Canadian employers are beginning to offer season-specific benefits as summer draws near, but what’s being offered doesn’t line up with what employees are looking for, according to a new survey by staffing agency OfficeTeam.

The survey, which polled more than 400 human resources managers and more than 300 employees in office environments, found nearly half (46 per cent) of employee respondents said their top summer perk would be flexible working schedules, but only 27 per cent of companies surveyed offer them.

Read: Canadians work an extra 21 hours before and after a week of vacation: study

In terms of benefits that are more frequently offered, employees are less keen. Thirty-seven per cent of employers let staff leave early on Fridays, but only 25 per cent of employees say that’s their preferred benefit. One-third (33 per cent) of companies permit a more relaxed dress code during the summer, but only 10 per cent of staff rate that as the most appealing perk. And 19 per cent of companies host activities such as potlucks or picnics, but just eight per cent of employees said those are their favourite summer perks.

“Companies can leverage summer perks to boost morale,” said Koula Vasilopoulos, a district president for OfficeTeam, in a statement. “These incentives allow employees to relax, recharge and enjoy the season while still meeting project deadlines.

“Find what works for your team by regularly seeking their feedback. Providing attractive benefits not only keeps current staff motivated, but can also set your organization apart for potential candidates.”

According to the survey, 20 per cent of human resources managers think employees are less productive during the summer, though 69 per cent think there’s no change in on-the-job performance. The most common poor behaviours for the season are unexpected absences (28 per cent), being too distracted (20 per cent), dressing too casually (18 per cent), not planning well for vacations (17 per cent) and arriving late or leaving early (14 per cent).

Read: Should Canada move towards more generous paid leave provisions?

Copyright © 2017 Transcontinental Media G.P. Originally published on benefitscanada.com

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