Unclaimed-Money-Australia-Sherlock-Logo2It will come as no surprise that recent research commissioned by Ixaris across 5 countries, reveals that employees list “cash”, open loop gift cards (similar to eftpos gift cards) and store gift cards as their preferred choice for employee rewards.

One of the most interesting findings of the study, however, is that, although cash-based rewards are listed as the most desired option for the largest group of recipients, cash is also listed as the last choice for the second largest group!

Why would this be so?
Well, as the study goes on to show, a large  amount of cash reward recipients tend to use their cash incentive just as they would their regular pay, whereas the majority of participants agreed they tend to use a gift card as a reward to treat themselves with something special.
Here are just some of the ways that cash rewards can sabotage employee recognition programs:

  • Physicality.  In today’s world, cash payments and salaries are generally done electronically – money gets invisibly transferred from the employer’s to the employee’s account (and then gets stripped out by direct debits and bill repayments!).  viavia.com
  • The “invisible” nature of this transaction does nothing to link ‘behaviour and reward’ in the mind of the employee.
  • The reward gets sucked up into everyday expenditure and is forgotten about which, again, does not support behavioural change.
  • Entitlement – by using your payroll to give employees a gift or regular reward, you may unwittingly create a sense of entitlement and your employees may start to consider this additional payment simply part of their salary or package rather than a reward for desirable behaviour.
  • Association & Longevity
  • There is a real risk with cash rewards that they get forgotten as soon as they are paid – or even before.
  • Without the “ceremony” of presenting a reward there is little to associate behaviour with reward.
  • There is no long-tail, emotional, feel-good association created for the employer or their brand.

Eftpos gift cards offer the ideal alternative to straight cash rewards.
Because they are open loop cards, they can be used practically anywhere and providing all the benefits of cash. You can use corporate gift cards to showcase employer branding, thereby acting as a reminder of how and where staff earned their reward every time they use their card. Because the research shows people are more likely to treat themselves to something special with a gift card, you again magnify the feel-good factor and association between behaviour and reward.

The perfect employee reward program satisfies both organisational and participant goals and objectives whilst driving continuous behavioural change. Don’t let your good intentions get lost – make your staff rewards special, readily visible and a joy to use.

images from viavia.com and unclaimedmoneyaustralia.com


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