Firms looking to increase employee motivation through incentive programs: Survey

Store-specific gift cards most preferred
||Last Updated: 06/16/2011

Canadian executives are focusing on boosting employee motivation through employee incentive programs, according to a new survey.

Increasing employee motivation has become a key area of focus among Canadian companies, with a strong majority (88 per cent) of survey respondents indicating this is a top management priority in the coming year, found the 2011 Canadian Incentive Trends Survey by Berkley Payment Solutions in Toronto.

When asked how they use incentive programs, more than two-thirds (68 per cent) of respondents said for employee programs, compared to 56 per cent last year, according to the 429 executives polled.

Motivating employees was the top reason for offering incentive programs, according to 69 per cent of respondents.

"We've seen an increase in demand for employee programs in the last year, as organizations look to adopt cost-effective strategies to motivate employees, improve team performance and meet business goals," said David Eason, CEO of Berkeley Payment Solutions. "With employment rates on an upward trend, the need to attract and retain high performing employees continues to intensify.”

Two-thirds of respondents said their budget for incentive programs has stayed the same or increased and almost three-quarters (71 per cent) said the number of programs they are running this year either increased or stayed the same.

Seventy-two per cent of respondents said they have used corporate incentive programs as part of their business strategy. And more than one-half (54 per cent) of these respondents said they gained a competitive advantage over the competition as a result of these programs.

"Executives are recognizing that a motivated workforce translates into increased performance," said Eason. "This is directly leading to a renewed commitment to incentive programs that foster relationships and strengthen employee dedication." 

More than two-thirds (67 per cent) of repondents use retail gift cards for a specific retail outlet as an incentive vehicle. This is followed by merchandise (52 per cent), branded prepaid MasterCard or Visa cards (34 per cent), specials events (34 per cent) and incentive travel (25 per cent).

Store-specific retail gift cards are perceived as the most cost-effective (39 per cent) and easiest incentive vehicle to administer (51 per cent).

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