- Lifestyle benefits worth over £800 per year to employees
- Ability to work from home most valuable benefit
- Having a pet friendly office more valuable than private healthcare
- Having a fun working environment the third most valuable ‘benefit’
- Female workers place more value on lifestyle benefits than male workers
- Millennials more likely to value flexibility over a standard pay-rise
- Having a pet friendly office worth over £400 pounds a year to employees
- Employees would prefer a fun working environment over 5 extra holiday days
It is no secret that what workers expect from their employers is changing rapidly, so Euroffice has commissioned a survey of 2,500 UK employees (earning between £20k and £35k) to find out which benefits they considered the most valuable.
This survey explores; the actual value placed on certain benefits by employees, what pushes workers to look for new jobs and what are the most popular perks in an office.
All of the employees who took part work in an office environment.
Benefits which give employees control, the most valuable
When asked to assign a monetary value to these benefits, those that gave the employee more control over how they spend their time came out on top.
In first place was the option to work from home, which respondents value at £911 per year.
This is closely followed by flexible working hours (£858).
While not technically being a benefit, it’s also clear that employees’ value having a fun working environment comparatively highly (£743 per year).
There must have been a lot of pet owners or those that they wish they could be pet owners, as among the respondents, having a pet friendly office was valued at £432 per year!
Flexible working valued more by millennials than older generations
The results show both a generational and gender split when it comes to choosing between flexible working and standard pay increases.
While the majority of workers prefer a standard pay rise, younger workers are more likely to choose flexible working than their Gen-X colleagues.
51% of women between the ages of 20-24 prefer flexible working over a pay increase.
Why employees look for pastures new
Perhaps unsurprisingly the main reasons for workers looking for a new job is a poor relationship with a boss and poor working environments.
Which fun perks are most popular?
The results of the question ‘which of these perks would you most like?’ were also very revealing.
At the bottom of the perk league table is free massages at the office with just 2% of the vote, which is perhaps a case of us Brits living up to our less than touchy-feely reputation.
Results suggest that while we want to work in a fun environment, we don’t want to spend too much time with our colleagues! Just 18% of employees are happy to go for after work drinks with colleagues, however, and only 8% would attend a company away-day. More popular perks than social activities are casual clothing and listening to music at your desk.
Finally, with almost a quarter of the total vote, free food was voted as most fun perk – so if you want a happy work force, you best start building that office buffet!
What employers say
When asked why offering a mix of benefits is important Nigel Ramana, Managing Director – Europe of OPUS Recruitment Solutions, said:
“Being a recruitment company we employ a lot of sales people, we rely quite heavily on more traditional benefits such as bonuses and commission, but we also understand that the millennial generation are seeking different types of benefits packages. Typically our staff are aged between 24 and 28 so we have spent time looking at how we reward them and what we can offer as an employer.
“In some instances we have kept things relatively simple with things like transport loans, additional time off and gym memberships but in another instance we have gone as far as to give our staff access to an employee retreat; an Italian villa in Rimini.
“Once up and running, our employees will be able to use the villa free of charge for holidays and well-earned resting and recovery. Other benefits include mindfulness packages where our employees can help reduce stress through hypnotherapy. We’ve quickly learnt that wellbeing should be at the heart of your employee offering; we still have a number of ideas to be introduced in 2017 to continue to improve our wellness and benefits package for all employees, sales and non-sales.”
We asked Alex Fuller, User Interface Designer, an employee at Euroffice what he thought of the employee benefits, he said:
“One of the values at Euroffice is that “we love office life”. While we all work really hard, we’re also rewarded with some great benefits. We get the usual benefits like gym memberships, discounts, free cinema tickets and health checks but the company also makes office life fun.
“We have several company-wide events and parties each year and it’s a great way to get to know people in the company that you don’t normally work with. Recently we held a Euroffice’s Got Talent event where we showcased hidden talents and got to hang out together preparing our performances. It makes the office a much friendlier place to be and definitely improves relationships and workflow.
“We also down tools early every Friday to share a few cold beers together while listening to a Spotify playlist that we can all add to. It’s a nice way for the company to help us all unwind and ease into the weekend.”