Whether in print media, online media or panel conversations across television, a huge volume of workplace culture conversations lean towards the intrinsic and extrinsic value of staff working from the office as opposed to working from home.

What started as conversations around the legal rights of companies to mandate working from the office, has quickly progressed to positive discussions around “Perks That Work.”

In short, most commentators agree that:

  • Productivity means so much more than simply doing your core role
  • Flexibility doesn’t, and shouldn’t simply start and end with working from home options
  • Connections and F2F (face to face) interactions are irreplaceable

As these have always been amongst our core company values at Provender, the conversations we’re hearing in the media have sparked a deeper dive into each of these fundamental concepts.


Productivity extends far beyond simply fulfilling a particular core role. It also entails mentoring, working with, and brainstorming with others to achieve better outcomes.

Every company, every business, is a sum of the value of the people it employs and contracts. It is the combined value of ideas, of skills, of strengths, of interests and of networks and knowledge in parallel with core roles executed well, that truly make a business work.

In other words, it is what we all collectively bring to the table that ensures effective productivity.

Although countless studies have shown that “the great WFH” has meant little to no change to people’s literal productivity in terms of hours and core role output, I personally am yet to speak with one single business owner, business manager, line manager, commercial manager or team leader who doesn’t agree that WFH hasn’t negatively affected ideation, innovation, and interaction.

It is for this reason that companies such as Zoom, Twitter (X), Meta, Disney and Amazon are now demanding minimum time to be spent in the office. To enhance true productivity, to foster innovation; many of the world’s senior business leaders believe that there needs to be a balance between the flexibility offered through WFH and employee interaction and office time.

Many commentators also speak of the office environment as a key to productivity and attracting staff, particularly young staff, back into the office.

Dull, white, paneled, lifeless and soulless offices are not enticing or inviting. If we want to enhance creativity, innovation, and productivity within the workplace, then we must design workplaces that embody creativity, innovation, and productivity.

Music, breakout rooms, meditation rooms, coffee corners, Micro Markets, artwork and plants are just some of the ways to “pimp up your office” without breaking the bank.

When talking about “Perks that Work,” start with your office environment and you can’t go wrong!


When we talk about “Perks that Work,” it is inevitable that flexibility will be one of the first strategies that comes to mind – as it should.

However, flexibility means so much more than the ability to WFH.

Post Covid, WFH became the carrot that many companies dangled to garner the support of their teams and employees. But WFH is far from the only definition of flexibility.

There are, in fact, many options that scream flexibility and have absolutely nothing to do with working from home.

If a vibrant, youthful, innovative office environment is what you desire, have you thought of:

  • 4-day work weeks (with the same KPIs)
  • 9-day work fortnights (with the same KPIs)
  • Staggered start and finish times
  • Aligning office days so that full teams are in the office at the same time and on the same days
  • A Micro Market offering healthy food and drink options 24/7 so that your staff have healthy breaks whenever it suits them best, without wasting valuable time outside of the office.

And if you’re looking for a silver lining – none of the above options will cost you a single cent.

Offering flexibility is undoubtedly one of the least expensive and most effective Perks that Work available to any workplace.


The ability to see someone’s expression, the ability to read someone’s face and body language, the ability to share someone’s mood and energy are all irreplaceable and especially so in an office environment.

Experts say that between 70 and 93% of our communication is non-verbal and whilst some of this can also be garnered across a video screen, there is nothing we have found to replace the impact of human to human interaction.

Face to face communication and interaction in the office space is often far less rigid and less formal than over a video screen or mobile phone.

Walking past someone in the corridor, talking around the coffee machine, chinwagging whilst lunch is heating or sharing a meal for an informal chat require no appointment making (“let’s send five emails back and forth to find a mutually desirable time for our meeting and let’s double that number if there are more than 3 people involved”), and no strict time limits (“I have a hard stop at 2pm, regardless of whether we have reached agreement or created a solution”).

Face to face communication is not only easier and often more efficient, but working together in the office has its own perks, unrelated to both productivity and flexibility:

  • Visibility leads to memorability. When you’re eyeing a promotion or to be included in the next exciting tech project, it pays to be visible and accessible.
  • As humans, we work best with people we like and trust; both of which are infinitely more successfully achieved when we see
  • Collaboration and ideation are genuinely stronger when people are focused together on a mutual project.

A Provender GrabNGo Micro Market is not only installed, serviced, fulfilled, managed, and maintained by us, for you, at absolutely no cost to you but is transformative when it comes to engendering informal face to face communications, as well as a place for staff to meet for projects, team discussions and client coffees.

One could liken a Micro Market to “water cooler conversations on steroids.”

Not only can your staff benefit from healthy and nutritious fresh food choices with 24/7 convenience right there in their office, a Micro Market can help to transform any workplace into a modern space for staff who genuinely want to be in the office.

Now that is what we call a Perk that Works!