The Incentive Marketing Association (IMA) has signed an affiliation agreement with Recognition Professionals International (RPI). The affiliation gives the organizations a larger network and scope of education, and offers enhanced operational efficiencies and resources for the industry.

“The alignment of our missions increases our voice and our reach,” says Len Sadek, CPIM, president of IMA. “The IMA advocates for and promotes the use of incentives and recognition to improve business performance. RPI’s mission is to enhance organizational performance through employee recognition by providing access to best practice standards, education, research and the exchange of ideas. Both are important components in amplifying the message that incentive and recognition programs benefit business production and the work environment.”

The IMA serves to connect members from across the incentive industry, and is the umbrella organization for the Incentive & Engagement Solution Providers (IESP), Incentive Gift Card Council (IGCC), Incentive Manufacturers & Representatives Alliance (IMRA), Incentive Travel Council (ITC), IMA Europe and IMA Canada. RPI’s members include business practitioners, many of which are from Fortune 500 organizations, who practice the art of recognition at their companies by administering, overseeing and designing recognition programs, as well as business solution providers that provide recognition services, tools and platforms to companies as a service, including consultation, program design and technology.

The affiliation provides a means for the organizations to better explore the opportunity for RPI to join the IMA family as a strategic industry group (SIG). The IMA represents, and focuses on expanding, all segments of the incentive, reward and recognition marketplace while the organization’s SIGs and chapters provide expertise and education to their respective market segments and regions to increase visibility and business opportunities. Tonda Ferguson, CRP, president of Recognition Professionals International, notes, “Becoming a SIG within the IMA would allow RPI to grow and increase its reach while retaining our brand equity and best practices that bring value to our members and the industry.”

To streamline operations for the affiliation, RPI will move its headquarters to the IMA office where RPI will be supported by IMA staff for daily operations. The RPI board and staff are working closely with the IMA board and staff to ensure a smooth transition of daily operations.