As the working world reopens and rehires, online job advertisements are competing to attract top talent with a variety of benefits. But are these work perks just for show, and are UK companies offering us what we actually want?
That’s the question asked by a leading outsourced communications prover who analysed 1000 job advertisements on Indeed.com, and surveyed 1,000 UK office workers, revealing employer’s most commonly offered benefits, and how they line up with the workforce’s expectations.
The number one so-called perks mentioned across all Indeed job listings analysed, was a pension, followed by working from home. Others, in order, were gym membership, flexible working and sick pay.
Researchers then took a closer look to see if these listings reflect how the UK feels about work benefits and found they generally agreed but went on to list others they don’t believe should be added as ‘extras.
Few were impressed with the likes of free eye tests, maternity/paternity and adoption leave, the ability to taker time in lieu, kitchen facilities, and tea and coffee
The survey also revealed the benefits employees already have included at their workplaces. On-site parking was seen as a benefit by a third and four per cent reported to have unlimited paid holidays, with five per cent saying they have dog friendly workspaces.
We’re not surprised to see flexible working, wellbeing programs and more ‘fun focused’ perks being featured across the listings
The company behind the survey, Moneypenny also analysed the survey’s results by region, highlighting that a pension is deemed a mandatory perk by workers in East Anglia, East Midlands, London, North West, Northern Ireland and Wales.
But sick pay was the top choice for the North East, Scotland, South East, South West, West Midlands and Yorkshire and the Humber.
Ceri Henfrey, Moneypenny COO, said: “After spending months cooped up indoors, having a healthy work-life balance is more important than ever.
“We’re not surprised to see flexible working, wellbeing programs and more ‘fun focused’ perks being featured across the listings we analysed, however it would be amazing to see more companies following suit in the future!”
Another survey, from instantprint, suggested employee satisfaction levels regarding “work perks” left a lot to be desired, with nearly half stating their current workplace benefits aren’t a good fit for their lifestyle and needs.
With work-life balance, again, at the forefront of the minds of many following the pandemic, the new survey revealed UK employees are valuing flexible working more than ever. This was especially true for female workers.
Health-related benefits have also gained importance, with the most valued being dental care (43%) optical care (31%) and mental health counselling (18%).
Comparatively, social events at work have seemingly lost the appeal, as just 12 per cent employees value company socials now. A mere one in ten say they appreciate paid-for pub trips with colleagues as a work perk option.
Head of instantprint Laura Mucklow said: “It’s undeniable the pandemic has fundamentally changed our way of working, but it’s sad to see that a lot of UK employees are being left somewhat disgruntled by their current benefits packages.
“Our survey has shown there has been an evident shift in attitudes towards workplace benefits post-lockdown, with employees prioritising flexible working options and healthcare benefits over company socials and pub trips.
“This change may mean the same benefits that were offered pre-pandemic might not be as valuable and useful to employees now, and so employers may need to shake things up a little in order to ensure they’re offering the right kind of work perks, which is key for worker retention, as well as to attract the best talent in a competitive landscape.”
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