Convenience. Variety. Accessibility. These are just a few of the descriptions a micro market has taken on in the past few years as this model of vending continues to evolve. If you've looked into the possibility of adding a micro market to your office or location but wondered how to budget for a relatively new concept, this blog should help with your consideration.
I'll give you a hint: it won't cost you or your company a thing.
What a Micro Market Means for Your Business
Food and beverage are basic human needs. That's not earth-shattering to anyone and the necessity of eating and drinking during a typical workday is just that: a necessity. Perhaps your office has traditional vending machines or nothing that offers people the opportunity to buy food items or drinks. Have you thought about the revolution a micro market could have for your employees or staff?
A micro market is a freestyle-type convenience store setup offering people plenty of food and beverage items to purchase. Think open shelves and accessible cooler and coffee machines available to peruse any time of day. There's a point of sale that accepts cash, cards, or personal ID for purchase. The micro markets are not staffed, encouraging people to help themselves to the items they want, no matter the time of day. Think yogurt, fresh fruit, and granola in the mornings and fresh salads and handmade sandwiches during the noon hour.
Micro markets can provide a reliable source of caffeine and energy throughout the day offering hot lattes or cappuccinos or ready-to-drink bottles of soda, energy drinks, or coffee-based drinks. Micro markets literally offer something for everyone.
How Can You Afford a Micro Market?
Within any business organization comes the responsibility of keeping employees engaged and satisfied while abiding by the B-word: budget. Affording a micro market won't require any additional funding or consideration in your fiscal or operational budgets. The installation of a micro market requires only the basics from your point of view:
- Space within your organization - think kitchen-type areas or employee break rooms with high visibility for access
- Dedicated electrical outlets - standard electricity with double-socket for machine plug ins
- Wireless access - a dedicated Internet supply to power point of sale transactions
- Water line - if adding coffee machines
There's no cost to organizations for the installation of micro markets or the ongoing management of keeping it stocked and running smoothly. Employees are treated as customers paying for each transaction on their own. Businesses that feature micro markets don't spend any money on traditional setups or filling it with food and beverages.
Why Micro Markets Make the Most Sense
Maybe your company has traditional hours of operation complete with mandatory breaks for lunch and other rest. You might not have that type of rigid structuring but still encourage your employees to make good choices each day to get the most out of their workdays. In any type of professional scenario, managing time for eating and staying hydrated is key to employee success and overall productivity. Offering employees an easy, customizable, onsite source for those breaks and food and drink items could be an absolute game-changer for your business.
People work better and stay focused when they're sated. Having access to healthy, fresh food within a quick walk will increase satisfaction. Another positive perk is the idea of culture and collaboration: instead of having to leave the physical premises to grab a bite to eat or a cup of coffee on the go, you're offering your team members options right where they are, all day long. Imagine fostering an atmosphere where people can convene for meetings or casual breaks with each other. With the right variety of food and beverage items, you'll meet the needs of your organization with a micro market.
How should you budget for your micro market in 2018? Simply commit to making a difference for your employees and add it as an action item. That's all that's required - that's a fact.