by Lisa A. Grimaldi | December 10, 2019

Planners of rewards and recognition programs increasingly value automation and ease of use when it comes to technology solutions, according to the Incentive Research Foundation's new study, Incentive & Events Industry Software Report: 2020. The in-depth look at the ways technology is selected, customized and integrated into such programs is based on 41 interviews with incentive program design consultants, reward providers, technology vendors, industry experts and buyers of incentive and events software. The new report aims to provide incentives professionals with a better understanding of incentive and events software tools and providers.

Among the key findings from the report:

  • As incentive programs become more sophisticated, customers demand software that is easier to use, more feature-rich and flexible, capable of full integration and robust in its ability to produce analytical insights and personalization.
  • Solutions are delivered almost exclusively via software as a service and most pricing is on that SaaS per-user subscription model -- resulting in lower systems fees and the ability to invest more in rewards.
  • Ease of use is a top priority for customers. They also often require extensive customization; in a SaaS-dominated environment, that means providers must make their tools more flexible and configurable.
  • Program owners want solutions that fully integrate with other human-resources tools, as well as customer relationship management and intranet platforms, using open API and single sign-on capabilities.
  •  Sophisticated data capture, analysis and insights are in high demand. Technology-first providers may evolve into analytics-first firms, especially as artificial intelligence and predictive analytics are more widely used to offer deeper, more actionable and individualized insights.
  • Responsive web design that enables mobile user interfaces -- including dashboard access, points redemption and reports -- has become standard.

The full report can be accessed here