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Businesses go into ‘perk-cession’, cutting back on employee benefits and rethinking rewards

Businesses are getting rid of company ‘perks’.

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Businesses are getting rid of company ‘perks’.

Free coffee and snacks at work could be a thing of the past as businesses cut back on employee benefits and rewards in what has been dubbed a “perk-cession”.

Staff in an Auckland-based clothing and homeware retailer told a poll by Frog Recruitment that the company recently ditched free coffee and fruit for its staff, leaving workers annoyed, especially those who started early in the morning or late at night and said their employer shouldn’t be removing “basics”.

Globally, Google is a company that has become a victim of the perk-cession. The tech giant has removed several worker benefits it initially offered, including free food, spa treatments and nap pods, citing the reduced number of employees who opt to work in the office as the reason, combined with a business downturn.

The results come as no surprise to Frog Recruitment managing director Shannon Barlow who said for most businesses operating in this current difficult economic environment and in the face of a looming recession, perks were on the chopping block.

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In the poll of 503 New Zealand workers, one in four workers said their employers had cut employee benefits in the last six months.

“However, retaining talent is more critical than ever, and when salary raises are not an option, maintaining or offering individual benefits can keep people happy. Simple, shared workplace perks, which usually have a lesser monetary value, can also help people feel rewarded and create an inclusive culture.”

Barlow said that not all perks were created equal and

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