More and more companies feed their employees at work. And often the burden of managing those food programs falls on the office manager, human resources team or facilities professional. Few of them have a nutrition background to curate the list of healthy products required. Even fewer have the time necessary to order those products, stock the shelves, specify and maintain the equipment (refrigeration, coffee brewers, water machines and the like), clean and otherwise organize the office kitchen and pantry. How do you know when it makes sense to outsource office kitchen needs? Here are five decisive factors:
1. Managing the Office Kitchen has Become a Burden
At early-stage startups, it probably makes sense to have an office manager handle the restocking of the kitchen supplies. But, if your company is at a growing stage, you have offices in multiple locations, and growing demands from your workforce, it may be time to rethink this approach. It may be fair to say that if maintaining the kitchen isn’t the primary role of the person or team currently doing it, chances are their actual responsibilities and productivity are being hindered. This may be the first indication that your company is ready to outsource your office kitchen needs.
2. Your Company is Growing
Related to the bandwidth factor above, scalability needs to be examined. Is the person or team able to handle the needs of your company as it grows? Many of Oh My Green’s current customers have come to us looking for a healthy alternative for the snacks offerings, but also after realizing that their current situation was no longer sustainable —case in point, Flatiron Health. We were able to provide much-needed support to Flatiron’s Office Operations & Facilities team when it became clear that servicing a growing workforce of 800+ employees and five kitchens at their headquarters alone was no longer viable. Read the case study about how the Flatiron’s Office Operations & Facilities team was able to get 20% of their time back by outsourcing management of their five kitchens when it no longer made sense to manage this in-house.
3. You Need Nutrition Expertise
Outsourcing your office kitchen needs to an experienced food vendor delivers more benefits than you may realize. Not all foods are created equal. Poor nutrition directly correlates to the three biggest health epidemics in America: heart disease, diabetes, and obesity. Nearly half of U.S. workers believe they’ve gained weight at their present jobs. Of these workers, 1 in 4 say they’ve gained at least 10 pounds in their current position, and 1 in 10 say they’ve gained 20 pounds or more. Per-year absenteeism costs can range from $8,065 for a single condition like obesity to more $40,000 (CDC). Furthermore, productivity losses related to employee health problems cost companies $225.8 billion annually, according to the Center for Disease Control (CDC).
With Oh My Green, you’ll instantly get expertise from trained nutritionists who can help curate a selection of foods and drinks that are guaranteed to help your workforce thrive. Plus, healthier food choices has been shown to have a positive influence on overall company culture.
4. Food Safety is Becoming an Issue
Food allergies are no joking matter. Ensuring your employees have access to not only proper nutrition but also foods that are free of dangerous allergens should be a priority. Having a vendor who understands food safety and pays attention to detail in the way snacks and meals are packaged, prepared, labeled, and displayed will give you and your employees an incredible amount of peace of mind.
Oh My Green takes food safety very seriously, providing detailed ingredient lists for each food item. In addition, clear communication of allergens is displayed with words and/or images so your employees never have to wonder.
5. You Wonder If It Might Be More Affordable to Outsource
Do you go back and forth between: “These food orders are becoming too expensive and too hard to manage.” and “We can’t afford to outsource; we’re not there yet.”? Think again. Look again at point #3. Like most companies in the U.S., productivity losses due to poor employee health are most-likely impacting your business. Furthermore, sourcing at scale, carefully curating food for nutrition and taste, plus managing for psychology takes a lot of time.
Healthy foods can have a positive influence on company culture and it can help attract the best talent, increase employee retention and productivity. All these factors ultimately impact your company’s bottom line. If you are an employer who is serious about having a health and wellness program you’d be well on the way to accomplish that. Healthy food choices have been proven to have greater impact on a person’s overall wellness than physical activity.
Also, there are potential tax benefits for offering snacks and onsite catered lunch at the office. Be sure to ask your accounting team and/or check with the IRS or your tax advisors to find out if your company may be leaving money on the table. As your company grows outsourcing is not only inevitable but also the right move.
At Oh My Green, we’re on a mission to transform the office into a destination for healthier living. If you’re not an Oh My Green customer, get on board now and make the upgrade!