RBS boosts employee motivation and engagement through its CSR approach

As part of its aim to become more efficient and environmentally responsible, Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) launched a reward scheme that engages employees with its corporate and social responsibility (CSR) goals.

Mike Lynch, sustainable workplace culture manager in the workplace specialist services team at RBS, says: “The bank is aiming to become number one for trust and advocacy, and we believe that if we are a responsible business taking care of the environment then that’s going to help get us towards that goal.

“The other thing is that we want to become more efficient. As a business, we have over 2,000 buildings and the energy bills are significant, so there’s a cost element in efficiency there.

“Then there’s employee engagement: getting people interested, engaged and rewarded for taking part in something that makes people feel good.”

In 2016, RBS ran a pilot of the Jump programme, provided by Green Rewards, with 1,200 employees. As part of the pilot, employees participated in challenges to see how they could save things like energy, water, and waste paper, and were rewarded for their sustainability efforts.

Teams were responsible for a ‘last person out’ checklist to take responsibility for ensuring everything was switched off and no taps were left on at the end of the day to save water and energy.

The rewards included wall socket timers so that employees could install them on electrical appliances that are usually left on standby in their own homes in order to save money on their own bills.

As an incentive to join the scheme, employees had the option of claiming a KeepCup reusable coffee cup or water bottle. Over 1,000 KeepCups were distributed, which led to the bank removing disposable cups from one of its sites.

Among employees that took part in the pilot, 95% said that the scheme contributed towards employee engagement, team building and environmental sustainability.

In March 2017, the scheme was extended to all RBS employees in the UK and Ireland, comprising more than 60,000 individuals, through a smartphone app whereby they can take part in the sustainability challenges to earn points. Employees that earn the most points will be awarded gift vouchers.