The Perks People Want

PERKS Editorial Team

PERKS Editorial Team


March 16, 2022

The Building Culture Podcast - Episode 4.6

Julie Figueroa & Eura Edmond, "The Perks People Want"

We often hear that flexibility is key to the future of work, but what does that look like practically speaking? Here to discuss with Building Culture are Julie Figueroa, Head of Marketplace Product, and Eura Edmond, Director of Client Success at PERKS.


You can download the episode here.
You can also find us on: 

Show notes:

  • Recent history of perks and amenities - Google set a new standard for perks at work in the early 2000s
    • free food/collaboration, game room, nap pods
      • In-office vs. remote-first: how do you maintain that kind of culture?
    • Eura, why is it important to redefine what perks are or should be during this season on the People Experience?
      • The world of work is not the way it was - the pandemic served as a catalyst
      • Workers have more power now, so we need to adjust the relationship between employee and employer
        • PERKS works with existing tools and provides actionable insights
  • Support has shifted with the transition to more remote-first and hybrid. Work and life happen simultaneously
    • Working parents are the best example. What are they looking for?
      • Julie: Employers who will be flexible and offer asynchronous workflows will stand out
      • Eura: Understanding and empathy will be critical in addition to the tools needed
    • Who is our audience or who are these perks for? Every person will have specific needs
  • Both: What are some out-of-the-box perks that employees are looking for?
    • Family care, financial assistance, and other things were traditionally considered “out-of-the-box,” but now are the new norm.
      • Ultimately, what will help employees become less stressed and more productive?
      • Perks must be fluid - this is how we need to structure our People Experience programs.
    • Julie: What types of partners are you looking for that would be of interest to employees currently?
      • Shares PERKS' vision and mission
      • Unique people have unique needs
        • Digital nomads
        • Working parents
        • Pet parents
      • Valuing the individual
      • Examples:
        • Future - virtual fitness provider
        • Toucan - anonymous peer support
        • MOBOT - foam roller and water bottle in one
        • DoorDash - food delivery
    • Eura: Any remarks on Learning & Development?
      • Past: Finding the happy medium between offering too many trainings (overwhelm) or too little - now up to the employee
      • How do you make sure L&D is the right investment?
        • A tool like PERKS allows you to give visibility to certain things, or offer your team learning stipends
        • People first
  • We agree that perks improve the people experience, which boosts morale and positively impacts productivity. But are fringe benefits nice-to-haves, or are they non-negotiables moving forward?
    • Eura: People aren't a monolith, and we need to move away from this idea of "buying in bulk"
      • in order for people to do their best work, must provide them the choice
        • accommodating these differences
      • Not that these things are a must-have or nice-to-have, but the new way of doing work
    • Julie: Are generations looking for different things when it comes to work?
      • What matters is that people are seen for who they are as an individual, not just what generation they're a part of
        • Why our marketplace has diverse and unique options
        • What's offered might sway their decision to stay with or join a company
      • The beauty of the marketplace is that it is entirely customizable and we offer anything that will help people excel
  • Recently, we've seen an explosion of remote-first and hybrid teams in the last few years. What about geography? How do you see organizations providing consistent perks packages if they’re distributed and/or have team members in different locations?
    • Julie: The marketplace shines as global solution with localized experience
      • We have curated goods offered everywhere
      • We have a feature built in to only show items available in the area. 
      • Showcase localized vendors depending on the regions
      • For example, if an employee chooses to work from NY one month and Italy the next, can still use PERKS the same way for a localized experience.
      • Also works well for organizations with multiple headquarters or requires travel for their positions.
  • Realistically, organizations don’t have bottomless budgets. How do you figure out what your team needs? 
    • Eura: Involve your team in the decision - ask them what they need!
      • Avoid the one-size-fits-all
      • Creating global culture by pulling your team together
      • Act on feedback you receive
  • PERKS Culture index
    • Eura: PERKS' culture tools includes your existing data (e.g. engagement surveys)
    • Survey tools and targeted recommendations within our 5 Measures of Company Culture
      • If gaps are identified, PERKS will address what steps to take to fill them.
      • Your data in one place
    • We constantly reflect and add items and services to our marketplace
  • Julie, what sets the PERKS marketplace apart from other players? What would you say to organizations who are actively finding solutions to bolster their People Experience?
    • Our global feature sets us apart from everyone else
    • It's about empowering the individual
  • Stay creative, collect feedback, try new things and collect more feedback. Keep people first, communicate with them (through thick and thin), and shape that incredible People Experience that no one else can imitate!