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Recognition programs that reap rewards

Progressive HR leaders are finding new and quirky ways to reward star performers. We speak to Simone Carroll of REA Group and Rose Clements of Microsoft for their thoughts on effective ways to celebrate employees' contribution to business.

Video transcript below:

Donna Sawyer, HC TV
Donna Sawyer:
 Rewarding and recognising employees hard work isn’t all about boosting the pay package and many HR leaders are finding new and quirky ways to celebrate their staff’s contribution to the business.  Simone Carroll of REA Group says overseas trips and secret dates with the CEO are just some of the perks on offer.

Simone Carroll, REA Group
Simone Carroll:  We have an annual incentive trip for all of our sales staff and for the non-sales staff as well.  This year the trip was to Las Vegas and to Mexico and next year we are looking at Turkey for our staff.  And there are fun little things that, fun ways I guess that we calibrate performance during the year to say who’s going to get on that trip and we all get on board and get excited about the destination.  Once a quarter we get nominations, peer nominations from all around the business and who we think is really worthy of recognition from our CEO and they have a very secret afternoon out together with the CEO and what’s said in the club stays in the club and they have then dinner together and they all come back from this day out with the CEO having done something along the lines of bungee jumping or something with wheels on it no doubt.
 
Donna Sawyer:  But it doesn’t always have to be flash or fancy.  Rose Clements says Microsoft has used technology as a unique way of rewarding staff.  
 
Rose Clements, Microsoft
Rose Clements:  Where we have put additional emphasis is around informal recognition to bring to life those high impact low effort ways for managers and peers to be able to say to their colleagues, you know thanks great job well done.  So that has been created in different forms.  Probably the most quirky form is a new application that we built to run on the intranet inside Microsoft Australia called Splash.  And that is an application that allows peers to put comments in about their colleagues to say thank you, great job, well done, to be specific about something that they’ve done, to link that back to our organisational values and then that gets splashed the different mediums, phones, PCs and also the flat screen televisions that we have in every branch.
 
Donna Sawyer:  Key to creating effective rewards program is tailoring it to the individual says Simone Carroll of REA Group.
 
Simone Carroll, REA Group
Simone Carroll:  This is an issue that companies face all the time, we have team work.  “Is it right to individual?”  And we think the answer is yes, because very much so individuals want to be recognised for their contribution.  We still have to have that team level recognition in there.  So what we do is we do retrospectives on projects that happen, team projects that happen and the team judge for themselves how well they think they went with that project and then what we do is throughout a period of time we can look at the, all of the scores of these team projects, say it’s 3 out of 5 or 4 out of 5 and then we say, what projects were you on to the individual and we look at those team scores, we can get a feeling for whether those individuals are working on projects or that are getting the high results.
 
Donna Sawyer:  This is Donna Sawyer reporting for HC TV.