Why quirky employee perks just don’t work

From hammocks and games consoles in the employee lounge to motivational quotes adorning the walls, quirky employee perks just don’t cut it for the majority of workers.

Businesses are trying harder than ever to attract and retain the best quality staff around and are going to amazing lengths to make their business stand out amongst their competitors when it comes to employee perks and benefits.

However, many of the more ‘out of the box’ employee perks just aren’t getting the reaction that the company anticipated and are just seen as annoying or gimmicky by their staff.

So what benefits and perks do actually work?

Technology that performs
Scrap the latest must-have office toys and focus your attention on providing technology that is reliable and capable. Employees might be slightly impressed for a few minutes by the interactive coffee machine or other quirky break room tech, but it’s far more important to allocate your budget to providing items that help them to perform their role.

Employees are far happier with better technical support and reliable internet access than they are with USB mug warmers and other, pointless pieces of office technology.

Employee perks that benefit the majority
Employers need to realise that not all perks are going to suit the individual circumstances of everyone.

Probably the best example of this is free childcare, which is obviously only of any real value for people who already have a young family or those thinking of starting one.

Taking the time to understand what employee perks will benefit the majority of workers before just offering them is the only way of ensuring that your staff will appreciate the value of the benefits and actually use them.

Appreciation of their lifestyle
Although free Zumba classes might not be for everyone, as a society we’re far more switched on to the benefits of a healthy lifestyle. Subsidised gym memberships, good quality food at the office canteen and free fruit are amongst the employee perks that rate highly with almost all employees.

Another element worth considering is the responsibilities have outside of the standard office 9 to 5, including family commitments, hobbies and other activities. Businesses that offer the perk of flexible working, the opportunity to buy (or sell) annual leave and the chance to earn a day off for exceptional work are amongst those with the highest staff retention rates.