British employees want flexible working hours and more staff benefits, study claims

Flexible working hours, bigger pension contributions and extra holiday for long service are amongst top work perks British employees want, according to a survey.

A study of 2,000 workers found more than half want their staff benefits to help improve their work-life balance and 49 per cent want added extras, which will save them money.

And while younger adults highlight the need for help with housing, older generations are more concerned with private healthcare.

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Access to mental healthcare is also more important to those who started working this decade than to those who began their careers in any decade before.

It also emerged fewer than one in five are currently totally satisfied with the benefits package provided by their employer.

And half of employees would leave their current employment if they thought they could get a position elsewhere with more perks, with just 22 per cent preferring extra pay over comprehensive benefits.

The study also revealed employees who started their working life in 2010 or later are most likely to want pets in the office, and free breakfast supplies.

And the demand for company-expensed dental care has decreased over the decades, with nearly a quarter of older workers feeling it should be offered as standard by employers.

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This compares to just 9 per cent of people who started their careers during this decade.

Free tea and coffee is most valued by workers aged between 45-54, with over-55's the most likely to seek out an enhanced pension contribution.

People aged between 18-24 cite unlimited holiday days as the most attractive perk they think a company could offer.

It also emerged employees who have been working the longest are most satisfied with their current benefits package, with those starting work in the 1990's the least happy.

Although more people who started work during this decade are currently looking for a job with better benefits than any other workers.

But unusually, younger workers are also most likely to stay in their jobs because the benefits are too good to pass up.

More than six in 10 workers who took part in the survey, conducted through OnePoll.com , believe their employer has a responsibility to look after their personal well-being.

And workers agree they have become more demanding of their employers due to the hours spent at work, increased retirement age and the always-on nature of work making them feel their companies should offer more for their service.

Steven Osei, spokesman for the preferential partnerships programme at Get Living, which commissioned the study, said: "It’s no surprise that employees’ attitudes to workplace benefits have changed over the last five decades since the world we live in is almost unrecognisable now.

“Employees are moving jobs more often, increasingly working from home and expecting to be compensated for their dedication.

“To keep up with the competition, employers need to reflect workers more flexible lifestyles.”

Different age groups reveal the most attractive perks of the workplace

Ages 18-24

1. Unlimited holiday days

2. Flexible working hours

3. Dental care

4. Free breakfast supplies

5. One free holiday a year

6. Access to mental healthcare

7. Private healthcare

8. Retailer and restaurant discounts

9. Free coffee and tea

10. Help with housing

11. Additional holiday days for long service

12. Enhanced pension contribution

13. Free fruit

14. Free eye tests

15. Free taxis if you need to stay in the office late

16. Clothing allowance

17. Phone allowance/work phone

18. Free/on-site gym and classes

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19. First class travel on work trips

20. Summer hours between May and August

21. Subsidised gym/fitness classes

22. Assistance with childcare costs

23. Free showers

24. Taking paid work days to volunteer at a charity

25. Access to an emergency nanny

Ages 25-34

1. Flexible working hours

2. Enhanced pension contribution

3. Unlimited holiday days

4. Free coffee and tea

5. One free holiday a year

6. Additional holiday days for long service

7. Private healthcare

8. Dental care

9. Free eye tests

10. Free breakfast supplies

11. Assistance with childcare costs

12. Summer hours between May and August

13. Free fruit

14. Retailer and restaurant discounts

15. Access to mental healthcare

16. Free/on-site gym and classes

17. Clothing allowance

18. Subsidised gym/fitness classes

19. Help with housing

20. Free taxis if you need to stay in the office late

21. Taking paid work days to volunteer at a charity

22. First class travel on work trips

23. Free alcoholic drinks on a Friday

24. Pets in the office

25. Unpaid sabbatical

Ages 35-44

1. Flexible working hours

2. Enhanced pension contribution

3. Additional holiday days for long service

4. Private healthcare

5. Unlimited holiday days

6. Free coffee and tea

7. Dental care

8. One free holiday a year

9. Free eye tests

10. Access to mental healthcare

11. Free fruit

12. Summer hours between May and August

13. Retailer and restaurant discounts

14. Assistance with childcare costs

15. Clothing allowance

16. Free breakfast supplies

17. Free/on-site gym and classes

18. Subsidised gym/fitness classes

19. Help with housing

20. Phone allowance/work phone

21. Taking paid work days to volunteer at a charity

22. Unpaid sabbatical

23. First class travel on work trips

24. Free showers

25. Free taxis if you need to stay in the office late

45-54

1. Flexible working hours

2. Additional holiday days for long service

3. Private healthcare

4. Enhanced pension contribution

5. Free coffee and tea

6. Free eye tests

7. Dental care

8. One free holiday a year

9. Unlimited holiday days

10. Clothing allowance

11. Free fruit

12. Retailer and restaurant discounts

13. Summer hours between May and August

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14. Access to mental healthcare

15. Free breakfast supplies

16. Free/on-site gym and classes

17. Unpaid sabbatical

18. Subsidised gym/fitness classes

19. Help with housing

20. First class travel on work trips

21. Free taxis if you need to stay in the office late

22. Phone allowance/work phone

23. Taking paid work days to volunteer at a charity

24. Assistance with childcare costs

25. Pets in the office

Age 55+

1. Flexible working hours

2. Enhanced pension contribution

3. Private healthcare

4. Additional holiday days for long service

5. Free coffee and tea

6. Dental care

7. Free eye tests

8. Unlimited holiday days

9. One free holiday a year

10. Retailer and restaurant discounts

11. Clothing allowance

12. Access to mental healthcare

13. Free fruit

14. Free taxis if you need to stay in the office late

15. Summer hours between May and August

16. Phone allowance/work phone

17. Subsidised gym/fitness classes

18. Free/on-site gym and classes

19. Help with housing

20. Unpaid sabbatical

21. Taking paid work days to volunteer at a charity

22. First class travel on work trips

23. Free breakfast supplies

24. Free showers

25. Pets in the office

SWNS