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The 9 coolest work perks on offer right now

We’re in a talent short market, which is great news for anyone looking to change jobs in 2022. More than ever, employers are having to sell themselves to attract top talent. 

Average salaries in the UK currently sit at £34,629. Despite rising rates of inflation, employers aren’t offering higher salaries. Instead, they are looking for new ways to attract talent. Employers are offering a range of incentives to join their teams and to retain their pre-existing staff. From flexibility, health and wellbeing support and even a couple of days wrapped up in bed, we’ve covered 9 of the best perks on the market right now. 

 

Work from anywhere

Number of vacancies advertising this perk: 106,617

Top companies offering this perk: Sainsbury’s, Facebook (Meta), Pearson

When the world shut down in 2020, it quickly became clear how many roles could be operated remotely. With no commute, employees found that they could create better work-life balance and some found their home environment allowed them to be more productive. It’s no surprise then that this is a work perk that is set to continue, with employees demanding more long-term flexibility. 

Meta (previously Facebook) was quick to announce last year that it would accommodate remote working at all levels and locations across the business and other tech-first companies quickly followed suit. 

Check out the remote filter on our site for all of our live remote roles. 

 

Language lessons

Number of vacancies advertising this perk: 99

Top companies offering this perk: Tui, Flight Centre

Ever wanted to learn a language? Some companies give you the opportunity to do just that for free. 

Understandably this is something a lot of travel companies are offering as it is of huge benefit for them to have multilingual staff but this is also a perk being offered more widely. Jobandtalent is the world’s leading digital temp staffing agency offering language lessons in a range of modern languages for all their employees. 

 

Pawternity leave

Number of vacancies advertising this perk: 48

Top companies offering this perk: Brewdog, Pets at Home

Yep, pawternity. Paid leave for a new pet. 

Anyone who’s ever had a new pet will know that it takes time for your new friend to settle in. That’s why businesses have begun introducing paid time off when you get a new furry family member. 

The pandemic led to a 20% increase in households with a pet, meaning this could be a perk that becomes more and more common. 

 

Mental health days

Number of vacancies advertising this perk: 754

Top companies offering this perk: Innocent Drinks, Barclays, Google

Our mental health is incredibly important, and more and more employers are recognising the benefits of destigmatising mental health. 

By offering paid time off for employees who are suffering from their mental health, employers are also reducing the risk of burnout, keeping morale up, and recognising that mental health is just as important as physical health. 

Similar perks on offer include access to free therapy and counselling, or free access to meditation, yoga, and wellbeing support online. 

 

Free food

Number of vacancies advertising this perk: 2,855

Top companies offering this perk: Byron, Brakes, Hilton

Let’s face it, everyone loves a freebie and being fed at work is an excellent way of coaxing people back into the office. 

With a cost of living crisis, this is a particularly appealing perk for those in more junior roles who are looking to save money wherever possible. Popular in the hospitality sector, of course, this is something that a lot of tech companies and start-ups also replicate. The challenge of course is that free food isn’t always healthy food. 

 

Exercise classes

Number of vacancies advertising this perk: 1,541

Top companies offering this perk: Dishoom, L’oreal, Sumo Digital

Staying fit and healthy is really important for the mind and body. It helps us to decompress and is a great way of stepping away from our desks at the end of the day and completely switching off. 

From dance classes to cardio to meditation and yoga, a lot of bigger organisations are creating spaces to exercise within the office itself or offering access to online support or gym membership nearby. 

 

Childcare

Number of vacancies advertising this perk: 1,491

Top companies offering this perk: American Express, Aston University

Childcare can become a huge barrier to the primary caregiver re-entering the workforce full-time, which for businesses means the potential loss of talented team members. To combat this, employers are offering over and above tax-free childcare. 

Perks include employers covering 50% of childcare costs, or even providing free or heavily subsidised on-site nurseries for little ones. Employee-owned social purpose consultancy, Traverse, now offers five days of paid emergency leave for anyone with caregiving responsibilities.

 

Duvet days

Number of vacancies advertising this perk: 777

Top companies offering this perk: Clearscore, nDreams, Easyship

Ever woken up and just don’t want to work? Duvet days are separate from sick leave, annual leave, and mental health days, and are simply no-notice days when you want to stay in bed. Go back to sleep, read a good book, or binge watch a Netflix series. The choice is yours. 

They’re not limitless, with games developer nDreams offering 2 a year and Clearscore gives you a duvet day on your birthday (perfect if you have plans to celebrate the night before!) 

 

4-day week

Number of vacancies advertising this perk: 1,200

Top companies offering this perk: Atom Bank, Medivet Group, Helping Hands

In June this year, 70 companies (and 3300 workers) in the UK began a 4-day working week trial modelled on working conditions in some Scandinavian countries. The idea is simple, employees work 80% of their full-time hours for 100% of the pay. 

Companies that have joined the scheme include a local chippy, right up to big corporates and reflect a range of sectors from creative industries, to caregiving and education. 

The trial runs until the end of the year, and similar separate schemes are taking place in Spain and Scotland. If successful, this could be a perk we see a lot more in years to come, or it could even become the norm. 

 

Tips for asking your boss for work perks

  • Ask in person. That could be via video call, phone call or face-to-face. You are more likely to get a positive response if you ask in person rather than over email. 
  • Look for precedents. Remember the adage ‘Knowledge is Power’ and do your research. Quiz your colleagues to assess if anybody else at your company has already requested the perk. This could help uncover any relevant workplace policies. Where there is no precedent, give examples of other companies in your industry that are offering the work perk you’re after to illustrate that offering it is a way for your company to stay competitive.
  • Do your research. With the current cost of living crisis paired with a skills shortage, employers are having to do more to stand out from the crowd to hire and retain staff. Look at what’s on offer if you were to move on and use this as leverage when you approach your boss. 
  • Focus on what you need to work effectively. Perhaps access to childcare support or wellbeing packages will help you think more creatively. Adopting flexible working hours or working from home could save you time commuting. Settling in a new pet with Pawternity leave may improve your mental well-being and boost your productivity. Framing your request around the positive benefits will help your employer make the business case for your perk, boosting your chances of securing what you want.
  • Anticipate any concerns. Try to put yourself in your bosses’ shoes and think about their worries. Maybe they are concerned that tasks will be missed if you request a duvet day, or that team communication will suffer if you request to work remotely, permanently. Putting in place shared schedules, group project management plans, and fixed virtual meetings can help prove that being flexible with your time doesn’t mean getting less done.
  • Suggest a trial. Suggesting a short trial period may help you prove the value of a certain benefit to your boss – without them needing to commit upfront. Then, once you’ve proven how a work perk is making a positive impact, you have a much stronger case for asking for a permanent change.

 

Looking to move jobs to a company with great work perks? We currently have over 1 million open vacancies on our site. You can also check out our remote filter if you’re looking for a new role but want to work from home.

 

💡 Read more: The companies offering the biggest signing bonuses


If you’re looking for a new job, check out our ValueMyCV tool to see what salary you should be expecting to see.