The return to office (RTO) that was expected this year has officially arrived. According to Kastle Systems, a company that tracks keycard swipes, in 10 major metro areas, average office use between Sept. 8 and Sept. 14 was back up to 47.5% of what it was in early 2020. While schedules and headcounts may be inconsistent for now, people are definitely ditching their sweatpants for slacks and heading back to in-person work.
This transition comes with a lot of mixed emotions and opinions. While some are excited to get back together with their co-workers, many are taking issue with the aforementioned burdens that come with leaving the house. Do you know what can help encourage team members to get to the office day in and day out? Good food!
According to USA Today, the way to workers’ hearts is through their stomachs. There’s something symbolic about the concept of “breaking bread together” as a team, especially when groups have been separated for an extended period of time like they have over the past two years. So deliver motivation by offering a perk team members are sure to enjoy - a regularly scheduled employee lunch program!
Consider Your Food Options
When you partner with Spork Bytes, we can help you find the newest, tastiest choices in town. Whether it’s a sandwich spread from Laurelhurst Market or healthy greens from Crisp Salads, we can help you serve up a delicious menu for your staff that’s sure to please.
Provide a wide variety of options, and vary them throughout the week so team members aren't eating the same things every day. We know everyone loves pizza but - trust us - there really is too much of a good thing. When you choose to partner with Spork Bytes, you get access to a variety of meal options and service styles from individually boxed lunches to full buffets. Working with us means you’re also supporting local restaurants and together, we can keep money in our Portland community. That’s important to employees, too: 92% of workers in a recent survey said that supporting local eateries is a high priority for them.
Figure Out What And How Much Food To Order
You’ve chosen the partner restaurants - now what? How much food will you need to provide each day? Does anyone have allergies or dietary requirements? One way to prepare is by using a free platform like Survey Monkey or Typeform to collect info from staff on participation and food preferences. These platforms even integrate with tools like Slack so you can get notified when someone fills out their lunch info. If you work with Spork Bytes, we can help set this up for you!
From there, take your estimated number of meals to finalize numbers and determine your budget. Will you offer beverages, too? Want to throw in a coffee from Portland Roasting and donut station by Delicious Donuts for an early morning treat? What about fresh, local veggie trays by Sheridan Fruit Co. for that 3pm snack break? Will the meals be free or will a portion be subsidized by the company or individual departments? So many questions! But don’t worry, we’ve seen it all and we’ll help you through it!
Make Sure Leadership Is At The Table
With numbers in hand, it’s time to outline the plan to your leadership team for final approvals. Remember to share how office lunches increase workplace productivity, reduce turnover, and are an expert recruiting tool for potential new employees.
Get Planning With Help From Spork Bytes!
You’ve received the buy in and you’ve planned the foods - now it’s time for the fun part! Head to sporkbytes.com to get started and one of our Account Managers will reach out to you. We can help match you with the meal options that make sense for your team - no matter your budget, dietary preferences, or number of staffers served.
Then, announce the good news to your teams that lunch is on the house! Make it a fun and exciting part of the workday - whether you release it in a company email, post signs in the office, or include it on your internal communications. Make sure you are adequately prepared for employee questions about flexibility, any expected costs, and how they can provide you with feedback and post meal photos - because everyone loves a good social media meal post.
With the current labor challenges, employers need to be even more creative than ever before to recruit and retain valuable employees. Investing in a meal may not seem like it makes the difference, but having full stomachs while working hard actually has been proven to incentivize employees to stick around. Get in touch with Spork Bytes today and find out how we can help you with each of these steps to ensure your office is a place your staff comes back to time and time again for fulfilling work, team fun - and delicious food!
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