Why you need to get your Christmas rewards right

A well-used statement is that we spend more time with our work colleagues than we do with our own family. At Christmas, employers may feel the desire to show staff how much they are valued – but this brings its own complications.


When children are small and the numbers are few it becomes easy to decide what to get them for Christmas. As they get older and their numbers multiply, siblings arrive and cousins etc. the decision of what to buy becomes harder.

You want to treat each child fairly and with the same thought and financial consideration, but what can you do that makes your present special but fair? It is a very similar situation when it comes to planning Christmas gifts for staff members.

Some of your staff members may not celebrate Christmas and some may have certain intolerances to food or alcohol, thus eliminating the standard hamper. The worst case scenario is that after all your efforts, employees think that no care or thought was put into the gift process thus alleviating the benefit of any goodwill you had hoped to create.

It is a difficult decision, but for companies looking to provide gift vouchers there is an exemption for retail vouchers valued at £50 and under, where no income tax or National Insurance will apply. But be aware that if the payment is over £50, the whole amount would be subject to tax as vouchers that can be exchanged for cash count as earnings and so would be subject to tax and National Insurance.

If Christmas really is not for you then we can always start planning for Easter. I am sure those Cadbury Crème Eggs will be in the shops soon!

Karena Woodall is a consultant at Mattioli Woods.

This article was provided by Mattioli Woods.

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