Cutting – Google Style

Over the weekend, I had the chance to catch up with a Googler who is on her way out -- or at least close to it. She won the jackpot -- and not only in stock options. In the past five years with Google, she's enjoyed countless benefits -- expensive Japanese toilets that give you that oh-so-clean spray and warmth, free and healthy cuisine at nearly all hours of the day and even free transportation to work in the Bay area (not to mention some of the best daycare facilities in the world). In a rising market, it's possible to offer these types of perks. After all, at a company like Google, procurement's job is not to say no. It's job is to identify and source new perks more quickly than any other company. But all of this could be coming to an end if an article in the New York post is any indication of what is to come.

According to the story, "Google is going on a diet when it comes to spending on a smorgasbord of food perks for employees living high on the hog in its New York office … Gone are exotic treats like afternoon tea on Tuesdays, which has been suspended indefinitely. The company is also creating new rules for feeding guests and discouraging employees from taking meals to go." Now granted, Google's Manhattan office is not headquarters, but still, when the cost cutting starts in even a remote location, you can be sure that it's going to come home to roost eventually. Who knows? Next thing you know, perhaps Google will put into place a beta-release featuring a comprehensive cost reduction strategy focusing on equal parts sourcing and demand management. Now I'd like to see that layered on top of Google maps …

Jason Busch

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