dog in the office

Your secret weapon for attracting talent

Christina Bruce|

“The salary is not bad…but really, it’s all about the perks.”

An offhand remark from a friend got me thinking—it really is true. Haven’t you ever had a friend that happens to work for a concert promotion company and gets tons of free tickets?  Or drives a luxury car because they work for the automotive industry?

Given an equal opportunity, a unique employment perk can be the deciding factor for a candidate taking a job. A Ceridian survey found that 65% of employers believe that perks help to attract employees.

Here are just a couple of unique ideas we’ve come across from employers in Canada…

    • Appealing to family. Professors at Dalhousie University have a perk that definitely appeals to the family-oriented. Children of staff members can attend university for free. Given the rising cost of education, this likely has a major pull for academic staff.


    •  Pet-lovers. Fluffy isn’t just a dog—she’s part of the family. It’s a common enough sentiment to make a dog-friendly workplace a noticeable incentive.  Softchoice, an IT Solutions provider, has an entire floor of their Toronto office dedicated to a dog-friendly workplace. Ceridian Canada takes another approach and offers pet benefits to employees.


    •  Luxury Travel Rewards. Employees are part of a recognition program throughout the year that ends with a luxury travel reward. RBC sends 700 of its top performers on a luxury cruise every year. Workopolis sends its most recognized talent on an all-expenses paid trip annually. The best part of the incentive? The time isn’t taken out of vacation days.


    • Unlimited Vacation Time. What does it say when you offer employees unlimited vacation time? Well, it certainly gives the message that you trust them not to abuse the privilege. We’ve seen this a few times and it generates a lot of interest with candidates. A few Canadian companies such as Toronto’s RL Solutions and the Social Media Group have adopted the policy.


Not all businesses have the capacity to offer perks like these, but there are always factors that consistently rank high with candidates. Things like health and fitness allowances, employee reward plans, discounts on products or services, and flexible working arrangements can be highly pursuasive. Keep those perks prominent when you’re hiring and you’ll likely have a bigger pool of candidates to choose from.

What interesting perks does your organization offer? What makes it unique, and how do employees react?

Category: Industry News & Insights, Recruitment Challenges,