How Workplace Food Perks Can Incentivize the Return to Office

Incentivization like food perks are an emerging trend in an effort to retain and attract not only your current team members but also for attracting top new talent in the post-pandemic workplace.
by
Jelena Leung
March 16, 2022

Return to Office

After two years of collectively contending with the global pandemic, there is light at the end of the proverbial tunnel - new beginnings, a new normal. Companies around the world are positioning themselves for a return to office, moving away from the work from home (WFH) model that became customary for so many employees around the world over the last two years.

Returning to Work After COVID

The pandemic has presented the world with unprecedented challenges and uncertainties none of us could have possibly foreseen. Yet, our collective capacity for adaptability has allowed us to forge onwards over the last two years - but two years is a long time. Organizations recognize that for some employees, returning to work after COVID will require a period of transition before fully acclimating back into an office setting.

A recent study found that 82% of Canadian respondents who’ve worked from home during the pandemic have found the experience to be positive, while just 20% want to return to the office every day. Therefore, for many people, the only thing for certain is that a return to work will be met with uncertainty. Unpredictability is clearly in the driver's seat as we look to collectively move towards a return to work, fortunately, organizations have options to help encourage a return to work.

Benefits of Workplace Food Perks

Save for love, food is the commonality that binds all humanity. Irrespective of age, gender, race, sexual orientation, ethnicity, or religion, we all enjoy food and delight in a good meal.

Prior to the pandemic, research had revealed there is a strong correlation between employee satisfaction and workplace food perks - 56% of full-time employees said they were happy with their present job; that figure leaped to 67% for those with access to free food in their respective workplaces.

Providing your team with healthy snacks and meals not only incentives the return to the office, but likewise comes with a plethora of additional benefits, including stronger company culture and consequently a stronger organization.

Families That Eat Together, Stay Together

Our teammates are in a sense our families. An essential component of team building is enabling employees to establish a rapport with one another. Few aspects of modern life bring people together faster than the geniality of sharing a meal. By offering things like a team lunch, inevitably employees are encouraged to socialize both one-on-one and in a larger group. What’s more, workplace food perks improve employee engagement which is crucial for all team members to shift back to the office.

Fueling High Performing Teams With Food

There are obvious health benefits of offering nutritious food perks at your organization. Team members who are healthy are far more engaged in the workplace, thus increasing productivity. 

Research has shown a clear correlation between consuming certain foods and increased brainpower. In essence, an energized brain is a productive brain. 

Additionally, offering workplace food perks such as fun, health-conscious meals provides important breaks and downtime for all team members. Team lunch gives everyone the opportunity to de-stress with a mid-day break, combats burnout, and ultimately is advantageous for team productivity.  Moreover, it also gives your team one less thing to worry about preparing as they get ready for their day heading back to the office.

Workplace Food Perks are Cost-effective

Providing your team with workplace food perks is can be cost-effective when done right. Consider corporate meal programs offered through Ritual for Teams, which provide many advantages including:

  • No delivery fees or menu markups 
  • Customizable meal plans with one-time or recurring credits for employees
  • Flexible hybrid work solutions 
  • And the best part, they support local cafés and restaurants we love

Geotargeting With Ritual for Teams

Geotargeting is the hot new trend that some companies are deploying as an incentive for a return to office. Ritual for Teams is the perfect way to treat your team members to company meals and healthy snacks. 

Utilizing in-app geotargeting technology, Ritual for Teams enables companies to offer team members workplace food perks by providing location-based meal credits for local restaurants. Redeemable credits can be used at selected restaurants that fall within a defined radius of the user’s office. Meal credits are automatically added to the employee’s account at the start of the work day, and can be set to expire the following day. By using one-time or even recurring meal credits, businesses can entice employees with a safe and delicious return to office.

Coming Together Mindfully

Incentivization is a vital component for organizations to employ in order to create a sense of togetherness amongst all team members returning to office. As we move forward in the new normal, providing conditions that will assuage people’s concerns and assist with this transition is key.

Moreover, not only do free snacks and meals incentive current employees to return to the office, but they also are a contributing factor that will attract new talent. According to research, 48% of individuals looking for new employment said incentives like free snacks and meals in a workplace would play a part in their decision regarding job offers.

Return to Work

Moving forward from the global pandemic, the return to work in offices signals a welcome semblance of normalcy. However, for some employees, the transition back to the office may present challenges. 

One solution to ensure that everyone is happy about the return to the office is welcoming your team back with healthy snacks and delicious meals. Food is not only sustaining for health and survival but provides a tremendous amount of joy for all of us.  

The last two years have not been easy. After the isolation brought about by the pandemic, providing small joys like company lunches gives your team members the opportunity to socialize and bond. Plus, the simple addition of workplace food perks is demonstrative of a positive overall culture of an organization. It serves as a token of gratitude to the most integral resource of any company - its employees. 

To learn more about the many benefits of Ritual for Teams:

Get In Touch Now
Jelena Leung
Jelena is the Senior Director of Marketing at Ritual. Her expertise in marketing strategy and execution has spurred the growth of the many businesses and teams that she has worked with. As a marketing leader with more than 14 years of experience, she has obtained valuable knowledge and insights about marketing in the restaurant industry. She occasionally writes about the topics of human resources, restaurant marketing, employee retention, team building, and more.
Jelena Leung
Jelena is the Senior Director of Marketing at Ritual. Her expertise in marketing strategy and execution has spurred the growth of the many businesses and teams that she has worked with. As a marketing leader with more than 14 years of experience, she has obtained valuable knowledge and insights about marketing in the restaurant industry. She occasionally writes about the topics of human resources, restaurant marketing, employee retention, team building, and more.