Workplace perks that employees value the most

Corporate culture and incentives go hand-in-hand.

Employers are always looking for unique ways to motivate their employees. These days, perks come in all shapes and sizes.

At Google, they offer a “chair-helmet energy pod” that will lull you to sleep with “soothing sounds.” Local search site Yelp offers its workers an on-site mini bar and adult beverage machines called “KegMates.” Abercrombie and Fitch gives its employees scooters to get around their sprawling corporate campus.

But opinions vary on whether lavish incentives actually improve productivity, according to Forbes writer Jacquelyn Smith.

Stanford University Professor Jeffrey Pfeffer says added benefits only work when the company has a positive corporate culture.

“What matters is whether companies let employees make decisions, offer them reasonable job security, and treat them with respect. Not whether or not they give them free food,” Pfeffer says. “Those are nice things, and they may represent the corporate attitude, but if they’re all you do, they’re worthless.”

It turns out the most worthy workplace luxuries of all are the time-saving incentives.

“So although a financial bonus is great, perks that save people time, like shuttle services, daycare and on-site dry cleaning, are actually worth more in terms of quality of life,” says Claire Tompkins, a workplace productivity consultant.

Is it time to review the perks you offer your employees?

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