Job perks – real or imaginary

by | 27.05.19

Perks – a word that conjures up a variety of images, – always good, they are viewed as a benefit. You’ve always been happy with your 20 days holiday, free parking and a lovely staff kitchen, but when a job offers “perks” it always appears more attractive – but is it? Let’s investigate….

Flexible hours

Fabulous you think, that means I can start at 11.00 am and work till 7am if I want, or I can squeeze two days into one by working from 6.00am till 10pm and not work tomorrow. Unfortunately it usually doesn’t work like this, most employers want you to work five days a week between 8am and 7pm, there usually isn’t the flexibility you think there is.

Working from home

You think this means if I don’t feel like working I won’t. What it really means is your boss trusts you, they believe you can work on your own and don’t need to be micromanaged, however they still expect the work to be done. Yes you have the flexibility to do your shopping midday or take the kids to school but you do have to do the work expected from you.

Zero Hour Contract

This looks very attractive, work when you want to, don’t work when you don’t want to. What it really means is you are not guaranteed any work at all. The employer will call you into work when they need you, if they don’t need you there is no pay. You also have no employment rights including holiday pay and pension. Furthermore if you are not available when you are needed for work there is a good chance you won’t be called again.

Free food for lunch and a games room

You think this means everyday is a party but what it really means is you are not encouraged to go out at lunchtime. Grab something to eat from the sandwiches and fruit that’s been supplied, have a quick game of ping-pong then get back to work. It’s a good morale booster to have a free lunch and be able to use a games room but it’s win, win, win for your employer – employees who have short lunch breaks, work longer and are therefore more productive.

Open management policy

What you think this means is “I can say what I want, I can be as open as I choose to be”. What it really means is the boss wants to know what you are thinking, they want to see how creative you are, what ideas you come up with or how committed to the Company you are. What it doesn’t mean is every time your colleague annoys you, or you’ve had a bad day or your cat has died the boss wants you in their office chewing their ear off.

The moral of this message is perks aren’t always as they appear so when job searching concentrate on getting the right job not on what you can get out of a job. There is an old saying “all that glitters is not gold”.

Happy job search!