There are several reasons for firms to motivate and incentive employees including:
- Reduced absenteeism
- Increased productivity
- Better staff loyalty
In extreme cases, happier staff will be less likely to steal, commit fraud or compete against the company in the future.
So for the purpose of getting the most out of your employees and promoting a happy workforce, keeping them sweet should be high on the list of senior staff. Whilst traditional bonuses, certificates for good work and acknowledging birthdays are still important, companies can go beyond to invest in their staff. New terms have emerged in the world of HR such as employee engagement and employee benefits that are specifically targeting this area that can be help productivity by up to 20%.
Invest In Their Training
Staff will be more likely to stay put and work harder for you if you have invested in their training. This is company for the top law and accountancy firms where employees are hungry to succeed because their training costs over £100k. Although there is around a third of people that leave once qualified (Source: KMPG), it is certainly lower than it could be due to the increase in loyalty.
Investing in education does not need to be 3 years or result in a qualification, it can also be paying to attend seminars, workshops or even giving the person an intern or extra screen at their desk.
Staff that work hard and get results can be rewarded with discounts schemes. This is now possible through employee benefit companies such as Xexec and Perkbox. The offering involves giving customers access to an online portal with access to thousands of discounts for mobile phone contracts, music shows, cinema tickets and holidays. Better offers are available to more senior staff or those that reach targets.
A popular scheme for parents includes childcare vouchers which help contribute towards their school equipment, clothes and childcare. Taking that extra step to show interest in the employee’s children is a huge way to incentive.
A healthy staff is a happy staff. There are several company-specific health insurance policies that cater to firms of all sizes. The policy gives workers access to different treatment including hospital fees, physio appointments and psychiatry (perfect for high pressured jobs).
For employers in makes sense to offer this perk. For those staff members with recurring toothache or back pain, it makes sense for them to see a specialist through private healthcare and get sorted quickly, rather than waiting for weeks for an appointment and referrals and taking time off work. Business healthcare also gives access to private cover to those that perhaps would not normally have it – and this is an enormous benefit, especially since some policies also throw in children for free. Companies are able to get a tax break for company health insurance and receive a discount for the more staff they cover. (Source: MediCompare)
Some of The Craziest Ideas
Alright, some of these are very American (not judging!) but if you are looking for ways to shake things up, these are some of the weirdest employee incentive strategies we have found around:
- Team Lunches – start off lightly but giving those teams with the best results a nice lunch on the company. This could either be at a nice restaurant or even a takeaway pizza.
- CEO for the day – this is a bit nuts but imaging giving a junior member of staff the role of CEO for the day? Includes a parking space, office, secretary and choose your hours. Go easy with the power trip, you probably shouldn’t fire anyone.
- Travelling trophy – less adventurous, there is a team trophy which gets passed around for the best employee that month. Similar to having a hall of fame and putting their name and face on the wall.
- Sleep in day – you can let the subordinate sleep in for a day. Everyone hates Monday mornings, so how nice would it be to turn up late? Or even on a Friday too, so you just have the half day. This is ideal for lawyers and investment banks where people work long hours and could do with a lie-in.
- Dress down – whilst dressing down is popular on Fridays, who says you can’t do it every day of the week? Ditch the tie and the suit for a more comfortable jeans and open neck shirt, or dress for women. Again, don’t take it too far by rocking up in a dressing gown or nightie, unless you work in a bed store, you might get away with it.