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31 Reasons to Work at Craigslist

by J. Money on Wednesday, September 11, 2013

craigslist office

If working in Gauntanamo Bay was too scary for you, perhaps getting a job at Craigslist is a better option :)

My wife was hanging out on their “jobs” page for some reason this week (maybe she’s trying to hint I need to get one?) and she started telling me all about how awesome their perks are over there. Which is funny because this is the same wife who literally just asked me if she should “list these musical instruments for sale in the “musical instruments” section?” Haha… “Ummm…No, put them in the furniture section instead!” ;)

Anyways, they weren’t looking for any sexy bloggers or anything – mainly just developers – so I ignored most of what she was saying until I couldn’t help notice how LONG that list of benefits kept growing. She was going on and on and on, and they just seemed to keep getting better and better!

Here they all are below. In addition to their “competitive cash compensation”:

  • Craigslist pays 100% of employee’s (and any eligible dependent’s) health and dental insurance
  • Craigslist pays 100% of employee’s covered out-of-pocket healthcare expenses ($3K, $5K or $7K annually, depending on # of eligible dependents)
  • 401(k) matching program (up to 6% of employee’s salary), with immediate vesting
  • 3-to-1 match on employee’s charitable donations (up to 10% of an employee’s salary)
  • Life insurance
  • Short and long term disability insurance
  • Employee assistance program
  • 4 weeks of paid time off annually
  • 8-10 paid holidays
  • Monthly transportation stipend
  • Monthly wellness stipend
  • Monthly technology stipend for mobile phone and at-home Internet (tech staff only)
  • Breakfast, lunch, fresh fruit, and healthy snacks daily
  • Weekly in-office yoga
  • In-office bicycle parking
  • Coffeebot 9000!

And here’s what else you get with “the Craigslist experience”:

  • An unusually philanthropic company mission and philosophy
  • An opportunity to work on one of the most used websites in the world
  • The prospect of imagining, designing, coding, and releasing a better CL
  • Non-garden-variety tech challenges à la billions-of-page-views-per-day
  • A workplace free of VCs, MBAs, sales, marketing, biz dev, endless meetings
  • A continuous deployment environment — we ship code 2-20x a day
  • Tens of millions of people experiencing the bugs features you develop
  • A chance to work with open source technologies at ridiculous scale
  • Free love from CL users for making site  improvements
  • Laid-back, down-to-earth, non-corporate vibe
  • A small team of fun, smart, interesting, idealistic people
  • A San Francisco office location well served by transit
  • Millions in company charitable giving each year to worthy causes
  • A small company culture with high retention and better benefits than most large companies
  • Market rates for you — free classifieds for humanity.

Crazy, huh? It reminds me of the start up I once worked at when we were rolling in the dough too – before all the paycheck stealing  and 401(k) shenanigans. (For those who weren’t around back then, I ended up suing my company – and winning! – but the money had since evaporated and I never saw a dime from them. On the plus side, I did became a full-time blogger on the spot! :)).

The benefits were just incredible despite the shakiness of the start up world, so I socked away every last penny I could and worked on my net worth goals 24/7. It would take a little over a year and a half since the first signs of trouble for the whole thing to collapse. But during the good times, we had the following to be happy about:

  • Bonuses of $2,000 per quarter regardless of effort
  • “Take it when you need it” sick/vacation time
  • Super casual dress code (I wore jeans and tees every day)
  • 100% free health insurance for all employees and their families
  • Fridge always stocked with drinks, yogurts, snacks, and BEER!
  • 100% matching of 100% 401(k) deposits put in. Up to the maximum legal amount (So, I put in $16,500, and they put in $16,500. No vesting, no waiting, no nothing! Well, until those shenanigans started happening, of course.)
  • Free unlimited Starbucks coffee. Like, a loaded up Starbucks card you could use at any location@ (There are over 60 of them in D.C.)
  • Open door policy: Can walk right into the CEO’s office and talk about ideas/problems/etc.

So, pretty much everything I *don’t* get now as a self-employed blogger. Haha… but I’m not bitter ;) Truth is, there are some damn good companies out there and if you can take advantage of all their benefits, then more power to you. If I ever get back into the workforce myself that’ll be right up there on the list of reasons why. But for now, I’ll just continue reading about them in my boxers.

What are some of the great company benefits you all have? Anyone WORK for Craigslist reading this right now?? If so, how awesome is it really over there pray tell?

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Photo by acloudman


{ 48 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Joe @ Retire By 40 September 11, 2013 at 8:27 am

Wow, that’s a great list of benefit. I don’t have any benefit right now either, but it’s a lot more fun to self employed. I don’t think I can ever go back to work for someone else again. The right small company might do it though.

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2 J. Money September 11, 2013 at 1:52 pm

I said the same thing 2+ years ago. But now all I really care about is being happy and having fun at work – whether that’s for my own brilliant companies or others’ ;)

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3 Brian September 11, 2013 at 8:33 am

Plenty of fancy coffee, tea,etc to drink for free daily.. For a very small fee internet, phone and cable. If I was paying out of pocket this would easily run me over $200 a month. 8-10 paid Holiday and 4 weeks vacation a year. Not a bad gig.

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4 Holly@ClubThrifty September 11, 2013 at 8:36 am

That is an awesome list of benefits. Question: does anyone know how Craigslist makes money?

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5 Mom @ Three is Plenty September 11, 2013 at 8:44 am

They charge for some listings – mostly job postings and some apartment listings

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6 J. Money September 11, 2013 at 2:47 pm

And they have like a billion x a billion eyeballs hitting them daily which you can always make money off. It’s just amazing how much they leave on the table though NOT pimping everyone out like most companies do. They’re all about the customer! :)

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7 Michelle September 11, 2013 at 8:37 am

Wow those are some awesome benefits! I would love to have all of that.

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8 Mom @ Three is Plenty September 11, 2013 at 8:42 am

My company is awesome to work for. There are 5 of us. We get 4% matching in our 401(k) – vested immediately. 100% coverage for health/vision/dental/disability insurance for us and our families. Casual dress code (except when meeting clients) – I regularly wear shorts and a t-shirt to work in the summer. Flexible hours (as long as you’re available from 10:30 until 3, you can work pretty much whenever). We’re also transitioning to a take it when you need it vacation policy (right now it’s 20 days/year + 4 holidays). We occasionally go out to lunch together (on the company dime), and folks are constantly bringing in baked goods to share. I don’t make as much as I could if I went elsewhere (est. 3/4 of what I could make), but the people I work with and the intangible perks are pretty awesome. I’ll have been here 10 years in about a month, so we’re still pretty stable with all those perks :)

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9 J. Money September 11, 2013 at 2:48 pm

Nice! Does your company need any sexy bloggers? ;)

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10 Joel @ SaveOutsidetheBox September 11, 2013 at 9:09 am

Don’t tell my employer this but I’m thinking of applying right now! Holy cow those benefits are ludicrously awesome.

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11 J. Money September 11, 2013 at 2:49 pm

I would say your setup is pretty sweet too ;) Though our love for the industry could be swaying us!

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12 Cat @ Budget Blonde September 11, 2013 at 9:18 am

I would say the best benefit I get is only working 9 months out of the year but getting paid 12 since I teach at a university. :)

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13 J. Money September 11, 2013 at 2:48 pm

I was gonna say there – hustlers never stop working! ;)

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14 John S @ Frugal Rules September 11, 2013 at 9:36 am

Wow, those are some crazy awesome benefits. The best I ever had was a full match at 8% with no vesting. Of course, I was just out of college and stupid. ;) That said, it would take an awful lot to get me back in the workforce now that I’ve been self-employed the last 15 months. Having a cold one with lunch if I want it is a pretty sweet benefit in my opinion. ;)

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15 J. Money September 11, 2013 at 2:55 pm

Indeed!

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16 Heather September 11, 2013 at 10:04 am

Looks like a great gig!

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17 Taynia | The Fiscal Flamingo September 11, 2013 at 10:20 am

Um, where do I sign up?

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18 No Waste September 11, 2013 at 10:55 am

This is particularly amazing to me as I have NO IDEA how Craigslist makes money.

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19 Leona@allmydollarsandcents.com September 11, 2013 at 10:56 am

Crazy benefits! My employer offers some nice perks but not quite like your list. Not bad!

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20 Debt Blag September 11, 2013 at 11:11 am

Hm. I like that there are a lot of benefits even though a lot of those are cash-like benefits. Cash-like benefits aren’t bad, of course, but if they’re going to pay more of my life insurance, I’d almost they rather just give me the money so that I can choose my own.

The food makes sense though. At least they get to buy it in bulk and expense it before taxes.

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21 J. Money September 11, 2013 at 2:58 pm

I’m not sure how CL works, but I know some companies will give their employees credits if they don’t sign up to certain benefits like insurance. At a lower rate, of course, but it’s still win-win for everyone.

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22 stephanie September 11, 2013 at 11:39 am

An in office bicycle park? So right-on-the-money! Free workout with the cardio benes, and I’d bet there’s a shower or two somewhere on site. We do have a small gym; I’m one of the few to use it but hey! It’s another FREE bene for me!!!
CL is a great service as far as I’m concerned – right now I’m planning a move in early 2014. So where do I go to hit up some info and interesting posts? Exactly right-CL. They’ve positioned themselves beautifully, their product works for even the least techie-engaged, and it meets a huge need.
I had no idea CL paid such wonderful side benes like charitable contributions. And NO meetings??? I think my office would fall over dead dead dead to hear that. Casual atmosphere, good retirement, green transit.
The fact for me is, I enjoy my work. My crazy office and the gang of characters who surround me. I have great insurance/403(b) w/a small match, Flexible Spending Account for my med/dent/vision needs, enough vacation for me (and it can be accumulated up to 8 full weeks, with a cash-out offered once a year). I know that there are many who just show up, grab a check, call it a day. I’m more involved, dynamic, and content. I’m taking on another new project this year, which soothes my ego.
I don’t think I could up and leave my company now; perhaps if I were 35? In the meantime, for those who work for CL, or who dream of doing so – best wishes for your success!

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23 J. Money September 11, 2013 at 3:03 pm

It’s great you enjoy your job so much!! That’s what it’s all about at the end of the day :)

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24 Betsy Rowbottom September 11, 2013 at 12:02 pm

Smart companies – like Craigslist (love Craigslist!) are winning the best talent by attracting discerning job seekers who see what CL does for people (perks & all the great stuff they do for the community). As the job market becomes more and more competitive, companies are investing in differentiating their cultures as a way to attract talent. Once again, Craigslist is a true pioneer!

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25 jestjack September 11, 2013 at 12:07 pm

I love Craigslist…use it every day….Still can’t figure out how they make money….BUT….if they’re happy I’m happy. Crazy thing about Craigslist….one of their earliest and largest investors….The Tribune Company…owner of the Chicago Tribune….La Times and Baltimore Sun. Kind of ironic when you think about it CL may be the largest force in the demise of newspapers profitability. The classifieds were a huge “profit center”….no more. It is good to see they take care of their employees But do ya have to move to San Fran?

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26 J. Money September 11, 2013 at 3:03 pm

That is interesting about the early investors! Probably the smartest thing I’ve heard newspapers doing these days ;)

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27 Martin September 11, 2013 at 12:11 pm

Ever since they dropped the sex classifieds, I stopped using Craigslist.

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28 J. Money September 11, 2013 at 3:05 pm

So now you just go to bars, right? :)

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29 Jacob | iHeartBudgets September 11, 2013 at 1:18 pm

Holy junk sing me up! 4 weeks off out of the gate?! And free food. I’D DO ANYTHING FOR FREE FOOD!!!!

My job has some decent benefits, unfortunately “competitive pay” is not one of them. Also unfortunately, there are not a lot of other jobs in my industry for my skillset. DOH!

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30 Mike September 11, 2013 at 1:26 pm

Self-employed can be a lot easier to adapt to, especially if a person has a lot of interests like me! However, some of those benefits are attractive……

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31 Free Money Minute September 11, 2013 at 1:55 pm

Wow, what a package. That sounds like the packages employees got back in the internet dot com boom days. Surprised they are still around.

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32 Financial Black Sheep September 11, 2013 at 2:11 pm

There are so many benefits from my job I just couldn’t list them all. I tried when I posted about my new benefits package, but I left out a bunch for privacy. I get things like free gym, free long term disability, cheap health, and discounts all over the city. It’s an awesome place to work :)

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33 J. Money September 11, 2013 at 3:05 pm

Sounds like it :)

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34 Christine @ ThePursuitofGreen September 11, 2013 at 4:14 pm

Hmm I’m self-employed so I get no benefits! Instead I’ll talk about my husband’s benefits. He works at a company that is 150+ but is part of a larger company with tons of people.

3% matching 401k
free lunch once a month
mostly covered healthcare
summer parties, new years party, and christmas party

Those are the ones I know of.

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35 EJ September 11, 2013 at 4:19 pm

Hi J Money wow where can I sign up? I hope they employ Aussies! Is your 401k like our superannuation retirement fund? Ours is usually at about 9-11% of annual salary made instalments per pay period. Gov will match up to a certain amount. Of voluntary extra funds a year. ( I think $10000 but don’t quote me on it!) 4 weeks annual leave is standard some companies give extra I used to get 5 working at a mon for profit company. 10-14 days sick leave also standard plus penalty rates for overtime in most industry at time and a half or double time depending on weekday or amount of hrs over normal set hrs.
Any holiday leave not taken is paid out in cash if you leave company or rolls into following year. Pretty unlikely to find all the other perks tho! Coffee is one of those things people spend on without thinking too much about it but over a year one coffee a day works out over $1000! Great read thanks for sharing!

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36 Christine @ ThePursuitofGreen September 12, 2013 at 3:38 pm

Sounds like Australia has good benefits already! If we’re lucky here in the US we’ll get 2 weeks paid leave, 5 days sick days. Our 401k sounds like your retirement fund. Cept no matching from the Government. Employers can match but it’s getting rarer that they do. If anything its only up to 3% too.

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37 J. Money September 16, 2013 at 12:16 pm

Yup, what Christine said. And now I’m booking my flight to Australia to start working there!!! ;)

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38 JS September 11, 2013 at 6:30 pm

Love my corporate job, but need and appreciate the security. We are a “medium-sized company” at 5500 employees (LoL), but after 7 years of employment get 7 weeks of paid time off, plus holidays. And, many of us work from home. Not a bad gig, and I did get to move home to a place where there are very few comparable jobs. Guess I had better stay in good graces!

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39 Micro September 11, 2013 at 7:51 pm

Wow, that is an impressive list. The thing that stuck to me was the comment about the lack of meetings. That is the one aspect of a work day that I just hate. So much of my time is spent listening to items that don’t apply to me. My time would be much better served working.

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40 J. Money September 16, 2013 at 12:16 pm

Hah! I didn’t even notice that one?? The shock must have caused me to overlook some! Haha…

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41 Marissa@Thirtysixmonths September 11, 2013 at 9:28 pm

oh wow! seriously?! Those are awesome benefits that would really make anyone think. Although there are a lot of other companies who offer as much if not more. Have you heard from any craiglist employees yet? I wonder.

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42 Dear Debt September 12, 2013 at 2:32 am

Wow, I would kill for that! I really dig the charitable giving, wellness money and food! I work for a non-profit and I am seriously happy I have 100% free health, dental, vision–which includes massages and acupuncture! Yes! My friend recently went to SF and visited Dropbox and Google and said it’s just plain ridiculous how spoiled they are with benefits. If you got the skillz, use them! Us plebeians can keep dreaming.

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43 J. Money September 16, 2013 at 12:18 pm

Oh man, Google is a whole other story out there. I visited a couple of years back and it was insane!! Free food and fancy drinks and all kinds of stuff laying around for the picking. It was beautiful!! (And randomly, enough, on that same trip I heard a a presentation from the founder of Dropbox :)) Is your friend, me??

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44 moneystepper.com September 12, 2013 at 2:46 am

Wowser, that is one impressive list of perks and looks like a great place to work at.

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45 charles@gettingarichlife September 12, 2013 at 4:01 am

The owner of Craigslist has stayed true to his roots. He could always sell out for big bucks, but he keeps it simple and true to his vision.

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46 J. Money September 16, 2013 at 12:19 pm

I know, you gotta give him credit for that. Not many would have at this point of success!

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47 Josh September 15, 2013 at 8:33 pm

I’d say my two biggest benefits where I work are my schedule, and my retirement match. I’ll generally be on the clock for 12-14 hours a day for 4 to 6 days, but then because I’ve accrued so much comp. time then, I’ll usually have a week to two weeks off before I need to go in again. As for my 403(b), I’m given the equivalent of 10% of my (before taxes) income! And come to think of it, that’s whether or not I put in anything myself (though don’t worry, I’m putting in 8% of my before-taxes income).

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48 J. Money September 16, 2013 at 12:20 pm

Nice! You seem like a hustler too working like that – I bet your super valued at work :)

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