When it comes to paying better wages and keeping employees invested in the company, Zappos isn't waiting for the other shoe to drop.
The Amazon-owned online retail shop is already known as a game changer with a catchy management phrase it calls "holacracy."
That stands for replacing traditional job titles with the practice of employees assigning one another with roles agreed upon during meetings with their colleagues.
Now, the company is taking a new approach with work incentives. Zappos plans to ask employees to choose their hourly work schedule based on higher pay and perks offered. The retailer recently stepped into this space by testing a new compensation model for their call center employees.
The model is called Open Market and is similar to Uber's surge pay that charges more during times of greater demand. Basically, Zappos plans to pay more on shifts with a higher number of callers.
"We wanted to start testing how we could give our call center employees more flexibility and be able to incentivize people to come to work when we needed them, even if the timing wasn't always ideal," said Adam Goldstein in an interview.
Goldstein is the senior products manager at Zappos Labs, the shoe seller's R&D group that focuses on experiments concentrated on social, content and commerce.
Along with his team, Goldstein developed the Open Market project in 10 weeks using a variety of algorithms and metrics, including historical data, call volume forecasts blended with seasonality assumptions, and rolled out a pilot test of the program during the retail industry's busiest time of year: between Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday.