Companies offer perks to attract top talent

Car allowances, mobile phones and employee parking are among the perks Canadian employers offer top talent in a bid to differentiate themselves from competitors.

According to the Conference Board of Canada Perks at Work report, those extras also supplement typical compensation and benefits packages and commonly include professional membership reimbursement and education grants.

“Offering a variety of perks adds both monetary and psychological value that may give an employer an advantage over their peers,” says Monica Haberl, a Conference Board research associate. “In particular, perks may be more attractive to younger employees who are looking for greater flexibility and work-life balance.”

According to the report, perquisite allowances tend to be the highest-value perks, with an average annual value of more than $13,300 per eligible employee. Car allowances are another high-value perk, averaging more than $8,250 per employee annually. But these perks tend to be offered only to executive-level positions.

The most common perks offered to all employees tend to be those located at an organization’s office, such as on-site fitness centres and on-site child care. Other common perks that tend to be universally offered include education grants for employees and their dependents, which average $2,300 annually, and fitness reimbursements, which average $475 per year.

Larger organizations are more likely to offer perks to their employees than smaller employers. Public sector organizations are more likely to provide on-site child care, on-site fitness centres and transit passes to some of their employees. Meanwhile, private sector organizations are more likely to provide financial planning assistance, subsidized meals or cafeterias and fitness reimbursements.

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