Companies today are routinely challenged with finding the best and brightest to join their organization and employee perks weigh heavily in a candidates final determination on which company to select. Since most new hires are comprised of Gen X’ers and Millennials, statistics have shown that these desirable candidates seek greater work-life perks such as flex time, expanded or unlimited vacation days, work from home options, gym memberships, as well as free food, beverages and catered lunches. In fact, of the overall workforce, 56% of employees would prefer workplace perks over salary increases with that percentage increasing as the workforce age declined; 57.4%- ages 35-44 and 63.9% ages -25-34.
At first blush, on-site complementary meals, snacks and beverages would appear to be very costly. However, the reality is that the perceived advantages far exceed the expense, especially when it results in candidates selecting your company over the competition. In fact, there are several factors that favor companies who offer complimentary food and beverages in the office such as:
1 - Providing in-house meals reinforces the positive culture of the company as employees perceive that their leaders care about them as valued people first which in turn increases company morale while potentially reducing turnover.
2 - Leaving the office, getting into traffic jams and waiting in long fast-food lines typically add up to additional time away from the office. And needless to say, this doesn’t include those who have to chisel their car windows in wintry climates. As an example, if an associate has to spend an additional 30 minutes a day to purchase a meal from a fast food restaurant, this could potentially cost the company over three weeks annually in lost productivity time.
3 - Generally speaking, employees who eat their lunch together, talk about work more often, stay more focused and interact with associates outside of their department which could potentially enhance work productivity and networking opportunities.
4 - Living on a lunch diet consisting of fast food burgers and fries wear on an associate (pun intended) over time which could cause additional sick days, increase overall health costs, not to mention sleepy afternoons. Conversely, adapting or supporting company wellness, healthy choices such as entrée salads and grilled chicken items become a win-win for both the company as well as for the employee as healthy eating habits are encouraged and practiced.
If these elements appeal to your organization, Variety FoodServices can carve out a program that’s flexible, creative and still cost effective for any company.
Are you interested in learning more about what goes into choosing a food service program for your employees? Get access to our "4 Step Guide To Choosing a Food Program" Guide here.