Google, the search engine gaint's campuses reflect its overarching philosophy to create the happiest and the most productive workplace in the world. But do its lavish perks lead to the creativity it is proud of ?
Google lets many software engineers design their own work stations out which resemble oversized toys. Some have standing desks, a few have attached treadmills so that they can “walk” while working. It looks a bit disorganized that's how its engineers like it.
This apparent informality is formally thought out and implemented. Everything has been researched and is backed by data. In an open kitchen area, there is an array of free food, snacks, candy and beverages but the healthy choices are visible from the front. So the candy, chocolates, chewing gum are in opaque ceramic jars with nutritional labels while almonds, peanuts and dried banana chips are in transparent jars. Similarly, in coolers, sodas are hidden behind translucent glass while a variety of waters and juices are instantly visible.
The perks are amazing. Subsidized massages in massage rooms on every floor, free weekly eyebrow shaping, free yoga classes, health consultation and personal health counsellling. Google's headquarters in Mountain View, California has many sophisticated fitness centres. All this is in addition to the conventional employee benefits.
Google doesn't ask its employees to work from the office or even keep track of who's there but it does expect employees to work out a work schedule with their team and manager. It's not a free-for-all. Obviously, for a company with Google's profits that make it possible - it's hardly necessary to require employees to be in the office.