Companies who want to attract the best talent without blowing their salary budget can compete for top candidates when they offer unique, desirable perks. Very often, job seekers and employees will value these benefits more than a few extra thousand dollars. If you're looking at expanding on the great things you offer your employees, have you considered specific family-friendly perks? Not only will they grab the attention of the skilled individuals you want to hire, but on a larger-scale, they help position your employer brand as a being family-friendly. What can you be doing to offer an environment desirable to parents? Here are a few examples, based on what some of Canada's top family-friendly employers already offer today:
Alternative Work Solutions: Most progressive offices already have some benefits that tie into this area. They include generous vacation, flexible hours, compressed work weeks and work-from-home programs so employees can work where and when its most convenient. This is especially helpful to parents trying to juggle the schedules of their children.
Parental Leave Top-Ups: On top of the government mandated leaves that companies are required to give new parents, family-friendly organizations will also top-up the pay of mothers, fathers, and adoptive parents when they are on leave. Some companies have also been known to offer extended leaves up to three years.
Daycare Assistance: Many parents choose to put their career on hold because when they do the math, it's more expensive for them to go to work each day and pay for day care, than it is not to work at all. To keep these skilled employees around, companies will offer babysitting subsidies or provide daycare facilities right at the workplace.
Scholarships: Once daycare expenses are eliminated, parents only have a few years before they have to start worrying about another major expense of raising a child -- education. Few companies pay the entire tuition, but some do offer scholarships to deserving children of their employees.
Encouraging Family Time: Family-friendly cultures know that spending time with family is important. As such, they extend regular staff socials to invite kids and spouses or offer subsidies for extra-curricular activities.
Family Planning: Offered as a rather unique perk, some companies go beyond helping employees who are already parents, and help other employees to become parents. They offer subsidies for in-vitro fertilization or adoption.
The perks you can offer job seekers to sway them away from your competition are endless and extend as far as your imagination. A mix of unique benefits with industry standards is a solid strategy that will differentiate your organization while giving people what they've come to expect from the best employers. When you can add "family-friendly" to your brand, it won't attract all job seekers (young people who have yet to start a family, people who opt not to have children and empty nesters) but you are guaranteed to tap into a market of talent that is neglected by many other top employers.