Home ShopTalk Perks and Rec: Free SmartPhones and Tablets, A Model Incentive!

Perks and Rec: Free SmartPhones and Tablets, A Model Incentive!

Call it a heaping helping of corporate culture via free “employee perking.”  A robust personnel recruitment and retention tool. Or simply “unrandom acts of kindness.” Fostering both brand loyalty and esprit’ de’ corps, the vanguard of high tech industry employers are undergoing a “Love Fest” for tech talent. The “carrot” is more powerful than the “stick.”  The Smartphone is mightier than the sword.

Since Google introduced free gourmet meals at its workplace, free at-work massages and haircuts, and subsidized on-campus child day care, the amenities of the high tech working class have kept software’s finest in rapt repose.

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Now the same values are being replicated by Google emigres, alumni and competitors across the matrix.

Google alumna, Marissa Mayer, the new CEO of Yahoo!, has set about reorienting the corporate culture from “fading star” to an atmosphere of “glistening hope” with employee perks.

In her first month on the job, Marissa has turned Yahoo’s cafeterias into free buffet lines and decreed that Yahoo will pick up the cost of a brand new SmartPhone for full-time employees, be it a Google Android Device or an Apple iPhone 5.  The Yahoo! hordes are ecstatic about it and rallying around their new matriarch like Worker bees to the Queen.

Mayer’s memo:

…As of today, Yahoo is moving off of blackberries as our corporate phones and on to smartphones in 22 countries. Ideally, we’d like our employees to have devices similar to our users, so we can think and work as the majority of our users do.

“Moving forward, we’ll offer you a choice of devices as well as provide monthly plans for the data and phone.”

Among the smartphones available to Yahoo employees will be:

  • Apple iPhone 5
  • HTC One X
  • HTC EVO 4G LTE
  • Samsung Galaxy S3
  • Windows Phone 8:
  • Nokia Lumia 920

The newest employee bonus bonanza was unveiled at Microsoft’s annual company meeting last week at Seattle’s Key Arena, with master of ceremonies CEO Steve Ballmer.

While Microsoft’s annual employee bash was off-limits to the media and the public, reports were quickly tweeted from home court that a “slam dunk” of freebies was in the offing,

All 90,000+ full-time “blue badge” employees of the Redmond-based computer company are set to receive not one, not even two, but three lots of free goodies.

As decreed by Ballmer, Microsoft is giving its workers an RT Surface tablet, a Windows 8 PC and a Windows Phone 8 device. While workers will be free to use the tablet and phone at home and for work, the PC is for work only.

Without a doubt, Microsoft wants its workers to be familiar with its new Surface tablet, and singing its praises to anyone who’ll listen. The Surface marks the computer giant’s entry into the tablet market, already crammed with competitors, and needing every endorsement it can muster.

“They want us to ‘dog food’ our own devices and get us jazzed about them,” said Microsoft employee Louis Maresca on the TWIT Internet Network.

With an instant user group of 90,000 Microsoftees, the effect on early adopters, the media and Microsoft partners and vendors should be worth the investment.

“Ballmer is super passionate,” said Maresca on TWIT.  “‘Windows ’95’ was an urgent release, but Windows 8 is a ‘Game Changer!”

The motivational factors behind these tech gear rewards seem perfectly natural in retrospect. A company is, ultimately, only as good as its employees. By rewarding and incentivizing a company’s talent pool, the “dividends” of extra effort, inspired ideas, and greater career confidence can be allowed to flourish.  [24×7]