Creative Employee Perks That Attract Culture Fit Candidates

Fifty seven percent of people say employee perks and benefits are a top consideration before accepting a job. Companies know they need to get creative in order to help them stand out to candidates and win the best talent for their team. Many companies are going a step further to offer employee perks that help them attract culture fit candidates. They know that talent who shares the company’s values can better serve their customers.

Travel perks

Aligned with their goal to connect people to “unique travel experiences,” Airbnb gives employees a $2000 travel credit annually to use on their site. Likewise, Southwest Airlines wants customers and employees alike to “be free to move about the country.” They offer employees, their family, and their friends free flights, as well as discounts on hotels, theme parks, and car rental companies.

This helps both companies attract candidates who are passionate about travel, and gives employees the opportunity to see the customer experience firsthand. Because of this, they can better connect with their customers and consider how they can improve their products and services to meet their customer’s needs.

Flex hours

Snowboarding company Burton says, “We love being outside, whatever the season. That’s why we offer flexible hours for riding before work in the winter, and flex Fridays for maximizing the weekends in the summer.” They also offer each employee a season pass, lessons, and demo gear rentals—all for free—so they can stay active and connected to the company culture.

Similarly, Tower Paddle Boards has five-hour workdays in the summer months so employees can enjoy their afternoons outside the office. They find that their passions are significantly aligned with their work, and employees often spend time together after hours playing volleyball, surfing, or doing other fun activities.

Flex hours are an employee perk that many people would enjoy, but is particularly interesting for consumer lifestyle brands like Burton and Tower Paddle Boards. They preach about active lifestyles, and encourage their employees to live the culture. In order to make it work, however, they need to hire top performers who can maintain productivity with reduced hours. This employee perk allows both companies to attract a large talent pool so they can hire the best culture- and skills-fit candidates on the market.

Parental benefits

Toy company Mattel says they, “seek to make a meaningful difference in the lives of children around the world through play.” With Mattel’s creative employee perks, this goal extends to the children of their employees. Mattel offers paid time off to attend school-related events and volunteer opportunities. They also have access to a resource and referral service that assists with childcare referrals, adoption services, college admissions, and scholarship information. These employee perks make it easier for working parents to balance their family and their career. In turn, Mattel is able to hire people who understand their customer’s needs—because they’re likely customers themselves.

Health and fitness perks

Clif Bar is “passionate about food… that feeds and inspires the adventure in all of us” and believes “healthy, inspired people create delicious and nutritious food.” Their headquarters features a gym with a bouldering wall and fitness classes, and subsidized services such as massage therapy, acupuncture, and chiropractic care. They even offer 30 minutes per day of paid time to work out with their personal trainers! These go beyond traditional health benefits to help employees actually stay fit, and helps them attract candidates that live the healthy lifestyle they promote.


Employee perks are an important consideration if you want to hire the best people for your team—particularly if the perks speak to your company culture. Getting creative in this area can help you attract and retain talent that is passionate about what your company does, and shares your organizational values. This, in turn, helps your employees better understand and serve your customers, ensuring your company’s long-term success. If the creative perks your company can provide aren’t as obvious as offering a travel perk if you’re Airbnb, it just means you’ll need to give it a little extra thought. Hint: Talk to your employees and find out what would be the most meaningful to them.

Learn more about employee benefits to help you win top talent, here