What Incentives Can Do, What Incentives Cannot

Compensation Force

Incentive compensation. Incentives are dangerous, and not just because people game them. Incentives are like that jet engine. Yet incentives are still the first resort of most managers, perhaps because they all think they’re smart enough to create the perfect carrot. How do you know when an incentive plan is a good idea and when it is not? . Next, you'll need to face up to the reality that there are problems which incentives cannot fix (and may even make worse).

What is Incentive Pay?

The Incentive Solutions News blog

What is incentive pay? Incentive pay can be defined as a type of variable compensation that is awarded to employees when they have completed a specific set of performance objectives. Types of Incentives. Incentive Pay Examples.


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Planning for 2022: Incentives, Bonuses, and Variable Compensation

Astron Solutions

Annual performance bonuses this year, based on 2020 performance, were awarded by 91 percent of responding companies, up from 76 percent of companies that awarded them last year. For management and professional employees, bonuses averaged 16 percent of salary. Spot Bonus Programs.

Incentive Services to Help Increase Medical Device Sales

The Incentive Solutions News blog

Incentive Services to Help Increase Medical Device Sales. Incentive Rewards. Our Incentive rewards inspire motivation in your participants and produce the most ROI for your brand. Incentive Programs. Assistance from Advanced Incentive Technology.

Incentives Without Teeth

Compensation Cafe

The title of this post probably had you thinking about incentive plans that required real goals to be met before payment was earned. Many companies have incentive plans without links between individuals, teams, departments and the company as a whole. When you evaluate the success of your incentive plans during this year pay special attention to understanding and documenting how each plan, metric and goal is helping or hindering the success of those around it.

2021 Compensation Budgeting Forecast Part 2: Incentives, Bonuses, and Variable Compensation

Astron Solutions

On the bonus front, 76% of companies planned on awarding a bonus in 2021. Bonuses, which are generally tied to organizational and employee performance goals, are projected to average 11% of salary for exempt employees. Adjust long-term incentive mix.

Stop the $600 Annual Incentive!

Compensation Cafe

As regular readers know, I am someone who does a ton of incentive compensation work. I believe in incentives and their ability to align people with the culture, strategy, and goals of a company. I know incentives work when properly designed and communicated.

Best Ways to Manage an Incentive Plan for Medical Device Sales

The Incentive Solutions News blog

When you're creating sales incentive plans for the medical devices industry, you need flexibility. With the right set of technology, services, and expertise, a sales incentive plan can yield long-term, scaling results. Deliver bonus rewards to salespeople who make it to the top spot.

Boost Market Share with Tire Sales Incentives

The Incentive Solutions News blog

I’d like to focus on three sales incentive strategies that can help tire suppliers be proactive, establish competitive advantages, and boost market share. Sales incentives can improve your brand experience. You can personalize marketing and incentive program experience.

What Does a Bonus Mean?

Compensation Cafe

Can your employees tell the difference between a raise and a bonus? After all, we often don't make much of a communication effort when we award bonuses. When it comes to bonuses, the understood link with business results is often sketchy, too.

The Incentive Pay Competitive Advantage

The Incentive Solutions News blog

Incentive rewards can facilitate these actions, increasing your channel data and accelerating your channel sales and marketing initiatives. To take it even farther, you can strategically design your rewards payout system to make your incentive program even more effective.

Variable Pay: Is There a Difference Between a Bonus and an Incentive?

Compensation Today

Is there a difference between a bonus and an incentive? Under the umbrella you can find any number of bonuses, incentives, commissions, and other cash comp that is contingent on something happening. Bonus” falls under the umbrella. Bonuses may or may not be tied to a plan, they may or may not be connected to performance and they are typically backwards in orientation. Incentive” also falls under the umbrella. Choosing Incentives or Bonuses.

Use an Incentive Program to Boost Your Market Share Growth

The Incentive Solutions News blog

An incentive program can help you protect your business from unanticipated hardships, along with boosting market share growth with a solid competitive advantage. In this article, I’d like to highlight four strategies that position your incentive program to help you grow market share.

10 Best Uses for a Channel Partner Incentive Program

The Incentive Solutions News blog

A channel partner incentive program, for example, accelerates your sales and marketing strategies by powering them with motivation, brand value, and personalized experiences. Or you can use tangible incentive rewards as a more sustainably enticing option. Targeted Incentive Marketing.

Sales Incentives: Farmer, Hunter, Rancher

Compensation Cafe

Everyone who has ever worked on sales incentives has heard people refer to roles as “farmers” and “hunters”. Dan is also a leading expert on incentive plans and equity compensation issues.

Employee bonus programs: What’s right for your company?


A thoughtful, high-value employee bonus program can help make the difference between struggling to recruit and retain talented employees , and having a workplace that employees never want to leave. Employee bonus programs defined. Types of bonus programs. Performance-based bonus.

B2B Ecommerce Solutions: Incentives, Integration, and Gamification

The Incentive Solutions News blog

Incentives as a Complete Ecommerce Solution. Incentives may not be the first thing that comes to mind when looking for effective eCommerce solutions that increase sales. Integrating Incentives into an Ecommerce Platform. Bonus?

Is the Purpose of Incentives to Motivate People?

Compensation Force

Article after article tells us that we should halt our use of incentives because people aren't motivated by money. Many of the incentive arguments centered around whether or not money motivates people reflect a wrongheadedness about the role of and reason for variable pay.

Short-Term vs. Long-Term Incentive Plans for Tire Sales

The Incentive Solutions News blog

Short-Term vs. Long-Term Incentive Plans for Tire Sales. Incentive Rewards. Our Incentive rewards inspire motivation in your participants and produce the most ROI for your brand. Incentive Programs. Short-Term Incentive Plans. Long-Term Incentive Plans.

Give a Bonus of Heartfelt Appreciation This Year


Even after a difficult year, giving employees the appreciation and recognition they deserve is an important bonus. Employees were rightly concerned that years-long traditions around holiday bonuses might not materialize. Then news broke this week that all associates would indeed receive their deserved bonuses. The Christmas and customer-service bonus checks are the first to be handed out since Arthur T. I didn’t expect [a Christmas bonus] at all.

Why Today’s Incentive Thinking Is Different


Too often in human history, this meant that people with less power were simply compelled to work, and incentives — if they existed — consisted merely of being allowed to survive. After several evolutionary waves, we have a deeper insight into what truly motivates people, and today’s incentives are about far more than compensation. As the Forbes Coaches Council puts it, “In decades past, motivating employees was all about raises, promotions, and bonuses.

Rethinking Your Company Incentive Plans

The Incentive Solutions News blog

Rethinking Your Company Incentive Plans - Incentive Solutions. Perhaps the greatest benefit of company incentive plans is their flexibility and scalability. Your company incentive plans stand to benefit greatly from expert consultation on the plans’ strategy and structure.

Cafe Classic: Excessively Successful Incentives

Compensation Cafe

Editor's Note: In this Classic cautionary tale, Jim Brennan (using the 2016 Wells Fargo incentive disaster as his beginning "case in point") reminds us of how easily even reward plans designed with the best intentions can misfire. Incentives/Bonuses Pay for Performance

Rethinking Your Company Incentive Plans

The Incentive Solutions News blog

Rethinking Your Company Incentive Plans - Incentive Solutions. Incentive Rewards. Our Incentive rewards inspire motivation in your participants and produce the most ROI for your brand. Incentive Programs. Utilize strategic incentive software tools and features.

Do attendance bonuses make absence levels worse? | HR blog


To combat this issue, employers are introducing different incentive schemes to motivate staff and thus increase attendance. One of the most popular schemes companies can implement is an attendance bonus.

What is the Difference Between Benefits, Perks, Gifts, Awards, Incentives, and Rewards?


While most companies talk about employee perks, benefits, incentives, gifts, awards, and rewards in the same breath, the truth is, they each have their distinct characteristics and impact people in different ways. What are incentives?

The Potential for Incentive Perversity

Compensation Force

Need more proof that carelessly designed incentives can do more harm than good? Check out Wikipedia's list of perverse incentives. Perverse incentives, by definition, are those that produce unintended negative consequences. Bonus/Incentives

The Intent to Incent is Our Sun

Compensation Cafe

Incentive plans are one of the most complex aspects of pay and rewards. All of these simply orbit around the most important element of any effective incentive plan. The purpose of an incentive plan can only be absolutely clear if we avoid assumptions.

Key Factors to Manage Employee Merit, Bonus & Incentive Plans Effectively


There are many ways to incentive performance in an organization. Typically grouped together under the umbrella term “pay for performance plans,” employers may choose among merit programs, bonus options, and individual or team incentive plans.

Taming the Incentive Beast

Compensation Force

Left on their own, with no boundaries or constraints, incentive plans will often multiply like rabbits. I recently spoke with a compensation professional who claimed that her organization has over 300 incentive plans in place. First of all, should the organization be managing 300 separate incentive plans? For this reason, I am an advocate of getting a grip on the incentive beast! In summary: effectively designed and managed incentives = GOOD.

The Wild and Crazy World of Signing Incentives

Employment Metrix

Most signing bonuses require a minimum amount of time spent at a company—so maybe 3 or 6 months, and then the employee gets their cash. A lot of companies, knowing that mandating a vaccination could be problematic, are instead offering a bonus to those that choose to vaccinate.

9 Employee Bonus Ideas and How to Use Them Effectively

Semos Cloud

9 Employee Bonus Ideas and How to Use Them Effectively. What are different types of employee bonuses and how can you use them to increase retention and productivity in your organization? What Is Employee Bonus. What is an employee bonus in the first place? Signing bonus.

Is Your Annual Bonus Guaranteed?

Compensation Cafe

When worried organizations consider methods to get their arms around (control) high payroll expenses, they typically turn a blind eye to the variable pay component, to annual bonuses or incentives. Are the annual bonus/incentives payments in your organization guaranteed (all or in part) in a similar fashion? Annual bonus/incentive payments tend to be spent on major purchases like TVs, vacations or even a new car. Base Salaries Incentives/Bonuses

Incentive Plans: Individual Incentives vs. Team-Based Incentives


Incentive Structures. Incentives have always played an important role in helping to motivate employees, especially in the last few years as competition rises and more businesses are facing uncertain circumstances. Team Incentive Compensation Programs.

Cafe Classic: Aligning Incentives, Performance Metrics and Strategic Objectives

Compensation Cafe

Managers will receive bonuses tied directly to their survey scores. However, a substantial amount of research suggests that incentive pay has attention-directing effects that influence an employee's experience with performance measures.

Compensation Cafe: The Contradiction of Annual Incentives


Incentives are only effective when they match the timeframes of employees’ motivation to perform. In light of a recent Willis Towers Watson report on the ineffectiveness of annual incentives, I wanted to take a closer look at how and why they motivate employee behavior. For me, it was important to start at the very foundation and really look into what we mean when we talk about annual incentives. Bonus & Incentives Employee Motivation Annual incentives motivation

Incentives and The Rule of Three

Compensation Cafe

Designing an effective incentive plan is always a challenge. Over many years I have come to rely on what I call the Incentive Plan Rule of Three. No more than three metrics (KPI), no more than three defined goal levels, no more than three incentive plans for any one individual. Most incentive plans use three-level goal setting. I find that the Rule of Three works for nearly every incentive program, for nearly every company, and in nearly every industry.

Incentive Plan Examples


Incentives have always played an essential part in motivating employees, but they have become even more crucial in recent years as competition has increased and more firms have faced difficult conditions. How to design an incentive plan? . Team vs Individual Incentives.

The Dark Side of Incentives

Compensation Cafe

When describing their annual incentive plan (STI) most organizations will highlight to eligible employees the upside reward opportunities provided by the plan. But there’s usually less talk about what happens when times are tough, as incentive communication tends to focus on the positive.

Behavior Bonus: Performance Enablement


While the Kazoo Employee Experience platform is primarily driven by spontaneous, timely employee recognition — some employees want specific incentives and directions for their behavior. This is where our Behavior Bonus functionality comes in. Using Incentives for Performance Enablement. Behavior Bonus is, in its essence, an incentive tool. Each behavior bonus defines an action an employee can take that will get a specific number of points.