Following in the footsteps of famously ‘cool’ companies like Google and Just Eat, it’s in your company’s interests to offer unique and enjoyable perks to your employees.
After all, we know that perks significantly affect employees’ wellness and productivity. But what do you do if you’re on a budget?
Even if money is tight, there are plenty of options that you can offer your employees to keep them happy and engaged. Read on for our top wallet-friendly perks, which can be offered by even the smallest of start-ups!
1. Work flexibility
Offering flexible work hours or the possibility of working remotely may not seem like a big perk, but it can make a huge difference to your employees. Allowing employees to work from 10-7 or 8-5 instead of 9-6, for example, as well as from home, allows them to fit their lives around work more comfortably – an obvious perk. It may also boost productivity. And best of all, work flexibility costs you absolutely nothing.
Instating a FOIL – or ‘Fridays off in lieu’ – scheme can similarly boost morale on a budget. A few times a year, allow your employees to work a half-day on Fridays if they make up the hours elsewhere during the week. They’ll be able to beat the commuting traffic and be able to head off on weekend getaways early, enhancing their work-life balance!
3. Weekly team breakfast or snack box
Catering a full hot meal for your staff every week can really sap the coffers – but what about a team breakfast? Buying cereal, milk, fruit and maybe some pastries can come to less than £20 each time, if you’re a small team – and the team bonding that comes with a shared meal is well worth the cost.
If you’re not up for providing a meal, you could also consider a seasonal fruit box or biscuit platter. Providing your employees with snacks will likely boost productivity – and even a couple of bunches of bananas and some chocolate digestives can go a long way towards putting you in the good books.
4. Pets at work
If you work in an animal-friendly office, it can pay to let employees bring their (house-trained!) pets to work once in a while. Not only will it boost the office mood to have a cute dog or cat (or teacup pig!) running around, it’s free!
5. Fitness classes or an office sports team
Many workplaces offer fitness subsidies, whether in the form of gym memberships, bike plan subscriptions or reimbursements for gear like running shoes. Employees naturally love these sorts of things, but even if your company can’t quite afford that you can still contribute to their fitness. Why not have a yoga or fitness instructor come in once a month to lead a company-wide class? You’ll get your staff moving at a fraction of the cost.
Alternatively, you could organise an office sports team. Getting everyone together regularly to play football at a club will really build team spirit, and research shows that employees particularly value such social perks.
6. Extra leave allowances
Some companies, such as Netflix and LinkedIn, are famous for their unlimited holiday allowance. Though offering unlimited holiday understandably isn’t feasible for every business, even a couple of days of extra holiday allowance can mean the world to your employees. Give them a birth-o-holiday, or an additional day of holiday every year they stay on at your company!
7. Reassigning company perks
Your company is likely racking up external perks through a company credit card – perhaps airline miles or free event tickets. For a low-cost employee perk, you could offer these rewards to your staff. A free trip to see the latest Marvel film at the cinema or a cheaper flight to that holiday in Lisbon will be highly appreciated by your workers, with little effort on your part.
8. Perk packages
If you’re on a tight budget – time-wise and financially – but still want to provide employees with a range of perks, you could also consider paying for a perk subscription service. For example, Perkbox and Charlie HR offer discounts on everything from cinema tickets to clothing and food, all paid for in one company-tailored lump sum.
In short, however small your budget, you can provide your employees with meaningful perks which add to their feeling of fulfilment at work and deepen their loyalty to your company. So, why not?