What employees want from incentive compensation

Ever wondered if your incentive compensation program is actually working? There are ways to tell if employees are satisfied, if they're working toward desired outcomes and if they're performing to enterprise standards. However, none of these factors actually indicates whether or not personnel are engaged or enjoying their sales incentive compensation options.

The thing is, the value of an incentive may seem superb to a corporation, but personnel may not feel the same way about offerings. There's more to making a business work than just offering products and services, and leaders need to look at their internal affairs the same way. Just as simply putting items on the shelf won't result in the best sales figures, so too does putting an incentive plan into action require follow-up from HR and other relationship management services.

Targeting better options
So what kinds of things to people really want? The answer can be nebulous or obvious, depending on how in-tune with workforce organizations happen to be. There are some options that tend to be more valuable and valued by employees than others, so taking note of these offerings is important. Not only does this show trends in how to reward staff members effectively, it can also show what business leaders should be doing to make the work environment more enjoyable for everyone.

According to a recent Berkeley Payment Solutions survey, about 70 percent of companies are using sales incentive compensation tools right now. However, a gap exists between what personnel are offered and what they really want. On top of that, companies use varying levels of insight and technical operations to determine who earns these rewards. This can result in differing levels of accuracy and satisfaction within corporations that use more or less transparency in their award programs.

Tracking transparency
Some of the most common kinds of rewards include corporate merchandise and retail gift cards, the source noted. However, these tools aren't ideal for people of all ages. In a multi-generational workforce, people have varying ideas about what's valuable and which kinds of options actually show a benefit to their lives.

These issues result in motivation and engagement issues, as the source noted. While some of these tools, such as gift cards, may present the greatest profit margins for organizations, there are considerable issues with actually making people want them.

"The incentive gap exists because recipients clearly want more choice and flexibility in the rewards they receive," said Dave Eason of Berkeley Payment Solutions.

Taking responsibility
Owning up to disparities in what employees want versus what they're being offered is the first step in rectifying the situation. By honing in on what staff members are interested in for motivational and incentive compensation options, businesses can produce better outcomes while also providing employees with a sense that their corporations are really interested in building relationships within the organization.

However, some of the solutions companies can offer are not necessarily tangible rewards. The Berkeley research focused on the kinds of monetary and physical solutions that businesses prefer, but as Mondaq showed, it's sometimes better to offer job security and personal wellness.

The source stated that non-compete agreements with other similar corporations serve a great benefit for companies that want to maintain their workforce stability. At the same time, this kind of environment makes it more important for leaders to encourage happiness and satisfaction so that employees don't try to seek out the competition on their own.

What's more, such agreements bring more scrutiny and transparency to the enterprise landscape. Mondaq mentioned that companies with non-compete agreements tend to receive more attention from governing bodies, thereby making their corporate functions more compliant and durable. The end result is a more positive work environment that's backed by job security and incentive programs that target satisfaction.