“Employee incentives are essential to building a stronger workforce”

Employee engagement should be a priority in any business looking for success, yet according to a survey by ADP, 47 per cent of UK employees expect to change jobs within the next three years, compared to just 34 per cent in the rest of Europe.

Retaining staff may seem costly to some, but not so much compared to the recurring costs of recruiting new staff on a cyclical basis.

The survey also highlights that the UK has the lowest number of devoted staff in Europe, with only 17 per cent wishing to spend their entire working lives in their current jobs.

Another recent study suggests the number of millennials in today’s workforce outweighs that of any other generation and that 30 per cent of companies lose at least 15 per cent of their millennial workforce within just one year of employing them.

Although many business leaders will agree that there is indeed an urgent requirement to improve employee satisfaction, few know how to instigate change.

According to research from Harvard Business School, 75 per cent of business leaders believe that employee engagement is poor within their own organisations.

In order to improve employee satisfaction, a business must first understand the financial benefits of engaging the workforce, yet no more than 50 per cent of companies participating in the study were able to confidently say that they were able to measure employee satisfaction against the overall performance of the business.

This is where experts in promotions should come in.

With great insights in running both employee and customer focused promotional campaigns, a promotional consultancy can give a business confidence in introducing an incentive program & strategy that guarantees to deliver healthy results.

This goes beyond merely selecting an employee of the month or running other such awards programmes that business leaders may see as quick-fixes to keeping employees motivated.

In fact, it has been argued in a separate study from Harvard Business School that these types of workforce incentives can actually be disruptive, not only demotivating the employees that don’t win awards, but also demotivating those who do.

The usual schemes may be proven to be detrimental to workplace morale and ineffectual in boosting employee satisfaction, but a specialist promotions consultancy can bring meaningful and engaging campaigns to businesses, motivating workforces and directly improving overall performance.

For example Opia, a global creative sales promotion agency, is working with ODEON to bring the Limitless voucher perk to businesses, giving employees the opportunity to see an unlimited amount of films with ODEON, with hardly any restriction on show times or titles.

Organisations using rewards of this type provide themselves with an effective new tool to improve employee relations and foster more friendly commercial relationships.

For businesses buying vouchers and rewards in bulk, the standard cost is reduced considerably, allowing for generosity when handing out tickets in return for hitting sales targets or to mark birthdays.

From a cost perspective, the fact that companies and organisations can save up to 38 per cent off the face value of a cinema ticket makes such vouchers an affordable and valuable corporate gift or employee benefit.

The use of e-vouchers also removes any perceived complications.

There was a time when it was common to hear companies contemplating vouchers say there were potentially too time-consuming to administer.

The e-voucher has removed those concerns.

In fact all the other pain-points and obstacles have been removed from rewards and discounts, with fulfilment of gift cards, for instance, taken care of by Opia’s partnership with highly-specialised companies with long experience.

Whether it is rewarding outstanding employees or simply passing on bulk discounts to save employees and their families significant sums at the box office, rewards and gifts are motivational tools that work.

They put the spotlight on excellence, lift the spirits of recipients, and are highly persuasive, improving important relationships right across the business.

Andy Stone, Account Director, Opia