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Want to attract the best employees? A loan might help.

Lending Club is rethinking who could help you repay your debts. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)

Silicon Valley companies have a track record of using great perks to attract and retain talented employees. In one remarkable example, Dropbox reportedly flew its interns’ parents to San Francisco to get a look at where their children were working.

Lending Club, a peer-to-peer lending company, has a creative perk in mind. It wants cash-rich companies to offer their employees low-interest loans.

For recent college grads with the burden of loans, a better interest rate might work as a recruiting pitch. Student loan debt has nearly doubled in the United States since 2007. Given the rising price of higher education this issue appears unlikely to go away. For those with credit card debt or mortgages to pay, the offer of a loan with significantly better terms could be a selling point for accepting a certain job offer.

AllThingsD has reported that Lending Club has approached Google and other companies on the prospect of offering low-interest loans to employees.

The possibility would be a good fit for technology companies, which sit on gigantic piles of cash. Apple alone has $147 billion on hand.

Why not put this money to better use? If a tech company knows an employee will be working for it and earning a healthy wage, it shouldn’t have to worry about the debt getting paid back. This is somewhat reminiscent of Uber’s smart plan to help offer better financing on new cars to its new drivers.

Would a low-interest loan help persuade you to change jobs?


Matt McFarland is the editor of Innovations. He's always looking for the next big thing. You can find him on Twitter and Facebook.

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