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A recent study by a national staffing firm has found that the most coveted summer benefits for employees are flexible schedules and being able to leave work early on Fridays.

The survey was developed by OfficeTeam, a firm specializing in the placement of highly skilled administrative professionals.

The survey was managed by an independent research firm, which conducted a series of telephone interviews with 457 workers aged 18 or older and employed in an office environment.

As it gets harder and harder to keep your top talent happy, this study is food for thought.

The pearls of wisdom that have come out of the survey are a great way to keep employees motivated. They can also give you a chance to show them how much you appreciate their hard work, particularly if you’ve already cut staff due to the last recession.

“Employees appreciate flexibility in their jobs because it gives them greater control and enables them to handle other commitments without sacrificing their work performance,” says Robert Hosking, executive director of OfficeTeam.

Survey results

Asked which summer benefits they want the most, respondents came up with the following preferences:

  • Leave early on Fridays: 32%
  • Flexible schedules: 28%
  • Activities (company picnic, potlucks): 6%
  • Relaxed dress code: 5%
  • Other: 14%
  • Don’t know: 15%

Flexible scheduling is an inexpensive way to keep employees motivated.

To ensure customer service doesn’t suffer, Hosking suggests that businesses stagger workers’ schedules to maximize the total number of hours employees are available to assist customers.

Even if companies aren’t able to implement flexible schedules, allowing employees to occasionally leave early on Fridays can have a positive effect on morale.

Many workers like to schedule weekend trips during the summer, and they will greatly appreciate a head start on their travels.