8 Non-Salary Benefits, to Help You Secure the Right Candidate

It's not always possible to offer new employees more money. But there are plenty of non-salary benefits you could use to boost the package you're offering.

June 20, 2023

Most Hiring Managers would love to be able to offer the perfect candidate, their dream salary.

That would make recruitment so much easier!

But unfortunately, business - and indeed life - just don’t work like that.

Budgets are constantly being squeezed and it can be difficult to find the right balance.

But, contrary to popular belief...

...money isn’t everything.

Sometimes, there are other things that could seal the deal – and at least put you in a better point for negotiation.

For example, a study by Fidelity in the US revealed that job candidates (millennials in particular) would sacrifice up to £5,900 for a better work life balance…

So what can you offer to impress and attract great candidates, without increasing salary?

Let’s take a look.

1. Opportunities for progression. 📈

Career progression is often more important when changing jobs, than base salary.

People want to be challenged and they want to be moving forward – they don’t want to be stuck in a rut.

If you can show:

- A guaranteed career path for that role.

- A structured training program they’ll have access to.

- Any mentoring systems you have in place.

- Examples of other staff members who’ve worked their way up.

These kinds of thing show that you’re committed to keeping them in your business (and moving forward) for the long run.

And that offers them stability and the opportunity to grow, should they want to.

2. Long-term job security. 🔒

Things are getting better when it comes to job security, but we have recently been through a bad recession, which has left many people feeling insecure and nervous about their futures.

That insecurity still exists and a recent Deloitte study revealed that even last year, 44% people expected to leave their new job within two years.

Many people just don’t expect to last at one place.

And they certainly want to…

A Manpower Group global study revealed that 87% of 21-35 year olds around the world crave job security almost as much the money.

So, if you have employees that have been with you for decades, show them off!

Show, don’t tell, that your company values loyalty.

Show that you want your new recruits to stick around for the long haul.

This + opportunities for progression will make you a very attractive employer.

And, it won’t cost you a penny.

Your longstanding employees are already there – you just have to showcase them.

3. Flexible working. 🤸‍♀️

How annoying is it when you have to take the morning off to wait in for a parcel?

Or when you get stuck in hours of traffic because you leave during the morning rush hour?

Or when you have to rush out of work because your gym class starts at 5.30pm on the dot?

Flexible working gives people an opportunity to balance their working life, with their personal life, without either one suffering.

They may decide to start work earlier, or later depending on their needs, but it’s essentially their responsibility to ensure that a) the correct hours are worked and b) they get that work done.

As you can imagine, this is a fantastic benefit for working parents.

Obviously, this will not work for all companies – if you receive calls between the hours of 9-5, you don’t want everyone to be gone by 4pm!

But if it can work for your business, it’s very effective – and very attractive to new recruits.

4. A social program. 🗣

Giving back to the community isn’t just good for your company image - it can boost your employer brand and be used as a draw for socially conscious employees too (which is of course, a great thing).

And charitable work has been proven to make employees feel more engaged.

Simply organise some kind of charitable program (team voluntary days and events work well) and get everyone involved.

This will help boost teamwork, make people feel great and help out a worthy cause too! Win-win-win.

5. Unlimited/extra holidays. 🗓

Unlimited holiday is like one of those trust exercises on a team building weekend.

You have to put your faith in your workforce not to abuse this incredible privilege.

Netflix, LinkedIn, Hubspot and more offer unlimited holiday to their staff and it seems to be working.

The general consensus is that the companies get more from the staff in return and 80% of candidates would be swayed by the perk.

Recruiter Pro Tip

It has to be said, people working in the companies aforementioned presumably have very strict targets they would be expected to hit, so it’s not as simple as just disappearing off the grid for six months.

The work still has to get done. It’s just up to them when; much like flexible working.

If you don’t want to totally cut loose, you could offer additional holidays as part of a package when you don’t have the budget to increase salary.

Or you could offer employees a chance to buy extra holidays when necessary.

It’s a useful (and less expensive) bargaining chip you can pull out at any time.

6. Gym memberships/contributions. 💪

Yes, that old staple still works and you could get a substantial discount that makes it win-win.

A gym membership isn’t the biggest perk in the world, but it’s a really great little add-on which could sway the healthy-minded individual.

Especially when you consider the cost of some gyms these days!!!

Of course, offering this perk is also great for health and wellbeing at work, so definitely worth it.

7. Effective Maternity/Paternity Leave. 🤰

This is a big one for younger workers.

If they know that you will take care of them if they need to take time away to have children then they’re more likely to sign on the dotted line.

Etsy offer their workers half a year of paid leave when they have a child.

It’s the kind of big-picture issue that really does worry employees and would certainly attract them.

8. Free/ subsidised food. 🥙

It’s in your interests to make sure your workers get a nutritious lunch, or their performance will slip in the afternoon.

You also know how expensive a fancy sandwich and a coffee can be from most of the major chains.

So, if you can offer food in your building and subsidise the costs then your workers will love you for it.

It’s a big step and it simply isn’t viable in a lot of places, but you can probably do a deal with a local supplier that won’t cost you as much as you think.

This is the kind of perk that new recruits, especially in lower paid positions, would love to hear about.


Some of these ideas will stretch your budget (and possibly your patience) to the limit, but some won’t cost you anything at all.

The point is, when it comes to negotiating with a potential new recruit, you don’t have to just use salary as a bargaining chip. You can use:

  • Progression.
  • Job security.
  • Flexible working.
  • Charitable programs.
  • Holidays.
  • Health and wellbeing perks.
  • Maternity and paternity.
  • Food.

Could you be using any of these better?

Coburg Banks - Multi-Sector Recruitment Agency
We help great people get brilliant jobs in top companies.

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