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  1. #1
    Nobody mconlonx's Avatar
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    Company Bicycle Commuter incentives?

    Anyone work for a company that has any bicycle commuting incentives? I'd love to hear some examples of successful ones.

    Anyone ever have a hand in successfully devoloping one that was actually implemented?

    If there are threads around here which document such things, I'd be happy if people pointed them out to me. A couple of different searches didn't seem to yield much... but I haven't really looked into it overly much at this point.

    Recently, and for the first time in my life, I hired on to a larger company with all kinds of fringe benefits. One is commuter incentives--reimbursement for motor vehicle transit via public transport and car parking fees. They recently also introduced a Wellness Reimbursement Initiative, but it is rather limited in scope to traditional health club membership, accredited weight loss and smoking cessation programs. Anyone see the problem here? (No bicycle commuter incentives which would cover the goals of both programs.)

    I know that some of the transportation issues are covered by tax breaks granted to companies which adopt such programs, but I'm unaware that the wellness program is based on any such possible offset. Seems to me that if the co. is actively promoting mass transit and well-being, that it's silly for them not to offer some kind of bicycle commuter incentive. Certainly this is a bit selfish as a commuter, but along with higher gas pricing, it might be just the thing to get more out on bikes for transportation.

    So I'm looking for examples of biking incentives offered at other companies and any accounts of those who have had a hand in successfully implementing them at their place of employment.

  2. #2
    Senior Member murphstahoe's Avatar
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    At Advanced Micro Devices....

    We can buy commuter checks pre-tax, and there is also this.

    Monthly Drawings (Eligible: Go Green members tracking commutes)
    On the first Monday of each month the Go Green Program will hold a $100 drawing for each week of the previous month.

    Quarterly Drawings (Eligible: New Go Green members only)
    On the first Monday of each quarter, according to the AMD fiscal calendar, the Go Green Program will hold a $300 drawing among new participants.


    NEW!!
    - Bike to work and get discounts to Calmar Bicycles. 5 mi or less = 2 pts and 6 mi or more = 3 pts (one-way). Points are turned in each fiscal quarter. 10 pts = 10 % off, 30 pts = 20% off (or 3 x 10% off) and 60 pts = $25 gift card (*parts and accessories only; can't be used with other offers).

  3. #3
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    I've been thinking about this for the past year, but haven't been able to find out a ton of info on how to go about setting it up. I'd love to see this integrated into our eco-plan, but would need to package it perfectly or it'll get shot down.

  4. #4
    Senior Member littlewaywelt's Avatar
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    VACATION TIME
    - Give time bonuses to bicyclists (15 minutes of vacation time each bicycle commute trip) works out to 8 days for a whole year
    - Offer "flextime" for bicycling employees so they can avoid peak rush hour congestion and fumes.
    - Green Mondays - give a paid monday or fridat off once a month to green commuters

    CASH BACK
    - cash incentives to commuters (generally from $1 to $0.25 per commute, or per mile from $0.28 to $0.05). Similarly, offering a health package that includes fee reductions for fit and active employees can save everyone money.
    - paid gym membership for bike commuters so they can shower change, etc.
    - Give cash back to bicyclists for part or all of the parking spaces they don't use (if your business subsidizes parking in building parking
    - $1000 towards a new bike or upgrades once every two-three years
    Hold monthly drawings for cash or other prizes for bicyclists. Give ppl on ticket for every bike commute they did.
    - gift certificate to e-giftcertificates.com

    EQUIPMENT
    - Refund bike maintenance or basic expenses. $150/year
    - Purchase equipment such as helmets, rear-view mirrors, blinkies, headlights or reflective vests for those employees who commit to commuting by bike three or more times a week.
    - Provide a pool of company-owned bikes which employees may use for short business trips, errands and recreation.
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  5. #5
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    I like all of the benefits being posted, but how do you convince your employer to spend money specifically on bike commuters?

  6. #6
    kipuka explorer bkrownd's Avatar
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    The best incentive is a shower. !
    --
    -=- '05 Jamis Nova -=- '04 Fuji Absolute -=- '94 Trek 820 -=- '77 Schwinn Scrambler 36/36 -=-
    Friends don't let friends use brifters.

  7. #7
    Been Around Awhile I-Like-To-Bike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by littlewaywelt View Post
    VACATION TIME
    - Give time bonuses to bicyclists (15 minutes of vacation time each bicycle commute trip) works out to 8 days for a whole year
    - Offer "flextime" for bicycling employees so they can avoid peak rush hour congestion and fumes.
    - Green Mondays - give a paid monday or fridat off once a month to green commuters

    CASH BACK
    - cash incentives to commuters (generally from $1 to $0.25 per commute, or per mile from $0.28 to $0.05). Similarly, offering a health package that includes fee reductions for fit and active employees can save everyone money.
    - paid gym membership for bike commuters so they can shower change, etc.
    - Give cash back to bicyclists for part or all of the parking spaces they don't use (if your business subsidizes parking in building parking
    - $1000 towards a new bike or upgrades once every two-three years
    Hold monthly drawings for cash or other prizes for bicyclists. Give ppl on ticket for every bike commute they did.
    - gift certificate to e-giftcertificates.com

    EQUIPMENT
    - Refund bike maintenance or basic expenses. $150/year
    - Purchase equipment such as helmets, rear-view mirrors, blinkies, headlights or reflective vests for those employees who commit to commuting by bike three or more times a week.
    - Provide a pool of company-owned bikes which employees may use for short business trips, errands and recreation.
    You forgot free Pizza and Beer on demand at the job site. Why not? Don't Bike Commuters deserve that benefit from their employer as much as all the others you listed?

  8. #8
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    LEED certification

    Point your business owners toward the idea of achieving LEED certification on your building, because within that is the idea of sustainable operations and there is a credit system for alternative commuting transportation. LEED certification is publicly recognized and can be beneficial for business and building owners, mainly USA but catching on worldwide now with all the greening of the world.

    See this guidebook page 17 of 81, SS credits 4.1-4.4

    Payoff is 1 to 4 points (of minimum 34 needed to achieve certification progressing (Silver, Gold, Platinum) to a maximum of 92):

    1 for 10% reduction in conventional single occupant motor commuter trips
    2 for 25%
    3 for 50%
    4 for 75%

    at the bottom of page 17 they discuss some of the topics under consideration in this thread (racks, showers, parking, incentives, etc.).
    Longbikes Slipstream

  9. #9
    Senior Member littlewaywelt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
    You forgot free Pizza and Beer on demand at the job site. Why not? Don't Bike Commuters deserve that benefit from their employer as much as all the others you listed?
    They are only ideas...and some companies already have things like that. Some much greater.

    Ppl deserve equal consideration. When a company subsidizes mass transit or auto commuting there's no reason they can't also subsidize bike commuting when it has obvious benefits for the company. And if progressive companies are trying to encourage greener behavior, incentives like those can play a role.

    Imo there is no justification for paying for an employee's parking or other commuting expenses on a hit or miss basis. You either subsidize everyone or not at all. Incentivizing certain types of behaviors is a different issue. IMO, you subsidize expenses and incentivize/reward behavior.
    Last edited by littlewaywelt; 04-15-08 at 01:53 PM.
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  10. #10
    RacingBear UmneyDurak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bkrownd View Post
    The best incentive is a shower. !
    with secure lockers and parking.
    I see hills.... Bring them on!!!
    Stay calm and bring a towel.

  11. #11
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    we had a choice (at my old job). A parking spot, a bus pass, or the equivalent to the parking spot in cash if you rode your bike to work. Of course we also had covered and secure bike parking, and shower facilities.

    Some were able to double dip with the bus pass and the cash for biking, but as I left the company, they were talking about putting a stop to that.

  12. #12
    Senior Member littlewaywelt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BootsyC View Post
    I like all of the benefits being posted, but how do you convince your employer to spend money specifically on bike commuters?
    I took this line.

    I found out who on staff got what benefit, auto or metro subsidy and priced out what they were spending on each type.
    I then calc'd everyone's individual out of pocket expenses (parking or metro only - no gas) based on what employees told me they were spending
    I then calc'd everyone's carbon footprint for commuting either by train or drive based on a few constants.

    I broke down the final numbers into avg, max and min out of pocket expenses for auto parking vs mass transit. I left out our vps that get in bldg parking, so we were really only looking at staff. I did the same numbers for carbon output. It made an easy sell that way.

    Given that drivers were losing far less money than metroers, I made the case that we were rewarding the wrong behavior (I work at a cons org), and that we needed to upgrade our subsidy. That the ppl (I left bikes completely out of it) who were inconveniencing themselves the most to do the green thing were paying the most out of pocket (nearly double).

    Once all the reasearch was done I gave to another colleague to pitch (again no bike bene) so that it wouldn't be perceived as my agenda. Once our high level management was sold on it at least from a "we need to increase commuter subsidies" he was able to add in that some staff were still losing money/still not incentivized or subsidized. Again we sold it based on the green / carbon factor and the inequity between cars and mass transit users. That paves the way for a bike subsidy.

    The bike subsidy hasn't been setup or approved, but I am extremely confident that we're going to get one. Personally, I'm hoping for the 1k every two years approach which is less than 1/2 what we spend on parking or metro, and probably 1/3 of what we spend when/if subsidies are increased.
    Last edited by littlewaywelt; 04-15-08 at 01:57 PM.
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  13. #13
    kipuka explorer bkrownd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by UmneyDurak View Post
    with secure lockers and parking.
    and somewhere dry to hang smelly clothes and wet towels.
    --
    -=- '05 Jamis Nova -=- '04 Fuji Absolute -=- '94 Trek 820 -=- '77 Schwinn Scrambler 36/36 -=-
    Friends don't let friends use brifters.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by littlewaywelt View Post
    I took this line.

    I found out who on staff got what benefit, auto or metro subsidy and priced out what they were spending on each type.
    What if subsidies are not available or are negotiated while hiring, and therefore individual, if they even exist?

  15. #15
    Senior Member littlewaywelt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BootsyC View Post
    What if subsidies are not available or are negotiated while hiring, and therefore individual, if they even exist?
    in a small company with fewer types of fringe benefit packages (but where everyone gets something) I think it's easier to make the "fair" argument. in a big company it might be advantageous to pitch it as something that buys them good pr for next to nothing since, few are likely to take full advantage of it and as such it won't hit them financially.

    If they don't exist at all then you might try and pitch it on the green values alone both as reward and incentive for behavior that benefits everyone. It might also be easier to sell if you explain the benefits the company gets because you bike commute. LOAB (www.bikeleague.org) has a list, but for starters, fewer sick days, sharper during work hours, and in general better health. You might also ask some of your coworkers if they get commuting subsidies and if so what they are.
    One Less Car
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