I would like to thank an HR person who has been very helpful in managing my placement at my current company, including arranging and organizing interviews for further internal advancement.

What would the appropriate way to thank them be? Would a gift be appropriate, and if so, what kind?

  • At minimum, express your appreciation during a team meeting and a meeting with your manager. – bytebuster Aug 26 '12 at 5:19
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    The recruiter is getting a percentage of your salary (assuming you pass the probation period). I don't think they need anything else :) – ChrisF Aug 28 '12 at 9:20
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    This question appears to be off-topic because it is a polling question about a thank-you gift. – Jim G. Feb 2 '14 at 20:47
  • @JimG. - This question can be modified to ask what kind of expression of gratitude is appropriate. – user10911 Feb 2 '14 at 21:57
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    @geekrunnings if the modification was done then that could be taken into account when voting to reopen. As the edit has not been done its still the same question as it was before – Rhys Feb 4 '14 at 9:09

The best present is a thank-you copied to their manager, or a nomination for some internal award. The recruiter is doing a job, not doing you a personal favor. If you don't know what would be appropriate, that is a good sign that the correct answer is nothing.

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    I would add that actually buying them something might give others the impression it was a bribe... Be careful not to cross any lines. – animuson Aug 27 '12 at 0:11
  • @animuson: "bribe" -- that's the word I was looking for. – kevin cline Aug 29 '12 at 6:40

I think the best gift you can give is to refer him/her to other job applicants. This not only shows you appreciate what they did for you, but that you acknowledge their abilities and are willing to go out of your way and put your reputation on the line by vouching for them.

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I would strongly recommending checking with their boss to ensure such a gift is not violating company policy.

Some companies have policies in place to prevent things like this which can result in the feeling of favoritism or even bribery (just imagine seeing the following from the perspective of a coworker - XXXX helps gets YYYY a better job. YYYY gives XXXX a gift).

Second, I would make sure they are going above their job responsibilities if you are to make a formalized gift. Especially because you directly benefited from their actions, although the company presumably did too, the role of HR is as several others have said to do this sort of work.

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The company recruiter / HR person is tasked with finding a good employee to fill the need. From a company perspective the important metrics are: does the new employee create income and profits?; Do they make it more likely that they can continue to win business by the quality of the work?

In some way the company does care the the new employee is happy in their position. Because if the employee is not happy they might not stay around long enough to overcome the cost of hiring them.

The praise for a job well done shouldn't come from the new employee, but from the manager of the new employee. They are the one who can determine if the new employee has met the metrics.

A gift from the new employee to the HR person might make it more likely that the HR person will help them in the future. But it only shows that the employee is happy with the position, not that the HR person did a good job for the company.

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HR people are not robot drones (even if that's not always apparent) and they appreciate a "thank you" same as anybody else. Nor are they solely devoted to the company bottom line or performance metrics as has been suggested, but take pride and satisfaction in a happy employee.

If you truly feel that level of gratitude towards this person, I don't see anything wrong, per se, with a small token of appreciation. A small potted plant and a handwritten thank-you note gets you a long way! Just be sure to keep it within a reasonable price-range ($5-$10).

Of course, it could be that the brown-shirts have taken over at your company and any sign of affection or gratitude between co-workers is equated with bribery or harassment and severely punished, in which case I can only say that I'm sorry and that you should restrict yourself to a company-approved "thank you" nod as you pass each other in the hallway.

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