In the United Kingdom, residents of the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead are to be incentivised for positive behaviour by being awarded Nectar points if they switch to more environmentally friendly methods of receiving and paying their Council Tax bills, registering to volunteer, and tidying their 'adopted street'. This article is copyright 2012 The Best Customer Guide.

The Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead worked with Nectar's parent company, Aimia, to create the pilot scheme aimed at incentivising positive behaviour among residents of the borough.

Following a successful pilot run in partnership with Birmingham City Council, Nectar will now work with the Royal Borough to pilot the scheme which will reward residents with Nectar points for a variety of activities, including:

  • Switching to easier methods of Council Tax payments
    The Royal Borough aims to make it as easy as possible for residents to pay their council tax. Now, residents will be able to collect up to 1,000 Nectar points if they switch to more efficient, environmentally friendly methods of receiving and paying Council Tax bills.
  • Volunteering
    The Royal Borough is working in partnership with Windsor and Maidenhead Voluntary Action (WMVA) to encourage residents to volunteer. Residents will be awarded 1,500 Nectar points for registering with WMVA and an additional 1,000 points each time they begin a new volunteer placement.
  • Adopt-a-Street
    Adopt-a-Street gives residents the opportunity to help keep the Royal Borough clean and tidy. Residents simply choose the area they want to 'adopt' and the Council provides them with the necessary tools to take part. Adopt-a-Street has been in operation since 2009, but residents will now be incentivised to sign-up and take part. They will be able to collect 500 Nectar points when they register with Adopt-a-Street and an additional 1,000 Nectar points each time they tidy their 'adopted area'.

According to Eric Pickles, Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, "Up and down the country, local authorities are working hard to make each pound they spend go further for their residents. Incentives are an important part of that, helping drive innovation and efficiency savings through services. Building on the success of their recycling rewards deal, this new voluntary scheme is a great way to get Windsor and Maidenhead's local people more involved in their community by rewarding residents for their participation - proving that carrots really do work better than sticks."

Will Shuckburgh, Nectar's Client Services Director, added: "We know Collectors and partners love getting behind initiatives they believe in, with millions being rewarded for reducing plastic bag usage by Sainsbury's or switching to paperless billing by British Gas. It's exciting to see the public sector using Nectar points as a tool to drive positive behaviour in the community. This has already been done in partnership with Birmingham City Council, rewarding recycling or more active lifestyles through leisure centre usage."

"By joining forces with Nectar we are giving residents well-deserved recognition for helping others, and making our borough a great place to live," said Councillor David Burbage, Leader of the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead. "And, by changing the ways they manage their Council Tax, residents can also help make our borough greener as well as saving Council Tax payers' money by enabling us to cut paper bills."

Nectar's existing partnership with Birmingham City Council is now in a period of assessment, but initial results are positive and it is hoped that this scheme will become a permanent initiative.

In 2012, Nectar celebrated 10 years of rewarding British shoppers and has given back over £1.7 billion of rewards to collectors, including money off shopping, travel, days out and cinema tickets. More than 18.5 million collectors earn Nectar points when shopping for groceries, doing DIY, booking a holiday, paying household bills, buying petrol and even getting their car serviced. Collectors also earn Nectar points every time they shop online via nectar.com at over 500 leading online retailers.