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Sneak Peek at this year’s 100 Best

Leslie Caccamese

The 2013 FORTUNE 100 Best Companies to Work For®

Last year, we asked companies applying for the 100 Best Companies to Work For® list to name their top three priorities for 2013. While our list publication ordinarily reflects on what the Best Companies achieved over the past year, this year, we focus on where these forward-thinking, culture conscious companies are headed.  Whether a Best Company or not, these focus areas resonate broadly.

Focus: Employee Wellness

Over the past several years, the Employee Wellness Program has become the new standard at Best Companies, and more broadly with list applicant companies as well. The reasons for this are obvious: rising insurance rates and cost of care, colluding with increased incidents of chronic disease and an aging workforce, necessitate measures for preserving employee well-being and containing expenses. 

While the number of companies covering 100% of employees’ health care premiums has steadily decreased from 21 10 years ago, to 12 today, the number of companies offering employees financial rewards or other incentives for participating in wellness programs—undergoing screenings, or maintaining biometric standards—has only increased.  While such practices were rare to nonexistent just 5 years ago, in 2013 we saw 55 of the 100 Best Companies offering health incentives.  Currently, the largest cash reward offered is $2,600, with the average award coming in at $460. Looking at our entire applicant pool, that number only increases, indicating that companies are willing to share the savings with the people who help net them.

Check back next week to learn more on the new trends in employee wellness programs, as well as best practices from the 100 Best.

Focus: Employee Development

The Best Companies to Work For make a considerable investment in training programs, offering 66.5 hours of training annually for salaried employees and 53 hours of training for hourly employees.  Of those hours, almost 70% is devoted to employees’ current roles, and nearly 40% is focused on growth and development. 

While the Best Companies to Work For already possess impressive training and development programs, along with generous tuition reimbursement, employee development remains an area of focus for many, specifically in 3 key areas: Career Roadmapping, Leadership Development, and Diversity Development.

Next week we will outline the new trends and people practices taking place at this year’s 100 Best in these 3 key areas.

Focus: The Global Workforce

In 2013, 14 of the 100 Best Companies saw more than 50% of their employee population residing outside of the US, while 27 of the 100 Best have more than 25% of their employee population outside of the US.  Incidentally, these numbers have not changed much over the years.  In 2004, 14 of the 100 Best, mostly in the pharmaceutical or manufacturing sectors, also had more than 50% of their employees located outside of the US.  While the demographic has not changed, the certainly approach has.

For example, one Best Company takes a different approach to cross-cultural collaboration by hosting job swaps, where employees from the same team will swap homes, vehicles, and jobs for a set period of time.  These short term assignments creatively invite experiences that build team and facilitate employee development without long-term overseas assignments. 

Check back next week on Thursday, January 17th when we reveal the 2013 FORTUNE 100 Best Companies to Work For® for more details on these 3 trends, and how Best Companies are approaching them.

Leslie Caccamese serves as Senior Strategic Marketing Manager with Great Place to Work® Institute.

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