Nisar, Tahir M.
Is it all in the timing? The practice of bonus payments in the UK
Compensation and Benefits Review, 35, (5), . (doi:10.1177/0886368703256944).
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Bonuses are increasingly linked to wider business goals, replacing the traditional focus on output or profit measures. The evidence also shows that companies make awards to coincide with payments made by competitors to raise their profile among prospective employees and customers. The timing of bonus payments has thus become a strategic consideration in many markets in recent years. These trends suggest that there are a host of factors that contribute to companies' decisions about bonus payouts. This article uses case studies of two U.K. banks to show that companies pay bonuses for a variety of purposes, ranging from employee performance and productivity to wider company goals, such as company reputation, stakeholder influence and employee hiring and retention policies. The article argues that current bonus pay practices are best understood as a value-added strategy, as various trade-offs are required before a company can expect to benefit from its employee rewards and benefit strategy.
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