Company: Human Genome Sciences.
Number of employees: About 1,000.
Susan Torrence gets a 30-minute massage at work every month.
“It’s great because if you’re having a bad day, you can go in for 15, 30 minutes and get all the kinks worked out,” said Torrence, a senior human resources business partner. “It’s a good stress reliever.”
Human Genome Sciences, a pharmaceutical company in Rockville, has been offering monthly massages at its headquarters and manufacturing facility for about two years. The sessions last either 15 or 30 minutes and are priced at a rate of $1 per minute.
“We wanted to give people the flexibility of getting something luxurious done on premise,” said Patty Hostler, associate director of benefits at the company. “The slots fill up very quickly. People really enjoy it.”
Between 20 and 25 people sign up at each location every month, Hostler said. The cost for the massage is deducted from the employee’s next paycheck.
The company’s massage therapist sets up shop in a small conference room. She closes the blinds, turns off the lights and plays soothing music.
“A couple of times, I’ve almost fallen asleep,” Torrence said. “It’s so refreshing that I want to go out on the town and start the day over again.”
Torrence, who has been working at the company for four years, said she has only missed two monthly massages.
“I was late signing up once and I really regretted it,” she said. “After that, I learned my lesson.”
Now, she immediately secures her spot as soon as she receives the company e-mail announcing next month’s schedule. Once, Torrence was vacationing in North Carolina when she got the e-mail on her BlackBerry.
“I was at a basketball tournament with my son but I stopped everything and called to reserve my massage,” she said. “That’s how much I love it.”