US technology firm rewards 8,500 staff with iPods

US technology firm National Semiconductor has celebrated its most successful financial year by giving each of its 8,500 employees a 30GB iPod.

The company, which produces microchips and analogue circuits for PCs and mobile devices, will use Apple’s portable music player as a new training and communications tool by offering national ‘podcasts’ and other employee communications.

“We’re looking for new and more effective ways to communicate with our employees – and the iPods will help us do both,” said Brian Halla, National’s chairman and chief executive.

“Our employees were vital contributors to our most successful year in National’s 47-year history, and we wanted to equip them with the tools to help us create more value for our customers.”

Increasing numbers of employers are attempting to tap into the popularity of youth icons such as the iPod.

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