Inflation results in cancelled Christmas celebrations for Australian companies

 “Cutting highly-valued social events like Christmas parties can leave a sour taste in employees' mouths as the year ends"

More than one-third (38%) of businesses cancelled their staff Christmas celebrations in response to rising costs. Sydney, according to recent research recruiter Robert Half.

This is despite recognition that social, in-person events contribute significantly to company culture and that cost-cutting measures in a tight labour market could have a negative impact on company culture and employee retention.

The study was conducted online in June and November 2022 by an independent research company on behalf of Robert Half, surveying 300 hiring managers, including 100 CFOs and 100 CIOs, from companies across Australia. This survey is part of the international workplace survey, a questionnaire about job trends, talent management, and trends in the workplace.   

Andrew Brushfield, Director of Robert Half Australia believes that organisations should be cautious when considering saving money on ditching employee engagement initiatives such as the traditional Christmas get-together.  “Cutting highly-valued social events like Christmas parties can leave a sour taste in employees’ mouths as the year ends, potentially putting a negative light on the hard work they have done at a time when achievements are usually celebrated with peers. Before taking similar actions in the new year, businesses should consider other ways of managing costs like creating and sticking to a budget and keeping track of expenses.” He said. 

“Rising inflation is having a negative impact on Australian workers’ employee experience, with some companies cutting costs on events and experiences that contribute to a strong company culture. The idea of having premium corporate culture is becoming one of the biggest attraction and retention strategies amid a tight labour market, with candidates paying more attention to what their experience would look like if they took a job offer from a company. During the interview process candidates are inquiring about recognition efforts, social events, and company culture initiatives as a way to evaluate the quality of a job offer. Company culture is one of the main factors that entices existing employees to stay with their employer”.