Sales Incentive Practices Study

Designing an effective sales incentive plan is critical to the long-term success of any organization. Sales incentive plan design must align with the financial vision of the organization and, at the same time, attract and motivate top-tier sales talent. To help analyze these key design components, our annual study provides you with detailed information on the crucial plan design elements you will need to consider when creating a world-class sales incentive plan.

Survey Scope

By making our entire suite of market practice studies automatically available to Radford Global Compensation Database participants, and complimentary to everyone who provides a complete and timely submission, we’ve maximized our data collection efforts. Our most recent Sales Incentive Practices Study includes:


Sales Incentive Practice



Covered Practices

Our Sales Incentive Practices Study covers the following key market practices:


Sales Team Organization

Sales Plan Design
  • Components of target total cash
  • Quota setting/attainment
  • Incentive payout curve
  • Threshold/cap

Special Plan Situations
  • Multi-year sales
  • Windfall treatment
  • Leave of absence
Sales Incentive Management
  • Payout frequency
  • Draws

Sales Performance Funding Formula (SPIFF)

Recognition/Award Program



Our Sales Incentive Practices Study is conducted once a year with the following general schedule:

  • Data collection opens — April 2022
  • Data collection closes — November 2022
  • Results published — March 2023


Results for the Sales Incentive Practices Study are provided in a PDF format. Key plan design findings are reported by role to provide insight on differences in plan design among roles.


Access to the Sales Incentive Practices Study is limited to Radford Global Compensation Database participants. All clients are automatically invited to submit data once a year via an online questionnaire posted on the Radford Network®. To check on your company's submission status, visit the input page on the Radford Network and look for the "Sales Incentive Practices Study" information tile.


All Radford Global Compensation Database participants who provide a complete and timely submission to the Sales Incentive Practices Study will receive a complimentary copy of overall study results at the time of publication. Custom industry or peer group reports can be purchased separately for $500 each.

Radford Global Compensation Database participants who do not submit information to this study can purchase overall study results for a fee at the time of publication.

Participation in the Radford Global Compensation Database is required to join this study. To learn more about your survey participation options, click here.


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