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Over 50% of Cheeky UK Office Workers Are Happy To Re-Gift To Co-Workers



The latest research by Instantprint reveals valuable insights into workplace collections and celebrations amid the challenges of rising living costs. The study examines employee perspectives on office spending and highlights their sense of obligation in these practices.

Are Employees Taking Part?

While workplace collections and celebrations may appear to be age-old traditions, it is evident that not everyone actively participates in them in modern times. The survey asked respondents if their workplace carries out collections for celebrations and or milestones.

53% said yes, 31% said no, 9% shared ‘other’ and 8% were not sure.

The survey then asked employees specifically if they participate and contribute to collections for workplace celebrations themselves.

  • Yes, some – 53%
  • Yes, all – 22%
  • No, none – 12%
  • I’ll buy them something personally – 3%
  • Other – 9%

Employees Feel Obligated To Participate

The survey asked respondents if they feel obliged to participate and contribute to collections and celebrations in their workplace.

Almost a third of respondents shared that they feel obliged to participate and contribute because other people are and over half shared that they participate in what they want when they want and 9% simply don’t participate at all.

What Are Office Workers Spending On Each Other?

The survey quizzed respondents to find out on average how much they contribute to a collection at work.

Money Put Into CollectionsPercentage of Workers
£3 – £534%
£6 – 1029%
I don’t participate19%
£0 – £29%
£11 – £154%
£15 – £203%

Cost Of Living Impact On Workplace Collections

After asking respondents how much they spend on each other at work, the survey also quizzed them to find out if their spending habits have changed over the last few years.

Almost half of the respondents share that they pretty much spend the same amount.

Interestingly, one in five spend less on collections than before. With the cost of living making us tighten our belts, workplace spending is probably an area that employees can afford to cut back on. A whopping one in 20 have decided to stop participating altogether. 

17% shared that they’ve never participated in collections and only 9% feel that they are spending more.

How Often Is Too Often?

In some workplaces, it seems like there’s a collection for something or someone almost every week, while in others, it’s not that common. Instantprint asked respondents how often they take part in workplace collections.

Over two-fifths of respondents shared that they participate only a couple of times a year.

A quarter of respondents participate every few months.

A fifth of respondents don’t participate at all.

8% of respondents participate once a month.

4% of respondents participate a few times a month and only 1% of respondents claim to participate once a week.

Earn More? You Better Pay More!

To shed light on the expectations and perceptions of responsibility within the workplace, the survey asked respondents whether managers, leaders, or more experienced and higher-paid team members should contribute more towards workplace collections for team members.

A whopping 27%, over a quarter, believe yes, they earn more so they should contribute more.

73%, however, agree that it is up to the person contributing how much they should contribute.

Some respondents sitting on the fencing shared ‘This is a tough one, on one hand, yes they could if they earn considerably more, but I guess it’s their choice.’

If I Put In For You, You Should Put In For Me

The survey revealed whether respondents believe in reciprocation. The survey asked them, if they were to contribute to someone’s collection do they expect it to be reciprocated?

An admirable 46% shared that they don’t expect anyone to contribute back, as it’s a personal choice.

41% think they should but understand some people may not be able to or to the same value.

But an honest 12%, 1 in 8, believe that if they contribute to their collection, they should contribute back.

Work Besties Get Better Gifts

If you thought work was a popularity contest, you may be right. Respondents were asked if they’d be more inclined to contribute to a collection if it’s for someone they like or are friends with.

60%, almost two-thirds of respondents stated that they would pay more if they knew them better or liked them whereas a smaller 24% shared that they would pay the same amount into all collections.

Not All Collections Are Equal

Survey participants revealed whose collections they would contribute to.

  • 20% shared that they would only put in for their work friends.
  • 20% shared that they would put in for anyone at their company.
  • 19% would put in for someone in their immediate team.
  • 17% would chip in for anyone in their department.
  • 15% don’t participate.
  • 4% would pay in for anyone in an adjoining team.

How Workers Want To See Their Money Spent

In the survey, respondents were asked about their thoughts on how collection money should be spent. 

Over 50% agreed that it should be used to buy the respondent a personal gift, which was closely followed by vouchers at 15%.

12% of employees are happy to see the recipient just receive the money and 11% revealed it should probably be a generic gift like chocolates, flowers or a bottle of wine.

At opposite ends of the spectrum, 4% believe that recipients should simply get a card whereas 3% believe they should receive an experience day, trip, booking or reservation.

Is It Ever Okay To Regift? 

The concept of regifting entails giving a gift that was previously received from someone else and passing it on to another person. In our survey, we probed the attitudes and opinions of respondents regarding the practice of regifting at work and whether they deem it to be acceptable.

A cheeky 51% of respondents think regifting is okay when done subtly so no one finds out.

30% of respondents are sustainability advocates, sharing that they think regifting is great, there’s less waste and it gets put to use.

A small 13% revealed that they think regifting is cheap, it shouldn’t be allowed.

What Are Office Workers Coughing Up For?

The survey gave respondents a list of popular milestones and celebrations and asked them to select the ones they’d be happy to contribute towards for a co-worker.

Top 10 Reasons Milestones and Celebrations Employees Will Contribute To

  1. Coming in top spot was the age-old leaving present. On to pastures new, over 78% of respondents would put in for a leaving present.
  2. 75% would contribute to retirement.
  3. 67% for a wedding.
  4. 55% for illness or a get-well-soon gift.
  5. 54% would be happy to contribute for a big birthday such as a 21st or 30th.
  6. 54% would also be happy to spare some money to celebrate the birth of an employee’s baby.
  7. 24% would be happy to chip in for charity or fundraisers.
  8. One in five would happily participate in a baby shower or pregnancy announcement collection and 19% would do so for an adoption.
  9. 19% would contribute to a bereavement collection.
  10. 15% would contribute towards someone’s engagement.

Vicki Russel, Head of HR at instantprint, commented on the findings:

““Discretionary time off is not a perk; it’s a powerful tool that can empower employees and foster a culture of trust and flexibility when applied in a fair and consistent manner. Employers should allow their teams to take time off under reasonable circumstances, recognising that employees’ well-being and work-life balance directly impacts their productivity and creativity. By cultivating a culture that understands that there are demands and responsibilities that lie outside the office, we not only enhance employee satisfaction and retention but also cultivate a resilient and high-performing workforce.”

Read the full article here