Ignite

June July 2019

A fresh resource for people who plan and manage meetings, events, business travel, promotions and incentive programs. Providing you with inspiration, guidance and great ideas.

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The bottom line for incentive programs, he says, is profitability and whether a program pays for itself. How you get to increased profits depends on the industry, and every industry is different. So, it's important to choose the program based on what drives your business—and what best motivates your employee population. If it's straight sales, productivity and profitability are easier to measure, Garlick says. Trickier is trying to measure undefined outcomes, and in the travel and hospitality industry, where most of his consulting is done, the route to profitability is a little more roundabout. Among travel companies surveyed by Magid, strengthening employee engagement and the relationship between employees and manage- ment were important. One of the most successful HR metrics, Garlick has found, is the employee attitude sur- vey conducted simultaneously with employee performance reviews. While a lot depends on the questions asked, the goal is to determine employee intentions to remain long-term, and whether they'd recommend this place of work to someone else. You could also be direct and ask in the survey how fair and effective employees consider incentive programs. Once you understand performance drivers, you can select an incentive program to encour- age that result, whether it's sales or employee engagement and loyalty. Sadly, only one in four companies tracks its ROI on incentives, based on a recent study, says Garlick. "Many companies are fuzzy on why they keep an incentive program, and often it's because they've always done it that way. That response makes me nervous because if you aren't determining what's effective now, you won't know what works—or doesn't— when the next recession hits. When times get tough companies cut programs—and it may be the wrong program you cut." SELECT GROUP MARKETING

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