Just when we thought we’d seen it all in the benefits sphere….we went to PERKS, and were quickly proven wrong.
The Perks Convention is an annual trade show and networking event that brings together the best corporate perks that the Boston area has to offer. With 30 exhibitors (the maximum allowed given the space!), and about 350 attendees, Perks covered conventional and unconventional offerings, and everything in between.
So what’s new in employee perks? Let’s see. We saw: on-site mani/pedi’s with Manicube, on-site haircuts with My Barber, healthy food services with LeanBox and Platejoy, on-site mini golf with Mobile-Mini Golf, on-site yoga with Chasing Nirvana, alcohol delivery with Drizly, bike to work options with BikeBus, massages, branded jello, meditation, and much more! Oh, and did we mention on-site eye exams?!
What’s to learn from all of this? A few things:
- It’s cool to bring cool stuff to your employees, and more and more employers are getting on board.
- As such, this is an industry that continues to grow year after year.
- Traditional benefits, like top-notch health insurance, are important but not necessarily enough to keep employees happy and attract top talent. Employees, especially those that are younger, are looking beyond the basics (“How much is my copay?”) when it comes to benefits packages.
- It doesn’t necessarily cost the company much to bring on a valuable perk or on-site service (sometimes it’s free!).
- Don’t be afraid to think outside the box when it comes to employee perks. What may seem like a bizarre idea could be the thing that people never knew they wanted in their lives!
All in all, our team had a blast at the Microsoft NERD Center learning about Boston’s thought leaders in this space and meeting new faces (as well as those we had previously known on the phone or via email). We talked to existing clients and contacts, and (hopefully) sparked some new relationships too.
This was one of the most fun, laid back and friendly trade show environments we’d ever been a part of (the open bar didn’t hurt). It’s living proof that there’s a tight knit community of HR and benefits professionals in the area that truly enjoy each other’s company and learning about all of the different services they can bring to their employees. These are people that care about making their employees’ lives just a bit better, in whatever feasible way they can. We were so glad to participate in PERKS this year and are already looking forward to next year’s!