Case Study

PAUL uses recognition and reward to fire up employees

uploaded on 14 December 2023

Discover how the word-famous French bakery and patisserie business uses Compliments Select Vouchers to motivate UK employees and create a great team spirit.


A culture of teamwork

Founded in 1889, PAUL prides itself on the quality of its ingredients and the great tasting food it serves in its cafes around the world. In the UK, the company employs over 500 people – all of whom work together across 31 high street outlets, a production unit, and the UK head office to deliver excellent food and service.

“As much as the quality and tradition of our food, our success depends on our people – we all contribute,” says Beatrix Toronyicza, Office Manager for PAUL, who administers the company’s HR systems and is responsible for implementing its recognition and reward scheme.

“One of our core values is ‘Work Together’. We believe that anything is possible if we build strong and lasting relationships based on listening, trust, and mutual respect. To bring this culture to life, we also have a strong belief that we need to recognise and celebrate each other’s work.”


The need for more frequent and flexible recognition

A few years ago, PAUL’s HR team decided to back this ethos by introducing more flexible recognition and reward.

“Previously we had only given out rewards for things like employee of the year or at Christmas,” says Beatrix. “We wanted to introduce more regular and instant reward and recognition, so that all colleagues could nominate each other for a great job at any time. We wanted to build that team spirit. We also wanted to support this with a process that is quick, easy, and straightforward - so you don’t have to wait a month, a quarter or even a full year to give someone recognition.”

To make this happen PAUL decided to use Edenred Compliments Select – an easy-to-use digital platform that enables it to send out reward vouchers the same day. Employees can redeem the vouchers instantly and spend their reward at hundreds of retail and leisure outlets on whatever they choose.

“We also wanted to have some fun,” adds Beatrix. “Whenever a colleague’s nomination for a reward is approved, we send them a branded rubber duck that relates to one of our three core values. They then send us a picture of themselves with their duck to trigger the reward, and we post the picture on our internal social network. We wanted to create a bit of a buzz around our rewards – and it’s worked. Everyone wants a duck!”


Positive results

As a result of these efforts, the number of rewards that PAUL gives to colleagues has increased significantly over the past year. The scheme has also encouraged employees to think more about what their colleagues are doing.

“It’s about creating visibility for rewards. When people see the photos on the social network, they think ‘I know someone who deserves that’. We’ve also had positive feedback that people like the digital vouchers. They appreciate how quicky they can use them, and that we’re not just adding a financial reward to pay that soon disappears.”

“Ultimately, we want people to feel that we care about them and recognise the effort they are putting in to support the team. We know they are much more likely to stay with us if they feel that way.”

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