Made in Croatia

Croatian MealPass App Succeeds in Croatia, Eyes Wider Region

By 6 November 2021

November the 6th, 2021 - The Croatian MealPass app has done exceptionally well here on the domestic market, and with a spring put in their step, they're now eyeing expansion across Croatia's immediate region.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Ivan Tominac writes, Sasa Jurkovic has spent a very long time indeed working in human resources, and that pushed him to decide to try to offer the market some new benefits, which will further strengthen the relationship between employers and their employees.

Guided by this way of thinking, this year, he launched the Croatian MealPass app - an application that saves money that employees have to typically hand over for meals and lunches, all while not having to use it during their working hours only.

The idea has been evolving for more than one year, and significant amounts have been invested in the form of their own funds. They involved a whole team of experts in the application's realisation, so that the final idea would be ideal for the market and its current needs.

This story is about the benefits that have become the ''modus operandi'' of every employee-oriented employer, and the Croatian MealPass app is a new value precisely in the domain of benefits as one of the important parameters of attracting and retaining talent.

“In order to further motivate and attract new employees, employers began to introduce various benefits that moved away from purely financial benefits. Some of these benefits cost nothing, and some did, but the value significantly outweighed the price of each benefit. It started from offering things like drinks and fruit in the office, to flexible working hours, and today you have hundreds of different options out there on the market. The only question is which of the benefits are more valuable to any of the employees. In any case, the benefits have become an indispensable part of the package for motivating and attracting new employees. Combined with a pleasant working atmosphere and optimal income, the benefits greatly affect the desirability of any given employer,'' stated the president of the HR Centre and entrepreneur Sasa Jurkovic.

As Jurkovic added, employers often tend to think that the same benefit is good for all of their employees and that it will make them happy and motivate them. Unfortunately, this is not the case, so smart organisations adjust the benefits they offer to their employees, that is, they try to get an idea of the wishes of all of their employees in as much as possible. What works best depends on the sociodemographic characteristics of individual organisations.

Companies with younger employees will offer more benefits based on education, sport and recreation, as well as private life, while those with older employees will put emphasis on health insurance, pension savings, etc. However, Jurkovic noted that nutrition is the benefit that suits absolutely everyone.

The Croatian MealPass app is an idea that has existed in other parts of the world for years and is somewhat of a standard in employee benefits, but here in Croatia it is a complete novelty.

Enabling tax-free receipts for food, the ability to work from home and the growing need of people for social contact and moving out of the office, but also from home — were among the main inputs from the market that led to the development of this idea.

Furthermore, many families tend not to cook at home on weekends and the need of employers to provide employees with a benefit that doesn't discriminate against anyone, while also being something everyone wants.

The Croatian MealPass app provides its customers with more affordable food in any restaurant or restaurant within the MealPass network with a 15 percent discount. The user pays for the food they've purchased using the MealPass application, the funds spent are then replenished in the user's MealPass account using a credit or debit card or via net banking.

For the use of the MealPass programme, an annual membership fee of 150 kuna plus VAT needs to be paid. Given that this amount is paid on an annual basis, the Croatian MealPass app is acceptable to the vast majority of users, and represents an extremely favourable benefit to employers if they pay a membership fee for their employees.

“Now imagine going to a family lunch. You'll likely not manage to get much for under 400 kuna in most Croatian restaurants. With MealPass, your lunch will cost 340 kuna. Better yet, imagine a birthday celebration. You'd likely not go below a thousand kuna there. With MealPass, you'll pay 850 kuna. The savings on a monthly and annual level are huge,'' pointed out Jurkovic.

As he explained, they also have big plans that they plan to implement in the next three years. “MealPass has big plans and we expect more than 100,000 app users in the next three years. Given the interest of employers and their employees, I believe that we'll succeed in reaching this goal much earlier. Given the wide network of contacts we have, we've already started talks about expanding into the immediate region,'' concluded Sasa Jurkovic from the Croatian MealPass app.

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