A field experiment in motivating employee ideas


Gibbs, Michael ; Neckermann, Susanne ; Siemroth, Christoph


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URL: https://ub-madoc.bib.uni-mannheim.de/37385
URN: urn:nbn:de:bsz:180-madoc-373851
Document Type: Working paper
Year of publication: 2014
The title of a journal, publication series: ZEW Discussion Papers
Volume: 14-096
Place of publication: Mannheim
Publication language: English
Institution: Sonstige Einrichtungen > ZEW - Leibniz-Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung
School of Law and Economics > VWL, Wirtschaftspolitik (Grüner)
MADOC publication series: Veröffentlichungen des ZEW (Leibniz-Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung) > ZEW Discussion Papers
Subject: 330 Economics
Classification: JEL: C93 , J24 , M52 , O32,
Abstract: We study the effects of a field experiment designed to motivate employee ideas, at a large technology company. Employees were encouraged to submit ideas on process and product improvements via an online system. In the experiment, the company randomized 19 account teams into treatment and control groups. Employees in treatment teams received rewards if their ideas were approved. Nothing changed for employees in control teams. Our main finding is that rewards substantially increased the quality of ideas submitted. Further, rewards increased participation in the suggestion system, but decreased the number of ideas per participating employee, with zero net effect on the total quantity of ideas. The broader participation base persisted even after the reward was discontinued, suggesting habituation. We find no evidence for motivational crowding out. Our findings suggest that rewards can improve innovation and creativity, and that there may be a tradeoff between the quantity and quality of ideas.

Dieser Eintrag ist Teil der Universitätsbibliographie.

Das Dokument wird vom Publikationsserver der Universitätsbibliothek Mannheim bereitgestellt.




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Gibbs, Michael ; Neckermann, Susanne ; Siemroth, Christoph (2014) A field experiment in motivating employee ideas. Open Access ZEW Discussion Papers Mannheim 14-096 [Working paper]
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