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United Airlines Announces Lottery to Replace Bonuses

United Airlines Announces Lottery to Replace Bonuses

United Airlines Announces Lottery to Replace Bonuses

Inc. reports that under the new system, about 1.6% of employees-Quartz reports United has 86,000-would win something.

As reported by Inc, Employees were quick to voice their disquiet over the lottery on the company's internal communication system and private Facebook page.

Scott Kirby, president of the Chicago-based airline, said United was "pressing the pause button" on changes that would have handed out much larger bonuses - including vacations and luxury cars - but to only a fraction of its workers.

On Monday, United quickly shelved plans to replace quarterly employee bonuses with a $100,000 lottery prize, after a stinging backlash from its workforce.

The previously proposed bonus system would have offered employees lottery drawings for cash prizes, luxury cars and vacation packages instead of the now approved quarterly performance bonuses. Over 1,000 employees would win these prizes per quarter if certain operational criteria were met, according to the initial announcement sent to employees and obtained by ABC News. The lottery idea was introduced two months later, and it was not received with the kind of enthusiasm that executives of this airline had hoped for.

Southwest Airlines Co. has its own lottery system that awards a small number of employees cash prizes based on the number of company goals achieved each year, a spokeswoman for the carrier said. Other employees stated that the lottery system does not appeal to them and could thus opt out of participating simply by not doing a good job. The company has been under pressure to keep shareholders happy as budget airlines have been taking away market share.

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These were posted on the internal United Airlines employee website, Flying Together. Earlier, the union had said that employees were "entirely opposed to and offended by this new "select' bonus program". United Continental has about 88,000 employees.

"Since announcing our planned changes to the quarterly operations incentive program, we have listened carefully to the feedback and concerns you've expressed", Kirby wrote.

Our intention was to introduce a better, more exciting program, but we misjudged how these changes would be received by many of you. "We are pressing the pause button", he wrote.

It was roundly criticized by workers' feedback.

The move tarnished the airline's already beleaguered reputation, instead of boosting employee morale. "We believe that this new program will build excitement and a sense of accomplishment as we continue to set all-time operational records that result in an experience that our customers value".

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