10 Best Hiring Incentives to Attract and Retain Talent

June 10, 2024
Snigdha Parghan
Snigdha Parghan
Snigdha Parghan
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You spend weeks (or maybe months!) finding the dream candidate – someone with the skills and experience that seem ripped straight from your job description.

They negotiate, they accept your offer, you're both excited and then...bam! Silence.

The start date approaches, and they decide to ghost you!

Let's be honest, it stings. As a hiring manager, admin, or leader, it's a real bummer to see someone you were counting on walk away.

There could be a million reasons – a better offer, a change of heart, or even dissatisfaction with the final salary. Hard to figure it out!

Now, this sudden change throws a wrench in your whole operation. You were relying on this person, and now you're back to square one. Harvard Business Review says the average job filling takes 24 days and costs companies up to $4,000 per hire – ouch!

So, what can you do? Well, venting might feel good, but it won't fill the position. Here's the way out: Hiring incentives!

Yes, they can be your savior!

I get it, you must be having countless thoughts bouncing around in your head about Hiring Incentives! What are they? Why do you need them? And so on!

Don't worry, I got you!

This blog will help you understand how a hiring incentive strategy can help you land and keep your dream hire. By the end, you’ll have a clear roadmap for building a successful hiring incentive program. Promise!Let’s jump right in!

What are Hiring Incentives?

In today's crazy job market, Hiring incentives are additional rewards or benefits offered by businesses, a strategy companies use to stand out and attract the best talent.

It shows potential hires that you truly value their skills and long-term success.

You're not just making your job offer more attractive, you're investing in building a happy and engaged workforce that will stick around for the long haul.

Hiring incentives are like the free fries that come with your burger – they make the whole offer way more tempting.

They can be anything from a sweet signing bonus or stock options to relocation assistance. Basically, you can pick the ones that make the most sense for you and your awesome new hire.

10 Hiring Incentives to Draw Top Performers

The only list you need to check!

Whether dealing with a tight budget or just trying to fill that crucial role, these incentives can work wonders.

So, without further ado, here are ten proven hiring incentives that will entice your potential employee to hit the "Apply" button and join the team in a heartbeat. 

10 Hiring Incentives to Draw Top Performers

👉🏼Signing Bonuses

Who doesn’t love some extra cash? A signing bonus can be the cherry on top that makes a candidate say yes.

👉🏼Relocation Assistance

Moving can be a hassle. Offering financial support for relocation can decide to move a whole lot easier.

👉🏼Flexible Work Arrangements

In today’s world, flexibility is key. Remote work, flexible hours, or even a four-day workweek can be huge selling points.

👉🏼Professional Development Opportunities

Show candidates you’re invested in their future with funding for courses, certifications, or conferences.

👉🏼Stock Options or Equity

Give them a piece of the pie! Stock options or equity can make candidates feel more connected to the company’s success.

👉🏼Referral Bonuses

Turn your employees into recruiters with referral bonuses. It’s a win-win when they bring in great new hires.

👉🏼Performance Bonuses

Reward hard work with performance bonuses tied to achieving specific goals.

👉🏼Enhanced Benefits Packages

Go beyond the basics with top-notch health insurance, retirement plans, or extra vacation days.

👉🏼Tuition Reimbursement

Help them keep learning with financial support for continuing education or advanced degrees.

👉🏼Company Perks

Make work more enjoyable with perks like gym memberships, wellness programs, company cars, or even free meals.

Hiring Incentives vs. Employee Benefits

Attract top talent with strategic incentives, but also invest in creating a supportive work environment with valuable benefits.

By getting this mix right, you'll be well on your way to building a dream team that thrives!

Let's break it down. First, how are hiring incentives different from employee benefits?


Hiring Incentives

Employee Benefits


Offered upfront, before accepting the job.

Offered after accepting the job, ongoing.

Target Audience

Potential employees considering the job offer.

Existing employees of the company.


Attract top talent and convince them to accept.

Motivate, retain, and improve employee satisfaction.


Signing bonus, relocation assistance, extra vacation, etc.

Health insurance, retirement plan, paid time off, etc.


Short-term, one-time offers.

Long-term, ongoing value proposition.

Who wouldn't want to stay at a company with a spread of irresistible benefits?

A MetLife study found that 73% of employees would stick around for longer if offered more perks. Employee benefits are so powerful you see.

Top talent gets swarmed with offers these days.

Gartner says nearly half are juggling multiple job offers at once!

That's where strategic hiring incentives come in and throw the limelight at you.

The Takeaway: It's a two-pronged approach. Spoil your existing team with benefits that rock, and lure in the brightest talent with eye-catching hiring incentives.

This duo is guaranteed to be a success!

The Far-Reaching Benefits of Implementing Employee Incentive Programs

You know, it's funny how something as simple as a pat on the back or a "job well done" can completely change the vibe of a workplace.

Employee incentive goes far beyond and turns an ordinary office into a place where people genuinely want to be.

And let's not forget the ripple effect these programs have—they're not just about making the current team happy, they also charm top talents from the market. So yeah, employee incentive programs? They're kind of a big deal.

Here's why Employee Incentive Programs prosper:

☑️Boosts Morale-

Employee incentive programs can lift spirits and keep everyone motivated.

☑️Enhances Engagement-

These programs are like the ultimate engagement tool. When employees feel valued and appreciated, they become fully invested in their work. 

☑️Attracts and Retains Top Talent-

With enticing incentive programs, you become a magnet for top talent. Candidates are drawn to companies that reward hard work and dedication. 

☑️Fosters Healthy Competition-

Incentive programs inject a healthy dose of competition into the workplace, driving individuals and teams to push their limits

☑️Improves Company Culture-

When recognition becomes a part of everyday life, positivity radiates throughout the office.

☑️Aligns with Organizational Goals- 

By tying rewards to specific objectives, you ensure that everyone is marching in the same direction.

☑️Encourages Continuous Improvement-

Incentive programs provide the gentle nudge needed to encourage continuous improvement.

8 Steps to Choose the Appropriate Hiring Incentives to Offer Candidates

Figuring out the right incentives to dangle in front of potential candidates is like assembling the ultimate gift basket—you want it to be thoughtful, Inviting, and absolutely compelling. So, how do you nail it? Keep reading!

8 Steps to Choose the Appropriate Hiring Incentives to Offer Candidates

#Step 1: Understand Your Candidates

Get to know your potential hires. What motivates them? What do they value? Tailor your incentives to match their desires.

#Step 2: Evaluate Your Company's Needs

Where does your company need the most help? Identify areas where incentives can make a real difference

#Step 3: Research Industry Standards

See what other companies are offering. You want to stay competitive, but also find ways to stand out.

#Step 4: Stick to Your Budget

Figure out what you can realistically afford. It's all about balancing the cost with the long-term benefits.

#Step 5: Customize Incentives to Roles

Different roles have different needs. Tailor your incentives to match the expectations of each position.

#Step 6: Gather Feedback

Your current employees are a goldmine of information. Ask them what incentives they find most appealing.

#Step 7: Be Creative and Flexible

Don't be afraid to get creative. Sometimes, it's those not-so-obvious perks that make the biggest impact.

#Step 8: Test and Iterate

Once you've implemented your incentives, keep an eye on how they're working. Be willing to tweak them based on feedback and results.

By following these steps, you're primed to offer hiring incentives that not only reel the best from the talent pool but also ensure their long-term happiness.

The Unexpected Challenges of Hiring Incentives (Let's Talk)

So, you're ready to test the power of hiring incentives? Great!

But hold on there, partner, there can be a few bumps on the road.

Here's what to watch out for:

  • Budget Constraints: Let's face it, money doesn't grow on trees! One of the biggest challenges is figuring out how to offer enticing incentives without breaking the bank.
  • Measuring Effectiveness: How do you know if your incentives are working? Tracking their impact on employee satisfaction, retention, and overall performance can be a tricky task.
  • Consistency Across Teams: What works for one team might not work for another. Maintaining consistency in incentive offerings across different departments or locations can be a nightmare.
  • Legal and Compliance Issues: From tax implications to legal regulations, there's a lot to consider when implementing hiring incentives.
  • Unrealistic Expectations:  Don't overpromise and underdeliver. Be realistic about what your incentives can achieve, and focus on attracting talent who value your company as a whole.

Remember, hiring incentives are a powerful tool, but like any tool, they need to be used strategically and with a clear understanding of potential pitfalls.

The Workforce Institute’s 2021 Retention Report revealed an eye-opening statistic: nearly two-thirds of employee departures are preventable.

It suggests there's a lot we can do to keep our top talent happy and thriving.

Hiring incentives can be a piece of the puzzle, but before you dive headfirst, it's important to consider all the challenges that might arise during the implementation of these programs.

Friendly advice: Be wise while being nice!

5 Ways to Gauge the Impact of Your Hiring Incentives: Hit or Miss?

With these hacks in your toolkit, measuring the effectiveness of your hiring incentive programs becomes a breeze!

1. Employee Feedback:

It's like checking the pulse of your workforce. Simply ask employees how they feel about the incentives offered.

2. Retention Rates:

Keep an eye on who's staying and who's leaving. If your incentive programs are hitting the mark, you should see higher retention rates.

3. Recruitment Metrics:

Track metrics like time-to-fill and offer acceptance rates. Are candidates jumping at the chance to join your team?

4. Performance Metrics:

Look at key performance indicators (KPIs) such as sales numbers, productivity levels, or customer satisfaction scores.

5. Cost-Benefit Analysis:

Crunching the numbers never hurt! Conducting a cost-benefit analysis to compare the expenses associated with offering incentives against the benefits gained.

Conclusion- The Decision is yours!

We’re at the end, and as I mentioned earlier, you should be ready to launch a hiring incentive plan by now. I hope you're there!

So for the one last time- should you offer hiring incentives? Let me give you some facts and let you decide.

Glassdoor revealed what job seekers are looking for in their next job. Check out these mind-blowing numbers:

  • Nearly half 48% of respondents prioritize attractive benefits and perks, like gym memberships, generous PTO, and more.
  • A convenient and easy commute ranked highly at 47%, highlighting how important location and work-life balance are for job seekers.
  • Money still matters! High salaries were a key factor for 46% of respondents.
  • Achieving a healthy work-life balance is crucial, with 43% prioritizing this aspect.

These stats show that while salary is important, job seekers want more. Are you offering most of these? If not, now’s the time to create a solid hiring incentive plan to give job seekers what they want.

Attracting and retaining top talent is a constant battle, but it gets a lot easier if you have a good hiring incentive strategy in place.

I rest my case. Now it’s your move!


Snigdha Parghan

Snigdha Parghan is a content writer and SEO analyst at Kennect, with extensive experience in B2B digital marketing. She specializes in creating insightful and impactful content for various industries, including SaaS, Marketing, and IT. She uses her creative flair and innovative approach to transform industry jargon into relatable and meaningful narratives that resonate with both audiences and business objectives.


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