To lure employees back to work, UK companies allow dogs to work – Chinadaily.com.cn

After the epidemic has eased, in order to attract employees to return to work, British companies can be said to have racked their brains and made a lot of tricks. Some companies allow employees to bring dogs to work, some companies let employees exercise for free, and some companies allow employees to book manicure services. How effective are these incentives?

IT manager Toby Griffin now takes his two dogs into the office with him. (Credit: Rise at Seven)

If you think that taking a pet dog into work with you would be a bit distracting for you and your colleagues, computer manager Toby Griffin goes one step further – he takes two into the office.

If you think bringing a dog to work is a distraction for you and your colleagues, Information Technology Manager Toby Griffin goes one step further — he brings two dogs to work.

Mr Griffin, who is head of IT for marketing agency Rise at Seven, turns up at its Sheffield headquarters with his furry friends Jesse and Oscar.

Griffin of marketing agency Rise at Seven recently showed up at its Sheffield headquarters with his dogs Jesse and Oscar.

“Rise allowing dogs in the office has meant that I’ve been able to take both my collies in,” he says. “They get to meet new people, have new experiences, and I get to spend more time in work with my colleagues.

“The company allows dogs into the office, which means I can bring both of my collies. They get to meet new people, have new experiences, and I can spend more time with colleagues work together.”

“It’s a complete win-win situation as far as I’m concerned.”

“It’s a win-win situation for me.”

Like millions of other people, Mr Griffin got his dogs during the pandemic. With most of us homeworking at the time as a result of lockdowns, there was a huge surge in pet ownership as people wanted increased companionship.

Like millions of others, Griffin started owning a dog during the pandemic. Some time ago, due to the epidemic blockade measures, most people worked from home, and the desire to accompany them led to a large increase in the number of pet owners.

Yet fast-forward to bosses requiring staff to return to the office at least a few days a week, and having a pet dog can become a problem. You have to see if a friend or relative can look after it, or pay for expensive doggie day care, or even potentially try to get a new job that allows you to continue to work from home all the time.

Later, when bosses required employees to return to work at least a few days a week, pet dogs became a problem. You’ll have to find a friend or relative to look after the dog, or send the dog to expensive dog day care, or even try to find a new job where you can continue working from home every day.

It was to help employees such as Mr Griffin more easily return to the office after the pandemic that Rise’s bosses decided to let everyone bring in their dogs.

It is to help employees like Griffin return to work with ease when the pandemic is over, the owner of Rise at Seven decided to allow everyone to bring dogs to work.

Mia King, one of the firm’s executives, says that rather than being a distraction, having dogs at work has actually made staff work harder because they make everyone happy, and cheery staff are more productive.

Mia King, one of the company’s executives, said bringing a dog to work is not only less distracting, but it also makes employees work harder because dogs make everyone happy and happy employees are more productive.

“Not only do dogs bring comfort within your home, but they also help increase productivity within the workplace,” she says.

“Not only will dogs make your home feel more comfortable, but they can also help increase productivity in the office,” she said.

While having dogs in the workplace will likely remain a rarity, this example is part of a wider trend – companies introducing new incentives to try to make staff happier to come into the office more often.

While allowing dogs in the office is relatively rare, this example offers a glimpse of a larger trend in which companies are rolling out new incentives to make employees more likely to come to the office more often.

Job search engine Adzuna says that the number of adverts that highlight “in-office perks” has now more than doubled since before the start of the pandemic. The increased incentives range from free exercise and language classes, to complementary food and subsidised childcare.

Job search engine Adzuna noted that the number of job advertisements advertised as “on-the-job benefits” has more than doubled since the outbreak. The perks range from free fitness and language classes to supplements and childcare subsidies.

“Employees aren’t in a rush to return to the office, after enjoying the improved work-life balance that came from remote working,” says Paul Lewis, chief marketing officer at Adzuna. “As a result, companies are desperate to find new and unique ways to lure employees back to the office.”

Adzuna’s chief marketing officer, Paul Lewis, said: “Employees are in no rush to return to work after enjoying the work-life balance that remote work brings. As a result, companies are eager to find unique new ways to attract employees back to work.”

At central London-based financial planning firm First Wealth, workers are being tempted back via free sessions at a nearby gym. Employees are encouraged to go to the gym on their way into work.

Central London-based financial planning firm First Wealth is enticing employees back to work with free classes at a nearby gym. The company encourages employees to hit the gym on the way to work.

Staff from First Wealth, pictured, often train together at the gym. (Credit: First Wealth)

Zoe Raynsford, a client relationship manager at First Wealth, says the fitness class sets her up for the working day. “I like to lose myself in the music to help clear my mind and get myself ready to start the day full of mood-boosting endorphins. I feel stronger, more productive and re-charged after each class.”

Zoe Rainsford, customer relations manager at First Wealth, said the fitness classes kept her refreshed for the day’s work. “I like to immerse myself in (fitness) music, it helps me clear my mind and gives me enough endorphins to start the day in a good mood. I feel stronger and stronger after each fitness class. Efficient and full of energy.”

First Wealth financial planning director Robert Caplan says that the gym classes are just one perk that staff can choose from under a scheme introduced since the pandemic. Each member of staff gets credits for an employee benefits website called Heka.

First Wealth’s director of financial planning, Robert Kaplan, said fitness classes were just one of the perks employees could choose from. Since the outbreak, the company has purchased points for each employee on the employee benefits website Heka.

From there they can choose other things such as mental health support, financial health checks, career guidance or relationship counselling. Yet Mr Caplan says that the gym is by far the most popular.

On this site, employees can choose from other services such as mental health support, financial health checks, career guidance, emotional counseling, and more. But Kaplan says fitness classes are by far the most popular.

Beauty treatments are another incentive that companies are booking to get their staff excited about coming into the office. Isabel May Surtees, a nail artist based in West Sussex, has seen demand from businesses increase substantially.

In order to attract employees to their posts, some companies will also make beauty appointments for employees. West Sussex manicurist Isabel May Surtis has seen a recent surge in orders from businesses.

Companies are employing Isabel May Surtees, pictured, to give staff free nail treatments. (Credit: Isabel May Surtees)

Larry Gadea, the boss of workplace app Envoy, says that while staff incentives are good, the benefits of going into the office should be more than free gym membership or being able to take your dog in or have your nails done.

Larry Getia, owner of office app company Envoy, said that while these incentives for employees are good, the perks of coming to work shouldn’t just be a free gym membership, the ability to bring a dog into the office or get a manicure.

“Employees want to connect with their co-workers face-to-face, and collaborate in-person, or just get out of the house,” says Mr Gadea.

“Employees also want to communicate and collaborate face-to-face with colleagues, or get out of the house,” Getia said.

He adds that firms should ideally have at least some days when everyone has to be in. “Without fixed days where everyone is in without exception, people will never learn that the office trek can be worth it.”

Ideally, companies should mandate that all employees be present on certain days, he said. “If there’s no set day when everyone has to be there on a regular basis, people will never realize that it’s worth coming to the office.”

English source: BBC

Translator & Editor: Dany

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