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Company uses card mechanism to incentivise safety

An image of Steve Mallaby

STEVE MALLABY Some companies understand that safety and sustainability need to form a part of their overarching strategy, and they are "quite progressive" and open to new ideas

7th June 2024

By: Lumkile Nkomfe

Creamer Media Reporter


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To address a multitude of workforce challenges, financial services company adumo Payouts advocates for the adoption by employers of behaviour- enhancing incentivisation for employees and increased financial literacy among blue-collar workers in the mining, manufacturing and construction industries.

The company’s Premium iMali Card aims to create zero harm for employees across these sectors and become a de facto distribution mechanism for incentives. The card rewards employees for adhering to workplace compliance and safety regulations. It has been used by major mining companies, whereby employees have been rewarded for being conscious of their surroundings at work, and for promoting safe working areas.

Some companies understand that safety and sustainability need to form a part of their overarching strategy, and they are “quite progressive” and open to new ideas, outlines adumo Payouts CEO Steve Mallaby.

More companies are realising that it is not enough to simply say that they are going to pay out an incentive and are opting to work with a company that understands a better way of distributing incentives.

In outlining the challenges of introducing the Premium iMali card, Mallaby adds that some companies question the need to incentivise workers, especially after the dispersion of salaries.

“We have found certain schools of thought, which we think are outdated. You have grocery vouchers being handed out, but how is this helping a person save for the end of the year or to put their kids through university?”

Despite this, Mallaby asserts that sound, progressive leadership and the “right” workforce culture can make a significant difference in addressing ongoing health and safety challenges across various workforces in the sectors in which they operate.

Leaders should have an acute understanding of their workforce composition, which is gradually shifting towards young people.

“Younger people are more in tune with what they want, but there’s this concept of instant gratification. If you do something well, why should you have to wait weeks to be rewarded for it? A lot of us have become like that. So, when we talk about instant gratification, it’s about linking the timing of the reward very closely to the behaviour and that, in turn, drives positive reinforcement,” Mallaby explains.

This relative immediacy eliminates the practice of workers having to wait for the end of the month while allowing them the option of using their rewards or saving them.

adumo indicates that the Premium iMali card has been positively received at blue-collar level. Mallaby says labour unions have been supportive of the company’s aims and efforts.

The company says the design and appeal of the card have engendered feelings of pride among this category of workers, and Mallaby highlights that there is still a level of trust because this card is issued in conjunction with MasterCard.

“When I say that there is a very high trust factor, it means that there is no friction. When we give you the card, minimal education is required in terms of how and where to use the card, but you also have the peace of mind knowing that it’s secure,” he elaborates.

Mallaby says that adumo continuing to provide its services for various companies in the mining, manufacturing and construction sectors is testament that the incentive programme works.

In trying to gain a better understanding of emerging workforce needs, adumo is using an external research organisation to undertake research on its behalf. While the Protection of Personal Information Act makes it difficult to do that on an individual level, there is impetus to receive feedback, as it allows for enhancing the company’s solutions offering.

The overarching aim of adumo’s offering is to educate corporates on a variety of incentive programmes, consequently facilitating better performances from their employees. Technology can be used in these sectors to foster closer and more positive interactions among employees, Mallaby adds.

In its common purpose of promoting zero harm across various sectors, adumo hopes to continue playing a pivotal part in a variety of workplace health and safety strategies.

“We would probably want to become the de facto distribution mechanism to make sure that, ultimately, we are also empowering workers to be a lot more independent. If you have a workforce that is significantly engaged, that can only be good for an organisation,” Mallaby concludes.

Edited by Nadine James
Features Deputy Editor




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