Almost half of human resource (HR) professionals say that monetary rewards programs are very effective at motivating top-performing employees, according to the 2005 Rewards Programs and Incentive Compensation Survey released by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM).

HR pros surveyed said that both non-monetary and monetary awards programs are very effective at improving employee morale. But HR pros said that neither was effective at motivating under-performing employees to improve.

Something to think about when designing your next safety incentive program.

The survey found employees' eligibility for rewards programs are based on long-term and short-term goals. Managers and above are most likely rewarded for reaching long-term goals, which could include incentive compensation, year-end bonus, and profit sharing.

Non-managerial employees are more likely to be eligible for new hire referral bonuses and spot bonuses, which are usually associated with short-term goals.