Companies Giving More Holiday Parties and Perks This Year

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-ten (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)

Survey Methodology

This survey was conducted online within the U.S. by Harris Interactive© on behalf of CareerBuilder among 2,638 U.S. hiring managers and 3,661 U.S. workers (employed full-time; not self-employed; both government and non-government) ages 18 and over between August 17 and September 2, 2010 (percentages for some questions are based on a subset, based on their responses to certain questions). With pure probability samples of 2,638 and 3,661 one could say with a 95 percent probability that the overall results have a sampling error of +/- 1.91 and +/-1.62 percentage points, respectively. Sampling error for data from sub-samples is higher and varies.

About CareerBuilder®

CareerBuilder is the global leader in human capital solutions, helping companies target and attract their most important asset – their people. Its online career site,®, is the largest in the United States with more than 23 million unique visitors, 1 million jobs and 32 million resumes. CareerBuilder works with the world’s top employers, providing resources for everything from recruitment to employment branding and data analysis. More than 9,000 websites, including 140 newspapers and broadband portals such as MSN and AOL, feature CareerBuilder’s proprietary job search technology on their career sites. Owned by Gannett Co., Inc. (NYSE: GCI), Tribune Company, The McClatchy Company (NYSE: MNI) and Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT), CareerBuilder and its subsidiaries operate in the United States, Europe, Canada and Asia. For more information, visit