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How to Boost Engagement Using Employee Incentive Programs

Posted, by Deborah Merkin
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Incentive programs play an important role in increasing employee engagement. They also help establish continuity between your team members and keep them motivated and satisfied in their work.

Employee incentives and rewards support the engagement initiative by recognizing an employee’s good work.

A recent study by Maritz Motivation Solutions indicates that the types of recognition programs used most frequently by respondents are service anniversary, above-and-beyond performance, and employee referral.

The study revealed gift cards are the No. 1 regularly offered award in recognition programs, with cash, certificates and employer-branded items rounding out the list.

Here are a couple of suggestions for how you can boost employee engagement using employee incentive programs:

Show Non-Sales Staff Some Love, Too

Typically, non-sales employees are less visible within a business than sales reps. However, they’re critical to the business’ success, too.

Ensuring that all employees feel recognized and rewarded is key, especially at smaller companies where non-sales staff can feel like salespeople receive more recognition than they do.

Gift cards are a great way to say “thank you” or “good job” to employees who are working hard behind the scenes.

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According to a Maritz Motivation Solutions study, 60 percent of participating companies said they fund at least four different recognition programs. Non-sales programs are a great place to start.

Increasing engagement provides return on investment beyond the cost of a reward by growing company stability through reduced turnover.

Satisfied employees, who feel like their work is being reinforced and rewarded, are less likely to look around for the next best thing.

Say 'Happy Anniversary' With Service Rewards

Anniversary incentives prove to newer employees that the longer you stay with the company, the more you will be rewarded for your dedicated service.

Rewards for anniversaries have evolved past Lucite trophies, watches, and fancy pens. In fact, 20 percent of the 300 HR professionals surveyed by Michael C. Fina Recognition cited anniversary service incentives as the most influential type of recognition program.

Make sure that anniversary rewards are personal and, when possible, relevant to someone’s hobbies and interests outside of work. With company loyalty on the decline, it's crucial to make employee recognition as memorable as possible.

Offer Quality Sales Incentives

From commissions to trips, rewards are significant to how companies reinforce a salesperson’s job performance. Salespeople have also come to expect rewards and incentives as part of their overall compensation package.

Sales positions turn over faster than any other part of a company. The more engaged and successful your salespeople are, the better your employee retention rate will be.

Boosting employee engagement is a constant challenge for human resource departments nationwide. Introducing incentive programs—like those geared toward anniversaries, non-sales and sales employees—into your engagement strategy builds trust and loyalty between employees and the company.

How will you incorporate incentives into your employee engagement strategy for the rest of 2017? Let us know by posting a comment in the comments section below.

Topics: Employee Engagement

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