Case Study

Hays Travel and Target share their secrets behind successful recognition and reward programmes

uploaded on 16 October 2023

Previously, we looked at the three drivers of an effective reward and recognition scheme. In this article clients share the impact of these principles on employee engagement and performance. First, we showcase how we sustain a year-round culture of appreciation. Next, Target explains how a hybrid-compatible scheme helps to drive company culture. Finally, Hays Travel highlights how their scheme motivates staff to hit sales targets.


How Edenred creates a year-round culture of appreciation

When we designed our employee appreciation programme, a key consideration was to motivate staff year-round. Although we love a Christmas party, we also have four other ways to recognise and reward great work throughout the year – peer-to-peer recognition, quarterly awards, the annual Employee Excellence awards, as well as celebrating life events and long service.

Peer-to-peer recognition can be given by any member of staff at any time to a colleague that demonstrates one of our company values. Managers review any recognition given and can add a financial reward if merited. 

Staff that receive recognition are put forward for consideration to receive a quarterly reward. Board Directors vote for a winner from each value category.  Winners are announced at an all-hands, Town Hall meeting and receive a Compliments Select Code to redeem against a reward of their choice.

Quarterly winners are also entered for our annual Employee Excellence awards. The board votes on category winners, except for the People’s Choice award, which staff vote for at an awards evening using QR codes. First, second and third places are awarded for each category and winners receive a Compliments Select Code which enables them to select their own reward.

Finally, managers send team members a personalised card containing a Compliments Select Code to celebrate life events such as birthdays, becoming a parent or long service.

We aligned reward and recognition to five company values that drive success at Edenred. Recognition and reward are given to an individual or team that demonstrates one these values – passion for customers, respect, imagination, simplicity, and entrepreneurial spirit. 

For us, a values-driven reward and recognition programme has three clear benefits.  First staff can see how their actions contribute to the overall success of the business.  Second, staff find it motivating when their contribution is recognised and spurred on to achieve higher levels of performance. Finally, seeing the achievements of other staff rewarded encourages peers to demonstrate desired behaviours themselves, as well as greater collaboration within teams and across functions.


Recognition hits the Target in a hybrid workforce

Target has a unique story to tell. At the point HR sat down to overhaul the company’s existing recognition and reward scheme, the country went into lockdown. This meant that Target had to consider questions that any organisation with a hybrid workforce needs to answer today. How can managers support staff morale, and encourage them to give their best work when they might not see them in person or on a regular basis? How can we keep company culture alive and communicate our values to new joiners?

Today, with 95% or staff working remotely, the company is reaping the benefits of a scheme designed with hybrid in mind in terms of colleague engagement and morale. By moving to an online recognition system, managers and colleagues have the ability to recognise and show gratitude at any time. 

In addition, the move online helps colleagues feel more connected. The system has been configured so they can celebrate birthdays, long service milestones and many other major life events together, while apart. Gratitude and connection underpin Target’s culture and My Recognition helps to keep the culture alive for existing colleagues and brings it alive for new joiners who may never have worked from a Target office.

Target is constantly finding new ways to use My Recognition to drive its strategic people goals. Already down to 8%, the company aims to close its gender pay gap by 2025 and that means making sure we have a strong pipeline of female talent being developed for promotion. Colleagues use the platform to encourage, promote and celebrate the achievements of female colleagues. In turn this has created a culture where women feel encouraged to go for promotion opportunities.

Hybrid working has changed the way in which Target Group operate and whilst colleagues may be geographically separated, they’ve continued to champion gratitude. The recognition system will continue to encourage actions and behaviours that drive business growth. 

Read more here to see how this provider of financial support services created an award-winning, hybrid-compatible recognition scheme.

Incentives drive motivation and sales at Hays Travel

Hays Travel is proud to be the UK’s largest independent travel agent with over 4,000 staff who working in over 400 hundred retail shops or remotely. Success is driven by knowledgeable staff who are passionate about finding the holiday that best meets their customer’s needs from a wide supply chain of tour operators.

While proud of its success, the business wanted to create an incentive scheme that showed employees a clearer cause and effect between the good work they do and the reward they receive. They also wanted to reinforce the company mantra that passion, excellence, and hard work deliver good things.

Since working with us to introduce their award-winning new incentive scheme Hays Travel saw a 20% increase in like for like sales. Which is impressive when you consider, pre-scheme, year on year sales increased between 11% to 14%. Crucially, the biggest uptake in sales has come from previously low to middle performers, which is the litmus test for whether a scheme is effective to motivate staff.

In particular insurance sales grew during this period in some cases from 0 to 30%. This is significant to Hays Travel because insurance is a key area for sales growth.

The scheme reinforces company culture and desired behaviours. Employees say, every time they reach for their Smile Reward Card to buy something they really want, they are reminded of the good things hard work gives them.

The award-winning scheme is so successful that 100% of sales staff participate in it, from the first day they join the company and a solid 96% of staff continue to open the monthly e-shot.

Want to build your own successful recognition and reward programme?

If you would like to know more about how Edenred can support year-round recognition and reward in your organisation, book a free demo with a member of our friendly team.

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