Reward and Recognition Myths

Posted on: 2nd December 2015

When it comes to making the decision on commencing a recognition programme for your staff, you need to weigh up the pros and cons. But there are a lot of myths that come with making this decision. In this blog, we’re going to dispel some of these un-truths using our own experiences, and show you how easy setting up and running a programme can be.


Cash is the Greatest Motivator

We hear it all the time….. my staff only want cash. It’s true, if you told someone they could have a discount, or a wodge of cash as a thank you for their loyalty and doing great work, they’d be delighted and take the cash. But what about the second, or third time? What if they start to feel like they’re worth more than the cash you’re offering? After a while, will they feel the same about receiving this reward as they did the first time you offered it? Would they remember the amount and why they received it?

Studies have shown that, when asked, people will often choose cash as a reward because it’s the easiest choice when faced with it. But this cash will often go on bills or food shopping - not very exciting! When given the option of experiences or exciting prizes such as holidays, iPads and hampers, people value their reward more. They have an emotional attachment to the reward they receive and as such remember why they received it and who from - you!


Recognition Programmes are a Quick Fix

We often find people expect to get results in the space of a couple of months. This can happen, but in reality it takes around a year to start to see real results. Great reward programmes need time to bed in. And that’s the sign of a great scheme - the kind that starts from strong roots, grows into something strong and is well and truly part of your company. That being said, depending on the end goal and how you want to get there, you can see great results in around 3-6 months, but this won’t ever train the behaviours in your staff that you’re looking for.

Once you’ve grown a strong programme tactical promotions can be implemented quickly and for those you will see fast results. Get your scheme started at the right time, treat it with respect and you’ll see the benefits begin to roll in within a year and then continue to go from strength to strength. 


It Costs a Lot

It can, but it doesn’t have to. Depending on what your end goal is it can cost as little or as much as you like. For example, with incentivesmart you can choose between different packages with different levels of support, management and modules for what you’d like your users to see. And you only pay for points when a user redeems a reward, so you’re only paying for performance.


Reward Choices Are Limited

When you think of reward programme rewards you think of wine, watches, boxed pens, gift vouchers - not very inspiring. But it doesn’t have to be like that. Exciting and aspirational gifts like holidays, jewellery, experience days, electronics, sports equipment and chocolate! The world’s your oyster, why be restricted? 


Our Staff Don’t Understand Technology, and Don’t Go Online

We hear this occasionally, especially in industries where people work way over retirement age or work in a blue collar environment. You can’t assume that age means a lack of technological knowledge. One of our newer clients was very worried about this issue when they initially rolled out their programme, but their engagement statistics told another story. With over 70% engagement their users are definitely logging on and using the programme!

Reward programmes need to be built with the user and usability in mind. If it’s not easy to use and not easy to access you are fighting a losing battle. Websites should be responsive to allow users to access them from anywhere on any device and they should be intuitive and easy to maintain. 


It Takes Too Much Time to Manage!

Some programmes can be an administrative black-hole this is true, but they don’t need to be. It is important at the beginning of any programme to understand your objectives and set targets, but it also critical to make sure your reporting and administrative processes are well thought out. If data flow and processes are well thought out they can be automated taking away time burdens. One of our longstanding customers used to manually process reward claims on their programme, the programme grew and grew and before long it became a full time job for two people to process claims. We sat down with them, looked at their internal process and built an integration with their SAP system which automatically processes every claim made, saving over 500 man days per year and reducing processing time by 7 days.

A dedicated account manager can also work with you to maintain your programme, set up and management can be taken care of for you and you can be as involved as you want! Remembering that communication is key to a successful programme, you can control the message you send regularly to your users whilst leaving the hard work to your account team at incentivesmart. 


Recognition programmes have come on leaps and bounds over the past decade. They’re focussed towards the user and aiding your end goal - you wouldn’t want it any other way!

Creating and implementing a scheme that’s right for you and your company is what it’s about and at incentivesmart that’s the prime objective.

So what are you waiting for?

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