Office perks not only benefit individual employees, but the entire company as well. Clutch, a business management consultant firm, surveyed more than 500 employees and found that company amenities “increase workers’ efficiency, decrease turnover, and improve company culture overall. There are many simple and effective perks that a company can offer its employees.
Fitness and Wellness Perks
Offices should offer fitness and wellness perks to their employees. There are countless examples of health and wellness perks, and they all benefit employees in some capacity. Many larger corporations such as Square’s San Francisco headquarters have on-site amenities such as fitness centers, acupuncture, and chiropractic services available for employees. q
However, smaller companies can still provide employees with fitness and wellness perks even if they are not on-site. Many companies partner with local establishments, such as gyms and yoga studios, to provide employees with discounted or subsidized membership. Employers can also provide perks that benefit their employees’ mental health, such as therapy or meditation classes.
A poll conducted by Monster found that 42% of employees left a job due to a stressful environment, and another 35% were considering it. Fitness and wellness perks decrease employees’ stress levels significantly. This leads to more focused, productive, and happier employees while improving the company culture as a whole.
An Office Lounge Space and Social Area
Every business should provide employees with a lounge space or area where they can socialize during the day. Even if it is a simple room with couches and comfy chairs, employees deserve a place to relax, socialize, and just take a break throughout the work day. Some employees may find that working on their laptop from the comfort of a couch or recliner even stimulates their productivity.
Many offices are embracing this and implementing “recharge rooms.” This allows employees to take a break from their work by relaxing, stretching, napping, or meditating. After a brief stint in the recharge room, employees find themselves ready to attack the rest of the day with much more enthusiasm, production, and focus.
Some offices also have games and entertainment their social areas. Employees will enjoy taking a break from work to play games such as ping-pong, foosball, or darts. Some prefer this “active break” rather than just sitting on a couch for a few minutes. Games and entertainment can also stimulate team building and competitiveness in the office.
Flexible Scheduling and Remote Working
When practically applicable, flexible scheduling and the ability to work remotely are perks that every business should provide. While some jobs require one to be physically located at their place of work, most jobs and tasks can be done remotely due to laptops, computer programs, and software. According to the U.S. Census, 5.2% of workers (~8 million people) worked from home in 2017, up from 5% in 2016 and 3.3% in 2000. Many find themselves more productive while working remotely, as they may be comfier and less distracted working from their home or favorite coffee shop.
Many offices also experiment with unconventional schedules and work days. For example, some companies use a condensed work week schedule. By only coming into the office four days a week, employees are much more motivated and focused as they accomplish a normal week’s workload.
Some companies also allow employees to work remotely to avoid commuting, as a long and complicated commute leads to increased stress and decreased morale. Employees in some cities find themselves sitting in hours of traffic or hopping from train to train, but this is avoidable by remote working and flexible scheduling. Companies can also subsidize their employees’ commutes if necessary.
There are many benefits to flexible scheduling and remote working. Some find that their employees are more productive and motivated to work on their own time and in their own location rather than the traditional 9-5 schedule at the office. It also promotes a work/life balance, which is crucial for the mental health and overall wellness of the employees. Finally, this perk is very enticing to prospective employees while also helping retain current employees.
Free Food at the Office
Every business should provide snacks or even occasional meals to employees. There are many benefits to keeping employees well-nourished at work. It eliminates the midday lull and keeps employees energized, focused, and attentive throughout the rest of the day. It also helps employees outside of the office because they will not have to worry about packing or ordering food beforehand. Additionally, employees can interact and socialize while enjoying their free meal or snacks. Finally, free food helps lure new employees and keep current ones because it is one of the most important perks a company can offer.
Many employers are realizing the benefits of having a variety of food and snacks on hand for employees. Some even provide a meal or two per day, but many opt to keep the pantry and refrigerator full for employees instead. There are also international snack subscription services available that allow employees to experience many different snacks at once. These often vary from month to month, are very affordable, and ship right to the office!
Professional Development in the Workplace
Another important perk every business should provide is professional development for employees Professional development includes but is not limited to graduate school, workshops, mentorship programs, and certification courses.
Many employers also provide financial incentives and assistance for employees seeking professional development, which pay immediate dividends in the office. It makes current employees more likely to stay because they sense the opportunity for growth and feel valued. These same reasons make it desirable for any prospective employee. It also helps create and maintain a positive company culture.