America's Most Loved Workplaces 2021 - Rank by Size

America's Most Loved Workplaces 2021


Welcome to Newsweek's first Most Loved Workplaces rankings. The collection of 100 small, medium and large companies on the pages that follow come at a crucial time for employees and their bosses alike. COVID-19 has turned the work world upside down—and the relationship between employees and their employers has never been more fraught. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, 11.5 million workers quit their jobs in the second quarter alone. (Are you keeping your employees happy? You'd better be.)

There are other lists out there that rank good companies, to be sure. But we believe our rankings, produced in partnership with the Best Practice Institute, are different and dig deeper. We're doing more than just counting how many benefits employers provide—a solid 401(k) plan, medical benefits, paid time off and so on. Those things are, of course, important. But what we're measuring, critically, is how employees feel about their organizations. There's a big difference, after all, between workers getting a kick out of free Doritos and whether they truly love and feel in sync with the company they work for.

"A Most Loved Workplace is focused squarely on the degree to which employees have a positive feeling about their employer," says Louis Carter, CEO of the Best Practice Institute, a leadership development center and think tank that developed the research underpinning the rankings in collaboration with the University of Pittsburgh. In other words: "high emotional connection or love for" their place of employment.

Why is this important? Because that "emotional connection" is directly relatable to the success of a company. Carter, and the BPI team, including head of research Scott Baxt, have over the years studied more than 3,500 managers, leaders and employees in a wide range of industries and company sizes. Their findings: Employees are as much as four times more likely to be extra productive if they love the company they work for. Also, not surprisingly, those same workers tend to stay put, cutting down on turnover.

The two crucial factors behind this kind of loyalty? Respect from their bosses, for one thing. It is also important, from the workforce's point of view, that their company lives "the values and ethics it espouses," says Baxt. Adds Carter, author of the book In Great Company: How to Spark Peak Performance by Creating an Emotionally Connected Workplace: "The reality is that offering lots of perks doesn't necessarily make your company the place people want to dedicate themselves to."

To make the cut, companies on the list had to meet certain criteria. For instance: Is collaboration and teamwork important—or does the company follow The Hunger Games management model? Are there opportunities for advancement or do jobs just dead-end? Is the company a good citizen or does it just pretend to be a do-gooder? Some of our companies, of course, have slipped up in the past (and some, for sure, will slip up in the future). But how they overcame the pitfalls is what mattered to us at the end of the day—an indication of the strength of leadership and determination to do the right thing.

Our Most Loved Workplaces reflect our criteria in a number of ways. Some examples:
Footwear maker Crocs, No. 20 on our list, has always been big on public service, and its employees expect it to deliver on that. Case in point: Early in the pandemic, Crocs gave away some $40 million worth of its iconic foam clogs to nurses and other frontline COVID workers. No. 18, Sweetgreen, a casual restaurant chain, rewards employees for being good citizens by, among other things, giving them three hours to vote and five paid hours to volunteer.

Patagonia, of course, is the role model for the practice-what-you-preach crowd. Recently, our No. 30-ranked company pulled merchandise out of the Jackson Hole Mountain Resort—Patagonia's biggest customer in the ultra-ritzy ski community. Why? One of the resort's owners hosted a politically radical right-wing event featuring GOP Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia. ("We join with the local community that is using its voice in protest," a Patagonia spokeswoman told the political publication, The Hill.)

Doing well by doing good is a great thing, but career-building, collaboration and transparency matter too at our top 100 companies.

Apparel-maker Deckers, ranked No. 6, constantly encourages employees to submit ideas, some of which may result in a direct investment by the company. Deckers employees, up and down the corporate food chain, can join teams that pitch those ideas directly to top execs including the CEO. Box, an internet cloud services firm (No. 21) is big on employee career-skill building. Three times a year, the company holds what it calls "LearnFest" professional development programs.

Are you in a career rut? Employees at LivePerson (No. 46), a computer software company, can switch to different teams if they think their jobs are going nowhere. A we're-all-in-this-together vibe? Spotify, our top company this year, gets its executives to answer emails from employees up and down the food chain. It also constantly shares its mission and values and asks workers for input.

Diversity is a big deal at many of these companies as well, which is important to customers as well as employees, says Carter. No. 73 Denny's, the restaurant chain, says around 55 percent of its restaurants are owned by minorities and 40 percent of its board are women, 56 percent of the directors are minorities.

We believe you'll find our 2021 Most Loved Workplaces list of great value—no matter what position you hold. If you just want to know where your company stands, this list is for you. If you're interested in finding a company where your career and values are aligned, this list is for you. Or if you're an executive who wants to do a better job and create a happier and more productive workforce, these rankings will work for you as well. Dig in.

Most Loved Workplaces® is a registered trademark of the Best Practice Institute, Inc., of Palm Beach Gardens, Florida.

RankCompany (overall rank)Employees
1O2E Brands (17)Under 1,000 Employees
2DigitalOcean (28)Under 1,000 Employees
3Click Funnels (37)Under 1,000 Employees
4EQrx (39)Under 1,000 Employees
5IMAX (51)Under 1,000 Employees
1Spotify (1)1,000 to 10,000 Employees
2Deckers (6)1,000 to 10,000 Employees
3Cadence (7)1,000 to 10,000 Employees
4Hasbro (8)1,000 to 10,000 Employees
5Fanduel Group (9)1,000 to 10,000 Employees
1Dell Technologies (2)10,000+ Employees
2SAP America (3)10,000+ Employees
3Wyndham Hotels & Resorts (4)10,000+ Employees
4Navy Federal Credit Union (5)10,000+ Employees
5Capgemini (10)10,000+ Employees

How We Did It - The Methodology

Newsweek's ranking of the Most Loved Workplaces 2021 pays tribute to companies that put respect, caring and appreciation for their employees at the center of their business model and, in doing so, have earned the loyalty and respect of the people who work for them.

The list was created in partnership with the Best Practice Institute (BPI), a leadership development center and think tank. BPI has conducted extensive research to identify the specific management practices that lead to employee motivation and satisfaction and to document the strong link between worker satisfaction and productivity and performance. Based on that research, BPI measured five basic areas, via surveys, to determine how employees feel about where they work to create the 2021 Most Loved Workplaces list: the level of collaboration at the firm; how positive workers are about their future at the company; how much employer values align with employee values; respect at all levels; and career achievement. Working in consultation with Newsweek editors, BPI also gave consideration to the company's response to the COVID-19 pandemic, including its return-to-office rules; workplace diversity, equity and inclusion; as well as its compensation and benefits policies and practices.

All together, more than 800,000 employees were surveyed, at companies ranging in size from less than 50 employees to more than 10,000; additionally several hundred company officials were interviewed. To identify the top 100 companies for the Newsweek ranking, companies were evaluated and scored as follows: 35 percent of the initial score was based on employee survey responses; 25 percent was derived from analysis of external public ratings from sites such as Comparably, Careerbliss, Glassdoor, Indeed and Google; and 40 percent came from direct interviews with and written responses from company officials. Newsweek then conducted additional research into every company on the list, as well as the top runners up, to determine the final list of 100 companies and their ranking. (The list includes both U.S. firms and companies with a strong U.S. presence that are based overseas.)

The rankings combine quantitative and qualitative analysis that was developed by BPI in partnership with The School of International and Public Affairs at the University of Pittsburgh and featured in the book In Great Company (McGraw-Hill, 2019) by BPI and Most Loved Workplace founder Louis Carter.

To find out more about becoming a certified Most Loved Workplace or to apply for next year's list, go to www.mostlovedworkplace.com.