5. Absolutely No Dress Code

While you may not think a casual dress code falls under the category of employee benefits, your employees sure do. Having the freedom to wear whatever you want to work indicates a certain amount of respect between management and their employees – after all, why is it okay for one adult to tell another adult how to dress? Most 12-year olds have more freedom than that!

Once your employees are given this freedom, they’ll be more apt to work and create from a place of inspired comfort. Besides, no one ever increased efficiency by insisting on polos and pleated khakis.

If you’re afraid everyone in the office will come to work in their sweatpants, don’t be. And even if they did – would that really be such a bad thing?

6. “No Cubicle Zone”

Knock down the walls of your cubicle farm like Ron Livingston in Office Space. Cubicles make employees feel like worker bees, nameless faces whose individuality doesn’t matter. Cubicles are stifling and are certainly not conducive to increased productivity or inspired creativity.

More and more startups are utilizing shared workspaces in an open environment that encourages collaboration. According to the Harvard Business Review, the highest-performing office spaces are the most open office spaces.

7. Free Food

Do you see employees running out just to grab coffee or a snack several times a day? This may be an indication that your office’s snack and beverage offerings are sub-par.

Employee benefits like unlimited healthy food, free snacks and even grocery delivery can be seen at booming tech companies across the country, including Google, SC Johnson and Genentech, Inc.

Heck, Genentech employees even enjoy fresh, seasonal produce stands right within their building! Skip the sugar and crash-inducing carbs and make sure your employees have access to healthy foods that will energize them throughout the day.

We are getting SO much work done right now.
We are getting SO much work done right now.

8. Mad Men Cocktail Hour

Drinking on the job? You betcha. Like allowing employees to dress themselves, make their own schedules and determine their own vacation days, making alcohol available in the office indicates a certain level of trust. Companies like furniture giant Knoll and GMR Marketing always have wine and beer on hand, and many employees can be seen imbibing as the day winds down.

Here at Shoeboxed, we have a weekly happy hour on Friday afternoons that allows employees to relax before the weekend instead of heading out the door with work still on their minds. We also use these events as opportunities to invite other local startup teams to our office for some informal networking and fun.

This benefit creates a relaxed, fun environment that makes work feel more “happy hour” than “power hour.”

9. Lactation Rooms and Onsite Daycare

Offering new parents and nursing mothers employee benefits like onsite lactation rooms and free daycare is about more than just being politically correct and socially savvy.

When Amgen, Inc. began offering its employees free Lamaze classes and nutritional counseling for moms-to-be, the company was making a statement about working moms and the importance of finding a work/life balance.

Amgen is there for its employees before, during and after a pregnancy, indicating its approval of its employees having children. Unlike the old days, where women had to hide the fact that they were pregnant or choose between parenting and their career, Amgen employees really can have it all.

10. Company Vacations

Many companies don’t just give their employees vacation days – they actually take their employees on vacation!  The upfront costs of the trip far outweigh the benefits of having a happy team who feels appreciated for all of their hard work (and who can’t wait for next year’s trip!).

What unconventional employee benefits are offered at your company? Which benefits do you wish your company offered? Let us know in the comments!

Resources:

1. Forbes

2. Women’s Day

photo credits: blogs.nature.com, papermag.com