be aware that these feelings become exacerbated during the holiday season as employees come under even more stress. During these trying times you want to ensure your employees feel appreciated while promoting a strong sense of community. Make sure both your remote and in-office teams stay focused, feel supported, and valued instead of overworked and stressed out. You set the tone for them as they head into the holiday season. Here are several inclusive gift ideas for employees as well as best practices for gifting this holiday season:

Easy bulk gift ideas for employees that everyone will love

Getting gifts for family or friends may come easy, but gifts for employees can certainly be a challenge. However, going the extra mile and rewarding your employees for all the hard work they put throughout this challenging year is the best way to spread merriment and build a solid work relationship with your team. 

For gifting to be a success it has to be done right. Making sure your gift is inclusive, high-quality, and has been well thought out are some of the key aspects to consider for your presents to be a hit. Keep in mind you want to be able to show appreciation and be thoughtful when gifting without breaking the bank. Here are a few creative ideas for employee gifts to show your staff you care while building a stronger workplace culture in the process.

1. DoorDash Employee Gift Cards

The way to employees' hearts is through their stomach. A delicious meal not only makes your staff members’ lives easier when they’re running around trying to meet their end-of-year deadlines but also makes everyone happier. A recent DoorDash survey found 82% of respondents said they’d feel more satisfied at work if their company offered free food delivery cards. These handy gift cards can be used in over 450,000+ restaurants anytime, anywhere and never expire, making them perfect for employees working both remotely and from the office. With the supply chain crisis afoot, you don’t have to worry about your gift making it on time for the holidays because it can be sent to your entire workforce via email. Also, buying employee gift cards as bulk gifts for staff will save you costs as well as mental energy trying to think of individual, thoughtful gifts for each of your team members. With this present, your employees are free to enjoy it at their leisure and their managers can add customized notes to show their appreciation.

2. Movie tickets

Staying indoors and watching a slew of holiday classics or the latest blockbusters is a plan everyone can get behind. Whether your team members have the entire family to entertain or are excited to spend the evening solo with hot chocolate, movie tickets are a fun gift everyone can enjoy on their own time.

3. Drink containers

With the days starting to get shorter and colder, it’s always nice to have a warm beverage at hand. Whether your employees are working from the office or home, high-quality mugs or bottles are useful to pretty much anyone. Extra points if they’re thermal to help preserve heat or ice cold drinks in the summertime.

4. High Performance Bluetooth Tracker

Do members of your team often misplace items? This practical gift is especially useful for locating keys, phones, or wallets. They can be easily attached to an item that if lost, can be tracked via a free app or by pushing a button that immediately sends sound signals.

5. Mindfulness cards

The holiday season is often perceived by everyone as anxiety-inducing with numerous deadlines and family getting together. By offering your employees access to daily mindfulness exercises you can help them stay focused, increase productivity, and increase their overall happiness. With the numerous mindfulness apps out there it will be easy to pick one to gift to your employees.

6. Candles

Lighting candles is a time-honored holiday tradition across the globe. Whether your employees are fans of scented candles or prefer to simply admire the light they bring, this employee gift is ideal for both in-office and remote employees. They can decorate their desk or bedroom filling the atmosphere with the holiday spirit. 

7. Cozy Kit

Staying warm is crucial to both being healthy and being able to focus during the winter months. Why not make the season cozier for your team with a cozy kit? Include various items that will keep your employees feeling comfortable like fluffy socks, fleece blankets, sweatshirts, or a mug.

8. DashPass for Work

This versatile food benefit works anywhere your employees do — whether at home or in the office. This gift that keeps on giving year-round is ideal for your entire team. DashPass for Work shows your appreciation by treating your team to their favorite meal. By making your team part of this membership program, they can have access to $0 delivery fees and reduced service fees on eligible orders. Not only will you make this holiday season but you'll be saving on turnover costs that can total 20% of an employee’s salary. That's why Fortune 500 software company, Synopsys, chose DashPass for Work, which was an instant success internally. As put by Gloria Lee, their Benefits Administrator: “We got the most positive feedback ever when we launched DashPass [...] After sending out our open enrollment brochure, I made a comment to my Manager on how surprising it was to receive so many messages from employees asking for more information on DashPass.”

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9. A gift card to refurbish their office

Whether working from the office or home, having a workspace that makes your staff feel comfortable will ultimately help them be much more focused and productive. Providing them with a gift card that enables them to add a key item to their workspace is something they’ll use throughout the entire year and can have a positive long-term impact.

10. A set of spa-worthy bath products

Relaxing after work is key to keep employees from burning out. Home spa kits are a great gift your employees will actually want to use. Make sure when you find the right spa kit, its products are free of toxic ingredients. To make it even more inclusive and ensure all your employees will be able to use this gift, look for fragrance-free options.

11. Tote bags

Tote bags are more than a passing trend. These reusable bags are useful just for about anything and to anyone. From being an eco-friendly alternative for taking your groceries home to taking your belongings with you wherever you go, this gift is always handy. This practical present can even be customized to let your employees flaunt where they work.

12. High-quality face masks

Even though it seems we’re out of the woods when it comes to lockdown it looks like face masks are going to be around for a while. Make your employees' lives safer and more comfortable by gifting them a high-quality face mask that they’ll be sure to use.

13. Nationwide Shipping on DoorDash

 DoorDash corporate gifting from famous restaurants, flower shops, bakeries, and more! With DoorDash, it’s never been easier to buy bulk gifts for employees. Corporate customers can now ship unique dishes and gifts - such as experience-driven iconic restaurant meal kits, cheese boards, fruit, pizza, baked goods, desserts, flowers, and much more - from premier DoorDash merchant partners around the country (such as Big Shakes Hot Chicken, Katz's Delicatessen, Carlo’s Bakery, Get Maine Lobster, to name a few). Merchants carefully pack all items to maintain temperature, freshness, and quality before arrival and perishable items are typically shipped with dry ice or gel packs to maintain freshness.

In addition, making recipients feel they're appreciated and seen is key, which is why customizing gift messages can go a long way. And to make gifting more inclusive, DoorDash corporate gifting offers gluten free, vegan, and other dietary options. 

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How Nationwide Shipping bulk gifts for staff work

DoorDash corporate gifting takes the hassle and stress away from finding the perfect gifts for your team this holiday season while making them feel appreciated. With this personalized service, the team at DoorDash will work one-on-one with you to collect order details, coordinate fulfillment on your behalf with our merchants, and ensure a high quality delivery experience for each recipient in the desired timeframe. Ready to get started? Here’s how it works:

  1. Fill out the contact us form to speak with a sales rep and see what option is the right one for you.
  2. You review the available merchants and gift items that DoorDash shares form a template. Then you select the gifts for your employees and provide all recipient info by completing the order form. Once the order form is complete with all gift and recipient information, you return the order form to DoorDash ASAP.
  3. DoorDash contacts the merchant on your behalf to align on key details (e.g. timeline, fulfillment capacity). Once DoorDash confirms terms with the merchant, DoorDash sends you an agreement for review and signature.
  4. As soon as the signed agreement is returned to DoorDash, you share payment details (i.e. credit card) with DoorDash.
  5. DoorDash officially submits the order to the Merchant on your behalf. 
  6. Finally the merchant processes your order(s) and ships all gifts to each recipient on an agreed-upon timeframe.

Nationwide Product Flow

Prefer to give an employee gift card or DashPass membership? Our sales team can help you easily order these in bulk.

What are some factors to keep in mind when gifting employees and coworkers this holiday season?

1. Supply chain issues

One of the various difficulties the pandemic has brought is how it has negatively impacted supply chains. Shipping items across the world is no longer as easy or quick as it once was. From small mom-and-pop shops to the world's biggest companies, nearly every industry has been experiencing issues shipping products throughout the year. With the sharp increase in purchases during the holiday season, disruptions and delays become inevitable. 

With “The Great Resignation” added into the mix, supply chain businesses are also more short-staffed than ever. In fact, Octavio Guadarama who has been in the trucking business for more than 30 years states: "I think they don't have enough people to move everything. There are too many containers inside the terminal but there are no chassis to take those containers out." This is not only true of the trucking industry, but ports across the U.S. are backlogged. Just the Port of Los Angeles has seen a new record of 70 cargo ships waiting to get into both the LA and Long Beach ports. With the logistical issues, it’s important to factor in that shipping will take much longer this year.

2. Buying in advance

With the broken worldwide supply chain affecting timelines, you have to make sure you buy gifts well in advance for your holiday plan to stay on schedule. By pre-ordering gifts not only are you ensuring your purchased items will make it to their destination on time, but you’re also helping businesses avoid the intense overwhelm that happens the closer we get to Christmas. 

Do you really need to get that item all the way from China? Or could you get something similar from a local business? With the deteriorating supply chain, buying local as much as possible will also be a key factor to keep in mind this holiday season.

3. Added home delivery shipping costs

Also, while some gifts may seem inexpensive, shipping them to people working from home will add additional costs versus being able to ship everything in bulk to your office. Speaking of additional costs, you’d be surprised how much you can save by forgoing gift-wrapping especially when it comes to shipping items to remote employees’ homes, not to mention it’s much more environmentally friendly.

Another factor to keep in mind is: location, location, location. With many employees having left major cities, it’s important to consider whether people can use their gift locally. For example, a gift card to a famous San Francisco restaurant you gave pre-COVID won’t be very useful to someone who has moved to Paloma, CA. The point of gifting is to show employees they are appreciated. A thoughtful gift shows the recipient that their company leadership cares for them and values them. Employee gifts should demonstrate that you have thought about their individual interests and needs. This is why DoorDash employee gift cards have become popular bulk gifts for staff. This practical, enjoyable gift can be used at their leisure from anywhere and can be customized to include thoughtful messages.

4. Choose inclusive corporate employee gifts

Employees are the lifeblood of a company. Whether you manage a small group of three or are in charge of thousands worldwide, you are aware of the direct impact they have on your company's growth. This is why they deserve a token of appreciation that goes beyond their salary. As the holiday season inches closer, gifts for coworkers start to come to mind. Even though most people enjoy receiving gifts, it can be tricky to navigate giving the right present to colleagues especially when they come from another part of the world or grew up with a significantly different culture to yours. 

Make sure your gift makes all your employees feel included, thoughtful (as in something they can use), and if possible, personalized to add a special touch. The times when an assortment of dry fruits was the gifting norm for corporate settings is gone. Whenever a gift is not well thought out, the recipient feels undervalued. It's time for employee gifts for coworkers to evolve.

This holiday season is all about making thoughtful gifts that promote a culture of inclusivity. By 2025, Millennials are predicted to make up 75% of the workforce, and 44% of them classify themselves as non-Caucasian. Even small biases can make employees feel alienated, keeping in mind the message your gifts express is key to being a multi-culturally sensitive organization. Ethical, thoughtful, and timely corporate gifting moments that celebrate diversity can bring your team closer together and make everyone feel included. 

Not only will ethical and inclusive gifting make your employees feel more appreciated but Deloitte Insights found that inclusive cultures translate into value. Businesses with inclusive cultures are twice as likely to meet or exceed financial targets, three times more likely to be high performing, six times more likely to be innovative and agile, and eight times more likely to achieve better business outcomes.

Get started with thoughtful bulk gifts for staff today

Finding the perfect last minute gifts for your employees and coworkers has never been easier than with DoorDash for Work. By presenting your team with one of these inclusive, easy to deliver gifts you'll express how much you appreciate the hard work they have done throughout this challenging year. Giving the gift of food is always something people welcome as it not only brings people together, but nurtures both body and soul. With DoorDash for Work your team can pick from over 450,000+ restaurants anytime, anywhere beyond just the holiday season. 

Contact us to find out more about purchasing employee appreciation gifts using DoorDash for Work or check out our webinar on how to bring everyone together with festive holiday fun.

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Kristen Van Nest
Kristen Van Nest

Kristen Van Nest is an L.A.-based writer with bylines in Forbes, HuffPost, and VentureBeat to name a few. She specializes in helping B2B tech companies explain the value of their solutions, how they relate to market trends, and strategies businesses can use to grow. In her free time, you can find her ordering in dumplings and writing funny content to make people laugh.