The competition for the best professionals is fierce, that’s why many companies have joined the game of attracting and retaining the best talent by devising different perks for their employees.

Have a look at some unique perks that companies offer to attract the great employees and encourage their growth and job satisfaction.

Employees are encouraged to take advantage of a flexible work schedule in companies like Google, LinkedIn, Tagged, plus they have unlimited sick days. Many times employees are allowed to set their own schedules and work their own hours, not being held accountable for a standard number of hours per day or week. Engineers at Google and LinkedIn are even allowed to devote significant portion of their work time on projects of their own. Staying productive and innovative is what matters.

Some of the other amenities in the Facebook and Google offices include weekly massages, running trails, fitness classes, weekly lectures by entrepreneurs, car washes, bike repairs, haircuts and even dry-cleaning services. The last perks are considered a complete time-saver for employees, who happily cross out items from their to-do lists, while being at work.

Companies like Eventbrite have created their own relaxation spaces with nooks and hammocks at their workplace. They even have a Zen-like room, in which employees are regularly invited to enjoy yoga and meditation retreats, stress release and breathing sessions, which help employees relax and recharge, gain a fresh perspective before switching back to work mode.

Talking about office spaces, take a tour of the LivingSocial office, which also stands out with its rock climbing wall, skee-ball arcades, shuffleboard, and yoga room.

Vynamic, a health care consulting firm, has established a “Zmail policy”, which discourages employees from sending emails and messages between 10 pm and 6 am, during the week and the weekends. As a result, employees can really “zone out” and relax during their free time, while the company benefits from a much lower employee turnover.

Free on-site childcare and dog-care services are among the top perks for the more family-oriented employees. Many companies are adopting the bring-your-dogs-to-work policy and building special areas for pets or children, so that employees do not have to worry about these family members while at work. Pet-friendly companies like Trupanion and Pinterest have reported an increase in the employees’ moral and commitment, as a result of such services.

Summit LLC devises different ways to excite its employees: for example, it purchases an annual membership to a bike program in Washington DC for its employees. As a result the employees’ goodwill, loyalty and productivity have increased, while their overall health, well-being and mood have also improved.

Companies like Ruby Receptionists and BBMG encourage personal growth and development through a five-week paid sabbatical programs or “inspiration accounts”, which give chance to many employees to pursue their dreams and inspirations, which they might not otherwise have the chance or finances to achieve. The employees, who have benefited from such perks and have enjoyed such cherished experience, become happier, more creative and even more productive.

Have you heard of any other good examples of perks that win the hearts and minds of a company‘s top employees? Thanks to Dave & Lorelle for the picture (Flickr).