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Using social media to improve incentive programs

Most social media sites enable companies to easily track various metrics that can be used to gauge performance and provide instant feedback.

Social media has become a central part of call center operations. In addition to assisting customers through phone calls and email, employees are often asked to respond to questions posted on social networks. In a blog for AT&T, author Brian Solis notes that 71 percent of customers between the ages of 16 and 24 will first search for solutions online before contacting companies directly.

This is forcing employees to use social media consistently, which makes the technology a good medium for conducting call center incentive programs. Information can be shared through the networks to help companies align employee performance with organizational objectives. Most social media sites enable companies to easily track various metrics that can be used to gauge performance and provide instant feedback. However, running an incentive program through social media requires as much planning and effort as it would through any other channel.

Incentive Magazine reports that maintaining consistency across digital networks is one of the biggest challenges of running incentive programs through social media. Communication needs to be clear and proactive, every employee should understand the objectives and firms should give their workforces regular updates regarding performance, corporate news and other initiatives.

Encourage participation

Publishing news on a variety of topics and company objectives will educate staff members about  company goals and help them understand their place within their organizations. The potential for feedback also makes social media a simple avenue for employee recognition. Using social media tools to highlight performance can create a culture that recognizes the value of each team member. This may bolster employee engagement and can lead to higher productivity.

Social media will make it easier for employees to participate in incentive programs, but managers should remember that rewards need to be tangible and personal. The magazine notes that individualized programs make it easier for workers to be motivated. Offering various merchandise items, such as televisions, laptops or handbags, can be an excellent way to ensure participation from all employees. These goods provide workers with continual reminders of their good performance, and their value increases when employees are able to choose their own rewards.

Giving staff members a selection of items to choose from ensures that they will be properly motivated to participate in programs, and incorporating social media tools makes it easy for workers to get regular performance updates. This makes it easy for both companies and employees to track improvement and measure progress.

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