Good Coffee: The Fastest Way to an Employee’s Heart

Coffee. For many of us it’s a ritual, right? And that means it has to slot into the working day, somehow.

For some employees, a quick fuel-up at the desk can kick-start the day. For others, the coffee break is a momentary escape. It’s a chance to connect with others – and great things can come of it.

The idea for Gmail was dreamt up by a small group at one of Google’s workplace cafes. So says Katelin Todhunter-Gerberg, a senior associate on Google’s communications team.

So if your team does some of its best thinking over a coffee, doesn’t it make sense to do some thinking over the coffee and the equipment that brings it to them?

Let’s nurture the coffee break and take a look at how your business can benefit – and what some of the considerations are.

Help yourself to your choice of brew, and let’s go deep into coffee territory! 


RENT OR BUY, KNOW YOUR MACHINERY 

The price of buying or renting a coffee machine for a business is comparable. It’s generally thought that renting or leasing is preferable, as it provides greater flexibility and maybe frees up your capital for more pressing things.

Rental Packages – what to consider

As with any rental agreement, there are things to consider before moving a top-of-the-range barista-ready model into your lunch room. Here are some of them.

  • Does the rental package include a minimum quantity purchase, or specialised products?
  • Will there be model updates prior to the end of the lease?
  • Is technical support and servicing included? 
  • What are the rental T&C’s? 
  • Is there a buy-back scheme at the end of the fixed term?
  • Are there any risks in a fixed term contract – are you able to opt out?

Besides the obvious attraction of a latte or mocha whenever you want one, there are very real business perks to renting a coffee machine. You may be able to claim tax deductions for the rental expense every month for the lifetime of the agreement.

Buying Outright – benefits here too

Buy a coffee machine, and you’ll be congratulating yourself over your first office cappuccino, as there are many benefits to be had here too. Some things to consider first:

  • There are no monthly obligations or the T&C’s that come with renting a machine.
  • Is there an extensive warranty option available?
  • Is servicing included complementary or an additional expense?
  • What’s the ‘life expectancy’ of the machine? Knowing this helps you compare products.

Machines in excess of $1,500 are considered a business asset, and you may be able to write off depreciation as an expense. Anything under, and it’s possible that you’re eligible to claim the tax deduction for the full cost – just as long as you meet the prescribed criteria. A quick chat with your tax agent should clear this up.

The Benefits Beyond

Beyond the luxury of having great coffee on hand in your workplace and a few tax-incentives, you have to wonder whether it’s all just self-indulgence, or whether there are tangible benefits beyond the taste.
Turns out, there are.

Dr Suzy Green, founder and leading psychologist of Positivity Institute says, ‘Our brains do need to have a little rest - they just can't be on all the time. And it's often in the breaks where you get your creative ideas.’

Walking away from your desk for a coffee break can spark many cool things, including workplace engagement, cross-functional conversations and general idea sharing. 

As a business owner, it makes perfect sense to nurture such opportunities – with perfect extraction, great quality beans, and a café quality drop! 


IT’S THE LITTLE THINGS THAT COUNT

When it comes to rewards, employees appreciate the small things. Sure, sometimes grand gestures are in order to reward exceptional performance. But when we think about the day-to-day, most employees will tell you they’re really not looking for fireworks, but simple things that make a tangible difference and genuinely foster a great workplace culture.

You don’t have to provide barista training. But as a business owner, it genuinely pays to think about coffee breaks and the facilities you provide as an opportunity - for increased productivity and engagement.

 

Disclaimer: This post is intended to provide general information and does not constitute legal advice and should not be relied upon as such. Formal advice should be sought in particular matters to make certain your legal interpretation and decisions are correct for your location. This information is for guidance, ideas, and assistance only.

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