To get the maximum impact from your employee incentive programme you need to interact and engage with your employees. There are two important ways to do this; the first one is through communication and the second way is through gamification.
Communicating your incentive programme
I’ve previously written about how communicating your incentive programme effectively is critical to ensure employee engagement and more importantly participation in your programme.
Make your employee communications a priority and start by establishing a strong base of communications that uses segmentation to help you understand the communications preferences of your employees so that you can reach them with communication channels and message at crucial times. Once you’ve done this and are measuring the impact your communications are having regarding employees engaging with them and taking action; then you can start adding interactive elements to your employee communications.
Adding interactive elements to your employee communications
Fun, engaging and social communications can help you drive your key messages to employees, and interactive content is an excellent way to reinforce your other communications. Here are some ideas for interactive and engaging content:
- Short, up to two minutes, video messages to communication key points and relevant information
- Webinars or Webcasts of meetings and presentations
- Screensavers with the latest programme rewards or recipients
- Text messages for programme updates or to remind people to check their current standing.
Communications don’t always have to be top-down from HR or management. By empowering employees and getting them involved in spreading messages you can ensure that you reach all your employees whether they are based in the office or out in the field.
Using gamification to increase engagement and participation
Gamification is about enhancing an already existing experience by applying proven motivational techniques that encourage interaction with customers, employees and partners, to help drive sales, stronger employee engagement, increased profits and customer satisfaction.
In other words, it’s about use game design elements in a non-game context so that you make the hard stuff in life fun.
Gamification generates a buzz and social proof that can significantly improve the results you get from your incentive programme, and the good news is that any business can use it, no matter what their budget or their goals.
People are naturally competitive, and offering your staff the chance to receive some form of reward for completing an action appeals to our competitive nature. This can be utilised in employee incentive programmes by introducing game mechanics to encourage certain behaviours.
Examples of gamification include:
- Individual and group challenges to achieve sales targets
- Rewarding staff for keeping up to date on new product or service information
- Earning badges as people progress through online training courses
- Earning points for working their way through question and answer sessions
- Leaderboards that rank employees by level or achievement
Social media techniques, mobile applications and other technological advances are an important tool in gamification and when used in the right way, they can have an enormous impact on employees and keep them engaged in your programme.
However, it is easy to become blinkered by technology that replicates everything available to you on a personal level. As an employer the relationship you have and the interaction your programme website has with your employees will be different from their social interactions at home, so consider this when choosing which social techniques and technologies you want to use, you don’t want to waste valuable budget on underutilised technology.
You should ensure that any new technology will have a genuinely positive impact on desired outcomes and the overall objectives of the scheme. That being said, if the technology applied is well aligned to your objectives, it can have a genuinely positive impact on engagement.
Want to find out more?
Read the next article in the series: Motivate with the right rewards >>
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