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Working for America


Performance Management


Rewarding

"Rewarding" means providing incentives to and recognition of employees, individually and as members of groups, for their performance and acknowledging their contributions to the agency's mission. There are many ways to acknowledge good performance, from a sincere "Thank You!" for a specific job well done to granting the highest level, agency-specific honors and establishing formal cash incentive and recognition award programs.


Frequently Asked Questions



Staff Recommendations    (What to read when you can't read it all.)

Title

Description

A Closer Look at Nonmonetary Awards (4/96)

Looks at the underlying authority for granting nonmonetary awards and some of the ground rules that affect their use.

Benefits of Using Nonmonetary Awards (6/95)

Describes the benefits of nonmonetary awards and describes how this form of recognition can be more effective than cash awards.

Ceremony Has Its Own Recognition Value (6/95)

Addresses the value that ceremonies and honors have for individuals and organizations.

Criteria for Determining Award Items (2/97)

Describes criteria for the kinds of items that can be used as honorary awards and informal recognition awards.

OPM Announces New Award (4/00)

Describes the OPM Director's PILLAR award and provides eligibility criteria and nomination information.

Strategic Rewards (fall/00)

Describes what strategic rewards are and how they play an important part in attracting, managing, and retaining Federal employees.

The Power of Positive Feedback (6/97)

Stresses the value of positive feedback, immediate recognition, information recognition, and effective program design.

Team Incentives (12/94)

Describes the principles of designing team incentive plans that can be used as a tool to promote team effectiveness.

Using Balanced Measures as a Basis for Managers' Incentive Pay (4/99)

Provides three examples of how agencies can use current award authorities to provide incentives that reward managers who achieve organizational goals.


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Policy Documents

Title

Description

Award Restrictions During Presidential Election Periods (2/00)

Explains when a Presidential election period is and the restrictions for granting awards to political appointees during this time period.

Non-Monetary Awards for Political Appointees During the Presidential Election Period (5 U.S.C. 4508 and 5 CFR 451.105(A)) (8/96)

Provides policy guidance on the interpretation of this law and its accompanying regulations.

Quality Step Increases: Know the Costs (6/00)

Describes the long term cost implications of granting quality step increases (QSIs).

A Supervisor's Quick Review of Awards (6/00)

Presents forms of, and bases for, awards and some things supervisors must consider when deciding to grant an award to an employee or group of employees.

Using "Cash Surrogates" to Deliver Cash Awards (1/97)

Explains the concept of cash surrogates and how they can be used as awards.

Using "Nonmonetary Items" as Incentive Awards (1/97)

Presents the criteria that must be met and the authorization for this type of award, including an explanation of how Savings Bonds fits into this award category.


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Resources

Title

Description

Awards Calendar (11/01)

Provides information on honorary awards for Federal employees offered by various organizations. Includes both alphabetical and nomination deadline listings.

Good Ideas: A User's Guide to Successful Suggestion Programs (1/95)

Provides information to assist agencies in designing and revitalizing their suggestion programs, including examples of successful programs from both private and public sector organizations.

GPO Rider Information for Ordering Career Service and Retirement Certificates (11/00)

Provides information on ordering career service and retirement certificates.

New Nature of Action Codes for Reporting Awards to CPDF (5/99)

Presents the Memorandum to Directors of Personnel communicating changes to the Nature of Action Codes (NOACs)for processing awards and reporting them to the Central Personnel Data File. The new NOACs will be used for awards processed after October 1, 2000.

Reporting Awards with Ease: Simplified Nature of Action Codes (12/99)

Explains how to use the new nature of action codes for reporting award data to the Central Personnel Data File (CPDF).


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Newsletter Articles

Title

Description

Agencies Can Use Referral Bonuses To Support Recruitment and Hiring (Spring 2001)

Explains how agencies can use referral bonuses to help recruit and hire new employees.

Awards Recognize Travel Savings (2/98)

Describes the government program that allows some Federal employees who frequently travel on Government business to participate in agency awards programs that reward employees for savings earned through use of frequent flyer miles and reduced lodging costs.

Choosing the Best Course Using Strategic Compensation (fall/00)

Describes why agencies must rethink the way they use compensation to attract, retain, and reward employees.

Criteria for Determining Award Items (6/95)

Describes criteria for the kinds of items that can be used as honorary awards and informal recognition awards.

Debit Cards: A New Way to Pay (Spring 2001)

Describes how two agencies in Department of Treasury use a debit card to quickly get cash award payments to employees.

Emerging Issues in Employee Incentives and Recognition (10/98)

Summarizes conference presentation on uses of and latest developments in Federal employee awards.

Gainsharing Links Performance Management Processes (2/95)

Describes how gainsharing can link performance management processes.

Good Performance Management Aids Retention and Productivity (4/99)

Presents the results of three studies on retention and productivity describing the critical factors for creating a productive work environment and retaining good employees.

Grossing Up Awards: Why and Why Not (12/98)

Defines "grossing up" award amounts, addresses whether it's a good idea, and discusses monitoring and managing the true value of awards.

How to Order Career Service and Retirement Certificates (4/96)

Describes the process for ordering career service and retirement certificates.

Lessons Learned from Awards Study (4/99)

Describes the findings, employee preferences, and recommendations found in an OPM study on Federal awards programs.

Locality Pay and Performance Awards (4/94)

Describes the calculation of performance award amounts when an employee is also receiving locality pay.

Paying Awards Made Easy (4/99)

Explains how the Debt Collection Improvement Act affects the disbursement of cash awards.

Performance Management Mailbag: Communicating About Awards Programs (4/00)

Answers an often-asked question on how agencies can let their employees and supervisors know about the agency awards programs.

The Performance Management Mailbag: Cash Incentives for Completing Customer Surveys (Winter 2001)

Explains whether an agency can give prizes to Federal employees as an incentive for completing customer satisfaction surveys.

The Performance Management Mailbag (double award) (Spring 2001)

Explains whether an employee can receive two awards for the same accomplishment or contribution.

Plan Awards Programs with SMART Moves (4/98)

Looks at finding the right incentives to help employees become more customer focused and results oriented.

Quality Step Increases: Timing Matters (4/99)

Explains why timing does matter and the factors involved when granting an employee a quality step increase.

Reinvention and Suggestions: How Do They Fit? (12/93)

Discusses how agencies deal with the newer role of employee involvement and traditional suggestion programs.

Reporting Awards with Ease: Simplified Nature of Action Codes (8/99)

Explains and lists the new nature of action codes and how they affect award reporting requirements for agencies.

Time-off Awards: Reviewing the Basics (6/99)

Explains who's eligible to receive them, the advantages and disadvantages of using time-off awards, the Governmentwide limitations, and how they may be combined with other forms of awards.

Trends and Shifts in the Use of Awards Governmentwide (12/99)

Describes trends, shifts, and consistencies in Governmentwide awards spending and explains changes in the type of awards granted by agencies.

Using Balanced Measures as a Basis for Managers' Incentive Pay (4/99)

Provides three examples of how agencies can use current award authorities to provide incentives that reward managers who achieve organizational goals.

Work and Rewards in a Reengineered World (10/95)

Describes the new world of rewards in employee performance and compensation.

You Asked About This - Must agencies still file Standard Forms 50 (SF50) for awards in employees' Official Personnel Files (OPF)? (6/99)

Explains the new filing requirements that prohibit agencies from filing award documentation in employees' Official Personnel Files.


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Rewarding Teams

Title

Description

Developing and Rewarding Teams (4/98)

Describes the largest Government-owned weapons manufacturing arsenal's approach to effective teaming practices and lessons learned.

Rewarding Organizational Goal Achievement (2/98)

Describes the Red River Army Depot's award program that emphasizes team and organizational performance and breaks away from its traditional individual performance award culture where awards were distributed almost solely based on performance ratings.

Rochester Institute of Technology/USA TODAY Quality Cup (8/00)

Highlights a privately sponsored award program for Federal employees.

Team Incentives (12/94)

Describes the principles of designing team incentive plans that can be used as a tool to promote team effectiveness.


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Nonmonetary Awards

Title

Description

A Closer Look at Nonmonetary Awards (4/96)

Looks at the underlying authority for granting nonmonetary awards and some of the ground rules that affect their use.

Benefits of Using Nonmonetary Awards (6/95)

Describes the benefits of nonmonetary awards and describes how this form of recognition can be more effective than cash awards.

Ceremony Has Its Own Recognition Value (6/95)

Addresses the value that ceremonies and honors have for individuals and organizations.

The GEICO Public Service Awards (6/00)

Provides general information about this public service award that recognizes outstanding achievements of Federal employees.

OPM Announces New Award (4/00)

Describes the OPM Director's PILLAR award and provides eligibility criteria and nomination information.

The Performance Management Mailbag (8/00)

Explains whether agencies can include military service when recognizing years of Government service for career service certificates.

The Power of Positive Feedback (6/97)

Stresses the value of positive feedback, immediate recognition, information recognition, and effective program design.

Rewarding With Certificates and Bonds (10/97)

Focuses on two types of nonmonetary awards that some agencies are either currently using or are thinking of using.


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Case Studies and Examples

Title

Description

Agencies Develop New Awards Criteria (6/97)

Describes two agencies' approaches to granting awards under a pass/fail program.

Agencies Reward Exemplary Customer Service (4/95)

Outlines some approaches agencies are using in their awards programs to support and promote agency-wide customer service standards.

Clear Goals Lead to Success in GSA (2/00)

Explains how GSA's Linking Budget to Performance initiative got Region 2 to focus on results and performance improvement.

Customer Service Award at IRS (8/95)

An example of a labor-management partnership and employee involvement in action related to the establishment of a customer service award.

Effective Communication Improves Customer Service (4/00)

Describes effective agency customer-focused feedback practices recognized by the National Partnership Council.

Employees Shape-up Awards Programs (10/96)

Describes how three organizations used employee involvement to improve their awards programs and support improved performance.

GSA Rewards Exemplary Performance Management Practices (6/96)

Describes effective performance management practices recognized and rewarded by the General Services Administration (GSA).

GSA's Giraffe Award (2/97)

Describes an award program used in the General Services Administration (GSA) where employees are encouraged and rewarded for "sticking their neck out" in the interest of doing GSA work better, faster, easier, cheaper, or smarter.

Goalsharing: A GSA Experience (2/98)

Describes GSA's successful program balancing team and individual recognition.

Gotcha Awards: Recognition Improves Customer and Employee Satisfaction (6/00)

Describes a customer and peer nomination award program aimed at recognizing employees who go the extra mile by providing quality patient care.

Group Incentive Award Increases Productivity (12/99)

Describes a Department of Interior group incentive award program.

Innovative Suggestion Programs Improve Performance (12/97)

Presents the innovative suggestion programs that were initiated and demonstrated by award winners of the National Partnership Awards.

Internet-Based Performance Management (2/99)

Describes two agencies' success in using the Internet to post information on their award and performance appraisal programs, and gives examples of the type of information they included.

Measurement and Rewards Improve Performance at GSA (2/00)

Explains how the General Services Administration (GSA) Linking Budget to Performance initiative improves organizational and individual performance.

OPM Director Presents PILLAR Award at Strategic Compensation Conference (8/00)

Describes the first recipients' award winning performance management programs and practices.

PILLAR Award Recipients Honored at the Strategic Compensation Conference (Fall 2001)

Describes award recipients' presentations on the performance management programs and practices that earned them this recognition.

Presidential Award Winner (4/97)

Describes presidential award winner Dr. Homer C. "Mac" McClure, recognized for his leadership of the Oklahoma City Federal Executive Board after the bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building.

Recognizing and Rewarding Supervisors and Managers (8/00)

Describes the criteria three agencies use to recognize outstanding supervisors and managers who demonstrate exceptional supervisory skills.

Vice President Gore Hits Home with HAMMER Award for VA Regional Office (4/94)

Describes the Vice President's 1994 presentation of the HAMMER Award to the VA Regional Office for customer service.


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Book Reviews

Title

Description

1001 Ways to Reward Employees (8/94)

Looks at ways to rejuvenate and redesign awards and recognition programs.

Innovative Reward Systems for the Changing Workplace (12/95)

Provides guidelines and principles for designing performance management programs to include appraisals and awards.

Managing Generation X: How to Bring Out the Best in Young Talent (12/98)

Describes Generation X employees and what they value, and discusses how to work with them to bring out their best performance.


 

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