The Secrets To Top Performing Manufacturing Companies Incentives and Rewards

BY Lucy Fang
Aug 15, 2020

With the pandemic raging on, many businesses have been worried about the effect that the current health crisis will have on their finances. A survey sponsored by the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) revealed that about 80% of manufacturers expect a financial impact on their businesses, particularly as their work cannot be completed remotely by employees. When it becomes safe for businesses to resume normal operations, the manufacturing sector will be hard-pressed to come up with ways to recover. As a result, increasing productivity among employees, sales team members, and channel partners will be essential to their success. 

A 2020 study on Top Performers from the IRF showed that incentive programs, such as sales incentives and channel partner programs, were common among the most successful manufacturing companies prior to the pandemic. All companies classified as top performers in the IRF study had to show 5% revenue growth in the previous year, have a customer satisfaction/loyalty rating, and an employee satisfaction rating of at least 90%, and have a high-performing employee loss rate of less than 5%. 

Top Performers are likely to have broad-ranging recognition programs. 98% of top performers are in support of reward and recognition as part of achieving a competitive advantage. Nearly all of these top performers’ executives believe rewards and recognition represent a major competitive advantage. 

The way incentives are awarded by top-performing manufacturers varies, with the majority being based on pre-determined goals leading to the automatic winning of incentive awards. Both Top Performers and Comparators have shied away from the use of selection committees for awarding program participants in their channel partner and sales incentive programs, with less than 10% of the top performers using selection committees, rather than reward management technology automation. Qualification criteria for top-performing manufacturing companies has also become simpler of late, in comparison to other sectors. This also holds true for channel partners. 

The manufacturing industry as a whole has increased the variety of rewards being offered to participants. Top performers are likely to offer their sales incentive program participants more incentive trips, compared to Comparators.  Gift cards have also become more popular as rewards for manufacturing incentive programs. Non-cash and travel rewards showed effectiveness in increasing engagement and support. The best programs from top performers focused on being flexible with reward choices, to ensure that the most relevant rewards were offered to participants. 

It is easy to see from the NAM study that incentives are an excellent way to increase manufacturing companies’ success in profitability, customer satisfaction, and employee engagement. Top performers know that focusing on flexibility in their incentive programs is key to their success. Rewards that a personal and significant to participants show the highest levels of effectiveness, with the perceived value of the rewards mattering more than their monetary cost. With the right incentives, tailored specifically to their participants, manufacturers can use incentives to increase their standing and be counted among the top performers in their industry.

All Digital Rewards (ADR) supports all kinds of manufacturing incentive programs. We offer an extensive rewards catalog as well as our reward management technology, RewardSTACK™. RewardSTACK™  offers an automated easy to use reward fulfillment solution that includes our proprietary Reward REACH™ and Reward WIZARD™ API technologies. With RewardSTACK™ we put the control back in your hands with instant access to thousands of unique rewards connected to file uploading, email delivery, and reporting and analytics in a simple easy to use dashboard. For more information on how we can support your next channel partner or sales incentive program and help you join the ranks of the top performers, call us now at 866-415-7703, or click on the button below to schedule a demo.