Incentives in the form of gift certificates are a better option than giving cash rewards to stimulate the interest of employees and to motivate them in performing well in all fields of their activity. Over and above the salary that is payable to employees gift certificates cater excellently in boosting the employee’s morale by linking strategic goals with employee performance. Such incentive plans reward the appropriate actions if administered in a way that they are developed clearly and communicated effectively. Such plans are also linked to organizational objectives since individualism is amply stressed in making the employees feel a sense of achievement and contribution towards the goals of the organization.
Gift certificates fit perfectly into the scheme of special incentive programs which take into account the individual employee aspects of performance, recognition, and service. The purposes of these special incentives are aptly fulfilled by triggering an increase in sales and expanding customer services, especially in a service business such as a restaurant. The incentives positively encourage teamwork amongst employees as also their morale. The measures reduce absenteeism and improve safety in addition to enhancing employee loyalty and retention. Gift certificates are another way of tying rewards with team performance and with the improvement of productivity and customer service.
Sales incentive programs in which the top performers get privileges by way of getting holiday trips or other larger rewards by being grouped into an elite class, that is offered special recognition, have their specific advantages and disadvantages. By adopting such a plan organizations can group the team results and be specific about goal sharing and gain sharing. The quality of the products and results can be considerably improved upon since a group of employees makes efforts in giving their best efforts to meet company objectives.
Moreover, a sense of competition is infused into the system by way of the efforts and results of each employee being open for perusal on the company’s website, which ensures the best possible results for the organization. These incentive plans ensure excellent performance and recognition for achievers in further motivating and stimulating them to perform better. There are increased sales, customer service expands and employees get encouraged to work better in teams. The incentive plans increase employee morale and also enhance employee loyalty and retention.
Since the rewards by way of such group incentives are the same for all employees, they may be perceived as being unfair by those employees who feel they work harder than others, have better capabilities, and can perform more difficult jobs. The team members may tend to refrain from handling the decisions on incentives for co-employees. In today’s environment of competition amongst employees, the better performers expect to be rewarded specifically following their performance without being clubbed together in generalized terms. In most cases of such a reward system, the incentives may not be seen as being fair and may prove to become de-motivating factors if not handled by the management efficiently.
Moreover, the existence of such an entitlement culture sometimes hurts the working of the organization making the incentive plans to become ineffective. This is primarily because high performers do not see any difference between those employees who have crossed the minimum thresh hold by becoming members of the elite group and hence eligible for the benefits, and those that are much higher up in terms of performance. Thus, there is a need to reward employees based on their performances to instill in them the confidence that they have been well rewarded for their hard work.