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Smarter task assignment or greater effort: the impact of incentives on team performance

Burgess, S.; Propper, C.; Ratto, M.; Scholder, S.; Tominey, E.; (2009) Smarter task assignment or greater effort: the impact of incentives on team performance. (CMPO Working Paper Series 09/215). Centre for Market and Public Organisation, University of Bristol: Bristol, UK. Green open access

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Abstract

We use an experiment to study the impact of team-based incentives, exploiting rich data from personnel records and management information systems. Using a triple difference design, we show that the incentive scheme had an impact on team performance, even with quite large teams. We examine whether this effect was due to increased effort from workers or strategic task reallocation. We find that the provision of financial incentives did raise individual performance but that managers also disproportionately reallocated efficient workers to the incentivised tasks. We show that this reallocation was the more important contributor to the overall outcome.

Type: Working / discussion paper
Title: Smarter task assignment or greater effort: the impact of incentives on team performance
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Publisher version: http://www.bristol.ac.uk/cmpo/publications/papers/...
Language: English
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Dept of Economics
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/18619
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