How Great Perks at Work Impact Employee Wellness

Twenty years ago, typical employee benefits for new hires included two weeks of paid time off (PTO) and medical benefits. Today, a growing number of companies have expanded the idea of what a benefits package should include and are offering a number of other desirable work perks, such as unlimited PTO, pet-friendly offices, hybrid work environments, and free lunches.

Enhanced work perks not only help companies attract top-tier talent, but they also improve staff retention rates. Additionally, organizations that take proactive steps to ensure their staff are happy and healthy are more likely to receive positive word-of-mouth recommendations, which can help strengthen their brands.

Below are just a few of the other ways that great perks at work foster employee happiness, wellness, and loyalty.

Why Perks at Work Are Increasingly Important to Job Seekers

As of June 2023, the unemployment rate in the United States was 3.6%, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Low unemployment rates not only make it harder for organizations to recruit and retain talent, but they also provide job seekers with additional leverage to negotiate work perks.

For example, 52% of job seekers, not employers, feel they have the upper hand in today’s job market, according to the 2023 U.S. Job Market Trends Report from Joblist. Companies with robust benefits packages, such as those that offer competitive wages, flextime, and health and wellness perks, often find they’re able to differentiate themselves from their competitors and attract better talent.

Why Job Seekers Have Begun to Prioritize Wellness Perks

Professionals seeking new employment are prioritizing wellness perks for a variety of reasons. For example, not only are today’s workers increasingly aware of the need to maintain a healthy work-life balance, but they also understand that companies that offer wellness perks are more likely to have a positive work environment.

Following are some other benefits associated with working for companies that offer wellness programs:

  • Improved mental health. Work pressures can exacerbate symptoms of anxiety and depression. Employees who enjoy wellness perks may have lower rates of absenteeism and turnover, TeamSense reports.
  • A more enjoyable work environment. Perks such as free meals and snacks, pet-friendly offices, and flexible schedules make time spent at work more enjoyable, which may make employees less likely to job-hop.
  • Increased engagement, motivation, and productivity. Employees who feel appreciated may be more likely to be motivated, engaged, and willing to go the extra mile. Happy employees are often more productive employees.
  • Less burnout. Employee wellness programs can help prevent staff burnout. People who love their jobs tend to be less stressed at the workplace.

Examples of Great Work Perks in 2023

A person pets a dog in an office.Competitive pay rates and medical benefits are just some of the work perks companies are providing to their employees. Examples of other great work perks being offered in 2023 include the following:

  • Unlimited PTO. Companies offering unlimited PTO empower their staff to take control of their work schedules. This can lead to increased productivity and higher job satisfaction.
  • Strong retirement plans and health, life, and disability insurance. Compensation packages designed to improve employees’ financial security, such as those that offer health, life, and disability insurance, can help professionals feel more confident about their financial futures.
  • Hybrid work environments. Hybrid work environments provide flexibility and improved work-life balance. This type of arrangement often boosts job satisfaction and employee effectiveness.
  • Home office stipends. Companies that provide home office stipends help staff create home office environments that are tailored to their needs. Stipends for laptop computers, monitors, printers, and furniture are among the most popular.
  • Flexible hours. Flexible hours allow employees to customize their work schedules to accommodate their personal obligations. Flextime lets workers schedule medical or veterinary appointments during the day and drop off or pick up their children from school.
  • Pet-friendly office spaces. People working in pet-friendly office spaces often find that pets have a calming effect on employees. Allowing pets in the office can also improve morale and encourage social interactions among staff members.
  • Four-day work weeks. Job seekers are drawn to organizations that offer four-day work weeks for the additional time they get to rest, rejuvenate, and take care of their nonwork obligations.
  • Free meals, free snacks, and fitness discounts. In 2021, the average American dined out 5.9 times per week, and the average American household spent about $300 per month in dining out expenses, according to BLS data. Companies that offer free meals, free snacks, and discounts on commonly used amenities, such as gym memberships, can have higher levels of employee satisfaction.
  • Mental health perks. Companies that prioritize employees’ mental well-being foster a positive company culture that can lead to staff being less stressed and more engaged. Common mental health perks include offering mental health days and employee assistance programs designed to reduce costs for in-person and online counseling sessions.

Industries That Offer Great Perks at Work

Competitive industries that rely heavily on attracting top talent often provide better job perks. Examples of industries and jobs that offer the best perks at work include the following:

Earn Your Degree to Pursue Jobs with Great Work Perks

Offering employees great perks at work is beneficial for a number of reasons, including improved staff retention and workplace morale.

Professionals interested in advancing their education to pursue jobs with the best work perks are likely to find that earning an online degree from Maryville University can prepare them with the knowledge and skills needed to be competitive in today’s job market.

Are you ready to take the next brave step toward improving your job satisfaction and work-life balance? Discover how earning an online bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degree or certificate from Maryville University can help you market yourself to industries that offer enhanced work perks.

Recommended Readings

A Guide to Corporate Wellness Programs: Why Employee Health Matters
Best Productivity Tools of 2023
5 Unique Careers for Creative People


6Q, “5 Great Reasons Why Happiness Increases Productivity”
ALM Benefits Pro, “Job Seekers Retain the Upper Hand in 2023”
CNBC, “The Top 10 Industries Job-Seekers Want to Work in Right Now, According to New Research”
Forbes, “Best Employee Benefits in 2023”
Joblist, 2023 United States Job Market Trends Report
Kaiser Permanente, “Why Workers Should Care About Employee Wellness Programs”
LinkedIn, “Enhancing Employer Appeal: Top HR Practices That Attract Exceptional Talent”
LinkedIn, “Happy Employees Make the World Go Round: Why Employee Happiness Is Important in 2023”
LinkedIn, “How to Use Health and Wellness to Attract the Top Talents?”
Smartest Dollar, “Industries Offering the Best Employee Benefits [2022 Edition]”
TeamSense, “5 Reasons Employee Turnover and Absenteeism Rates Are Increasing”

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Consumer Expenditures, 2021
U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, The Employment Situation, June 2023

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