Award paper

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As an employer or supervisor, it's important to recognize your employees for their hard work and dedication
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Use printable certificate paper to give your employees performance awards.

Whether you own and run a business, or are in a position of authority in someone elseís business, treating your employees with respect and kindness is an essential part of being a good supervisor.

Most employees only hear from their manager or supervisor when they have done something wrong or are being given a new assignment. Itís just as important to recognize your employees when they have done something right or have in any way gone above and beyond the responsibilities of their position. 

One good way to do that is to give out employee awards, including certificates. With the many choices in award paper, it's easy to do this on a regular basis, or as a spontaneous gesture of appreciation. There is a wide variety of award paper available for printing certificates of recognition. Here are some ideas to get you started. 

Standard (formal) certificates

The most familiar is the standard style on grey or beige parchment-style paper, with a formal-looking border edging each certificate. 

You can buy packages of pre-printed, ready to fill-in certificates from employee award and recognition catalogs. Some allow you to fill in the reason for the award, as well as the recipient's name and the date. Others are pre-filled with generic award titles like "Certificate of Appreciation" or "Outstanding Achievement." 

Custom printed formal certificates

You can also buy the award certificate paper, complete with the fancy boarder and parchment-like design, then use most graphic arts software to design your certificate. Even MS Word can be used to create an award certificate layout (look in the Templates section.) 

Software especially designed for work or academic forms also may include a special certificate template for easier personalization.

Casual or creative certificates

For the less serious occasion or a more creative workplace, use a casual certificate paper with fun graphics to express your appreciation. It can also be fun to give out silly awards at your annual employee party. As with the formal certificates, you can often buy ready-to-fill-in award papers edged with colorful animals, letters or designs. 

If your office supply store doesn't have them, try a teacher supply catalog or homeschool store...they usually offer them in inexpensive packets. 

You can also use scrapbook paper to customize the theme or design of the awards. Pick a paper with an open area in the center, or print the wording on a solid sheet, then trim it to fit in the center of a colorful piece of paper. Instant customization!

Letter-topped certificates

If you want to truly express your admiration and gratitude to your employee, a letter-topped certificate gives you the means to do so. The top half of the certificate is letter-sized, allowing you to write in full the reasons for the award. The bottom, perforated section is the certificate itself.

These specialized award papers give a manager a chance to share more details about the reason for the award, while permitting the recipient to just frame the certificate itself. The letter portion can even become a part of the employee's file after they've had a chance to read it. 

Certificate bundles

If you know that you will be giving out multiple awards in the future, and you prefer a more traditional look,  it is probably more economical to purchase a certificate bundle. These packages come with the certificate papers, certificate frames or holders, foil seals, and ribbons. You can then use your software to print out the perfect award, and affix the ribbon and foil seal to finish it off. 

Several human resource supply companies offer these bundles custom imprinted with the company name, and possibly even the department or award title. All you have to do is fill in the name and date, then sign it. 

Custom printed

If an award banquet or other event is coming up, having a printer do all of the certificates might be the easiest and most time effective choice. Typically, you would pick out the award paper, then provide them with a list of recipients and award titles. They do the rest, and you just sign each certificate. 

Remember, one of the marks of a good manager or employer is that he or she treats his employees well. If you find that your employee contact consists mainly of confrontation and correction, you can go a long way to improving relations by offering some words of encouragement and recognition of hard work. And an award certificate delivered with sincerity might be step one in the right direction. 

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