Imagine the following scenario: Job #1 offers $60,000/year + insurance, two weeks vacation, and sick days. Job #2 offers $55,000/year + insurance, two weeks vacation, sick pay, an onsite gym with free membership, and a masseuse who comes in every other week offering free 20 minute massages to the staff.
When dealing with top talent, companies need to separate themselves from the competition to entice prospective employees. Oftentimes the salary is similar between two jobs and it takes something extra to sweeten the deal; this is where perks and benefits come into play.
By accepting job #1, the employee will make enough money to pay for all of the perks offered in job #2 – probably with a few thousand dollars left over. However, just by reading the offers, job #2 sounds more interesting. Whether or not the employee ends up using these perks or not, the fact that they’re offered says something about the culture of the company, which can sway a potential employee.
Based on the set of perks and benefits, the employee can begin to make inferences about the hiring company. From this example, job #2 seems like a company that is looser, freer, and more concerned with your all-around well-being than the company in job #1. By offering what are essentially wellness benefits, the applicant gets a sense of the company culture and what kind of people they hope to bring in.
Job #1 comes off as standard. There are fewer bells and whistles, no fancy decorations, and no surprises. There is clearly nothing wrong with the job, and it even offers more money than job #2. But that standard offer is less exciting. People like bells and whistles – it’s the reason that the word “upgrade” exists.
While these assumptions may not be 100% reliable, they’re a start. For all we know, job #1 may even offer all of these benefits as well, but they’ll miss out on candidates by not advertising these things.
Candidates want to feel special. An employee wants to know that they’re appreciated and taken care of before they sign on to anything. The relationship is a two-way street: The candidate wants to know that they’ll be treated well and that their interests are being considered. In turn, this breeds a stronger bond with the company, inspiring the employee to stay invested in their work.
When looking to make a great hire, it’s all about finding the best candidates. By making a strong offer, you increase the number of people who will apply for a job, which increases the number of qualified candidates. Because of that strong offer – and perks certainly enhance the strength of the offer – you’re setting up your company to find better applicants.
What are some interesting perks you’ve heard about and/or offered?