Part 2: Catalog Providers Hate Gift Cards Because Your Employees Love them!

Continuing my look at why employees love gift cards in a reward where we saw how if you introduce gift cards into an old catalog selection – within weeks 90-99% of employees will select the gift cards! That’s exactly why catalog providers hate them, because your employees love them!

We’ve 1.7 million employees worldwide using our solution today, a sizeable population, and one that we survey frequently and hear many comments from. When it comes to gift cards what do we hear from employees? Well, employees tell us they love gift cards because:

• I love REAL CHOICE, not pretend choice.
• I love they are LOCAL to where I live, not one size fits all.
• I love BEST VALUE for my money, not being price cheated.
• I love that gift cards are GREEN and SOCIALLY RESPONSIBLE too.

Using the verbatim survey comments from employees, let’s look further at each of these, as employees explain their reasoning, often better than I will.

I love REAL CHOICE, not pretend choice:

“In our previous catalog program, we’d a pretend choice of probably a thousand items. I always felt like I had to pick something that I didn’t really want, just to get something, anything really!”

“Now, I actually enjoy my reward! I can shop at my local department store in Paris, or take the family to a local restaurant. Much more choice – everyone is catered to.”

“Now I get rewards I love!”

“I really want the latest versions of electronics items, I was nearly always disappointed not to find them in the old catalog, now I can shop online at Amazon, or go to my local electronics store.”

In a global population of employees representing all generations from Y, X, baby boomers, close retirees, across many different geographies and different cultures too – what catalog of a thousand items, or even twenty thousand items could possibly cater to this wide, diverse group of consumers and their varied needs? For that matter what global retailer has ever done this? Is there a global retailer that succeeds in catering to all consumers worldwide? Not even close! There is no single global retailer like this. Oh, except one – your local merchandise catalog company – that claims to be able to cater to a worldwide employee base, when no single world retailer has yet done this. Really think about that one, can their claim be true?

Some employees are conservatives, some are hedonists, for some a great reward is a watch, but for others it’s a Def Leppard music collection, or a fishing rod; for some of our Chinese factory employee users it’s a chance to visit high end bakery store Ganzo for special cake treats.

REAL CHOICE is about providing your employees the opportunity to get a reward that is personal, meaningful to them, and meets their view of what is inspiring to get, and not – with all due respects – your view! That’s exactly why we have built over the past decade the world’s largest portfolio of gift cards from thousands of local famous-name merchants, respected brands in every country, famous department stores, restaurant and cinema chains, sports stores, travel providers, local online retailers, and local charities among other choices too, so that your employees have REAL CHOICE from the millions of items suited to their local needs.

I’ll be returning to this topic next week…more soon.

Derek Irvine

About Derek Irvine

The VP of Client Strategy and Consulting at Globoforce, Derek Irvine is one of the world’s foremost experts on employee recognition and engagement, helping business leaders set a higher vision and ambition for their organizations. As a renowned speaker and co-author of "The Power of Thanks" and "Winning with a Culture of Recognition," he teaches companies how to use recognition to proactively manage company culture. Derek holds a B.Comm and Masters of Business Studies from the Smurfit Graduate Business School at University College Dublin.

3 Responses

  1. […] If Walmart, Target and Macy’s can’t always offer the item we truly crave, how can we expect a traditional recognition catalog merchandise reward provider to offer the right rewards for our multi-generational, multi-cultural workforce? How can they be better at understanding the hopes and desires of our employees in the Philippines, India, South Africa and Spain? Even the most purposefully hand-selected assortment of reward choices won’t include the item each …. […]

  2. […] there’s a place for  meaningful rewards so employees can cement that goodwill in their memories for years to come – but you certainly […]

  3. […] If Walmart, Target and Macy’s can’t always offer the item we truly crave, how can we expect a traditional recognition catalog merchandise reward provider to offer the right rewards for our multi-generational, multi-cultural workforce? How can they be better at understanding the hopes and desires of our employees in the Philippines, India, South Africa and Spain? Even the most purposefully hand-selected assortment of reward choices won’t include the item each …. […]

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