7 Tips to Motivate your Employees in 2020

Hiring the right people is one part of the process – but keeping them is another big one.  Plus, people’s motivation for staying in a job is changing and isn’t always just about money.  Sometimes it is about making a difference, having a belief in the company and feeling they can grow in their role.  So how can you motivate employees in 2020 to keep them with the company and working at peak performance?

How to motivate your employees

There are lots of different ways to motivate employees – some include financial motivations while others are more about quality of life or work based accomplishment.  Here are seven of the most popular ideas to help you build an incentive plan that will work for your staff.

Give them a Challenge

We like to feel we are excelling at our jobs and we are pushing ourselves.  That’s why giving employees a challenge can be a great motivator.  Not only that but it encourages the development of skills, behaviours and attitudes.  Examples of challenges include:

  • Problems solving challenges – rather than relying on management for answers, they are motivated to try and solve problems themselves which is also great for developing skills
  • Demanding but realistic deadline challenges – these get employees to push themselves but always ensuring that the challenge can be met without comprising work quality
  • Learning and development challenges – these have the added benefits of additional skills for the employee and the chance to gain new experience

Prize Giveaways for Accomplishing Targets

One of the simplest ways to motivate employees is to offer prize giveaways for targets or reaching goals.  It is important to look at what kind of prizes will motivate staff and how to get the balance right between something that motivates and something that seems either unachievable or not worth the effort.  Seasonal prizes work for marketing and can also be a good idea for employee giveaways.

Increased Responsibility

For some, added responsibility would be a burden but for other staff, giving them more responsibility shows that you have faith in them, and this can be a great way to motivate them.  Look at what they are curious about, what skills they want to develop or what kind of tasks they are already doing to help out – then see if you could motivate them by adding these to their workload.

Always be careful not to put too many demands on people, especially the types that won’t say no.  You want to motivate them but not to make them so tired or jaded that their work suffers overall.  Striking the balance is something that needs monitoring too.

Team Building Activities

Team building activities can be a fun way to motivate staff and make use of any casual competition between departments.  There are lots of different ideas you can be inspired by including:

  • Digital scavenger hunts – arranged online, these don’t require to go anywhere and can be done even with small teams
  • Passing the ball – fill a ball with questions and each person pulls one and answers it which is great to get to know the people you work with
  • Go for a meal – it doesn’t need to be anything complicated, sometimes simply having a meal somewhere nice can bring the team together

Increased Holidays

Increasing holidays or offering something like flexible working can help employees achieve a better work-life balance and this often motivates them more in the time they are at work.  While this needs to be done with the needs of the business at the forefront, it is very possible to look at adding these kinds of benefits for many types of business.

Nearly half of people now say flexible working such as where they work or the ability to have more holidays is the most important factor when searching for a job.  And over 85% of top companies now offer this kind of benefit so it is proven to work.


Employees often show interest in other roles, developing themselves or training for something within their current job.  By offering in-house training or paying for them to attend courses on these topics, you can motivate staff and also invest in their futures.  It is important that the employee wants to take the path you are offering if you want it to motivate them, otherwise it may feel like an additional burden.  But done right and the employee feels valued.

Bonus & Pay rise

The classic option for motiving staff does still work for a lot of people – offering a bonus or a pay rise, sometimes both, for achieving targets and goals.  For people who are primarily motivated by money, these will work well to motivate them and allow them to have a clear reward in mind for the work they are doing.

How to manage incentives

Once you have worked with staff and isolated the kind of incentives that will motivate them, you need to create a formal scheme to manage this.  You should also be aware of the costs involved before you make suggestions to ensure the business can handle these and still maintain profits.

Incentive schemes should be clear in their aims and the rewards that employees will receive.  You should decide who will look after them and how pay-outs will be made.  If there is funding needed for things like giveaways, where does the money come from?  And how will the scheme be implemented as well as ensuring that it is fair?

It is also important to factor in tax and payroll issues when planning an incentive scheme.  Here, working with a payroll specialist such as Trace Payroll can make the whole process much easier.  You can ensure staff receive their benefits and incentives and that matters such as tax for the business and the employee are also handled correctly.

Motivating staff is an important part of running any business and finding the right way to do this is important.  Ensuring the scheme is then run correctly and all tax issues are covered is also key to long term success.

Trace Payroll provides managed payroll for companies so they can focus on making sure their employees are productive and working as part of a team, don’t hesitate to contact us. We have over 40 years of experience providing quality payroll services for all sizes of business in all types of industries.

Get in touch

To find out more about fully managed payroll outsourcing with a personal touch, contact Trace Payroll Services today.

Call Trace Payroll Services on 0845 873 5619