When Express Refreshments introduced the first Micro Market to the UK, it was met with curiosity and even a touch of apprehension. How was this self-service convenience store for the workplace a better solution than facilities already on the market?
Fast forward nine years and the benefits of the Micro Market are now strikingly obvious. With its attraction to UK businesses only accelerated during the Covid-19 pandemic, the Micro Market is arguably now the best on-site refreshment facility to the demands of the modern workforce.
The Micro Market is a grand employee perk.
We’re now living in a candidate driven market. It’s easier than ever for employees to search and apply for jobs elsewhere, which means your company must do more to retain star talent.
And when you consider that Covid-19 has drastically altered expectations from your workplace in the eyes of your team, employee perks are more of a necessity than they have ever been before.
Refreshments, including tea and coffee breaks, have always been a key part of an employees’ working day. The Micro Market makes sure you don’t overlook this in your workplace wellbeing strategy, before building on it to provide a grand refreshment solution on your own premises.
Fresh food, indulgent treats and healthier snacks are displayed in an open design that’s fondly reminiscent of your local convenience store. You can even add your own fresh milk coffee machine for the taste of the coffee shop.
The Micro Market is a great facility on its own, but it can alternatively be central to a grand breakout or recreational area that really takes workplace wellness to the next level.
That’s the benefit of your market being designed and created by one company: us. Think comfy seating, flat screen TV’s, hydration stations and more, but remember your space can be as little or as large as you want or need it to be.
And with Express Refreshments also handling replenishment in line with your own usage, the Micro Market is arguably one of the grandest yet convenient employee perks you can offer.
Company culture is firmly under the spotlight since Covid. Your staff care about happiness and wellness almost as much as they do their salary or additional benefits.
This is a key reason why the Micro Market continues to grow in popularity.
The Micro Market is wonderfully flexible.
The Micro Market offers welcome flexibility in a way no other on-site refreshment solution can. Only traditional vending comes close, though the fact you’re here probably means you need something bigger.
Remember we said that we design and create your own Micro Market? We do this to suit your requirements and work with you throughout the process to make sure you’re happy.
Take a look at Micro Markets online and you’d be forgiven for thinking that they’re all colossal facilities that require both space and a budget that is equally as large.
That just isn’t true.
The Micro Market is designed to be your solution. That’s the beauty of it. If you only have available space for a few shelves and one fridge, that’s fine. The Micro Market doesn’t have to be central to a huge breakout area.
Away from design, it’s 24/7 availability means staff can visit their market whenever they need to. This is a solution that works for them, not the other way around like contract catering often requires.
Some team members may take their lunch at midday. Others may prefer to work past 1pm before they grab a bite to eat. With the Micro Market, it really doesn’t matter.
And being self-service, nobody else needs to be there in order to assume control. CCTV is present for security purposes, though trust still goes a long way. After all, why have you hired people that you don’t trust?
Whereas contract catering requires everyone to grab what they want for dinner at set times, the Micro Market adopts a flexible approach that more and more businesses are getting on board with.
The Micro Market is perfectly suited to hybrid working.
Following on from the Micro Markets’ flexible nature, this ties in well to its suitability for hybrid working.
Some businesses have been adopting hybrid working for years, though the volume rapidly grew during the Covid pandemic. Even now the country gets back to normal, hybrid working will remain for many.
During the height of the pandemic, one survey found 76% of people had adopted hybrid working, with only 11% having now returned to the office full time.
The importance of employee wellness won’t go away. Rather than eliminating or reducing the value, hybrid working simply means you must double down on your efforts to cater to staff coming onto site at different times.
Contract caterers coming onto site between 12pm and 1pm is no good for someone who is working an afternoon shift. Because the Micro Market is always there, it provides a welcome solution for everyone, even those who may work night shifts.
Aside from traditional vending, we can’t think of any other refreshment solution that is always ready and waiting. It’s all down to the benefit of being totally self-service.
The Micro Market delivers peace of mind in this modern world.
Covid-19 has changed our world and even as we continue to progress back to normality, the virus has ingrained a certain level of fear and concern that will be difficult to shift.
Of course, these stem around health, safety, and hygiene.
We worry about shared touch points and personal space in a way we never worried prior to the pandemic. In fact, it is these concerns that have so far shaped the “workplace revolution” in line with adaptations or complete overhauls.
The Micro Market, in many ways, is a Covid-compliant facility that can provide natural reassurance. For a start it is completely self-service, with no extra person needed to assume control or encounter.
Then, you have an open design that makes it easy for staff to keep their distance. That’s without everyone needing to rush for breaktimes at once like they’d need to do with contract caterers.
You can even implement one-way navigation through the use of signs or floor stickers.
All products in the Micro Market are pre-packaged, so whilst this is ideal for browsing at your leisure prior to purchase, it also means the products themselves remain safe, secure, and ready to enjoy.
Finally, payment is made using a cashless payment terminal that uses software bespoke to Express Refreshments for speed and security. No cash is required, meaning you can steer clear of any potential germs.
The Micro Market could prove cost-effective.
Of course, expenditure matters to businesses. That is something else that has become more apparent since the unpredictability of the last two years.
With more emphasis now being placed on employee wellness at work, the cost of keeping an unhappy team could far outweigh the cost of keeping them content on your premises. Up to 400 times more, in fact.
That doesn’t mean we’re about to tell you that the Micro Market will blow a hole in your accounts, though. It could actually be far more cost-effective than you think.
It all depends on your space, size, and equipment, but we have had some customers see a welcome saving compared to what they were previously paying. If your current solution is coming at an unwelcome cost, now maybe a good time to talk to us.
For example, serviced buildings could save money having a Micro Market installed for all staff to use instead of having a variety of facilities dotted all over the building.
And with Express Refreshments handling everything from initial design to ongoing maintenance, our Micro Market is an all-in-one solution that can work for almost any business.