Predicting the Most in Demand Office Perks Post Pandemic
As the world gets back to normal, many people are returning to office environments. Some are re-evaluating what they do for a living and looking for ways to be happier and healthier at work. While flexibility is the number one desire as people go back to work, there are many things that make office life better. Here are the top perks employees are going to be looking for.
1) Healthy lunches and food on site
Free drinks, bar carts, and candy are so last year. People have had enough unhealthy and are instead looking for ways to feel better, starting with what they eat. Companies that offer health focused snacks and nutritious on-site lunches will draw people in and entice people to spend time at the office.
While cooking at home was all the rage at the start of the pandemic, everyone, especially parents want and need a break from deciding what to eat. If you want to motivate your employees to come back to the office, a surefire way is through their stomach.
2) Dog friendly workplaces
Employees will be looking to bring their home life with them. Many people got dogs during the pandemic and their four-legged friends are simply not going to be able to adjust to life without their person, especially going from all day together to all day apart.
Dog friendly workplaces are not just about convenience. Dogs are proven to improve mental wellbeing, and even contribute to physical wellbeing. Petting a dog for just a few minutes can lower heart rate and reduce cortisol in the body.
Having a dog at the office promotes taking breaks and going out for short walks, which actually make employees happier and even more productive.
Taking walks also reduces the risk of sitting related diseases. People with anxiety, extreme stress, depression, or other conditions may even benefit from registering their dog as an emotional support animal.
Anyone can consider this option. If you suffer from an emotional disorder that affects your sleep, daily life, or general wellbeing, talk with your doctor, healthcare provider, or therapist about making your dog an emotional support animal. Any healthcare provider can write a prescription or letter of health recommending you maintain a dog as an emotional support animal, and you can register your dog online to get a certificate and ID card. If you do make your pet an emotional support animal, make sure they have general good behavior training and they are within your control at all times.
3) Work from anywhere
Many people took advantage of remote work to visit family near and far, or explore a new place. With the return to work, people will still seek to explore the world around them, or keep family a little closer.
Workplaces should respect the new normal and allow employees some flexibility. Imposing rules and limits assumes employees will not be responsible or get their work done. If you trust your employees and help them take care of their own needs, they will take care of the work.
4) Mandatory time off
We’ve all heard of flex time off, but how about mandatory time off? With pressure to not take vacation and burnout becoming all too common, companies should change their vacation policy to demand that employees use it. The problem with progressive policies like unlimited time off is that it looks good on paper, but in reality, employees don’t use it.
Employers need to help their employees stay motivated and creative by giving them the space to take a break. Research shows that they come back happier and better able to do their job.
5) Mental health resources
Most careers come with health insurance, but what are employers doing for their team’s mental health? Offices are becoming more than just workplaces, they are communities and people, especially Gen Z, expect their employers to take care of their entire selves. Resources like mental health days, free therapy sessions, and outlets though HR and committee groups are in demand.
Employees need to feel confident bringing their whole selves to work and know that they will be supported.
Living through the most unprecedented circumstances of our time, there is a great re-evaluation taking place. Companies that can put their employees’ needs first will maintain talent and grow their businesses.