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Why Experiences

Blueboard is an Inspiring Workplaces Top 25 Work Tech Vendor

At Blueboard, we’re working tirelessly to change the way companies reward their employees. Gift cards, merchandise, plaques, and branded swag—it’s all well-intentioned, but these ways of rewarding employees are a relic of the past. Today, people are looking (and hoping) for more.

After eight years of helping companies deliver experiential rewards to their employees, we’re more sure than ever before that experiences trump things every time. We’ve grown from 40 to over 200 people in the past four years, and there is nothing else we’d rather be doing with our time. 

And today, we’re proud to share that Blueboard has been recognized as a Top 25 Work Tech Vendor by Inspiring Workplaces and The Starr Conspiracy. This list recognizes organizations that help top workplaces deliver an exceptional workplace experience to their employees. 

Matt Manners, founder of The Inspiring Workplaces Group, shared this about these awards: 

“Congratulations to the Top 25 Work Tech Vendors. At Inspiring Workplaces, we endeavor to recognize and reward the organizations that go above and beyond the call of duty to deliver an outstanding workplace experience for their people. 

This year, with the support of our partner, The Starr Conspiracy, we launched the Work Tech Awards. These awards celebrate the success and diverse range of technologies that we believe can be a serious catalyst to driving positive change for an organization and the people within it.”

What makes a top work tech vendor? 

In submitting for this award, we got to look back at the impact that we’ve had on our own people, customers, and our overarching purpose: To help as many people as possible challenge their comfort zones, try something new, and indulge in their passions. 

A color photo of a person in a yellow kayak on a giant lake raising their paddle above their head. There is blue sky and water in the foreground and background.
Tori S., an SDR at Blueboard, takes a spontaneous kayak trip in South Lake Tahoe, California, to go #blueboarding (our term for getting out and experiencing the world!). 

Our vision of the future of work is one of reciprocity. Employees give their time and energy to make their companies successful. We believe the best way a company can reciprocate—and build employee connection and loyalty—is by giving their people quality time to spend in the real world with their families and friends.

Our platform is designed around making that vision possible. Blueboard empowers HR teams and managers to send rewards in a matter of seconds. When an award lands in an employee’s inbox, they get to jump into the platform and choose the experience that is most meaningful to them from our curated menus. Surfing lessons, a couple’s massage, a Michelin-star dinner, or a trip to chase the Northern Lights in Iceland are only a click away. 

Two people stand on a rock with a waterfall flowing behind them in Iceland.
Staci B. explores the stunning landscapes of Iceland while on the “Ring around the Roadsie” Blueboard experience—a sales appreciation reward from her workplace, Veritas Technologies.

Once they’ve picked their ideal experience, the employee is paired with a dedicated Blueboard Concierge who handles all of the logistics and booking. Employees just need to show up and have a good time. 

Beyond our platform—which allows global companies to run impactful recognition programs at scale—we've also built a marketplace of 10,000+ small business vendors (spas, yoga studios, cooking classes, etc.) from the ground up. Which means we’re able to funnel corporate dollars into local communities.

The outcomes speak for themselves. Over 500 companies use Blueboard, and this year alone over 70,000 people will go #blueboarding in every state in the US and in over 50 countries internationally. Over 90% of reward recipients report feeling motivated to perform at the same level or higher, and a similar number feel that Blueboard is additive to company culture. 

A person poses with cartoon character TIgger at Disneyland. They are smiling and it's a sunny day.
Annie L. poses with Tigger during the “Disneyland!” experience, while redeeming a Blueboard reward from Celtic Bank.

Of course, being a leading work tech vendor is about our own employees’ experience as much as it’s about our customers’ experience. This award also gave us the chance to reflect on all the ways we’re working to be a most-loved employer, like:

  • Weaving company values interviews into our standard interview process. We (the co-founders) still interview every single candidate who gets an offer.
  • Offering live mission, vision, and values training during week one of onboarding. We believe that it’s important to spend the time getting to know Blueboard’s story, growth, and purpose from the source. 
  • Our annual retreat, Bluetreat. We bring the whole company together every year to kick off the new year. We spend time learning skills (set ourselves up for success), #blueboarding (building meaningful relationships), and getting aligned so that we can succeed as a team. 
  • Employee resource groups. We started ERGs early, once we passed 150 employees. Our ERGs are a space for conversation and connection, and have dedicated times to present at company all-hands, and a budget to host educational events. 
  • Work Abroad. We host an optional annual trip where Blueboarders from around the world can work out of a foreign country, together, for a week. It’s an opportunity to step out of our comfort zones and absorb a different community and culture. This year’s was in Lima, Peru, where we got plenty of time to enjoy ceviche and explore this coastal gem of a city together. 

What’s next for Blueboard?

While we're proud of the progress we’ve made over the past few years, the feeling around the company is that we're just getting started. We have ambitious goals to make our product more accessible and enjoyable for all of our clients and their employees. 

A few things that are top of mind:

  1. Making Blueboard work everywhere. We are investing aggressively in international expansion in major tech and financial hubs across the world. Next year, we are rolling out 24x7 Concierge service to better serve our international reward recipients.
  2. Building connections in a hybrid world. We’re doubling down on what we’re great at, which is helping people create meaningful connections in the workplace. We’re working on a set of tools that will drive connection as companies navigate a hybrid workplace
  3. Fitting seamlessly into existing systems and workflows. Today, you have to log into the Blueboard platform to send a reward. Tomorrow, you’ll be able to initiate Blueboard rewards from the tools you work in every day, making our rewards more widely available for on-the-spot recognition

Congrats to everyone else who made it onto this year’s inaugural Top 25 Work Tech vendor list! We’re in good company with some businesses that are doing amazing things to define the future of work for all of us.

–Taylor and Kevin  

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