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Holiday bonuses top workers' wish lists, but employers have other plans

04 Dec 2018 8:30 AM | Bill Brewer (Administrator)


Valerie Bolden-Barrett


Dec. 4, 2018

Dive Brief:

  • A holiday bonus tops employees' wish lists this year, according to a new survey's results. In a poll of 1,000 people by Research Now SSI for Spherion Staffing Services, 41% of respondents ranked bonuses as their most preferred holiday perk. But the 2018 Holidays at Work Survey found that 46% of respondents said their employers don't give out any type of monetary holiday gifts, which would include bonuses. Among employees who do receive an extra check in December, the majority receive less than $500.
  • Slightly more than half of respondents surveyed (52%) described that business continues as usual at their offices during the holidays, while 36% said their workplaces are generous and 13% called them "stingy." Still, more than half (51%) said their company collects food, clothing, toys or other items to participate in drives. Almost a fifth said their companies organize a volunteer activity, and about the same amount (15%) said their company adopts a needy child or family.
  • Survey results found that this year's perks include a holiday party (36%), extra time off (28%), holiday bonus (26%), office close-down between Christmas and New Year's Day (22%), an employee gift exchange (18%) and an employer-paid holiday meal (18%).

Dive Insight:

It's no surprise that employees named holiday bonuses their most-preferred holiday gift this year; although other benefits and perks rank high, money remains the biggest motivator in job polls. But results in the Spherion poll showed that just over a quarter of employers offer the highly-prized holiday bonus.

Employers that can't offer bonuses can find other perks that employees might find nearly as valuable. Workers in a West Monroe Partner surveysaid they want flexible work schedules and remote work options during the time-strapped, often stressful holiday season. Respondents said they were just as productive, but less stressed, working remotely than working onsite. 

While employees find work flexibility and remote work options favorable throughout the year, they might find a less stressful holiday a more valuable gift than a bonus. In a 2017 Accountemps survey, employees said their greatest source of stress was balancing work duties with holiday events (32%), returning to work after taking time off to find a heavy workload (23%) and not having enough coworkers around to share some of the duties (18%).

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Source: HR Dive


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