Growth through Talent

Top 5 Benefits that Candidates want

 23rd Aug 2021

When it comes to securing top talent, you may know the exact skills, qualities, and characteristics that you’re looking for in a candidate.  But do you know what they want from you? Understanding the benefits and perks that are valued by your most-wanted candidates is critical. 

In our most recent Digital Skills and Recruitment Survey, over 200 candidates confirmed that their top five benefits were flexible working, stock options, and equity, performance bonus, pension, and enhanced holiday. And we’ve gone into more detail to help you understand how to attract (and keep hold of) the best candidates. And from a candidate's perspective, this can act as a guide so you’re reminded of what you should be looking for in your next job. 


Flexible Working 

The COVID19 pandemic has proven that working in an office isn’t necessary for businesses to succeed. As former office workers have discovered, working from home provides greater freedom and flexibility in a variety of ways, making it easier to balance work with life. We can now work from home, work remotely, or enjoy the benefits of a hybrid model where there is the option to work from the office and home. 

•    A standard 9-to-5 workday is becoming a thing of the past. Thanks to faster Internet connections and a global economy, more and more employees are looking for jobs that can accommodate their lifestyle with flexible work options. Many employers are now setting budgets aside for employees to purchase appropriate furniture and office supplies to ensure they can work effectively from home. 

•    One of the more popular options that many companies are choosing to implement is the hybrid model. Hybrid work tends to include more freedom around when to work as well as where. It largely grants more autonomy to employees to fit work around the rest of their lives. Ideally, employees get the best of both worlds: structure and sociability on one hand, and independence and flexibility on the other. Some examples include giving employees the opportunity to work 2/3 days in the week or 50% of work time in the office during any monthly period. 

•    But having flexible options doesn’t only mean working different hours. Flexible work includes remote work options. Allowing employees to live where they want helps companies in two ways. First, without geographical restrictions, you can tap into a vast talent pool that isn’t limited by postcode or city.

Share Options and Equity

Many companies offer employees an opportunity to have ownership in the company they work for and feel more connected to the business as well as to their co-workers.

•    From a retention perspective, share options and equity can increase loyalty, as share options often require employees to remain employed for a certain period of time before the shares can be issued and sold.

•    Employees can reap some of the financial rewards of a successful business, which increases dedication for all employees involved, as they are more invested in the company and its results.

•    Share options can serve as a great investment for someone with a long-term financial strategy. These share options allow employees to invest without paying broker's fees. They can also offer some tax benefits.

Performance Bonus 

With demand for talent driving salary inflation, performance bonuses can be used as a great alternative solution that is directly linked to performance, cause less internal conflicts with existing Internal structures, flexible and discretionary. 

Great performance and bonus structure should have well-defined criterias and be a performance metric system specifically designed to maximize employee potential and ensure objectivity and fairness.

•    Employees should always take part in target-setting.  Research confirms that there is a higher probability when employees will better grasp the tasks ahead of them and have the motivation to accomplish these tasks if they participate in the goal-setting process.

•    Offer performance bonuses consistently. Performance bonuses should be presented according to a consistent timeline. This way, employees can plan so they can meet deadlines and increase their chances of qualifying for a performance bonus.

•    Align performance bonus goals with company goals. Managers and senior leaders can empower employees by integrating goals that promote both individual and company success. This allows employees to feel more engaged, knowing that their work holds meaning and importance.


The UK now requires all private sector companies to enroll their employees in a retirement plan, and nearly 90% of workers in medium and large companies are now contributing, as are 70% in small companies, according to research. Once the law is completely phased in, employees must contribute at least 5% of their earnings, while employers will be required to add at least 3%. 

•    Around two-thirds (62%) of respondents state that a contributory pension scheme is one of their top five most valued benefits.

•    Many put in much more. A good practice is for the employer's contribution to be double that of the employee. The average employer in private sector schemes is between 7% and 14% depending on the scheme. In the public sector, it is around 20%.

Enhanced Holiday Package 

In recent years, some companies such as Netflix, LinkedIn and Virgin have introduced enhanced holiday packages, where employees get unlimited holiday entitlement. This type of benefit is focused on trust, whereby each employee is trusted to manage their own leave requests and to take as much or as little as they want when they want it. No tracking, no allocated days, just take a holiday when you want to.

•    We all know that happy employees are more productive. This is one of the many reasons companies like Netflix and Virgin introduced an unlimited holiday policy. This flexible benefit boosts employee morale and improves workplace culture. Today, there is more pressure than ever on companies to help employees better manage their work-life balance and personal well-being and unlimited leave is just one way to achieve these.

•    Research conducted by shows employers who offer an unlimited holiday to employees could see a reduction of sick days by up to 50% and a 10% decrease in staff turnover. 

•    However, unlimited holiday is a concept that doesn't work for everyone. In some cases, employees can actually be discouraged from taking time off if there's no formal time off policy. However, you can offer more flexibility by allowing employees to take every other Friday off, or letting them choose their own hours as long as work gets done. 

•    Some other companies have chosen to give employees the choice to buy back unused annual leave. This way, employees are still being rewarded if they chose to not use all of the holiday they are entitled to. 


If you need support with your job search or currently looking for talent within the digital marketing and media space, Pivotal London would love to help you. Get in contact with our team here or browse all of our live vacancies here

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