How to Incentivize Innovation

A recent study shows that group incentives are more effective in promoting creative thinking.

A recent study shows that group incentives are more effective in promoting creative thinking.

A recent review of seven years of corporate survey data published in Human Management Resource Journal has revealed that it's possible to financially motivate employees to come up with good ideas, reports Rachel Silverman of The Wall Street Journal.

The motivational tools that were found to work however were not those common sense would dictate are the most important, like individual performance bonuses and salary raises. In fact, incentives like group or team bonuses, profit-sharing plans and employee benefits were found to light creative sparks in employees.

"Innovation is in many respects collaborative, and these incentives are encouraging collaboration," said Bruce Curran, co-author of the research and a University of Toronto doctoral student. He elaborated that group bonuses can drive people to engage with each other. That cooperation often facilitates productive brain-storming, good ideas, and subsequent company-wide success.

In addition, "rewarding teams may allow workers to take more short-term risks because their own pay isn't necessarily on the line." This no risk/high reward system leads to more chances being taken, and inevitably more advancements being made.

Other factors listed included regular corporate training and company security. Not surprisingly, many of these facets of company procedure identified as conducive to creativity are linked to how well the HR department of said company performs. 

Needless to say, finding the right employees, ones who can work with each other fruitfully, and setting up appropriate benefits are crucial components to getting the most out of your workforce. However, the logistical hassle of recruiting, vetting, on-boarding and managing those employees can get in the way of HR specialists doing what they do best: finding and training good, hard working people that fit their company.

HR software can streamline and automate many of the duties involved in human resources, allowing HR employees the freedom to develop relationships with potential and new employees, create new incentive packages, and foster a prolific work environment. HR Software Solutions will implement and manage that software for you, so you can focus on moving your business forward.