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Rewards & Recognition (January 2013)

News Briefs

Registration Open for the 2013 R&R Expo in New Orleans

What: The 2013 Rewards & Recognition Expo and Conference
Where: Hilton Riverside, New Orleans, LA
When: Sunday, April 28-Tuesday, April 30
Who: The Enterprise Engagement Alliance, in conjunction with:

How: Registration is now open at
Why: The need to engage customers, channel partners, employees, vendors and communities requires an entirely new level of knowledge, services and efficiency. Benefit from this unique exhibition and education program designed to help attendees elevate their solutions:

Don't miss the rewards and recognition field's only conference and expo in 2013 specifically designed for corporate practitioners and solution providers! Registration is now open at, or call 914-591-7600, ext. 229, for exhibit info.


More than Half of U.S. Firms Use Gift Cards as Rewards

A new study by the Incentive Research Foundation (IRF) confirms that the incentive gift card market is a vast, multi-billion-dollar industry. The 52% of U.S. businesses that currently use gift cards spend $22.7 billion a year in this category. Employee gift card programs are the clear favorite – over 60% of firms using gift cards name employees as recipients. Other key recipient groups include salespeople, channel partners and customers. The IRF, in partnership with the Incentive Gift Card Council (IGCC), collected and analyzed data from a national sample of business executives in an effort to estimate the size and spread of the gift card marketplace. Researchers found that a total of 59% of U.S. businesses use some type of non-cash award program, and 52% use gift cards to recognize and reward their employees, salespeople, channel partners or customers. This means that fully 87% of companies offering non-cash awards use gift cards as part of such programs. Other highlights from the study:

"The economy over the past years has affected many things, but the research confirms that the use of gift cards in business is still very strong," says Betty Weinkle, Past President of the IGCC. "We find that the convenience, variety and desirability of gift cards contribute to their ability to motivate, reward and recognize." For more information on the IRF Gift Card Market Study, go to


Most Engaged Employee Contest Recognizes Top Talent

The Enterprise Engagement Alliance (EEA) has launched the Most Engaged Employee contest to publicly recognize actively engaged employees for making a significant difference for their employers, colleagues and customers/clients. The annual winner, to be named in May 2013, will receive a trip for two specially designed to fulfill a personal dream or desire they haven't had the time or resources to accomplish. Monthly winners will receive gifts specifically selected based on their personal interests – something special and meaningful that they will always remember. Visitors to the website ( can nominate themselves or anyone they know and/or anonymously measure their own level of engagement using the Personal Engagement Meter. Nominees will be judged on a variety of criteria, including ongoing actions indicative of a high level of engagement, length of service and clear evidence supporting how they made their organization a better place to work or created better experiences for customers, clients or patients.

Industry Insider

Marketing communications company AlphaGraphics of St. Louis recently announced that Mike Donnelly of Donnelly Creative Partners, Inc. has purchased the business. This new ownership agreement is effective as of January 1, 2013. Donnelly, a former executive with Maritz Inc., brings more than 30 years of creative, print, and marketing services experience to AlphaGraphics of St. Louis. He is a multiple winner of both national Direct Marketing Association (DMA) and local St. Louis Chapter DMA Awards and has experience in managing traditional direct mail and printed communications, as well as leveraging today's digital technologies and new media opportunities. Visit, or contact Mike Donnelly at 314-822-4414….Dittman Incentive Marketing has named Steve Cummins to the position of Director, Digital Marketing & Communications. Cummins joins Dittman Incentive Marketing from Panasonic, where he led the Marketing Group within the Industrial Devices Division. His team was recognized with a 2012 Excellence in Marketing Award from the ECIA for Social Media Outreach. Prior to this role, Steve held marketing roles in a number of technology companies in the United Kingdom and the United States....Rymax Marketing Services has announced a new partnership with Lalique, providing Rymax with the exclusive distribution rights for their artistic crystal collections in the Incentive and Premium Products Channel. Rymax also recently named Crystal Lethcoe as Southeast Territory Representative in the company's Corporate Solutions Sales Division. Lethcoe, a Tennessee native, brings to Rymax five years of sales experience in Special Markets and Hospitality. As a Product Development Specialist and a Special Markets Manager at Hartmann, she established strong and long-lasting relationships with her clients while helping them maximize their loyalty and recognition programs.

'Human Capital Analytics' Available Now

Coauthors Gene Pease, Boyce Byerly and Jac Fitz-enz recently celebrated the release of their new book, "Human Capital Analytics: How to Harness the Potential of Your Organization's Greatest Asset." The book, part of the Wiley and SAS Business Series and available for purchase at, provides an in-depth look at the science of human capital analytics, giving practical examples from published case studies of companies applying analytics to their people decisions and providing a framework for using predictive analytics to optimize human capital investments. More at

Secrets of Effective Employee Recognition

New research by Bersin & Associates shows that recognition programs dramatically improve employee engagement and reduce turnover, yet 87% of organizations still rely on outdated tenure-based service level awards. Companies with recognition programs that are highly effective at improving employee engagement have 31% lower voluntary turnover than their peers with ineffective recognition programs. The findings, which appear in a new research report, The State of Employee Recognition in 2012, indicate that recognition plays a much more measurable role in business performance than previously believed. "This new research highlights a huge opportunity for companies to redirect existing expenditures to programs that significantly influence engagement and retention," says Josh Bersin, President and CEO of Bersin & Associates. "The findings also suggest that recognition programs should align with an organization's comprehensive performance management strategy to drive business results." To download a copy of the WhatWorks Market Brief on the importance of recognition in performance management, go to

In the Current Issue of Engagement Strategies Magazine

The Q3 2012 issue of ESM is out! Here's a look at what you'll find inside:

Walking the Talk on Cultivating a Culture of Engagement

In her nine years with CA Technologies, Director of Talent Management Meagan Gregorczyk has worked in sales, marketing, operations, corporate education functions and, as of last year, human resources. Needless to say, she has seen engagement from every angle. Read more >

Capturing Actionable Analytics

How to make sure your learning initiatives (rather than advertising, market trends or operational leadership) are having a real impact on business outcomes. Read more >

The Right Information at the Right Time

The world has changed radically, not only in terms of communication channels and choices, but also in the amount of clutter organizations must overcome in order to break through.  Read more >

AtlantiCare Creates an Engagement Roadmap

This healthcare provider goes out of its way to make sure that employees understand how their individual efforts contribute to the achievement of organizational goals.  Read more >

To make sure you get your copy of Engagement Strategies Magazine, update your subscription today!

Insights from ESM Rewards & Recognition e-News

Is 'Social Recognition' the Next Killer App?

In the world of talent management, social networks have been used successfully in knowledge sharing, the identification of skills and construction of teams, in recruiting, onboarding and certainly learning. "Social Recognition," which uses software to enable people to recognize one another, is a relatively new entrant in the pantheon of talent management technology. Yet it draws on practices from some of the world's most popular internet applications. In connecting peers to peers, and in this case, employees to employees and employees to customers, partners, suppliers and others (the extended enterprise) it opens another dimension in recognition that has the potential to generate powerful cultural evolution within remarkably short timeframes. In others words, social recognition software can be transformative. It can fill a recognition gap quickly and it can extend recognition beyond the organization to help engage customers and other constituents. Click here to read the White Paper.

News From Selling Communications Inc.

Channel Partner Engagement

In many industries and businesses, channel partners are key links between employees and customers- a weak link if they are ignored, an important source of strength if they are engaged. The stakes are high. Channel partner impact can be enormous in terms of sales volume, market share, brand reputation and "share of customer", i.e., in engaging customers. Indeed, channel partners are often the sole link to the customer. But channel partners can also impact employee engagement, especially when they fail to deliver. Conversely, channel partner engagement is directly affected by the employees who manage them and who produce the products and services. In short, most businesses succeed only to the degree that symbiotic relationships exist between employees, customers, channel partners and vendors. This is the basis upon which "Enterprise Engagement" is built. In this paper, we focus on channel partners as a key constituent of organizational success and we offer practical strategies and tactics to engage them. Click here to read the White Paper.

About Selling Communications Inc.

Selling Communications, Inc. is a fully integrated, target marketing, media and technology agency that improves results for clients by focusing on the people who matter most. We can help your business grow and save you money by targeting key prospects, getting their permission and strategically integrating your marketing and sales communications with the specific audiences most likely to affect your business performance.

Take advantage of these SCI services to improve your business development:

For more information on Selling Communications, its products and services, contact Jim Kilmetis at 914-591-7600, ext. 229 or send an e-mail to

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