Providing free office snacks and food to your employees will boost the bottom line: business productivity. There are several ways in which this can be done. And there are several reasons why most of the businesses are investing in offering free food to their employees. This is because these companies look at the bigger and better picture. And the prospects of increased profits making such an investment.
If you are an owner of a business. And provide free food to your employees but are not having the returns as expected. Before cancelling your program and save a few thousand dollars look at the cost at which you are going to take such an important decision. More than the comparatively puny savings it is the economic benefit. That you and your company achieve from offering these free snacks to your employees that outweighs it.
Moreover, analysts say that once a business workplace gets hooked on to office snacks. It is really hard if not impossible for it to go back.
Facts and figures
The impressive facts and figures that researchers and market analysts have gathered shows the entire picture of benefits. Use and sensibility of providing free snacks. Few corroborate and substantiate the need of providing free office snacks to the employees. While others may not be so impressive. However, the fact that most modern offices believes in and practices this approach tells a completely different story.
- Initial reports of the Society for Human Resource Management’s 2015 Employee Benefits Survey showed that only 22% offices provide free snacks and beverages to their employees. These companies have a large and mixed stock in their snack pantry. That has everything from fresh fruit to chips, granola bars to dried fruits and nuts. However, this is applicable only to those corporate houses that have a most cynical point of view. And do not consider this as one of that usual corporate largess. That means, in the majority of the working class, employees usually have to fend for themselves.
- However, the role of free snacks provided in office is diverse and varied. It includes preventing the workers from going out of the office but keep them working. Instead of foraging for food for sustenance during the working hours. According to another 2011 study by Staples. it is found that more than half of the workers in an office leave their workstations to get snacks at least once in a day. Few of these workers even make as many as five trips a day to get their munchies. This means that frequent snacking accounts for 2.4 billion hours in the US alone in lost productivity.
Therefore, as a company owner you should focus more on keeping more of your workers in the office. Which is why you should invest in providing free snacks and make it as accessible as possible to them. The natural human behavior and the chain reaction come into effect here. If people find food easily they are more likely to stay there longer which will in turn result in higher productivity.
The cost balancing factor
Offering free snacks is more of an employee engagement policy apart from caring for their health and eating habits. Therefore, even if you order your office snacks from a third party. Such as varietyfun.com or other, the cost of these free snacks provided in your office will be much less than the cost of lost productivity.
Therefore, if you are thinking of eliminating such an expense, you will surely put your business at a considerable risk.
These snacks are probably the smallest of all perks and may have a very small dollar amount. But it will be highly symbolic for your business and it final outcome. Ideally, the workers often consider these as a gift and their deserving rewards.
Therefore, taking it away from them will have a negative psychological effect. And it will outstrip the dollar amount that you saved. These perks will result in better employee engagement playing with the emotional investment of the employee in their job.
The link between
There are several studies that have established a proper link between the bottom line successes of a business with high engagement level of the employees. These studies showed several astonishing and amazing facts such as:
- Employees that have high engagement levels work best when they care about their employer as well as their job
- Another 2012 Towers Watson study found that better work environments that promote the emotional, physical, and social well-being of the employees provides highest level of employee engagement
- It is also seen that at these high levels the operating margins are much higher taking a one year scale than those companies that did not have any such engagement policies in place and
- Employees usually get accustomed to such perk and may even feel burned if it is taken away suddenly leading in a fall in morale and feeling demotivated.
In short, all these effects of taking away free snacks will cause a big decline in engagement level of your employees that will not be justifiable with the cost savings. Therefore, no matter whatever is the amount of money invested or saved, it is the return on investment on office snacks that you should be more concerned of while taking such a drastic decision.
An ongoing debate
Providing office food for free to the employees is a source of debate that has been ongoing for a long, long time. However, there are a few happier sides of the story.
- About 67% of employees feel very happy at work when they have full time and easy access to office snacks
- Employees are also found to be 12% more productive than other peers who do not feel office hours to be attractive or pleasant and
- Employees who are satisfied with their employer and perks are 37% more likely to meet the sales targets.
All these will help in boosting revenue of your company by a considerable extent which is the primary objective of providing free office snacks.