Case Study SAS final by l00IJz


									Gift Certificate Center – SAS Institute Case Study

                                CASE STUDY:
                               SAS INSTITUTE
“We’re a 28-year-old company with employees reaching new milestones, including
20-year anniversaries and eventually 30-year anniversaries and retirement, so we’re
trying to be proactive in finding the best ways to reward our employees.” says Jack Poll,
director of recreation and fitness division of SAS Institute, a national software company
that consistently places in the top 20 of FORTUNE Magazine’s “100 Best Companies to
Work For”.

SAS Institute is headquartered in Cary, North Carolina (just outside of Raleigh).
Established in 1976, SAS Institute has long been a pioneer in employee-friendly perks,
including Friday Breakfast Goodies, Wednesday M&Ms, Fresh Fruit on Mondays, break
rooms stocked with complimentary drinks and snacks, and seasonal parties throughout
the year. The software leader now boasts a customer list that includes American Honda,
The Home Depot® and Staples employing 10,000 worldwide in offices from Anguilla
to Yemen.

Thinking Ahead to Celebrate Every Employee Milestone
As the growing company searched for ways to reward their 5,000 US employees, the
idea of using gift certificates and gift cards seemed to be the best fit because it allowed
the rewarded employee to select their own gift. The problem with single store gift
certificates was that not everyone is happy with the available selections. “We were
rewarding employees with gift certificates to local restaurants and stores, “ says Jack
Poll. “Our CEO even wanted to give airline tickets to retiring employees, but what if the
retiree didn’t want to travel or buy from that store we selected for them? We wanted to
give our employees something that they really wanted to make the gift more meaningful.
Our employees vary so much in age and lifestyles, we needed a more flexible gift
certificate program.”

Award-Winning, Employee-Friendly Company Selects Gift Certificate Center
After a long search for the right incentive solution, Poll found Gift Certificate Center®.
Gift Certificate Center is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Hallmark Cards, Inc., an 80-year
old leader in gift giving, and offers the choice of 400 merchants as part of its
www.Premiere Choice Award®. This program allows SAS Institute employees to redeem
their award using a flexible online technology that interfaces with the company’s intranet.
Premiere Choice Award offers gift cards and certificates to national retailers, including®, The Home Depot®, Sears and Target®, and it even provides employees
who want to go on that retirement trip with the opportunity to redeem it for a certificate
to American Airlines®.
Gift Certificate Center – SAS Institute Case Study

Why Gift Certificate Center Works For SAS:
 “Choice is why Premiere Choice Award works with our employees. Not only are there
400 stores, restaurants and other merchants to choose from, Gift Certificate Center also
allows our employees to select how they want to spend their certificate – breaking up the
award amount among one or many of the stores or restaurants available,” says Poll.
“With a company like Hallmark behind them, it is a company with both an impressive list
of merchant offerings, and a parent company with a long history.”

Great choice isn’t the only thing Gift Certificate Center has brought to the employees at
SAS Institute. Gift Certificate Center provides an easy-to-access customer service team
to quickly answer questions that administrators may have. “Gift Certificate Center
always goes the extra mile to make our employees happy with their gifts,” says Poll.
“Gift Certificate Center always makes sure the employee gets what they want. We have
always been happy with the way Gift Certificate Center works with our employees. After
all, this program is for them.”

How Employees Get Rewarded:
The process is very simple. An SAS Institute manager goes online to issue a
Premiere Choice Award to their employee, selects the amount to reward and even
designates their budget reference codes for the Premiere Choice Award. Then, the
manager personalizes the award with a special message, SAS logo and employee’s name.
Once ordered, the award usually takes less than two days to arrive on the employee’s

The employee then either calls a 1-800 number, mails in a redemption form or logs onto a
web site to redeem their Premiere Choice Award. Once the employee enters the unique
tracking code from their Premiere Choice Award, they choose to redeem their award to
one merchant or spread out the amount among many. The employee chooses from 400
national, regional and local merchants.

“It is so simple to use,” says Poll whose 5000 U.S. employees are mostly software
engineers and therefore, naturally technology savvy, “Employees log onto and make their gift certificate or card selection, and
within 24-to-48 hours receive their gift cards and certificates.”

Employees Love It:
After more than two years using Gift Certificate Center’s Premiere Choice Awards,
Jack Poll is still pleased with his decision to add it to the SAS Institute roster of
employee perks.

“As we grow older as a company, we need to stay current with our employees’ variety –
in age, lifestyle and everything,” says Poll. “Gift Certificate Center helps us easily get
them what they want because it leaves it completely in their hands – or I should say
completely in their click.”

To top