Personalized Incentive Programs Help Companies Reach Business Targets, says Incentive Research Foundation Study

Mar 16, 2011, 11:11 ET from Incentive Research Foundation

ST. LOUIS, March 16, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Personalized recognition based on personal performance, innovation and mastery of skill are key to capturing the intellectual and emotional commitment of employees, according to a new study.

An Incentive Research Foundation (IRF) study finds today’s highly educated work force responds to more tailored, non-cash incentive plans that celebrate creativity and promote best practices. In the white paper, Motivating Today's Workforce: The Future of Incentive and Recognition Program Design, the Incentive Research Foundation synthesizes input from incentive experts, secondary research and related resources to identify evolving knowledge about the use of incentives and recognition to motivate today's work force.

"While salary remains the primary pact between employer and employee, this study underscores that personalization of rewards is key to individual effort and motivation,” said Jeff Broudy, chairman of the IRF board of trustees. “Customized non-cash incentive programs based on job code, skills and previous performance are highly effective in helping a company meet specific goals and objectives.”  

Broudy noted that more so than in the past, the design of incentive and recognition programs is critical to drive desired business outcomes and avoid unintended consequences. While it’s still good for businesses to share the wealth with workers in the form of profit-sharing, IRF President Melissa Van Dyke said there are complexities to building an effective rewards strategy.

"The study found that not all people are equally motivated by extrinsic factors,” said Van Dyke. “Put another way, money is not all employees seek. As work force composition shifts to more knowledge workers, we find rewards that celebrate the mastery of a skill and the personal innovations exhibited along the way are very effective."

Van Dyke and Broudy encourage both incentive industry professionals and human resource executives to review the white paper to fulfill its purpose of stimulating dialogue about motivating today's knowledge workers. For a copy, go to and click on Research.

About the IRF:

The Incentive Research Foundation ( funds and promotes research to advance the science and enhance the awareness and appropriate application of motivation and incentives in business and industry globally. The goal is to increase the understanding, effective use, and resultant benefits of incentives to businesses that currently use incentives and others interested in improved performance.

Available Topic Expert(s): For information on the listed expert(s), click appropriate link.

Jeff Broudy

Melissa Van Dyke


Sue Voyles


Melissa Van Dyke


SOURCE Incentive Research Foundation