Motivating Employees on a Budget
Keeping employees motivated and engaged is more important than ever during tough economic times. This white paper takes you through the dos and don‟ts of incentivising on a budget - how to maintain morale and maximise the return on your investment.
During difficult economic conditions, the competition for custom intensifies; customers become far more discretionary in their spending and focus on getting the most out of their money. So it„s essential that employees are motivated to provide the highest levels of service that will set the company apart. Whilst it may be tempting for employers to make a quick saving by cutting the incentives ...view middle of the document...
To achieve the most effective incentive scheme, consider the following: Vision - Have a clear and realistic vision of what the company wants to achieve and set targets accordingly. Communication - Communicate the value of the scheme effectively to employees to ensure engagement. Supplier - Choose a supplier who has a good track record and plenty of experience in your industry. Added Value - Identify schemes providing added value - exclusivity, discounts and „money can‟t buy‟ offers. Timing - Incentivise out of the blue as well as when it‟s expected.
Tactics – get your game plan right
Whatever the incentives budget, it will not have been easy to secure and it‟s vital to use it efficiently. In periods of economic uncertainty the focus may need to shift from recognising outstanding performance to using incentives to drive productivity on a daily basis. Employers are also realising that they need to invest in the company‟s future by tactically choosing the behaviours to reward. 44% of the respondents in a recent survey plan to increase their use of reward to reinforce a culture of creativity and innovation - traits that only 25% of companies currently focus on. 5
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Motivating Employees on a Budget
It takes a considered approach to identify the behaviours and activities that will have the greatest impact on the company‟s performance and focus incentives accordingly. Another important tactic is to change the incentives on offer frequently to keep them fresh and exciting and to run short term „one-off‟ offers to encourage bursts of effort at critical times. Timing is also a critical factor. The greatest productivity is gained when the desired behaviour is rewarded immediately and unexpectedly rather than waiting for traditional times such as Christmas, when bonuses are expected regardless effort demonstrated.
Targets: stretching, but achievable
The next consideration should be to establish and manage targets. In order to sustain morale and increase productivity, targets must always be set at a level which is challenging, yet achievable. This may mean being prepared to lower overall expectations of performance during tough economic times and introduce smaller rewards at more frequent intervals. Despite best intentions and no matter how appealing the incentives on offer, if targets are unachievable the workforce will become disenchanted and de-motivated.
Communicate and engage
The structure and benefits of the incentive scheme must be effectively communicated across the organisation. Employers understand that quality communication is an essential factor in motivation. One study reported that 76% of business leaders believe clear reward communication has a positive impact on performance, engagement and retention, whilst 91% of those who feel that they don‟t clearly communicate to employees agreed that they had seen a drop in employee motivation....