Sometimes, you stumble on something that makes you think about your work in a different way. REBA, the UK-based Reward and Employee Benefits Association, recently released a video featuring Unilever’s Keith Williams on HR Technology and Innovation. He notes three important things to keep in mind for HR Technology, and I think they are particularly applicable when considering your employee engagement strategy:

1/ Use Design Thinking

When designing an engagement program – from incentives to recognition – it’s important to really consider the people in the program. Research tells us that most people have unique preferences for their recognition and rewards experience.  Online engagement platforms should not be transactional, but should reflect the culture of your organization, and your people. By tying recognition to core values, you connect to human motivation and inspiration.

2/ Forget Current Processes

If engagement at your organization is low, just taking it online won’t help. It’s essential to take a hard look at what’s working and what’s not in your organization, and put a strategy up against it. A recognition and engagement platform provides a framework for people to engage with one another in a meaningful and social way. It does not replace human dialogue or insight, it gives it a place to thrive.

3/ Don’t Expect a Magic Bullet… Put the Resources In

We don’t all have the bots Williams describes, but the same principle applies to employee engagement program owners. We can’t expect any program, including HR Tech solutions, to magically create an amazing culture and suddenly spectacular performance. As Williams says, “Don’t think you can just press a button and it happens.” It takes thought, program champions, communications, persistence, and willingness to adapt. With that dedication, though, programs will succeed and so will your team.

Check out what Williams has to say here:


If you’d like to discuss how an HR Technology solution can enhance the human experience in your organization, let us know! You can reach us at


About the author

As Vice President of Engagement at Next Level Performance, Susan serves on the board of the Incentive Research Foundation (IRF), and chairs the IRF Research Committee. She has also served on the board of the Incentive Marketing Association (IMA) and is a past president of the Recognition Council, and a past member of the Performance Improvement Council and the Incentive and Engagement Solution Providers (IESP). She is interested in the strategies and benefits of employee engagement, incentive, and recognition programs. An avid traveler, she is also passionate about the art and science of incentive travel. Favorite travel destinations: Costa Rica, Iceland, Switzerland, and Maine.

Susan Adams
Vice President of Engagement