Valerie Jarrett, the American Businesswoman and former senior adviser of Barack Obama, once said: “employers who recognize the importance of investing in their workforce have a more productive workforce, a more efficient workforce, a more loyal workforce, less turnover, and, in the private sector, more profitable.” In other words, if a business aspires to achieve high, long term growth rates, they need to retain and pamper their staff with cool stuff no other companies do offer.
Interestingly, many companies have already realized this and go beyond the familiar so the team would feel like home, because who would quit a place that feels like home. Here are some of the coolest job perks we heard about workplaces in Egypt and around the world.
Teleperformance: Fight stress with fun
At Teleperformance Egypt, team members have the chance to enjoy their breaks efficiently with games all around the place, i.e., PlayStation, ping pong, etc. Has this become quite common and familiar in workplaces nowadays? Teleperformance takes the fun to a whole new level with a long slide leading from the office to the break area.
More interestingly, it is not the first time to have such playground games in the office. On the last Mawlid Nabawi day, the team was surprised to find “Mawlid” swings in the office, when they arrived in the morning.
Mohamed Bisharey, Customer Service Representative at Teleperformance, says “working in the customer service field is sometimes too stressful, we need real breaks to release the pressure we usually face throughout the day. And, Teleperformance always impresses us with their entertaining ideas.
Instabug people are just taking the fun part very seriously. Pampering their staff is as important as urging them to meet KPIs. Some of the many perks offered to Instabug people include a monthly free movie ticket, a subsidized gym membership, Uber discounts among many other company-offered cool perks.
But if I have to pick the coolest of them all I would definitely say Instabug’s annual retreat. Believing that everybody deserves a break from work, Instabug takes its squad into a breathtaking trip to explore the world. In the last retreat, Instabug’s team visited Nepal and lived the adventure as a team.
Nooun: Eat, Play, work
Having swings around the workplace is not exclusive to Teleperformance. Nooun, a Cairo-based online magazine owned by MADEV, also has a swing in their reception area. At Nooun, fun is not limited to the break area.
“Everybody thinks meetings are boring,” says Azza Abulanwar, Content Administrator at Nooun Magazine, “while in Nooun, we start every meeting with a warm-up game.” Azza, who has been working for Nooun for four years, adds that they never have a meeting without sharing a meal together first. “Workplace can never be homier,” she says excitedly.
WUZZUF: Our very own rooftop
At WUZZUF, we cherish ourselves on many things, on top of which is our rooftop, where we have a mega screen to enjoy some time as one family. We are occasionally invited by the HR team to have a special movie night or cheer for our favorite football teams, besides any team Mohamed Salah plays for, in important tournaments such as the Champions League, the World Cup, and others.
In our roof, we also have our own in-house vendor to which we often run to grab a bite to eat, sparing ourselves long time-wasting phone orders and late deliveries.
Nagwa: Ordering lunch can never be easier
One of the very cool ideas Nagwa Company adopted to comfort their staff is their very own computerized food ordering system, through which every team member can order their meal from the set menus. By break time, they have their meals delivered and distributed on the tables of the break room, labeled with the name of the orderer.
“It is not easy to order food the traditional way to the company’s location (the Free Zone in Nasr city) and our amazing system ensures that food arrives timely by the break time” Mazen Emad, Copyediting Team Leader, explains “It is really inspiring how your employer would go the extra mile to save you any extra effort you may incur. Who would quit a place like that?”
In Nagwa, Games and fun time form an integral part of the company’s culture. This year, their HR team was everybody’s secret Santa. Team members found mandala-styled calendars and planners on their desks, and they spent the first day of the year coloring together.
Raya Holding: 5-star workplace
Having to stay for extra hours at your workplace can be the biggest nightmare, but not for professionals working at Raya Holding for Financial Investment, as they have all the comforting facilities they might need around, including in-house catering service providers, food court, mini market, banking service providers, a clinic, a pharmacy, a gym.
Doaa El-Sahar, Senior Corporate Communication Marketing Executive, says “ having such facilities around saves you the time you need to have a balanced stress-free life. Our premises are fully equipped already with everything I need to recharge my energy, and this reflects on my productivity significantly.”
Vodafone: The team bonds as one big family
Vodafone Egypt also has luxurious premises for its team members with a food court, gym, and other facilities. Such facilities definitely help to comfort and bond the team together, yet nothing compares to “Vodafone Kids Day,” usually taking place on the company’s anniversary day. On this day, all team members and their families are invited to the premises to celebrate the company’s anniversary day. The place is specially designed and decorated to please the special guests, not to mention the kids, who enjoy the day with entertaining games and programs.
Knowing how important it is to keep the team’s spirit up, Vodafone’s HR team ensures to surprise the team members from time to time with out-of-the-box pampering ideas. One of these ideas, shared by many of my Vodafone friends, is having a saxophone player moving around the workplace to amuse the Vodafoners as they do their work.
Evernote: Learn whatever is learnable
We all agree that learning is an ongoing lifetime process, and many companies have in-house academies to invest in their team members with career-oriented courses. However what is really cool about US-based Evernote is that their academy features, along with their career-related courses, really fun courses, such as barista training and macaroon baking.
It must be amazing to know that your company respects your other interests and saves you the opportunity to learn and do what you love during your work shifts, even if such interests are not necessarily related to your job title.
VAS: Good performance will make your dream trip true
The Egyptian IT company, Vas Integrated Solution, does not only deepen people sense of ownership with their flexible task-oriented system, but also the company adopts a highly rewarding system to value and appreciate the efforts of its team members. By the end of every year, top performances are rewarded a fully-covered Europe trip for 2 persons as a thank-you gift for their exceptional performance.
Passionate learners are also well- rewarded at VAS. Every year, VAS professionals get the opportunity to attend an overseas training course to deepen their knowledge and expertise in their respective areas, And this opportunity is sponsored by the company.
REI: Everybody deserves “Yay Days.”
Typically, we plan our adventures on our own, but people working for REI, a US-based retail and outdoor recreation services corporation, get two days off to go on some adventure away from work. These two days, called “Yay Days,” are fully covered by the company. In the REI blog, it was indicated that “yay days” are integral to their company’s culture, pointing out that it’s a must-do opportunity for each team member to do “something new, challenge themselves in a favorite activity, or work on an outdoor stewardship project. Yay Days help REI employees reconnect with the outdoors and prepare them to deliver great knowledge and service to customers”.
These are some of the coolest stories we heard about workplaces lately. Even if some of these ideas seem costly, turnover costs businesses more and more. Such cool ideas can be one of the clues, through which companies can retain and earn the loyalty of top professionals.
Has some story to share about your company? Share it with us in the comments section.