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Do Beer Carts, Burgers and Benefits Really Pay Off?

Does your company offer the ability to bring your dog to work? What about beer on tap or a foosball table? With the overcrowded marketplace there’s more competition for top talent and companies have gotten creative with benefits. The question is, do they work? We’ve got your answers.

Beer Taps and Taco Tuesdays

You can save your dollars on this one. These are two benefits that do not provide a strong return and actually dilute your brand according to Jeanna McGinnis with Mentor Happy. Instead, message a culture of upward mobility, professional development and growth which positively reflects on talent acquisition and retention efforts as well as client support. Would you prefer to do business with a frat house or a corporation that’s well put together?

The Google of It All

Google is well known for free meals, WiFi on shuttle buses and bringing your dog to work. So, do these benefits work? Maybe for some however, their employees also see other sides to these ‘benefits’. The free meals are seen as a way to get them to stay at work longer hours and work through lunch. The WiFi on shuttle buses is an incentive to work on the way to/from work rather than relaxing during the commute.

Unlimited Vacation Time

As an employer you might be thinking this is too costly of a benefit to provide. Think again. Most employees in North America that already have this benefit end up taking less time off. Without the ‘take it or lose it’ mentality, many forego taking vacation time they would normally have taken. However, they value the benefit. In addition, if an employee resigns, you don’t have accrued vacation time to pay out. This is one worth the change for the benefit and the bottom-line.

Foosball Tables and Snack Corners

As a frequent traveler to Silicon Valley companies, I’ve seen more than my share of companies with foosball tables. These tables lay dormant most of the time and take up space that can be used for work and meetings that give people passion. A much better use of both the space and funds. Save the snack funds too as people would prefer more flexible hours instead.

For an in-depth look at what benefits you might want to consider, here’s a recent survey from Harvard Business Review of employees 18 to 81. The #1 benefit came in as better health, dental and vision coverage for 88% of respondents with 54% giving it heavy consideration and 34% some consideration when choosing a new job.