Only 49% are motivated by pay

Almost half (49%) of respondents are motivated by how much they are paid, according to research by the Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM).

Its Beyond the bonus: driving employee performance research, which surveyed more than 1,000 employees, found that performance-related bonuses were considerably less effective as a motivator, with only 13% of respondents choosing it as one of their top three most important motivators.

The top motivators included: enjoyment of their role (59%), getting on with colleagues (42%), how well they are treated by their managers (22%) and how much control they have over their work (22%).

The research found that part-time workers (76%) were more motivated at work than full-time workers (68%), despite being paid less pro rata (£10,793 a year, less than half of the average salary of £22,328 for a full time employee).

The research also found:

  • 64% of female respondents chose enjoying their job as the most important motivator, followed by how well they get on with colleagues (44%), base salary (41%).
  • Male respondents chose salary and benefits (58%) as the most important factor, followed by enjoying the job (53%) and how well they get on with colleagues (41%).
  • Among respondents under 30, 55% indicated that money was either very or pretty important to them, compared to 43% of those aged over 30.

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Charles Elvin, chief executive officer of ILM, said: “ILM set out to discover just how effective UK organisations are at motivating their employees, with a particular focus on the impact of financial incentives on employee performance.

“ILM asked more than 1,000 employees about the things that motivated them most effectively, from how much they are paid to how their manager treats them, in order to better understand what UK managers and organisations can do to help their businesses succeed.”