incentive payments

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Payment by results: any method—such as individual piecework—of paying workers above a basic minimum and in relation to their output or productivity. Schemes may apply to individuals, small groups, or (as with some so-called profit-related pay arrangements) to entire workforces. Incentive payments require precise and acceptable measures of output and assume that workers are always motivated to maximize short-run money earnings. The aim, often unrealized, is to increase workers' effort and commitments to their tasks. See also effort bargaining; human relations theory; scientific management.

Subjects: Sociology.

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