If you want to recruit great talent, and retain the best staffers you already have, you’re going to need more than the standard benefits and perks offered by everyone else. While most workers appreciate things like on-site child care, flexible work hours, and work-from-home days, these programs are no longer the game-changing perks they once were. Winning and keeping the best talent means finding unique benefits for employees. Let’s take a look at some of the latest ideas in workplace benefits.
1) Catered Meals
Is there any better incentive to arrive to work early than a free breakfast? Why leave the office for lunch if you already have a free one waiting for you? Companies like Google have had great success by providing free meals — breakfast, lunch, and dinner — as well as free snacks. It keeps workers from having to deal with the stress of grabbing a quick bite during the lunch rush, and it also keeps productivity high. Employer paid food programs can be a hugely popular, and surprisingly affordable, perk.
2) Bring Your Dog To Work
There’s a special kind of guilt that comes from leaving your beloved pet at home all day. While it’s not right for every job or workplace, having the option to bring in a well-behaved and friendly canine is an incredibly powerful benefit for those pet-parent employees.
3) Food Halls
Why not bring the culinary variety of the outside world right into the company dining space? Vendors from the area’s best restaurants and eateries set up stations in the cafeteria (or other large space) to provide the same food they make at their establishments, and for the same price. Who doesn’t love having a variety of authentic, delicious and affordable food choices without having to leave the office? It makes good business sense, too, as food halls can actually reduce costs and overhead compared to legacy cafeteria models.
4) Gyms and Fitness Classes
While gym memberships and workout rooms are nothing new, today’s companies are upping the ante with complete on-site gyms, personal trainers, and regular fitness classes. Some companies have even gone a step further, providing instructor-led group yoga classes and walk-in massages.
5) Game Rooms
While some workers are content to watch YouTube videos and catch up on their social media during downtime and breaks, others want to do something a little more active. Adding an air hockey or ping-pong table to a break room provides those people who want to get up and move a great way to blow off a little steam.
6) Laundry Service
Dealing with laundry can be a tremendous drag, particularly when it comes to keeping those dry-clean-only work clothes presentable. Not surprisingly, many companies have been experimenting with free (or subsidized) laundry services for their employees. That’s a unique benefit that working parents particularly appreciate.
7) On-Site Medical Care
Health care isn’t becoming more affordable, and taking time away from work to see a health-care provider about routine or minor problems often means taking time away from the office. To solve both problems, many companies have been experimenting with pop-up clinics where staffers can get free or low-cost exams and treatment without having to leave work.
8) Free Public Transportation
When you live in a large city, getting to and from work often means paying each way to take subways, trains, or buses. Even if you drive to work, the parking fees and tolls can quickly eat away at your salary. By subsidizing these expenses — or even providing free passes — companies can create serious goodwill with their workers.
9) Continuing Education
Few benefits demonstrate an ongoing investment in employee development as clearly as continuing education. From tuition reimbursement to on-site job training and workshops, continuing education one of those unique benefits for employees that has immediate and obvious impacts. If your company prefers to hire from within, this should be an essential perk.
10) On-Site Popup Restaurants
Nothing creates a sense of anticipation and excitement among employees faster than knowing that a great local restaurant will be showing up with delectable, freshly made food. It’s always a welcome break in the daily routine, and it’s also a cost-effective way to boost morale during those stress-filled crunch times every business has.
By providing unique benefits for employees, today’s top companies are doing more than simply sweetening the deal for recruitment and retention. They’re creating workplaces that people actually like spending time at, building goodwill, and making smart investments for the future of the business. All of these benefits have some degree of additional cost, of course, but over the long term, they have the potential to yield unmatched results in productivity, loyalty, and office morale. That’s a good investment for any business.