One of the things I like to do for fun in my spare time is dive into WorldatWork's annual salary budget survey each year to see if I can tease out any interesting tidbits or trends. (Yes, I know - no need to say it...)
Here is an interesting nugget, featuring five years of high level plan design information from the survey. It examines the prevalence (% of organizations providing) of four different variable pay plan designs: combination awards (based on both individual and organizational performance), organization-wide awards, individual awards and business unit awards. Note that the plans covered here do not include either salesforce incentives or cash recognition.
Combo plans rule. Clearly no other broad plan design choice even comes close. Prevalence ticked up slightly last year (at the expense of organization-wide and individual plans), but otherwise, the combo has stayed at a pretty steady ~70%.
Organization-wide plans retain popularity and nose up in 2012. This year's data shows a slight shift away from combo plans in favor of those that focus solely on organization-wide measures of success, those that throw all their funds at measures of shared achievement. Whether a new trend, a one-time abberation or just a reset back to pre-downturn practice, only time will tell - for now organization-wide plans remain a distant #2 in prevalence.
Individual and business unit awards drift downward. Plan designs focused exclusively on individual performance or business unit performance appear to be very slowly but steadily declining in popularity.
How does this match up with your experience and observations? Other - or different - insights to share?