In a competitive labor market, companies are getting creative to attract and retain talent.
A Foosball table just won't cut it anymore. Here are several interesting real-life perks from Inc.'s 2019 best workplaces list.
A doctor in the house
Four percent of Inc.'s best workplaces take health care a step further by employing onsite medical providers.
For some, that's fairly easy: Steven Lee, co-founder and chief science officer of the Chicago-based Visibly, is also an optometrist, which makes free eye exams for his workers logical.
Sand and snow
At Invoca, a Santa Barbara, Calif.-based analytics company, employees take weekly walks to the beach.
The enterprise software startup Podium sits at the base of the Wasatch Range in Lehi, Utah. The company purchases season passes for staffers to the nearby Snowbird ski resort. When the powder is deep, entire departments hit the slopes before coming into work.
Ride the waves
At Scientist.com, board meetings have an entirely different meaning.
The Solana Beach, Calif.-based online marketplace connects pharmaceutical companies with vendors and research organizations. To support its surf-anytime policy, it called on a local surfboard maker to craft branded, custom surfboards of varying sizes for employee usage. Employees have a surf Slack channel where they coordinate when to hit the waves.
At Ocala, Fla.-based MzeroA.com, which offers flight training, employees get gym reimbursement and access to company-paid, flat-fee partnerships with local health care practitioners, as well as a catastrophic insurance plan for emergencies.
Employees also have unlimited access to the company's airplanes. All 19 employees are required to become pilots, even those who are in charge of things like marketing or HR.
I'll be going now
Paid sabbaticals are typically for professors, but a surprising 16 percent of Inc.'s best workplaces offer them.
At AdvicePeriod, an L.A.-based wealth-management firm, employees accrue a week of paid sabbatical time on each work anniversary. Once they reach year four, they can cash in and hit the road.
This year's data shows that 49 percent of the best workplaces now allow employees to bring a pet to work.
LYNC Logistics in Chattanooga, Tenn., features a golden retriever named LeBron as its chief happiness officer. "His sole purpose is to make everyone who walks in our doors happy," says the company.
Punch, a cyber-operations firm based in Ashburn, Va., offers its 22 employees an unlimited reading account with Amazon. Employees can order any book they'd like, no matter the topic for free.
The company says it helps promote personal development and is widely used, and loved, by team members.
Often, gender-transition procedures are not covered by insurance.
That is why Chicago-based employee communication software company Jellyvision, which guides customers through insurance-benefit decisions, offers up to $2,500 to any employee who is going through gender transition to help pay for medical expenses that aren't covered.
Sixty-five percent of our best workplaces hold regular stress-relief breaks, and some of them are particularly notable mental refreshers.
Enigma Technologies, a data-management and intelligence company in New York, stocks its office with musical instruments and pays for staff to book time at a local recording studio.
At Trinity Packaging Supply in Vorhees, N.J., ping-pong lessons with a former world champion are on the table. And at the new headquarters for United Shore, a Pontiac, Mich.-based mortgage lender, CEO Mat Ishbia, a former Michigan State hoops star, installed a full-size basketball court.