Category: Incentives

  • Five Tips for Managing with Mystery Shopping Results

    August 28, 2012

    Does your current mystery shopping strategy take into account associates from different generations? Consider this fact: By 2014, millennials will comprise 36% of the workforce. You need to meet the unique needs of your different employee segments to manage effectively, and this millennial group demands attention.

    Whether you want to see how well associates greet customers, upsell or resolve a problem, complaint or return; mystery shopping provides unique insights into employee behaviors. How you use this data ultimately determines how valuable the shops are, and reports and insightshelp you nail down key management areas. Here are five tips on using mystery shops to more effectively manage associates:

  • Are Employees Gaming Your Incentive Program?

    November 29, 2011

    People tend to do those things for which they are rewarded. To encourage employees to provide the customer service promised to our customers, employee incentive and recognition programs are put into place to reward employees who engage in desired behaviors or who achieve specific outcomes.Â

    Desired behaviors can be measured by mystery shopping programs, manager reports, audits, customer feedback measures and performance reviews. Specific outcomes can be measured by sales amounts, referral numbers and the like.

    No incentive program is perfect and, over time, sometimes employees figure out a way around the system to “earn” the incentive. In other words, sometimes employees “game the system”.

    Here are some common games we see. We hope they help you in planning to avoid them.

    The Game: Trick the Technology

    If an organization uses technology alone to measure key service metrics and reward performance with incentives, the system is usually an easy target for gaming the system.

    The modify the order trick. A mystery shopper overheard a training conversation at the first of two drive through windows at a quick service restaurant. When the mystery shopper attempted to hand the employee payment, the mystery shopper heard the trainer saying “No, never just accept the payment. Always be sure to click on Modify Order then click Ok before you accept the customer’s payment. This will restart the timer on our transactions so our service times will look good.”

    The ring up single items as multiples trick. At a grocery store checkout, the cashier entered a fresh bagel purchase as

  • On-the-Spot Rewards Shops are Rewarding

    September 16, 2011

    Confero, Inc. would like to send a big thank you out to all of the mystery shoppers who helped us complete thousands of on-the-spot rewards shops this summer!  Mystery shoppers conducted these shops at amusement parks, movie theaters, casual dining restaurants, fast-food restaurants, and airports.

    We got a lot of great feedback from our mystery shoppers about conducting this type of mystery shop.  If you have had reservations about trying a prize reveal shop, see what other mystery shoppers have said:

    “It felt great to be able to award the successful cashier with the gift card.  The cashier told me that he had been working for this company for sixteen years and it was nice to know he is appreciated.” – Kelly M., California

  • Employee Incentive and Rewards Ideas

    July 28, 2011

    Our experience in employee recognition and on-the-spot rewards in different industries has opened our eyes to the creative ideas introduced by our clients and our client services team. 

    This idea is one of our favorites. The Raleigh-Durham Airport Authority (RDUAA), a long time client, honors associates who score 100% on the mystery shops Confero conducts at the RDU airport. The airport authority changes the gift over time and tracks which employee receives which item, so that the award item is always fresh and

  • How will new Gift Cards Rules Impact you and Your Customers?

    November 18, 2010

    Gift cards are always an important element of retail offerings during the holiday season, but perhaps even more so this year, as companies conform to new gift card rules.   While consumers increasingly choose gift cards for holiday purchases, 13% of customers indicated in the 2010 gift card survey that they would be reluctant to purchase gift cards with expiration dates and additional fees.   Now, thanks to the new rules, consumers have fewer fees to consider when deciding on gift cards. The new rules mandate that companies may no longer charge fees for gift cards that are dormant or inactive.  Another element of the rules is that stores list gift card disclosures clearly on the back of the gift card.