How to Create a Reward and Recognition Program and a Billing Model to Go with It

By: Luke Kreitner

April 10th, 2017

An effective reward and recognition program is a great way to keep office morale high. It’s also a useful tool for keeping team members motivated and goal-oriented. But the benefits don’t end at an improved bottom line.

Your employees are important to your success, and a recognition program helps them know you’re aware of that. Employees who feel appreciated and recognized will be much less likely to leave. This serves to cut down on turnover and protects you from the time-consuming process of seeking out new hires. If your program can help establish a culture of praising and recognizing good work, you will find yourself with improved numbers across the board.

Even if you believe in the importance of a reward and recognition program, you might wonder how much you should spend on it. There is a great deal of flexibility here. Your program can be narrow and focus only on what you consider most important. It can also feature rewards given on a monthly basis, or even quarterly, depending on your preferences. Most important is establishing and defining the culture you want to reinforce. In this way, you can ensure the program works toward achieving it.

Create a Recognition Program That Is Timely, Visible and Specific

The effectiveness of your reward and recognition program ties directly into how your employees respond to it. Timely recognition is important, as it demonstrates a response to a certain achievement. If an employee does something that warrants praise, but too much time passes, the contribution will feel less attached to the recognition. The time that goes by between a contribution and the recognition it deserves will make a person believe no one took note of what they did. If you plan on awarding bonuses at the end of the year, consider that in all the months between the achievement and the end of the year, the person might believe their work wasn’t valued.

To highlight the importance of praise, consider a worker who is constantly going above and beyond. If they receive a reward for one out of many contributions, they won’t feel the same drive to continue producing at the same level. If only one activity seems to matter, why continue doing all the others?

Specific recognition visibly tied into the contributions that earned it is always going to be more effective. If employees get rewarded for their good work, and they know why, it drives them to continue producing. This visibility is a powerful motivational tool in itself, as it allows a worker’s peers to join in the recognition.

Many people value the praise of their peers even more than what they get from their superiors! This is due to the insight into their everyday tasks that someone on their level would have. Visible recognition also helps create productive, healthy competition among employees. Seeing the recognition given to their successful peers can inspire other workers to strive for the same goals.

Understand the Goals of the Reward and Recognition Program

Your reward and recognition program will undoubtedly help raise morale and encourage better productivity. It inspires more loyalty as well, but what specifically are you hoping to achieve? You’ll need to have a clear understanding of the behavior you’re aiming to reinforce, or you won’t be able to make the most of your program.

Encouraging contributions that line up with the values of your company is critical. However, there could be other factors you’d like to highlight as well. You might place a heavy emphasis on great customer service, or your focus could be on the people who show great leadership skills. Regardless of your specific objectives, your recognition program should reinforce actions synonymous with your company’s goals.

What about Your Program’s Billing Model?

Not all cases will be the same, but there are typically two model types available. Billing on issuance, otherwise known as the upfront method, is useful for budgeting. Since you would purchase points in advance from the vendor, the costs are clear from the beginning, and you know what you’ll be spending on them. Employees can later redeem the points for rewards.

The other method is billing on redemption. This involves paying for points only when redeemed by a participant. This can make budgeting more complicated, but it can also save you money as you wouldn’t be paying upfront. Not paying upfront means you wouldn’t need to foot the bill for points that go unredeemed.

Once you’ve figured out your reward and recognition program goals, the best ways of incorporating it and the ideal billing model, you might still be unsure of how to get started. At Incentive Solutions, we’re here to help you with every aspect of your new reward and recognition program. Give us a call at 866.567.7432 so we can get to work today.


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About Luke Kreitner

Luke Kreitner is the VP of Sales at Incentive Solutions, an Atlanta-based incentive company that specializes in helping B2B businesses accelerate growth, increase sales, motivate channel partners and retain B2B customers.


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