THE WEB IS A GOLD MINE when it comes to resources for research and best practices concerning incentives. Bookmark these links:

  • WWW.INCENTIVECENTRAL.ORG The Incentive Promotion Campaign publishes a free quarterly compendium of research related to motivation, which has been collected and summarized by the Forum for People Performance Management and Measurement at Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism. Synopses come from journals in various industries, such as “A Field Study of the Impact of a Performance-Based Incentive Plan,” from the Journal of Accounting and Economics. If you're looking for a perspective from outside the incentive or performance improvement industries, this is the place to start. Also on this site is a tool that allows visitors to anonymously benchmark their company's incentive practices and beliefs against those of other companies. Complete the questionnaire and get a free analysis of how your answers stack up against those of 449 U.S. businesses.

  • WWW.SITEFOUNDATION.ORG The SITE Foundation offers PDF files of its various research studies (usually a couple of new ones each year) at a cost of $35 for members and $50 for nonmembers. Also available for $195 are two new white papers published in 2004: “The Benefits of Tangible Non-Monetary Awards” and “Measuring the ROI of Sales Incentive Programs.”

  • WWW.PERFORMANCEFORUM.ORG The Forum for People Performance Management and Measurement at Northwestern University publishes a free quarterly newsletter, The Performance Executive, with case studies on companies that are models for their people performance and incentive programs.

  • WWW.RECOGNITION.ORG The National Association for Employee Recognition offers a white paper on the best practices of the two organizations — CalPERS and Telus — that won its most recent Best Practices Award. Cost is $25 for NAER members, $35 for nonmembers.

  • WWW.ISPI.ORG The International Society for Performance Improvement offers the free online PerformanceXpress newsletter, a wealth of information about improving workplace performance measurement, as well as the scholarly Performance Improvement Journal ($69 for a 10-issue annual subscription).

  • WWW.INCENTIVEMARKETING.ORG Each year, the Incentive Marketing Association recognizes outstanding examples of incentive programs used as business tools with its “Circle of Excellence Award.”

  • WWW.SITE-INTL.ORG Also each year, the Society of Incentive & Travel Executives' Crystal Awards program recognizes the best incentive programs, motivational events, and promotional campaigns among its membership.