10 Top Perks and Benefits That Win Employees Over

Whether you offer oodles of free food and coffee or the standard fare, employers benefit from perks, too. Here are 10 top corporate perks and benefits — and why companies are wise to consider offering them.

Here in the San Francisco Bay Area, over-the-top perks and benefits aren’t uncommon. While some generous companies subsidize lunch options (and make sure they’re right there on campus), others comp them altogether.

Now figure in some of the more unique corporate perks, like pet-sitting services and free dry cleaning delivery, and employees may never again have to open their wallets at work.

Like it or not, we spend the majority of our waking workweeks at the office. Many firms understand this and try to make the time away from our personal lives as comfortable as possible. After all, happy employees mean higher productivity, greater creativity and less turnover.

One way to perk up your team? Invest in their overall contentment with appealing perks and benefits. 

Defining perks and benefits 

They are sometimes used interchangeably, but for our purposes, here’s how we’ll define the two types of company extras:

Benefits – as in employee benefits – are a form of non-wage compensation. If not offered by the employer, employees would likely have to fund them themselves.

Perks – as in perquisites or corporate perks – are nice-to-have additions to an employee’s salary and benefits package. We define perks as above-and-beyond offerings that may sway an employee to value one employer over another. Think “icing on the cake.”

5 benefits top employers offer

  1. Healthcare. After salary, this benefits staple is of the utmost importance to many job candidates and typically includes medical, dental, vision and/or life insurance coverage for the employee and their families.
  2. Paid time off. Whether it’s for vacation, illness or bereavement, PTO – personal time off – is highly valued by employees, and a great way to combat burnout. Two weeks is standard, but three or more weeks starting PTO can be hard to pass up for many candidates.
  3. Retirement savings plans. A tax-advantaged 401(k) plan can be an excellent way to motivate employees to save for retirement. Offering to match contributions up to a certain amount is a big plus in the eyes of workers and can encourage them to stick with your firm.
  4. Maternity/paternity leave. Employees want to feel like they can pursue career goals while growing their families. Hence, many companies offer paid time off for new parents.
  5. Professional development. Now more than ever, creatives want opportunities for professional development, to master new skills and to grow into other roles. (This is especially important to Millennials who are particularly concerned about career path options.) Funding training and continuing education can be incredibly beneficial to both employee and employer.

5 persuasive perks to enhance recruitment and retention

  1. Workplace wellness programs. Your employees are the most valuable resources you have, so invest in their health and wellness. Whether it’s through a paid gym membership program, on-site yoga classes or health screenings (or all of the above), this is the perk that keeps on giving considering how wellness affects productivity and creativity.
  2. Free food (and good coffee). Some companies, like Google and Pixar, go all out, offering every meal, snack and treat for free. This appetizing perk can save employees a lot of time and money. (Plus, it’s great for spontaneous eaters/poor meal planners.)
  3. Work from anywhere. We’re all familiar with the work-from-home option, but how about work from anywhere, even when you’re in the office? More and more companies are loosening up and allowing employees to choose the location and space that is most conducive to getting the job done.
  4. Concierge services. Employees value work-life balance. And errands and chores are boring even when you have the time to do them. Win over employees (and recruits) by providing access to a concierge service that assists with daily tasks like dry cleaning pickup or basic auto servicing.
  5. Transportation or parking reimbursement. If employees have to travel long distances, pay tolls and parking, cross bridges, traverse tunnels or brave public transportation, offering to foot part or all of the bill can be a big plus.

While great perks and benefits will no doubt help your efforts to recruit and retain good people, remember that creative professionals want to work with companies whose values align with their own. Build and promote your attractive corporate culture and establish a reputation for fostering a supportive working environment. 

For time-strapped hiring managers, recruiting and retaining talented creative professionals isn’t easy. The Creative Group can help by doing the heavy lifting – finding and evaluating candidates who would be excellent matches for the positions you’re trying to fill. When both parties are happy, employees stick around. Check out how we can help you.

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Editor's note: This post has been updated. It was originally published in November 2013.