What makes great employees want to do their best work for you?

Sure, a healthy salary is important, but what about your culture, benefits and more? You can offer competitive salaries and the best benefits package around, but it doesn’t mean much if your employees don’t know how to take full advantage of these programs.

That’s why, as part of its Best Credit Unions to Work For program in partnership with Best Companies Group, Credit Union Journal delved into how some of the credit unions that made this year’s rankings are attracting and retaining top talent at every level.

From such untraditional — and sometimes downright quirky — programs such as Farkle Friday, weekly visits from a licensed therapy dog and offering pet insurance, to more common offerings, such as paid time off to volunteer in the community, the CUs on the Best Credit Unions to Work For rankings pull out all the stops.

But don’t stop with just what you find in the print edition — still more content will be coming online, as well, where you’ll learn why 8 percent of employees who leave Mountain America Credit Union wind up returning to the Utah CU. Hint: it’s not the pay — they miss the culture and their coworkers.

Now, 8 percent may not sound like a lot, but when was the last time someone left your CU to go work somewhere else — presumably for better pay and/or a better position — and then came back to work for you?

Or take the job shadowing program at Omni Community CU. It started out as a way to show those on the lower rungs of the corporate ladder how they might be able to further themselves. Now, the credit union has instituted a reverse job-shadowing program, giving those on the higher rungs the opportunity to see what those on the front lines are dealing with on a day-to-day basis — and maybe remind them where they came from, too.

Editor in Chief Lisa Freeman can be reached at lisa.freeman@sourcemedia.com.