A great New Year's resolution this year could be to take better care of both customers and employees by implementing a reward program in 2008. A couple of weeks ago I wrote an article on the importance and impact of rewards programs.It is clear that a well designed rewards program can truly make a difference in the overall performance of a company, but it is not always easy to convince the boss that a reward program needs to have a place in the corporate budget.
The benefits of a reward program can be far-reaching and justifiable.Reward programs that recognize customers and/or employees on a regular basis help to solidify the relationship that exists by increasing loyalty and brand awareness.In November 2007 an article discussed the top ten reasons to put gifts into your budget. Among these reasons were two that I felt might help in convincing any skeptic that implementing a rewards program is a great resolution.
First, corporate gifts increase company brand awareness to its customers which can translate into more sales for the company. For employee reward programs, sales incentives can also have a huge impact on the bottom line. A business to business client of mine rewards its pharmacy customers based on the amount of supplies that are purchased on a monthly basis. Customers earn points for every dollar that is spent and then use the points to redeem brand name merchandise gifts. The supply company has seen an increase in sales and has renewed the incentive program for over 3 years now.
Another reason in support of reward programs cited in this article was the energizing factor that a reward program can have on employees. The author reported, "Employees live on their commission and pay, but they really thrive on recognition." Increased productivity, loyalty and a positive work culture all are benefits that can be seen when an employee reward program is implemented.
A few of my clients in the call center industry and their employees are very involved with the company reward program. Employees earn incentives for various behaviors such as above average customer service feedback ratings, perfect attendance and reaching company goals for sales, etc. Since the employees are online at work, they are able to check their personal account balances daily and see the fruit of their efforts in the gifts that they earn. Not only are these employees enthusiastic, but they really felt rewarded for their hard work.
Incentive reward programs can really help a company reach its goals, be it reducing turnover-related costs or increasing productivity among employees, anything is possible when positive reinforcement and recognition is used.A well designed reward program can help give your company a competitive edge in 2008 and in the future. Not only are the benefits described above possible, they are really just within reach. This New Year keep your resolution and recognize your stakeholders with a corporate reward program.