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Dirty coffee mugs. Stale brews. Broken machines. Gripes about office coffee fill break rooms across the country every day. These are seemingly benign annoyances– but ones your company can’t afford to ignore. Coffee is a daily touchpoint in the lives of your workforce. It can either be a source of regular dissatisfaction or a positive ritual that enhances productivity and your company’s reputation as a desirable place to work.

A recent post about office coffee on the popular blog “Ask a Manager” garnered more than 1600 complaints in 3 months about employees’ breakroom coffee experiences. However serious or silly the complaints, the thread makes one thing clear – employees take their coffee very, very seriously and so should employers.

This summer, finally get the right blend brewing. Set up a taste test including descriptions of each coffee company and let your employees vote on which blends you will have on hand. Here’s why it matters.

It Boosts Your Employer Brand

Millennials have an emotional connection to their coffee. When they opt for sustainable sourcing and high quality roasts, it’s an expression of their values. Picking a coffee that represents your corporate values will resonate with employees and be reinforced with every cup.

It Keeps Employees On Site

Employees who aren’t happy with the coffee at work will leave to get a satisfying cup of joe. Take the 10-20 minutes per day spent walking, biking or driving and multiply it by the number of days someone works per year. That’s a solid week or more of lost time in the workplace.

It’s Connected to Productivity

Studies show that only 10% of employees under 65 consider themselves morning people. According to Scientific American, “These subjective ratings for peak productivity times also correspond with data from objective measures of cognitive functions, including analytical thought and judgment, memory, and the ability to suppress irrelevant information.” Coffee is the main tool employees use to produce sharpness in the morning hours before their energy peaks in the afternoon.

It Shows That You Care

The act of offering coffee options to your employees shows that you care about their personal preferences and that you’re listening to feedback. A company culture that consistently shows appreciation and respect for its people is essential to something far more important than simply coffee: talent retention.

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