Incentive Research Foundation (IRF) and the
Incentive Federation recently published a study that highlights gift cards as an employee reward preference over cash rewards. The study about incentive awards recognizes non-cash incentives as a way to control spending, while motivating employees and channel partners. The preliminary results of the study point out that employee cash incentive awards are averaging $732.00, which is triple the cost of non-cash awards. “The study validates our experience and belief that the average cost of a cash award is roughly triple that of either merchandise ($206) or gift cards ($240),” according to Incentive Federation Chairman Stephen Slagle. “The total cost of incentives is especially important in our post-recession economy, so the data points stimulated extensive discussion around the benefits of each award type,” he explained. To read more about this study, visit
IMA’s Return On Performance. Check back with us regularly; we’ll publish a link to the full study results once they are available.