Imagine an office where female workers are granted official gossip breaks, such as the ones unofficially enjoyed by their smoking colleagues, and male employees are allowed to watch the football on plasma screen TVs during working hours.
Meanwhile, amorous employees make eyes at each other during internal meetings after being introduced to each other via the office dating service. No, this isn’t a scene due to appear in the next Carlsberg advert; it is the real-life wish of some of employees.
An employee survey of 1,504 workers also showed that 40% of respondents would appreciate a day off on their birthday. And Christmas shopping breaks would appeal to 38% of staff and workplace beauty treatments would be attractive to 20%.
According to the research workers no longer think lunch is for wimps and are calling for the return of the lunch break with more than half wanting a full hour every day, while top of the list of the things staff want banned at work are meetings scheduled for 1pm.
In addition the report illustrated that freedom and personalised hours are the key to workplace happiness with over 40% of all workers citing flexible and summer working hours as the most desirable benefits – ahead of financial bonuses.
Helen Whitton, deputy chair of the Work Life Balance Trust, said: “Workers are demanding more perks to keep them motivated – especially given the economic challenges of the last couple of years. The research shows it’s not always about money but about achieving a better work life balance with the call for more flexible working hours across British businesses stronger than ever.
“There are companies like Kellogg’s which have foreseen the need to offer workers more personalised hours however other businesses need to follow suit quickly to ensure they can retain the most talented, productive and motivated staff to help them get the most out of the upturn.”