The employee incentive that supports local economies too

94% of executives support incentive programmes for their employees say the Incentive Research Foundation but finding the right incentive to reward staff is always a dilemma for employers. What do staff value the most? 

According to the IRF, gift cards are right at the top of the employee incentive wish list. They found that gift cards are more appreciated than cash, which tends to get eaten up by day to day bills.

But before we can truly answer the question of what employees most value in rewards, we need to look at the economic landscape in the UK. We’re in recession after a drop in GDP of 20.4%. The shop local message is everywhere; from Shop Local Week as part of the UK government’s Enjoy Summer Safely campaign to the Scottish government’s Scotland Loves Local campaign.

What corporate businesses really need, then, is a way of rewarding staff that also takes into account the need to drive local economy recovery.  

One place in the UK that has done just that is Salisbury. Salisbury BID encouraged employers to buy its Salisbury Gift Card to use as staff incentives. Redeemable with over 100 shops, restaurants, leisure providers and more in Salisbury, employees received an incentive they valued with greater choice than with a gift card for a specific e-commerce site.

The campaign was a massive boost for the Salisbury economy. Employers were able to show their support for the city’s businesses- from small independents to larger chains- kick starting their local economy and locking spend in locally. 

Salisbury also encouraged businesses themselves to use gift cards to reward customers. And in this economic climate, attempting to retain every single customer through effective reward programmes will be vital to recovery. 

The Gift Card and Voucher Association say the gift card market is worth £7bn, and a vast proportion of that will be for cards received for work programmes and rewards schemes. Local gift cards offer all of the benefits of non-cash rewards for employees in an incentive that they will love, whilst making a tangible difference to the local area.   

Town and City Gift Cards work through the Mastercard network, and can be used like a debit card across multiple retailers. There are over 40 programmes in the UK right now, and more are being added every month.

Why not take a look at our active programmes now and see if you can reward your employees and customers in a brand new way. And if you need more than £500 of gift cards, please get in touch and we’ll arrange this for you. 

More and more employers are waking up to the benefits of local gift cards as incentives; for the business, for their employees and for their local economy- will you be one of them?

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