Investing in staff welfare can go a long way

What a lovely story regarding the best tech employers in Singapore ("Best tech firms to work for"; Wednesday).

We know that not many companies can afford to put in place some of the things the featured firms have, such as backrubs and napping pods at Google, but it is great to share fantastic and inspiring stories such as these, coupled with such refreshing and creative pictures.

It gets people talking on a lighter note.

I once visited a company in Hong Kong where its main entrance opens to a cafe-style meeting area, with cheerfully coloured tables and chairs, a large fridge and pantry.

The firm encourages open discussions, and this is a place for its staff to do so.

The large fridge is also a place for staff to store their lunch boxes and heat them up during break times.

It opened my eyes and demonstrated that staff interaction was at the heart of the office culture.

After all, the common practice is to tuck the pantry area into a corner behind the office, as if the sight of employees eating and drinking is something to be avoided.

Talent retention and a good corporate culture are some of the key reasons behind a company's success.

An investment in staff welfare can go a long way to growing a company.

Mary Chan Pheck Li (Ms)

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 18, 2015, with the headline 'Investing in staff welfare can go a long way'. Print Edition | Subscribe