Tips for making the most of line managers

Line managers in reward – what makes them important?

The role of line managers is becoming increasingly important in influencing employee satisfaction in the workplace and this has been borne out in past years by CIPD research. This may not be surprising given their key role in people management practices. However, when it comes to reward, line managers are seen as the major inhibitor to implementation of a reward strategy. Managers are given little discretion on pay and benefits, yet they are often expected to implement the policies they have not been party to. So what are the challenges they face?

Challenges range from differentiating performance which impacts the reward an individual receives to navigating forced distribution systems. While designing reward systems is often done without line manager input, it makes sense to involve those who will ultimately be responsible for making the practices successful. Read on for tips on how to get line managers involved in reward………..

How to get line mangers involved in reward **

Raise awareness – help managers understand the role of reward in delivering good people management practices with their teams. Ensure managers are clear on the relationship to business goals and the impact on teams.

Involve managers in the design – As reward practices exist to recruit, retain and motivate employees, it makes sense to involve managers in the design. Involve managers early on to increase your success when it comes to implementation.

Establish tools and training – Provide line managers with access to tools to help manage practices from merit based pay to rewarding good performance. Supplement the tools with training to support managers in exercising good judgement and consistency.

Make communications a priority – Why? Good communications may be the single most important factor in achieving successful implementation. Involve managers at the outset to increase their ‘buy-in’ and ensure 2-way feedback processes are in place.

Support managers – The credibility of reward relies on line managers being seen as fair and consistent in reward practices. Offer support to help managers make sound judgements that are aligned to your business goals and organisational culture.

Assess the impact – Assess and measure progress of reward management practices through mechanisms such as peer reviews and employee satisfaction surveys. Consider linking results into line managers’ performance management goals where appropriate.

** Please note that this advice is provided as guidance only.

This entry was posted in News, Newsletter September 2012.