Career Advice: How to Attract the Best Employees

Future dreams of a woman

When you are in charge of a business or project, you want to make sure everything goes perfectly. Part of that is recognizing the realistic limits of your time and talents – there is only so much you can do by yourself. That’s why building a solid, dependable and innovative team is so important. But just as job candidates fight over highly sought after positions, employers must also compete over the best and brightest applicants whenever they have an opening.

You might think that it all comes down to salary when trying to attract the best employees, but the truth is that there are a lot of things you can offer besides money. Just as a job can be so much more than just a paycheck, a job offer can be an enticing package of perks and opportunities. Here are some tips on how to attract the best team money can’t buy.

Money saving perks

Sometimes it’s not about how much money you can give someone; it’s about how much money you can save someone. A kitchen stocked with free drinks and snacks in the office saves your employees time and money. Depending on the size of your company, you can register for discounts that you can pass along to your staff such as public transportation passes, cell phone contacts, amusement park tickets, and a variety of local services. Check with your local Chamber of Commerce or Small Business Association, which may have leads on this.

Lifestyle perks

A job isn’t always just a job, sometimes it’s a way of life. And by turning your project into an adventure or a perspective-changing experience, you can attract the passion and curiosity of the most eager candidates. Depending on what business you are in, you may be able to offer special perks as part of the job description. Traveling for work, attending local events for networking, eating at a variety of restaurants to check out the competition…the opportunity to get out of the office and into the world can be a very appealing bonus that makes all the difference!

A chance to be heard

Something most people want is a chance to be involved. Entry level assistants have thoughts and opinions on matters beyond their individual responsibilities. Giving them the opportunity to prove how much more they can do is good for both you AND your staff. Plus, it costs you nothing but time! There are many ways to give everyone a chance to express their ideas, from a simple suggestion box to more involved endeavors such as a  weekly brainstorming session. Whatever method you choose, letting everyone share their opinions about company decisions can create a solid team atmosphere and make them feel acknowledged. You don’t have to use their ideas if you don’t want to, but giving them a chance to pitch them might be a dream come true for them – and make the difference in their decision about where to go to work.


Atmosphere can be a powerful thing. Even when you’re not in the mood to go to a dinner party or attend a meeting, the right environment can change your emotional state in an instant and make you glad that you showed up. That’s why it’s important to put time and thought into creating a great working environment that matches the culture of your business. You could allow employees to decorate their space or bring their pets to work. A casual dress code (or at least Casual Fridays) can be relaxing and freeing, as well as budget friendly. A break room where employees can play ping pong, video games or relax on a couch with a book can encourage employee camaraderie. In-house facilities and services like an on-site gym or masseuse can be a big draw for people who spend long hours at the office.

Rewards system

Feeling appreciated never goes out of style. Financial bonuses and incentives, no matter how small the dollar amount, give employees something extra to strive for once you’ve hired them. When offering the job, make sure to let them know you provide these kinds of opportunities. That way they’ll know that their salary is just the beginning, and there are avenues to earning more for the motivated employee. It’s also a way to sweeten the deal when business demands that you must begin with offering a lower base salary than some of your competitors.

Just remember, when hiring employees, they are considering you as closely as you are considering them. And that’s for the best. That way the right people will find the right opportunities, and your team will be stronger than ever!