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Recognition Ready: 5 Exceptional Ways to Honor Administrative Professionals Day in 2023

April 13, 2023

Admin Appreciation gift box

Stuck on what to get or say for Administrative Professionals Day? Check out our helpful tips to get it right.

First launched as “National Secretaries Week” in 1952, Administrative Professionals Day (and Week) was launched by the International Association of Administrative Professionals (formerly, The National Secretaries Association) to advocate for increased recognition and respect for women in the workplace. The holiday has shifted over the past 70 years to recognize administrative professionals as a larger, more diverse group encompassing anyone who works in an administrative capacity in an organization – but the foundation of recognition and respect remain. 

Administrative Professionals often work behind the scenes to ensure a smoothly run company. Their work isn’t always on display, which means the integral nature of scheduling, project managing, and serving as the link cross functionally between departments can go unnoticed or worse, unappreciated. The last week of April is an opportunity to bring administrative professionals out of the shadows and into the spotlight whether you celebrate Administrative Professionals Week (April 23 – 29) or Administrative Professionals Day (April 26, 2023). 

But what do you say or do to ensure your colleagues feel authentically celebrated? Read on for 5 recommendations to make Administrative Professionals Day 2023 more meaningful than ever.

  1. SAY THANK YOU AUTHENTICALLY. As reported in the Packed with Purpose 2023 Employee Recognition Report, over 78% of respondents say feeling recognized at work is either “Extremely Important” or “Very Important” when it comes to their decision to stay with a company. Correctly recognizing the efforts of your administrative professionals on Administrative Professional Day can make the difference between retention or turnover in those positions. According to the report, the top 3 ways employees want to be recognized are: A monetary reward, an unexpected gift or a simple thank you. With an unpredictable economy, a heartfelt thank you is an inexpensive option but when done right, can be extremely effective.

    The most important aspect of an effective thank you? Authenticity. Sending a generic thank you card can have negative consequences and can feel like management is “checking the box” on Admin Professionals Day. But a personalized message that highlights their specific contributions to the success of the company will feel like a genuine expression of thanks.

    Another factor to that authenticity – recognition from leadership. From the Employee Recognition Report we learned that when it comes to employee appreciation, 47% of our respondents preferred Senior Leadership recognition over even their Immediate Manager (27%). To make your thank you really count, be sure to leverage your leaders.

  2. GIVE A MEANINGFUL GIFT. As a corporate gifting company, we know our clients are often looking for a special occasion to leverage as an opportunity for meaningful employee recognition. 30% of our gifts sent are to employees (onboarding, anniversaries, recognition events) – even more so since 2020, as the rise of remote work led to solutions to break through digital clutter. As of 2022, 66% of U.S. employees work remotely, at least part-time, ensuring the consistent need to creatively show employees appreciation without the access of in-person opportunities.

    Sending a gift on Administrative Professionals Day can achieve multiple goals at once: surprise and delight employees, personalize to fit their interests, include an authentically written card, and represent your company values through Packed with Purpose gifts that are all curated with social and environmentally impactful items.

    AdminAsst2023 drop 1Packed with Purpose’s thoughtful, hand-selected and sustainable gifts source products from 140+ purpose-driven organizations that have positively impacted nearly 1.5 Million lives since the company’s start.
    Per the Employee Recognition Report, 75% of our respondents want a gift that is personalized to their interests and 63% are looking for gifts that have a social impact. Our recently released Appreciation Medley gift is ideal for administrative professionals, featuring cheerful mini heart cookies freshly baked in small batches with a thin and crispy bite, smile-inducing rainbow-colored gummies, a decadent chocolate chip better-for-you-bar, and a premium lined notebook with a 2023 Gifting Occasion Calendar. In addition, the gift supports food insecurity initiatives, empowers young adults with intellectual disabilities, and funds building schools in disinvested communities.

    Or, find a gift that’s even more perfect for your admin professional by viewing our selection of employee appreciation gifts or speaking to a member of our Gift Concierge Team to find both the social and environmental impact and items that best match your recipient as well as your company’s purpose.

  3. GIVE THE GIFT OF TIME. Send a message of the value of administrative professionals by recognizing the need for their downtime and work-life balance. If these employees are the glue that binds your organization, giving an extra day of PTO can help them relax and recharge while ensuring their efforts and their needs are recognized and appreciated.

    Additionally, the gift of time won’t hurt the company’s bottom line, but will lead to healthier and happier employees – reducing burnout and retention issues in the long term.

  4. SHOW THEM THE MONEY. The top way employees want to be recognized? A monetary reward. If you have the budget, even a small financial gesture will be a welcome way to recognize the integral work of administrative professionals. This could be a raise, a small bonus, or even something as small as a gift card. In a time of rising cost of living – monetary recognition is practical but will also clearly demonstrate that their work is essential for the success of the company. So much so that it’s part of the budget.

  5. INVEST IN THEIR CAREER. Encouraging career growth and supporting ongoing learning can benefit both an administrative professional and your organization. If they have expressed interest in acquiring new skills or just keeping on top of current workplace trends, you can show your support by investing in their professional development. This can be anything from an online course to sending them to an administrative professional event in person. For example, the American Association of Administrative Professionals offers numerous events throughout the year both in-person and online that will leave administrative professionals with new skills, a supportive network, and fresh ideas.

    Once again, the objective of this gift is a message of both recognition and a signal that the organization is invested in their continued growth. It’s another way to show your employees their importance that goes beyond just appreciation. When you support professional development for admin professionals you clearly demonstrate that they are needed, valued and have a future with the organization.

    Administrative Professionals are the unseen heroes of all organizations. So much so – they have an entire week set aside in April to be recognized. Any of these gestures will be appreciated but you can go even further by combining some of them. Maybe a professional development opportunity and a day off? A personalized gift with a heartfelt and authentic card from leadership? Or a gift card and time to spend it on whatever they choose? Regardless of which strategy you choose to acknowledge Administrative Professionals Day this year – acknowledgement of the day itself is crucial to show the organization’s appreciation for this important role. Don’t miss the opportunity to recognize these crucial employees – any way you choose to show appreciation will pay off with increased retention, decreased turnover and a more productive and happy workforce. 


About Packed with Purpose: Packed with Purpose is a Certified Woman-Owned business that embeds social and environmental impact into the everyday act of gift giving. These distinctly curated gift boxes source

products from over 140+ purpose-driven organizations that transform more than 750,000 lives, resulting in a unique gifting experience that is as inspiring as it is impressive. Strengthen relationships with clients, employees, or friends with gifts for every budget or occasion through seamless ordering, branding and customization. Discover why the nation’s leading brands choose to send gifts that are Packed with Purpose.

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