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85 Creative Employee Benefits For Every Budget
February 20, 2019
Jill Garrison
Timer  Read Time: 6 minutes

Crafting compelling and competitive compensation packages is crucial for attracting top talent in an aggressive market.

How appealing are your benefits offerings – really?

And, recruitment isn’t the only reason to offer attractive benefits packages. What about your current employees? Employee churn and turnover is a costly problem and retention should be a top priority to control costs.

We know that benefits can be costly. In fact, benefits represent 7.6% of a company’s annual operating budget on average. That breaks out to an average of $8,669 per employee. And, the average cost per employee has increased by nearly $500 over the past three years – yikes!

So, how can your company remain competitive without breaking the bank?

Luckily, the options are almost endless when it comes to being creative and thinking outside of the benefits box to design appealing packages. With a little research and innovation, your company can incorporate unique compensation programs and perks that won’t hurt your bottom line.

*Statistics via Access Perks & SHRM

Check out these unique employee benefits for every budget!

Health & Wellness

Health and wellness perks are not just beneficial for employees. Studies show that integrating well-rounded wellness initiatives into compensation packages can decrease the cost of health care, increase productivity and decrease absenteeism over time, all of which will save your company money. If saving money appeals to you, check out these creative health perks to keep your employees in tip-top shape.

1.) On-site gym

2.) Gym stipend or discount

3.) Office nap room

4.) Standing desks/desk cycles/etc.

5.) Pet insurance

6.) Sponsor 5k/10k/etc. participation

7.) Free smoking cessation program

8.) Premium reduction for wellness participation

9.) Host blood drives

10.) Flu-shot clinics

11.) Health & wellness stipend for equipment, health tech, etc.

12.) Host yoga classes, massage sessions, etc.

13.) Stock free healthy snacks

14.) Bike share allowance

15.) Employee assistance programs

16.) Virtual doctor/telemedicine

17.) On-site health screenings

Paid Time Off (PTO)

Paid time off is consistently ranked one of the most coveted benefits that a company can offer. Many organizations are shifting from programs that categorized time off into buckets, like “vacation” and “sick”,  to comprehensive “paid time off” programs that can be used at an employee’s discretion. Additionally, companies are beginning to encourage taking time off to volunteer, celebrate birthdays or personal life events and even to build better mental health. Here are a few of different ways to work in more paid time off.

18.) Volunteer hours

19.) Unlimited vacation days

20.) Birthday PTO

21.) Summer Fridays

22.) Flex hours for family/child events

23.) Spring break

24.) Mental health days

25.) Sick days

26.) Paid holidays

27.) Company-wide service project day(s)


When compared to other countries, the United States doesn’t exactly have a great track record when it comes to offering benefits that support family life. With no requirements for paid parental leave, we fall way behind many more progressive countries that have embraced the importance of family. However, offering even modest family perks can really set your company apart. The market is ripe for disruption and the opportunities are endless when it comes to supporting your employees at work and at home. Here are a few family-related benefits options to consider.

28.) Maternity leave – paid or extended

29.) Paternity leave – paid or extended

30.) Shared maternity/paternity leave program

31.) Flexible return-to-work program

32.) On-site childcare

33.) Kid-friendly policy

34.) Office family gatherings (picnics, etc.)

35.) Home-loan assistance

36.) General loan assistance

37.) Childcare stipend or allowance

38.) Adoption assistance

39.) Fertility assistance

40.) Dedicated lactation room

41.) Family support programs


Travel has trumped personal purchases in recent years as younger generations prioritize experiences over “stuff”. While previous generations were busy saving for cars and homes, Millennials are busy planning weekend trips and vacations abroad. To support employees that have a travel bug and to encourage worldly experiences, consider working some of these unique travel perks into your benefits offerings.

Financial Wellness

Consumer debt is at an all-time high as many Americans struggle to manage personal finances. Furthermore, recent graduates are being crushed by staggering student loan debt, which averages well over $35,000 per person. Financial burdens are one of the leading drivers of stress, which can negatively impact your employees’ work and personal life. Empower employees with the tools and assistance they need to take control of their financial future with these savvy programs.

46.) 401(k) or other retirement savings account match

47.) Tuition repayment assistance (Tuition.io)

48.) College savings program

49.) Financial wellness training

50.) 401(k) or other retirement savings account optimization (Blooom)

51.) Legal assistance

52.) Identity theft protection (ID Watchdog)


Looking to really spoil your staff? Successes should be celebrated, and every now and again splurges can really boost employee morale in the short-term and employee retention and engagement in the long-term. Whether you offer these generous benefits company-wide or to a select group of employees, here are a few ways you can really pamper your team.

53.) Company car

54.) Company phone

55.) Company retreat

56.) Company bonuses

57.) In-house chef/on-site dining

58.) Concierge service

Personal Development

Do you want to prioritize employee retention and promoting from within? If so, focusing on employee development should be on your radar. 40% of employees who receive poor job training will leave their position within the first year. And, 68% of employees report that training and development is the most important workplace policy. Arm your employees with the tools that they need to succeed with these personal development perks.

59.) Conference stipend or allowance

60.) Wardrobe stipend or allowance

61.) Mentor program

62.) Lunch & learns

63.) Stipend or allowance for industry organizations

64.) Employee referral program

65.) Book library

66.) Online course membership

67.) Leadership training or coaching\


Are your employees excited to come to work every day? Though offering a keg and a ping-pong table won’t transform your culture overnight, strategically implemented and supported perks can make the workplace a fun and enjoyable place for everyone. Focus on nurturing and enhancing the culture of your organization with these generous perks.

68.) Remote work policy

69.) Flex time

70.) Relaxed or casual dress days

71.) Pet-friendly policy

72.) Theme days

73.) Giveaways & contests

74.) Indoor/outdoor workspaces

75.) Parking or transportation stipend

76.) Charitable donation match

77.) Employee recognition programs

78.) Birthday and holiday celebrations

79.) Area discounts for employees

80.) Free company swag – shifts, jacket, coffee mugs, cups, etc.

81.) Group events outside of work – happy hour, sporting events, concerts, etc.

82.) Team lunches – on-site or off-site

83.) Discounts on company products/services (where applicable)

84.) Game room

85.) Stock beer and/or wine

Do you need help developing and implementing a competitive benefits package? PlanSource proudly partners with more than 25 benefits carriers and HCM providers to help deliver and administer highly-customizable benefits packages.

Let Us Be Your Benefits Dream Team

Interested in learning more about unique employee benefits? Check out the PlanSource Partner Marketplace to see how easy implementing new, innovative benefits can be.

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