Posted: August 01, 2012

2012 Best Companies to Work for in Colorado

Past no. 1 Infinity Systems Engineering joins repeat winners Edward Jones and ReadyTalk

Mike Taylor

Responsive leadership. Low turnover. A collaborative atmosphere. Flexible work hours. Attractive benefits. Opportunities to advance.

These are just a few of the characteristics exhibited by firms vying for the distinction of Best Company to Work For. Some of the more exotic allowances include dogs welcomed in the office, subsidized massages and beer in the company fridge.

But let’s back up a bit, because perhaps what it takes most of all is the willingness of a company to open itself up to experts in the field of workplace excellence in pursuit of not only the recognition bestowed if it’s named a Best Company to Work For, but the quest to get better.

For the seventh year, ColoradoBiz has teamed with the Colorado State Council of the Society of Human Resources to produce a list of the best companies to work for in the state.

"Companies don’t sign up for this kind of program unless they are in tune with recognizing the importance of employee engagement," says Karen Kukulka, senior project manager for Modern Think, the Delaware-based workplace-excellence consulting firm that conducts the surveys for the Best Companies to Work For program. "The companies we see participating are already invested in creating a positive climate where employee engagement is a top priority. They’re often looking to take the data we give them and turn it into actionable plans."

These 30 finalists are categorized by work-force size: small (25 to 99 employees), medium (100 to 249 employees) and large 250 or more employees). All employees in the small and medium categories are surveyed for the program. For the large-firm category, up to 400 employees are surveyed, depending on the size of the organization. If the company has more than 400 employees, those surveyed are chosen at random.

The top of this year’s rankings may look familiar. Edward Jones and ReadyTalk are repeat winners in the large and medium categories respectively. They’re joined by Infinity Systems Engineering, No. 1 among small companies in 2010 as well.

To participate in the program, companies paid from $700 to roughly $1,000 for comprehensive reports based on surveys by Modern Think. Kukulka says that the economic downturn has prompted some companies to look beyond money for ways to cultivate a healthy work force.

"With the ebb and flow of the economy, they’re actually turning to this program to find other ways of engagement beyond monetary, beyond bonuses," she says. "There are other ways of keeping an employee invested and loyal beyond monetary."

Here's a list of the top three winners in each category:

Large companies:

1. Edward Jones

2. Omni InterLocken Resort

3. PricewaterhouseCoopers

Medium companies:

1. ReadyTalk

2. Rally Software

3. Return Path Inc.

Small companies:

1. Infinity Systems Engineering LLC

2. Accurence

3. Moneytree

 

Mike Taylor is the managing editor of ColoradoBiz. He writes about small-business money issues and how startups are launched. Email him at mtaylor@cobizmag.com.

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