It’s no secret that food perks at work attract the best talent and help boost employee productivity. We’re not talking about vending machines, either. We’re talking about freshly cooked meals made by on-site chefs – and all completely free for employees.
Why should you offer food perks? Because your employees are your greatest asset, and looking after their health and wellbeing is a priority. If your team is reaching for chips and lollies for a dose of energy, that only leads to more fatigue and stress in the long-term. Providing fresh and healthy meals, on the other hand, boosts mental clarity and nutrition to make employees happier, more focused, and more productive.
Corporate catering can be more than just sandwiches on trays and salads in boxes. Dream bigger, aim higher, and your employees will thank you for it. To give you a dose of inspiration, here’s what the world’s biggest companies are feeding their employees. If it works for them, it’ll work for you!
We’ve got to start with the company most recognised for its food perks. If you haven’t already heard, Google’s offices feature cafes with rotating local & seasonal menus (that’s more than 50,000 different menus each year in all its offices). They’re serious about the chefs they hire and even have their own on-site gardens and beehives in some locations. Google also holds cooking classes for its employees so they can learn healthy recipes to cook back home (also an awesome team building exercise). Here’s a fun fact: Google’s chefs cook nearly a million kilos worth of meat every year. That’s a lot of protein!
Lucky Pinterest employees are treated to both lunch and dinner at work. The company brings in corporate catering for dinner to lure employees into staying at their desks a little longer (and pumping out a bit more work!). And who wouldn’t want to work an extra hour or two in exchange for a gourmet chef’s dinner? The food perks don’t stop there, though. Pinterest also holds cook-offs that offer both team-building and food experiences, like guacamole contests for example.
There’s basically an entire eat street at Facebook’s main campus, which has two cafes, a BBQ shack, burger bar, pizza stand, taco stand, salad shop, and lolly shop. Of course, we’re talking a top-notch culinary team that’s throwing together fresh, gourmet burgers and pizza – not your standard Maccas and Dominos. Every employee is given three free meals a day, meaning they’re likely to stick around the office from breakfast through till dinnertime.
4. Big Ass Fans
The aptly named Big Ass Fans supplies enormous fans, and if we’re honest, we’re pretty big fans of their food benefits. This company is proof that you don’t need an in-house chef 5 days a week in order to treat your employees to a good feed. Once a week, BAF management takes a group of their employees and partners out for dinner at a nice restaurant. They also held a company-wide cooking contest after one employee bragged about being the best chef in the team. They paid for the ingredients, and employees went wild in a cook-off. Team building + food = guaranteed good times for employees.
This is a company that’s not just providing free food, but making sure that food is what employees want to eat. The SurveyMonkey team is given two free meals a day, cooked on-site by an in-house chef who actively asks employees for input and ideas. Engaging the team with their food helps foster a sense of community as well as provide more preferable options. On average, the company spends around $10-15 a day per employee on meals and snacks. In return, SurveyMonkey employees ranked food as one of their top 5 most meaningful work benefits.
Here’s another company that proves you don’t have to dish out big bucks for big food perks. Every fortnight, Vistaprint invites food trucks to its campus in Massachusettes and treats employees to a free lunch on-the-house. On top of that, they also host a weekly food/drink social hour where employees can mix and mingle, unload some stress, and enjoy top-notch food and drinks for free. These benefits, while simple, make employees feel valued and appreciated, and give them something to look forward to each week.
Want to treat your employees?
You don’t have to hire an executive in-house chef to provide healthy, fresh food perks to your employees (but if you do, they’ll love you for it!) Something as simple as a team building lunch, restaurant outing, or cooking class can make a world of difference for your team.
If you’re ready to shower your employees with some good food and a solid dose of appreciation, let us help. We’ll connect you with local chefs who can provide everything from on-site meals with seasonal menus to cook-offs, corporate catering, and dining experiences. Let’s eat!