Some of the biggest companies in the world that also happen to make it to the ‘best places to work’ list each year, earn their spots by offering innovative benefits that add value to their employee’s work experience.
In the war on talent, companies that offer unique perks are able to distinguish themselves, gain a competitive advantage, retain and attract top talent.
If you are a small business owner, you may not have the capital to invest in some of the perks on this list right now, but it is important to know what companies around the world are offering their employees to keep them happy, and then emulate them to suit your workforce and budget.
Google’s employee benefit game has hit the bull’s eye. The company’s uber-cool benefits are unique, which is also why it boasts the badge for having the happiest employees in the industry.
Google’s extensive list of benefits includes providing employees the option to dine in at over 30 restaurants serving a delectable list of cuisines within corporate headquarters. They also allow employees to take a siesta in a especially designed nap pod. Furthermore, employees are spoiled by being assigned a concierge service so that workers can save time on running various errands during the day.
Google also allows employees the option to bring their pets to the office and they also offer free massages. The company frequently holds fitness classes, free meals and 401k plans.
Perhaps one of the best benefits offered by the business giant is ensuring that an employee’s family is taken care off in the event of the worker’s death. Google gives $1,000 every month to each child, while the spouse receives 50% of the salary for a whole decade.
Apple employees enjoy many perks that go beyond receiving discounts on the company’s products. Apple is known for hosting fun corporate nights known as ‘beer bashes’ They also offer commuting services or reimbursements, comprehensive educational classes, on-the-job training and a well-rounded employee wellness program that focuses on improving employee health through fitness centers, chiropractors, dieticians and medical professionals.
Apple also takes cares of their employee’s family financial well-being by assisting them with their children’s tuition fees.
Another corporate giant, Facebook, offers out -of- the box benefits. On-site healthcare, a comprehensive paternity and maternity leave with $4,000 in cash, and free meals and fitness classes for professional development are just some of the perks for working with this social media behemoth. They also provide 21 days off for vacations, wellness allowance, on-site barber and dry cleaning services.
How Can a Small Company Compete for Talent Against These Companies?
While it makes for good reading to learn about these tremendous benefit packages, we often times hear from small business owners a sense of dismay that they cannot possibly compete against these perks when interviewing candidates.
The important thing to remember is that every employee pool is unique. Candidates that aspire to work for a corporate giant like some of the companies listed above quite simply would not be happy working for a smaller organization. And conversely, employees that thrive working in a start-up or a smaller organization, would be adverse to working for colossal companies where their contributions would not make the same impact as those in smaller work environments.
The one constant in all of the benefits listed above, is that the message is clear…. the company cares for its employees, and their over-all well-being. That is what makes these companies successful in attracting top talent.
Companies that are not in the Fortune 100 list are not competing against these corporate giants for talent. They are competing against their peers, in terms of company size and industry.
Every employee pool has its own set of incentives that will motivate them, which will also attract new employees.
As they say, the best way to get the answers to the test is to ask questions. Send out a survey to your employees, asking them what benefits would most appeal to them.
Your work force may be especially interested in tickets to sporting events, or concerts. Some workers may be delighted at the prospect of working from home one day a week, or casual dress Fridays.
By questioning your work force on the types of incentives they would find most appealing, you are signaling that you care about them, and want to offer the best work environment possible.
It’s also important to stress that study after study shows that the #1 thing that workers list as the biggest motivating factor for enhanced job performance and job satisfaction is praise. Acknowledging an employees success and work efforts often times costs nothing.
In todays increasingly competitive market for good talent, it pays managers to give some thought to what your workforce would find appealing, ask them for ideas, and then put together a benefit package that will at the very least be competitive, and ideally will exceed similar sized companies when hiring. When all other things are equal, it’s the benefits that will often determine which company a sought after candidate will choose.
Ann Zaslow-Rethaber is President of International Search Consultants. ISC has been a leader in executive search since 1999. Ann can be reached directly at 888-866-7276 or via email at