Earn Program Settings Follow
Any incentive program is just another form of recognition and rewards, but they don't always have to involve a peer or manager. In fact, wouldn't it be nice if employees took ownership of their own incentives? That's exactly what Earn programs are— a simple way to incentivize employees to hit goals, complete tasks, and be part of all kinds of initiatives. They are customizable to your organization, your goals, and your budgets.
This article will introduce general settings of Earn program and walk you through each step on how to create and edit an Earn program.
- Navigating to Earn
- Adding an Earn Program
- General Settings
- Configuring Rules
- Display Settings
- Questions Settings
- Notifications Settings
- Additional Assistance
Navigating to Earn
Locate Earn program settings by logging into your Awardco account, clicking the Admin settings button at the top right, selecting the Settings at the top of the screen, scrolling down, and clicking on “Earn Programs” on the left side of the Screen.
On this page you’ll see the option to turn on or off Earn programs. This setting simply makes Earn programs accessible to your employees on the homepage. The screen shot below displays what the home page would look like with this feature toggled “on”.
Whatever is entered in the Page Title field will be the name that will be displayed in the tab of the navigation bar.
Below, you will see a list of all active earn programs. You’re able to click on the name of a program to make edits to the Earn program settings. Click the “…” to the right of any Earn program to access the functionality of duplicating any Earn program. You’re able to access any Archived earn program by toggling “Archived”.
Adding An Earn Program
Now, let’s walk through the process of creating an Earn program. For this example, we’re going set up a program where employees can claim 10 points for completing an HR training. Start by selecting “Add Program” at the top right of the screen.
Give the program a name, a start date, and start time. If you’d like the program to become available at a specific time in the future, input a time and date in the future. The default time zone is Coordinated Universal Time, but you’re able to select your time zone in the drop-down menu. Selecting an end date means that the program will be archived once the selected day is reached, and employees will no longer be able to earn points through this program. Once you finalize these settings, select “Create Program.”
In the general settings view you’re able to edit the name and date of an Earn program after creation. Additionally, you can upload a custom image that users will see as the header image for the program when they select the recognition type. We have a selection of recommended images available to you, or you can select and upload your own. Image dimensions for this tile are 1200px by 600px.
Add a brief description of the program that helps users identify and select the program they are looking for. Adding a "Learn More" link message provides additional information accessed by selecting the “learn more” option for each program. This message can further aid users in selecting the correct program for nominations and recognitions or understanding finer details of a program.
The FAQ feature, when enabled, displays a link on the recognition submission page which will generate a pop-up window that can be used to outline program guidelines that users should take into consideration when submitting the award. Click "Edit" to change what users see. If any value is entered in the "Display" field, the FAQ link will be shown on the submission screen, even if the message is blank. The HTML box contains the content that will be shown in the pop-up window when the link is clicked. Using HTML here allows you to host images, PDFs, or other custom documents in the pop-up window.
Select “Next” when you’re finished organizing your General settings.
The Rules section will help you to define who can participate, how often they can earn, and allowed budgets.
- Reward Giver: Choose how the giver will be selected. The options are the company bot, the supervisor of the earner, a specific metadata tag tied to a user, or a specific user in the system. If the metadata option is selected, the Earn program will systematically check users starting with the supervisor of the earner, then follow the chain of command until someone in the said has a tag matching the one selected.
- Eligibility Limits: Select which users are eligible to receive awards for this Earn program. You can designate all users as eligible or limit recipients by designating groups, metadata tags, or listing individual users. The users designated will be able to claim rewards through the program.
- Claim Limits: These are added as rules, meaning you will have to configure the limit and then save the individual rule. You are able to opt to have no limits on this Earn program by toggling “No Limits” however, this is not recommended. Rules can be configured using the following fields:
- Limit Period Based On - Limits can be defined to start on the first day of the current period (ie first of the year, month, quarter, etc.) based on the calendar, or be based on the listed program start date. If the latter is selected, limits will be based on the most recent anniversary of the start date (ie if today is 4/12/21 and program start date is 6/23/19, most recent anniversary is 6/23/20; if program start date is 3/23/15, most recent anniversary is 3/23/21.)
- Recipient - Select either “All Users” (if you’d like everyone in your organization to be eligible to claim) or Role if you’d like designate Employees, Group Managers, Executive Managers, or Admins to be eligible to claim Earn recognitions in the program.
- Frequency | Amount - Determine if you would like to limit by frequency or the monetary amount of the collective nominations submitted through this program. This limit is for a set period of time - every month, 3 months, 6 months, or 1 year.
- Show Remaining - When "Yes" is selected, the remaining number of claims available to the user submitting an Earn request will be shown on their recognition submission form. This is based on the limit rules you establish. For example, when enabled, if you allow users to submit 4 Earn requests each quarter, users will see how many requests they have remaining for the quarter on the submission page.
For this example, I’ll assign the reward giver to be the Bot, I’ll give all users eligibility to claim a reward once every three months, and have my limit periods based on the calendar year start date. For any rule created on claim limits, don’t forget to click on "Add Rule" to ensure your changes are saved.
- Budget: All Earn awards will be awarded from a single budget; use this tool to select the budget from which points should be drawn. The “Manage Budgets” option will take you straight to the Budgets tab.
- Award Network: The award network designated here controls the redemption options available to the points awarded through this program. In most cases, "Standard" is the appropriate designation. If you would like to examine restricting the redemption options available to points awarded through this program, as outlined in the Smart Award Networks article, please reach out to your Awardco Client Success Manager. Separate award networks must be configured by an Awardco representative.
- Approval: Like the claim limits above, the approval option is a rule that must be saved after configuration. Remember to click "Add Approval" after you're done configuring each rule for the rule to be saved to this program. Please note, through this feature it is possible to configure up to three levels of approval. For example, you could designate level 1 to be for awards valued $5-20 and have level 1 route to the award recipient's direct manager; level 2 to be for awards valued $20-50 and route to the department head for approval; level 3 to be for awards valued $50+ and route to the VP level. It is also possible to have multiple people review the same award by creating a rule for the same value at multiple levels (e.g. Level 1 at $0+, Level 2 at $0+, etc.). When multiple approval levels are configured, the requests will pass through the levels one at level at a time, beginning with level 1. These tiered levels must be saved as separate rules. Please note, managers will not be asked to approve awards for which they are the listed recipient. In this case, their award will be passed to their immediate manager for approval. Please contact your Awardco Client Success representative for any questions on the topic.
- Points | Funds - Designate the point value at which the approval rule will activate. If the award is non-monetary and you would like it to pass through an approval process anyway, enter a $0 value.
- Level - Designate this rule's approval level as explained above.
- Approver - Select who will approve the award for this rule.
- Supervisor - If supervisor is selected, the system will use the hierarchy in the user file to identify the recipient’s supervisor.
- Metadata - Utilizing the metadata option will allow you to be quite specific in identifying the approving party. When used, the approval system will follow the manager hierarchy of the recipient until the system finds a user who matches the metadata value you specify. For example, if you would like this level of approval to go to users with the role of department head, you could include "Job Title" in your file metadata and select "Department Head" here. This means the system would look for the nominator or recipient's Department Head and send the approval to them. If the system is unable to identify an individual matching the metadata entered here in the proper supervisor hierarchy, the approval will go to the platform admins.
- Specific User(s) - Assign specific users to approve awards routed to this rule.
- Manual Override - This option allows for you to designate a specific approver for each employee in the platform. Manual override must be configured by an Awardco representative and will involve user file extensions.
Additional information on approvals can be found in our Approval Configuration Options article. For this example, I’ll have all awards in the Earn program pull from the Cyber Security budget, allow all users to select an award with the points awarded through this program through the Standard Award Network, and I’ll set up one level of approval; any earn request over 15 points will have to be approved by the supervisor of the user.
Select “Next” to move onto Display settings.
Display settings will help you to determine how your earn program appears to users and which
options will be available to them. Configure the settings, section by section, using the guidelines below.
- Post to Social Feed - Select whether or not you would like rewards earned from this program to be posted in the social feed. When "Off" is selected, no rewards earned from this program will be visible to anyone other than the recipient and the giver. The earned recognition will also be available for reporting purposes. Remember that the monetary value of an earned reward will not be visible to anyone aside form the recipient regardless of visibility on the feed.
- Banner Image – The banner image is used as a background element on the recognition feed tile. If no custom image is uploaded, the background banner image will default to the program image. For best results use images 1200x300px without text. Some cropping may occur based on user screen size.
- Reward Amounts - This section establishes the award value buttons shown to users on the submission page. For example, if you would like users to choose from $5, $10, and $15 when submitting an award in this program, you would enter those values here.
- Preset USD and Points Amounts - Enter the monetary value you would like displayed. You will only need to enter values in the currency or points input fields. The system will automatically convert the entry from currency to points or from points to currency. You will enter values in this field even if you are only displaying labels on the recognition submission screen. This section tells the system how much value to assign the buttons displayed to users Earning awards.
- Preset Amount Labels - Labels should be used when there is a special award tier or meaning associated with the amount being Earned. This meaning should be widely known and explained in training documents dispersed internally as the platform is rolled out. The labels entered in this field will be matched, one-by-one, with the values in the currency and points amounts field directly above it. For example, if you've chosen "Labels" in the Units section and entered 5, 10, and 15 points in the points field and "Bronze," "Silver," and "Gold" in the labels field, the program will only show the "Bronze," "Silver," and "Gold" labels at a value of 5, 10, and 15 points respectively to the user submitting the award.
- Show Amount Selection to Recipients: When this is toggled on, users claiming rewards will select an award amount. If this is toggled off, an approval process is requested for an amount to be selected, and the individual who first approves the reward will be required to select the reward amount.
Reward Note: This note appears on the approvals page, the recognition on the social feed, and is an optional addition for any email communications sent.
Allow User to Comment and Comment Prompt: When toggled ON, users claiming a reward will be required to input a free-form response to a question or direction input in the Comment Prompt section.
Image Upload: This setting determines whether users need to upload an image when submitting an earned reward and allows customization of the upload prompt
Tags: Using the Tags section, you can make company values or other identifiers available for users submitting awards to select and attach to the award. If you are using tags to track usage or generate data, by selecting "Required (1)" and enabling only one tag, the system will automatically attach the tag to each recognition processed through this program. Edit the tags available in your platform by clicking the "Hashtags" sub-tab in Settings.
In this program, I will have the earned recognitions post to the social feed. I’ll use the default banner image provided and allow the user to claim 5 points for completing HR training by uploading a screen shot of the training completion confirmation screen for approval.
The "Questions" settings page allows you to select what questions the submitting user will be presented with when submitting an earn request through this program. The default question for each program is “Please provide a screen shot of the confirmation screen”, but you can modify this open ended question with text specific to your program. Using the "Add Question" button, you can add additional questions to the program submission form such as multiple choice questions, short answer questions, and images. While you are able to create as many questions as you like, keeping the submission page short and simple is one of the easiest ways to drive up employee engagement with your recognition platform.
- Add Question by Type - Remember to click "Save" after configuring each additional question.
- Multiple Choice
- Question - Enter the question you would like posed to the respondents.
- Answers - When entering the multiple choice answers, type the answer and hit enter to log the entry and begin entering the next answer. Your entries will be displayed exactly as they are entered so remember to perform basic spelling and grammar checks on your entries.
- Short Answer - The short answer option allows you to type a prompt and allow an open text box for the response collection, much the same as the "Reason for recognition" option above. Enter a minimum or maximum character count to prompt your users to enter longer or shorter answers.
- Image - The image option allows you to include fun icons, gifs, images, or other colorful additions to the recognitions submitted through this program. Images selected by users will be posted to your company social feed (provided the program allows recognitions to be publicized) along with their recognition text. Using images will help your social feed feel more like a social media site and will reinforce the feed's celebratory and lively user experience. Manage these images through the Image Library. If several image categories are selected, you are able designate one category to appear before the others by selecting the star to the right of the category. This will assign the category as "featured." The option also exists for employees to upload their own images to their recognitions; if you'd like to enable this simply toggle the "Allow User Uploaded Images" option to On. It's also an option to either make submitting or adding images to a recognition optional or not.
- Multiple Choice
In this example, we'll keep the default question and have the submitter upload an image of the confirmation screen.
- If the image allows for user uploaded images and an image is required, a preset image category must be selected as well (this functions just like recognition programs). This will be updated in a future release to remove the preset image library.
- Images will show in the feed if the program is public.
If the required image upload contains sensitive information or is something the client doesn't want to have appear on the feed, we recommend that the Earn program is set to private.
Click "Next" to save your settings and continue to the next step.
On the notification settings page, configure the automated notification templates you would like to send with each recognition program you create. Work with your Awardco Client Success Manager to create and upload custom email templates with your branding and user guidelines. Each of these notification fields are optional and an email does not have to be sent. To opt out of sending notifications, leave the fields blank and click "Finish."
- Needs Approval - This is the template that will be sent to approvers as soon as a reward enters their approval queue. Use this template to highlight the importance of a quick response to keep your programs running smoothly.
- Declined Nomination - This is the template sent to nominators when a nomination has been declined by an approver. This template can be configured to include the message entered by the approver when the recognition was declined.
- Recognition - This is the template sent to recipients of recognitions through this program. These emails are sent at the time of recognition. If the program does not have any approvals the email will be sent at the time of submission. If the program has an approval process, the email will be sent when the final approver approves the reward.
I’m going to assign the Earn Approval email template for the Needs Approval notification, and the Earn Notification email template for the Recognition notification.
Click "Finish" to save the notification settings page and complete the setup of your Earn program.
Configuring your platform Earn programs can be a complex process. Always remember that your Awardco Client Success Manager is a software expert and has extensive experience configuring programs in this feature. Should you ever have a question on a specific setting or if you need to discuss your programs at a higher level, your Client Success Manager will be more than happy to assist you.
If you have any questions, please contact our Awardco Support Team.