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7 Signs Your Research Program Needs Better Incentives Management

  • author

    Brenda Stoltz

  • posted

    Aug 01, 2016

  • topic

    Academic Research, Market Research

7 Signs Your Research Program Needs Better Incentives Management

If you’re a market researcher, you are already busy with your core research tasks. The days are long, and the last thing you want to deal with is incentives management.

If this is the case, it might be time to consider an incentives management system that can do the work for you. Many overwhelmed market researchers have started turning to an incentives management system to buy, manage, deliver, and track digital incentives all from one convenient location.
Check out this short video, which shows a glimpse of a day in the life of two market researchers. One is frazzled, the other is relaxed. Which one do you relate to?

Think you could benefit from incentives automation, too? See if you agree with four or more of the pain points listed below:

1) You Expend Hours on Manually Sending Checks or Plastic Gift Cards

Just think of all the hours you spend on buying, preparing, and mailing physical incentives. If you send checks, you have to reconcile the checks when they are cashed. Delivering physical incentives leaves more room for error, which can cause you to spend even more time handling delays.

2) You Expend Hours on Wrestling Spreadsheets to Organize Incentives

Manually keeping track of recipients and rewards is error-prone, not to mention the time you spend on tallying incentives against projects and clients.

3) You Are Forced to Wait Until a Study Ends to Send Out Incentives, Causing Delays

Your qualitative research and multi-week studies can run for a long time, so you would like to do multiple waves of payouts. But paying incrementally on a daily or weekly basis would be too complicated to track with a manual process. With a manual process, multiple payouts would also be time-consuming and disruptive to your research.

4) Your Research Participants Complain About Delayed or Missing Rewards

If you wait until the end of your multi-week study to send incentives in one batch, your research participants will have waited a long time for their rewards. What’s worse is that your current manual process is prone to error and causes you to have to field complaints from frustrated participants.

If your rewards arrive from a third party, recipients often don’t recognize it and ignore it.

5) Recruiting and Rewarding International Participants Gives You a Big Headache

With international studies, you know that physical incentives are just impractical. The process of buying and managing country-specific gift cards is difficult and time-consuming. Sending out checks to distant countries can become complicated due to issues with addresses or data errors. Delivery can take several days. Rush delivery options are too costly when you are sending checks to hundreds of participants.

6) You Have a Hard Time Answering Questions About Project Incentives Status and Costs

Because all of your information is spread across multiple systems and spreadsheets, you are sometimes unable to determine if you have paid the right people the right amount. Sometimes you also can’t account for the money spent. When your employer or client asks you questions about project incentive status and cost, you might not have the right answer or the most up-to-date answer.

7) You Find It Challenging to Create Reports to Support Regulatory Requirements Like the Sunshine Act or 1099 Reporting

It can be very hard to track information for reports if incentives are delivered and managed manually. You find it challenging to find out which recipients exceeded incentive thresholds that require IRS reporting.

Did you find yourself agreeing with some of the scenarios above? If so, it might be time to consider an incentives management system, so you can get back to your core research tasks.

Download MRX eBookFree 30-page guide on how digital rewards are making research incentives faster, cheaper, and more global.

about the author
Brenda Stoltz

Brenda has over 20 years of experience building, selling and marketing products for F100 and start-ups.

Brenda has over 20 years of experience building, selling and marketing products for F100 and start-ups.