Southwest Airlines, General Mills, Slalom Consulting Top List, According to Their Employees in Second Annual Award

SAUSALITO, Calif. (December 16, 2009) —, a career and workplace community that brings greater transparency to company cultures, compensation and the interview process, today released the second annual Employees’ Choice Awards, listing the top 50 “Best Places to Work,” according to surveys collected from U.S.-based employees in 2009. The top five Best Places to Work based on employee feedback include: Southwest Airlines, General Mills, Slalom Consulting, Bain & Company and McKinsey & Company. General Mills and Bain & Company have secured positions in the top five for the second year in a row, while Southwest Airlines and Slalom Consulting are new entrants to the list.

“The Glassdoor Best Places to Work Awards recognizes those companies that have kept employees engaged and motivated in the past year despite the turbulence many endured during the historic financial storm,” said Robert Hohman, co-founder and CEO of “In this market, information is critical and we’re delighted to recognize employers that stand out among their own employees. The data we collect from employees on Glassdoor provides an important inside look at companies. This has significant implications not only for job seekers and employees, but also investors and potential customers.”

Unlike many workplace-related awards that require companies to self nominate, Glassdoor relies solely on the input from employees throughout the year. The ranking of the top 50 list was determined by each company’s overall rating on Glassdoor, which is the cumulative average rating from employees who elected to participate in a 20-question survey between December 1, 2008 and December 1, 2009. The survey addresses key workplace factors, including work/life balance, career opportunities, communication, compensation and benefits, employee morale, recognition and feedback, and senior leadership, as well as fairness and respect.

At the top spot, Southwest Airlines is rated 4.7 on a 5-point scale and CEO Gary Kelly holds a 94% approval rating. Although General Mills, winner of the 2009 Best Places to Work Award, slipped to second place, the company has a 4.5 rating and CEO Ken Powell has a 97% approval, the highest of any CEO on the 2010 Best Places to Work list.

“I’m honored to hear such positive feedback from the employees who rated General Mills on,” said Ken Powell, chairman and chief executive officer of General Mills. “At General Mills, we realize that the distinction of “great workplace” is truly defined by our employees and by their decision to work with us. General Mills devotes significant attention to shaping the culture as performance-driven, where people work hard to achieve goals and are excited by the challenges of their jobs. Yet at the same time, we provide a workplace that is supportive and does not require employees to lose sight of family and community. This commitment helps us recruit and retain the best talent.”

Approximately two-thirds of the 2010 Best Places to Work list were also on the 2009 list, although some have moved notably up or down. For example, the most improved award goes to FedEx, which employees rated an average of 3.8 this year, up from 3.5 for the 2009 list. This pushed FedEx from 49 last year to 21 on this year’s list. The most notable to slip in the ranks is Whole Foods, which came in at 48 this year, down from sixth last year. Despite the tough economic and employment climate in the past year, approximately one-third of companies on the 2009 list have higher ratings this year than last.

Companies new to the list also include Kraft Foods (Rank: 12), Medtronic (Rank: 18), Publix (Rank: 19), Edelman (Rank: 23), Edward Jones (Rank: 24), Sherwin Williams (Rank: 32), EMC (Rank: 33) and GlaxoSmithKline (Rank: 34).

The complete list of the Glassdoor 2010 Top 50 Best Places to Work is below, along with corresponding CEO approval rating, and 2009 rank where applicable:

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For more information about the awards and sample reviews from top companies, visit the Employees’ Choice Award for Best Places to Work webpage. A complete copy of the Glassdoor survey along with additional information about the Best Places to Work methodology may be requested via email: To receive regular updates about new and interesting data and reports, visit the Glassdoor blog ( and follow the company on Twitter.

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About is a career and workplace community where anyone can find and anonymously share real-time company reviews and ratings, salary details about specific jobs, or interview questions and reviews for specific employers — for free. Glassdoor was founded in 2007 and launched its public beta in June 2008. Glassdoor is headquartered in Sausalito, Calif. and was founded by Richard Barton, Robert Hohman and Tim Besse. To date, Glassdoor has raised $9.5 million from its founders, Benchmark Capital and Sutter Hill Ventures.

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