Poll shows companies giving more holiday parties and perks this year

RP news wires

The economic scrooge may be loosening its grip on holiday cheer in the office as employers indicate their intent to offer more holiday perks (bonuses, parties, gifts) than last year. The nationwide CareerBuilder survey was conducted between August 17 and September 2, 2010 and included more than 3,600 workers and more than 2,600 employers.

Bonuses: A third (33 percent) of employers plan to give their employees holiday bonuses this year,up from 29 percent in 2009. Among that group, 59 percent are planning to give the same amount as in previous years. Nine percent of employers say they will not be issuing holiday bonuses even though they have in previous years, down from 12 percent last year.

Parties: More than half (52 percent) of employers are planning a holiday party for their employees this year, up from 49 percent in 2009. Of that group, 70 percent plan to throw the same party as in previous years. Eight percent (down from 11 percent last year) of employers don’t plan to have a holiday party in 2010 even though they have in previous years.

Gifts: Close to three-in-10 (29 percent) employers plan to give holiday gifts, up from 26 percent in 2009. Among those giving gifts, sixty-five percent plan to spend the same amount for workers as in previous years. Six percent say they are not planning to give holidays gifts in 2010, even though they have in years past.

“Many employers are financially in a better place this season and recognize the positive impact holiday perks can have on office morale,” said Rosemary Haefner, vice president of human resources for CareerBuilder. “Companies are not only giving back to employees this holiday season, 45 percent say their charitable donations will be the same or more than previous years.”

Holiday perks in the office aren’t just from corporate; a quarter of workers say they plan to buy holiday gifts for co-workers this year, compared to 22 percent who plan to buy their boss a gift. The majority (86 percent) of workers buying gifts say they plan to spend $25 or less on average for each holiday gift they buy for the office. Workers said the most unusual gifts they received from co-workers included:

  • bag of ice
  • a bra
  • a CD he recorded of himself singing (badly)
  • a dickie
  • a unicorn
  • a statue of Dracula
  • a sweater turtleneck covered in piranhas
  • a used cookbook
  • coupon to a strip club
  • pack of toilet paper (20 rolls)
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