The more research we uncover around employee satisfaction and retention rates, the more apparent it becomes that companies need to give more than the basic monthly salary to gain employee loyalty.
The small business experts at Brighter Business have complied a list of truly unique employee benefits, tried and tested by some of the biggest and best employers.
Your company may not have the spare profits to invest in any of the mind-blowing benefits listed below, but they’re all great examples of workers getting real value from their job, and being valued by their employer. Providing benefits is just one jigsaw puzzle piece for creating a great workplace culture, and there’s no reason why you shouldn’t set your targets high when fostering a company culture, with the aim of garnering a thriving workforce in the long-term.
After all, these companies were all SMEs once upon a time, too – have a look at what they’ve done to become some of the most coveted places to work…
1. On-site childcare
The Campbell Soup Company knows that many of its employees have young children, and so its day centre accommodates for nearby, economic childcare as well as programmes for school children during the holidays.
2. Unlimited free food (and a healthy environment)
At Google’s HQ, the Googleplex, employees enjoy all the free food they want, from café snacks to chef-made specials at their on-campus restaurants. The company are keen to retain a health-conscious attitude, however, so doctors are kept on-site, and desserts kept out of sight, out of mind.
3. No 9 to 5
The staff of Netflix work on an official ‘non-policy’ – rather than being measured on the hours they spend in the office, they are measured by the work they get done. It’s a trust system, although staff who abuse the policy are assured to get a “generous severance package”.
4. Unlimited holiday days
Following Netflix’s lead, Virgin Group allow their staff to take as much holiday as they want, whenever they want. Richard Branson reckons it’s “one of the simplest and smartest initiatives” he’s heard of in a long time.
5. Private concierge service
Amongst other benefits, Johnson & Johnson employees can get their day to day chores taken care of with a free concierge service. Less stress in their personal lives = less stress at work.
6. Premier childcare
Facebook have gone beyond providing childcare for parents – by helping out wannabe parents of the future. A new and much talked-about initiative means that all female employees at Facebook can freeze their eggs, opening up fertility options.
8. Pawternity leave
Brewdog isn’t only about craft beers. They are now offering employees with a new puppy or rescue dog one weeks paid leave to help settle in their new family member.
9. All-inclusive holidays
SEO and digital experts, Moz, don’t just give its employees a generous holiday allowance, but also a $3,000 bonus to cover holiday expenses, that lead to testimonials like these. We think we could be persuaded to take our vacation days with these kind of perks.
10. Free education
Think working in a coffee shop is a stop-over job? You may reconsider when you learn that Starbucks Coffee now offers a free 4 year college education for all of its employees – an initiative that’s costing the company over $250 million.
11. Paid sabbatical
Good things come to those who wait – especially those who work at Capterra, who get a five week paid sabbatical after five years of service. The only requirement? They must give a presentation about what they got up to for the whole company on their return. No pressure there, then.
12. More credit
Weebly, the international web-hosting company, provides all employees with an automatic company credit card. As if the free massages and meals weren’t enough.
Sarah Musgrove is editor in chief of Brighter Business