Despite Economic Challenges, the Trends of the Best and Brightest Companies to Work For Make Them Viable

Nominations Open for 2012

WARREN, Mich., Dec. 5, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Despite the economic challenges of the last few years, 68 percent of Best and Brightest Companies to Work For applicants still managed to increase their employee base compensation in 2010, according to Jennifer Kluge, president and CEO of the National Association for Business Resources (NABR), the organization that sponsors the annual competition in several Midwest regions. “In addition, we also found that most menu-driven benefits packages and financial incentives now exceed standard perks to include items such as employee discounts with negotiated vendors (78 percent), wellness incentives (73 percent) and much more,” she said.

“This year’s competition also showed us that work-life balance issues continue to grow in importance with nearly 75 percent of companies offering their employees opportunities to telecommute while more than 90 percent offer flexible scheduling that includes everything from flex-time to job sharing, and family leave policies that go beyond legal requirements are offered by nearly 60 percent. More than 48 percent of applicants offer a phased return-to-work process for those coming back from a leave of absence,” Kluge continued.

She went on to explain that Best and Brightest Companies had a strong employee focus in other areas:

  • 80 percent rely on some type of survey to annually gauge their employees’ level of commitment.
  • 91 percent use tools like an intranet to communicate with employees including webcasts (1 out of 2) and leader blogs (1 in 4).
  • 55 percent offer recruitment and retention programs that include internal job postings (69 percent) and referral bonuses (60 percent).
  • Education that includes podcasts, webinars and learning management systems that encourage employees to participate in skills training (98 percent).
  • More than 80 percent sponsor local charitable activities with more than 87 percent conducting on-site activities such as blood banks and food drives.
  • Half of the organizations host or sponsor activities that celebrate multi-culturalism and diversity while 67 percent offer written diversity statements.

“After more than 10 years of conducting Best and Brightest Company competitions, we consistently find that successful companies understand that their business results, including the quality and strength of their customer relationships, are directly tied to how well they focus on their employees,” said Kluge. “This year’s results continue to raise the bar and prove once again that employees who are valued and connected to their work are more likely to give higher levels of discretionary effort and be more loyal to their organizations resulting in a win-win for all involved.”

The “101 Best and Brightest Companies to Work For,” a program of the National Association for Business Resources (NABR) is presented annually in Chicago, Atlanta, Houston, Metropolitan Detroit, Grand Rapids and nationally. Nominations are now being accepted for 2012. Visit www.101bestandbrightest.com to obtain an application.

Based in Warren, Mich., the National Association for Business Resources (NABR) is a business organization of small to medium-sized businesses, representing more than 20,000 members who employ over 200,0000 persons nationally. Members include attorneys, physicians, architects, accountants, construction companies, banks, retailers, wholesalers, manufacturers and the like.

Member businesses receive numerous benefits including free legal and financial consultations; discounted technology, automotive and office products; employee training and recruitment assistance; and competitive insurance rates. Visit NABR online at www.nationalbiz.org.