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Definition - What does Incentive mean?

An incentive, within the context of workplace safety, refers to rewards participation in health programs and meeting workplace health goals. In general, an incentive is anything used to encourage someone either to perform a task or to work harder at a task, such as a gift certificate or cash reward. In particular, workplace health programs may use incentives to encourage worker acceptance and participation. Incentive programs may also be used to encourage better workplace safety practices. The use of workplace incentives can be subject to federal and state anti-discrimination and disability laws.

SureHire explains Incentive

Incentives are one component of an overall workplace health and safety program. Employees may be offered free gym memberships, novelty items, cost sharing or discounts to encourage participation in the program. Workers may also be offered goal-based rewards to encourage them to change health and safety behaviors. However, incentives offered in the workplace must comply with state and federal laws. In particular, health-contingent incentive programs may need to provide alternative means of achieving awards for employees who are unable to participate due to disability. All incentive programs must be designed to operate in a non-discriminatory manner, offering equal opportunity to all employees. Ultimately, the goal of any incentive program should be to change long-term behavior by changing the attitudes and health and safety values of the target workforce.

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