HIGHLIGHTS OF THE WINNERS

Enterprise Best Places to Work Success Stories

Introduction

Winning a Glassdoor Best Places to Work award is an esteemed honor given to employers whose people are engaged and satisfied with the job. And there’s an ancillary benefit — one that might even be more powerful than having happy employees — winning a Glassdoor Best Places to Work award is a powerful way to rev up your recruiting engine.

Each year, 100 enterprise businesses (those with over 1,000 employees) are recognized as a Glassdoor Best Place to Work, and we’ve interviewed 11 of this year’s winners to tell you how they did it and how it’s improved their recruiting efforts. We’ll hear how they recruit to win — and win to recruit.

We hope you take inspiration from these top employers, learn what they did to become a place where employees love to work, and use it to fuel your own recruiting engine to attract the talent you want and need.

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital U.S. Best Places to Work: 2018 (#9)

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is a pediatric research institution founded to advance cures, and means of prevention, for pediatric catastrophic diseases through research and treatment. Keeping with founder Danny Thomas’s original vision, no child is denied treatment based on a family’s ability to pay.

What’s the biggest piece of advice that you have for recruiters looking to strengthen their relationship with hiring managers?

Within St. Jude, recruiters speak openly about using Glassdoor as a tool to monitor the candidate and employee experience. St. Jude continues to be a great place to interview and work, with rating scores of 4.7. Working with a hiring manager requires constant communication. It’s important to collaborate and for recruiters — and hiring managers — to take responsibility for filling positions quickly and efficiently. It’s also important to be realistic about turnaround times and set appropriate expectations, especially in the case of hard-to fill-positions. Doing so allows recruiters to demonstrate their expertise and earn a bit of grace in return. Most importantly, recruiters should always follow through. Do what you say you’re going to do.

What is your strategy behind responding to Glassdoor reviews, and acting upon feedback received there?

The Glassdoor review strategy for our St. Jude Talent Acquisition team is simple — answer all reviews, if possible, as soon as possible. We directly acknowledge when we miss the mark, and work to improve the candidate experience. Our responses offer solutions, or direct employees or candidates to resources, that can help with the concerns raised in their review. We share positive and negative reviews with teams, and our talent acquisition team follows up on all critical reviews to ensure the departments involved are aware of potential issues. As a result, our interview process and our onboarding experience have improved.

PRO TIP

By actively soliciting more reviews – especially at key points in your employees’ tenure – you can ensure your job candidates have a representative, up-to-date view into your organization. Because these informed candidates are well-researched and engaged with your company, they are twice as likely to be hired because they’re the right fit.1 And once hired, they get onboarded faster and exhibit greater productivity.

How did you get employees to leave reviews?

Within the first month of employment, St. Jude employees receive an email asking for an interview process review on Glassdoor. Employees then receive a request to review the organization after six to nine months with the hospital. Our talent acquisition team sends Glassdoor review requests to employees in hard-to-fill roles throughout the year. They’re focused on perspectives from employees with longer tenures, sending requests to employees celebrating milestone anniversaries (every five years) with St. Jude.

Southwest Airlines U.S. Best Places to Work: 2018 (#23)

Now in their 47th year of service, Southwest Airlines continues to stand apart from other air carriers with exemplary customer service delivered by more than 56,000 employees to more than 150 million customers annually. Having started with just three cities, Southwest now serves over 100 destinations in eight countries. Their singular mission: dedication to the highest quality of customer service delivered with a sense of warmth, friendliness, individual pride, and company spirit.

How do you engage your employees?

We view engagement as a two-way street. Yes, we have to work to keep employees engaged by offering good pay and benefits, opportunities for development and advancement and a collaborative, mission-driven culture. We also have to hire people who are engaged from the start, whose values are in sync with ours.

So, we start with hiring. We like to say we hire for attitude and skill, but we will never put skill over attitude. We’re looking for people who live and work the Southwest way. We’ve clearly defined these expectations, and build our interviewing methodology around them.

These are the specific behaviors we attribute to each of these expectations:

Warrior Spirit — striving to be the best, displaying a sense of urgency, and never giving up.

Servant’s Heart — an employee will follow the Golden Rule, treating others with respect, and embracing our Southwest family.

Fun-LUVing attitude — includes being a passionate team player, not taking oneself too seriously, and celebrating successes.

Work the Southwest Way — wowing our customers by delivering world-class hospitality, creating memorable connections, and being famous for friendly service. We expect employees to show up and work hard.

“In our latest employee survey, 72% of Southwest employees describe their work at Southwest as a calling.”

Shari Conaway, Senior Director People at Southwest Airlines

What is your strategy behind responding to your Glassdoor reviews?

We’ve had record-breaking hiring for the past several years. That, combined with a low unemployment rate in the United States, means the need for a strong employer brand is more critical than ever. We want to be a candidate’s first choice. Leveraging Glassdoor is one tactic we’re using to sustain our reputation so we can hire the best and remain a top employer.

PRO TIP

Recruiting informed candidates saves time and money because they’re responsive and engaged.2 When candidates have used Glassdoor, these potential hires come in with a deep understanding of your company’s mission and culture. Beyond that more overarching knowledge of your employer brand, they’re prepared for your specific company culture — and they’ve self-selected into it. These informed, high-quality candidates translate to shorter time-to-hire and less cost-per-hire.

Nestlé Purina U.S. Best Places to Work: 2018 (#27)

Nestlé Purina’s mission is inspired by the words of their founder, William Danforth, who believed that integrity, passion, expertise, and performance are the keys to Standing Taller and making good lives better. Today, Nestlé Purina carries on the legacy, passionately enriching the lives of pets and the people who love them. The people of Nestlé Purina are guided by their core values, “The Five Talls”: to stand tall with integrity, to smile tall with passion, to think tall with expertise, to live tall with performance, and to create tall with innovation.

What are your plans in 2018 to maintain a spot on the Best Places to Work list?

Our plans are best represented by a quote from our Founder, William H. Danforth. ‘Never be satisfied that what has been achieved is sufficient. Smugness and complacency do not promote progress.’ Our focus for 2018 is becoming a more agile business — keeping us competitive in the marketplace and a ‘Best Place to Work.’ We’ll continue to seek feedback from our associates and act quickly to maintain or improve their employee experience.

How do you screen candidates to ensure they’ll be engaged and thrive within your culture?

We believe our people make our culture so we share our associates’ stories anywhere we can — you can follow a #PurinaEmpTakeover on Instagram or read a blog post from a retiree on our website. Our culture should be just as much of a fit for the candidate as the candidate is for Nestlé Purina. By the time they begin to move through the recruitment process, they have a good idea of what it’s like to work here.

PRO TIP

Make sure you deliberately build your recruitment and candidate experience process to be an accurate representation of what it’s like to work for your company, then continue that seamless experience right into onboarding. Glassdoor resources are available every step of the way. Company and interview reviews allow candidates to get that transparent look at what it’s like to interview at and work within your company. And online templates and checklists walk you through the steps to ensuring a first-class candidate experience.

Blizzard Entertainment U.S. Best Places to Work: 2018 (#28)

Blizzard Entertainment enables millions of players around the world to have a whole lot of fun playing its massively popular games like Warcraft, StarCraft, Diablo, Heroes of the Storm, Hearthstone and Overwatch. Their mission as a company is to create the most epic entertainment experiences ever, and in the process, their people are having a blast — which draws even more great people. As a company that knows a lot about attracting people through fun, we’re not surprised Blizzard has been so successful.

How do you ensure new hires feel welcome?

Blizzard culture is built on collaboration and passion and it’s critical for new hires to feel included from day one. For example, during new hire orientation, employees team up and participate in a scavenger hunt to explore and experience our iconic campus. The onboarding experience extends well beyond week one with quarterly new hire mixers, pub trivia nights and more!

– Dina Medeiros, Director of Global Talent Attraction & Employer Brand at Blizzard Entertainment

How do you encourage feedback on sites like Glassdoor?

We consider the best ways to reach our overall employee base:

  • We post an informational call-to-action on our intranet, highlighting our talent attraction channels and how people can help.
  • We try to take advantage of high traffic areas around campus like our cafeteria. Table tents work wonders!
  • At Blizzard, we have several learning and training sessions for employees throughout the year. We leverage these opportunities to share our message.
  • We continue to look for creative and fun ways to encourage and empower our employees to share their stories on Glassdoor.
What kinds of content do you share in your “Why Work For Us” section on Glassdoor?

Every job search is different, but a visit to Glassdoor is often a stop along the way. Our goal is to showcase our teams, professional opportunities, perks and benefits, and our employee culture. By building out each section, we’re confident that when ANY visitor (from a student or to senior leadership) explores Blizzard Entertainment on Glassdoor they’re armed with enough information to act on one of our openings. This year we plan to bring a more in-depth look at certain disciplines to Glassdoor and highlight employees via video and interviews to give an authentic peek inside the life at Blizzard.

PRO TIP

Give a warm welcome to new hires, encourage feedback organically in a style that works for your company, and leverage Glassdoor to educate candidates on what makes you so great before they apply. All of this will lead to more meaningful conversations with candidates, a more streamlined interview process, and better collective employee engagement.

Paylocity U.S. Best Places to Work: 2018 (#29)

Paylocity develops industry-leading, cloud-based payroll and human capital management solutions that empower companies to drive strategic human capital decision-making, cultivate a modern workforce propelled by innovative technology, and improve employee engagement. Their mission is to elevate the profession of payroll and human resources across the backroom and into the boardroom.

How do you screen candidates to ensure they’ll be engaged and thrive within your culture?

Culture fit is very important to us, and we take it seriously. When screening candidates, every question we ask is designed to truly understand how those candidates will thrive within our culture. Due to our growth, Paylocity continues evolving, and with that comes change. Ultimately, we are screening for candidates who look at growth and change as exciting and not something to be feared. Another key driver for us includes having strong problem-solving skills, where they focus on the solution rather than the problem.

What is your strategy behind responding to your Glassdoor reviews?

We involve as many individuals as necessary to most effectively respond to Glassdoor reviews. Paylocity’s Marketing and Human Resources teams have access to the site, and both teams receive real-time notifications when we receive new reviews. Regardless of the feedback, we believe it’s important to see all reviews as soon as possible after employees leave them to understand what’s happening in the company.

For many of our positive reviews, we respond simply to thank the employee for taking the time to provide feedback. We respond to any constructive reviews as well, and this is often when we include department heads. It’s important that those directly involved with the employee providing feedback read and respond to the review, for two reasons. First, it shows the employee that we aren’t just responding from a generic account for the sake of responding. Second, it gives the department head an opportunity to receive honest feedback and make any necessary changes to positively implement the feedback.

How do you handle Glassdoor reviews within your interview process?

We send our Glassdoor link to candidates so they can read what others are saying. Like any employer, we have reviews that are not glowing, so when asked about those we point back to culture and the ability to thrive (or not thrive) in ours. We are honest that this environment isn’t for everyone — the pace, the growth, the change, and the ability to roll up your sleeves regardless of title.

 

PRO TIP

Be transparent during the recruiting process. The way to find the best talent that will thrive in your culture and stay with your company is by being upfront about what your company is like. This way you can hire people who align with your company on a deep level. What’s the best sign your recruiting efforts are working? In addition to getting more, higher-quality resumes, you want to have proof that the people you hire turn out to be the right people.

Adobe U.S. Best Places to Work: 2018 (#31)

Adobe is changing the world through digital experiences, from macro efforts in innovating in artificial intelligence and machine learning to micro approaches like teaching underserved kids to code. Adobe gives everyone — from emerging artists to global brands — everything they need to design and deliver great experiences. Adobe is committed to creating a workplace that works for everyone. The four core values of Adobe — Genuine, Exceptional, Innovative and Involved — inform all key initiatives within their company, from recruiting to product rollout.

How do you make sure prospective candidates will thrive at Adobe?

Right off the bat, our talent team looks to see if a candidate shares the same values and if they are a “culture complement” versus a “culture fit.” This means someone who adds to the team culture rather than one who brings more of the same. Finding that complement plays a huge role in the hiring decision. Do candidates seem excited when they envision what they can accomplish at Adobe? Do they share the same passion for the company mission? Do they showcase the leadership capabilities we look for? Our goal is to build a strong relationship from the start.

– Jeff Vijungco, VP, Employee Experience & Global Talent at Adobe

What’s the biggest piece of advice that you have for recruiters looking to strengthen their relationship with hiring managers?

Have a deep understanding of the business they support, be transparent, consultative, and set clear expectations. We believe the relationship between a recruiter and a hiring manager is a partnership, and their communication goes both ways. This partnership is also nurtured by the fact that our recruiter’s measure “stickiness” of new employees rather than the time it takes to fill a specific role. This means finding the right candidate for a role may take longer than expected, but it’s worth it.

What are your plans in 2018 to maintain a spot on the Best Places to Work list and beyond?

In 2018, we’ll be offering additional programs to educate employees on how they impact the business and give them access to even more development opportunities. We will also continue making our workforce more diverse and inclusive to make way for new ideas and innovation. This starts with our recruiting efforts and continues with finding more ways to enhance the lives of our employees through more D&I-related events, programs, and education.

PRO TIP

Customize the way you hire and engage employees to your unique organization. Adobe goes to great lengths to make sure that the underlying passion for the technology is there, then nurtures that passion with ongoing trainings to ensure every employee is on top of their game. By developing a diverse workforce that understands how the business is evolving, recruiting for “stickiness,” and offering career growth, Adobe has ensured that they will attract enough of the right people who will stay and make an impact.

Boston Scientific U.S. Best Places to Work: 2018 (#35)

Boston Scientific is dedicated to transforming lives through medical innovations that improve the health of patients around the world. Teams work collaboratively to solve healthcare’s toughest challenges by developing solutions that matter most to those suffering from debilitating and life-threatening conditions and the healthcare professionals who provide their care. Beyond their core mission, they invest in the future and the well-being of their employees and our shared planet, actively foster a diverse and inclusive work environment and provide opportunities for employees around the world to serve in their local communities.

What would employees say the best thing about working for you is?

Employees may say the best thing about working for Boston Scientific is our mission of transforming lives. Grounded in our core values, our employees are developing solutions to some of the health industry’s toughest challenges. It is a purpose that gives our work greater meaning. With a focus on inclusiveness, employee development and life/work integration, we create a work environment that enables every employee to bring his or her whole self to work every day.

How do you recruit for retention?

We realize that to grow our business, we must grow our people. To make that happen we’ve invested in a culture that thrives on individuality and empowers managers to truly support their teams to realize their full potential while achieving business success. We’ve found that job seekers are drawn to Boston Scientific because we actively foster career growth — and they stay as a result.

 

PRO TIP

Be sure your benefits are truly crafted to fit the needs and wants of your people. Employee benefits can be the advantage your company needs to stand out from the competition and attract more of the talent you want — but only if they’re appealing.

Forrester U.S. Best Places to Work: 2018 (#36)

Forrester Research is one of the most influential research and advisory firms in the world. We work with business and technology leaders to develop customer-obsessed strategies that drive growth. Forrester’s unique insights are grounded in annual surveys of more than 675,000 consumers and business leaders worldwide, rigorous and objective methodologies, and the shared wisdom of our most innovative clients. Through proprietary research, data, custom consulting, exclusive executive peer groups, and events, the Forrester experience is about a singular and powerful purpose: to challenge the thinking of our clients to help them lead change in their organizations.

What’s Forrester’s philosophy on how career growth plays into engagement?

Leadership at Forrester can come from anywhere; it’s not conferred upon title or seniority. Our moments of highest engagement are employee-led and peer-based. For example, our quarterly company meetings are co-hosted by a rotating cast of employees representing diverse functions, geographies, and experiences who help shape the agenda and facilitate an open and transparent ‘Talk Time’ with the executive team.

How do you ensure that your people feel heard?

By listening with a willingness to be influenced. Many companies have Voice of the Customer programs. Forrester also has a Voice of the Employee program that includes employee surveys, ‘why do you stay?’ interviews, group listening sessions, and active monitoring of comments on social media, including Glassdoor! And then we’re transparent about what we’re hearing – we share what employees appreciate about their Forrester experience, and where we need to do better. What does engagement look like? When we conclude our 1:1 employee interviews, whatever the feedback, many Forresterites will say, ‘I really appreciate that you’re listening.’

PRO TIP

Forrester is yet another example of a company applying their expertise to their recruiting strategy. Collecting feedback — what Forrester does best — is the most effective way to understand how to make your employees, both present and future, happy. Responding to and acting on reviews not only makes your employees feel heard, but it also shows prospective candidates that you’re a transparent company that cares about its workforce — and that fuels recruiting. In fact, 62% of candidates say their perception of a company improves after seeing an employer respond to a review.

Protiviti U.S. Best Places to Work: 2018 (#47)

Protiviti is a global consulting firm that provides consulting solutions in finance, technology, operations, data, analytics, governance, risk and internal audit to their clients through their network of more than 70 offices in over 20 countries. Serving more than 60% of Fortune 1000, 35% of Fortune Global 500 companies, and also smaller, growing companies, their mission is to team with clients to protect and enhance enterprise value by identifying, anticipating and solving critical business problems. Protiviti CEO Joseph Tarantino has spoken publicly about how he takes culture, transparency and Glassdoor’s Best Places to Work award very seriously.

How do you share the feedback you receive in your reviews with internal stakeholders to make change, and how do you handle Glassdoor reviews within your interview process?

The HR leadership team receives a monthly report on Glassdoor data, including trends month-to-month as well as year-over-year. We leverage the competitor analysis to review our positioning with our other executive leaders, including our CEO and global managing director team. We also confer with local leaders when considering Glassdoor reviews from specific geographical locations. Within the interview process, we follow up with recruiters in real-time to share positive and negative feedback from candidates and adjust our actions accordingly.

– Scott Redfearn, EVP, Global Human Resources at Protiviti

What kinds of content do you share in your “Why Work For Us” section and in your company updates?

Our Glassdoor employer site includes several pages: ‘About Us,’ ‘Career Path,’ ‘Diversity,’ ‘Giving Back,’ ‘Students.’ We framed this information around the topics that our candidates most frequently express interest in. These topics are also important tenets of our culture and employee experience, giving us an opportunity to showcase our strengths. We specifically added a ‘Students’ section due to our expansive campus recruiting program, enabling us to relay specific information to students about our internship and entry-level positions. Our Company Updates include pictures, news, and information about ‘life’ at Protiviti — coverage of events, announcements of awards and accolades and detail on the positions for which we are actively hiring.’

What’s the biggest piece of advice that you have for recruiters looking to strengthen their relationship with hiring managers?

As a recruiter, it is essential to building trust — not only with your candidates but also with the hiring managers and other key stakeholders within your organization. This can be a challenge, but we have found that frequent communication, regular reporting, and analysis of key metrics, and transparency in the recruiting process keeps our hiring managers engaged.

PRO TIP

Use the Glassdoor Employer Center to your advantage. This is where you can track how many applicants your jobs are receiving and how many potential candidates are following your profile. To better reach the candidates who are going to add to your culture, we recommend sharing company updates or customizing your “Why Work for Us” section.

Eli Lilly and Company U.S. Best Places to Work: 2018 (#52)

Lilly is a global health care leader that unites caring with discovery to make life better for people around the world. For more than a century, they have stayed true to a core set of values — excellence, integrity, and respect for people — that guide them in all they do: discovering medicines that meet real needs, improving the understanding and management of disease, and giving back to communities through philanthropy and volunteerism. They also pride themselves in their commitment to investing in their employees, through competitive salaries, training and development, health, and the opportunity to do good.

How do you screen candidates to ensure they’ll be engaged and thrive within your culture?

Our workplace culture is built around trust. Humility also goes a long way toward fostering engagement. We look for people who have dedication, purpose and determination. Innovation is a pillar of our company so we look for people who work with speed and agility.

– Ariana Gainer, Communications Lead, Global Recruiting and Staffing at Eli Lilly and Company

What’s the biggest piece of advice that you have for recruiters looking to strengthen their relationship with hiring managers?

What’s most important is effective communication between the recruiter and hiring manager — straight from the start of the hiring process. Successful recruiters will have a deep understanding of the hiring manager’s needs and have the ability to screen candidates according to those needs. We encourage them to ask hiring managers direct questions and be fully engaged at all stages of the process.

What internal changes have you made that you feel contributed to your Best Places to Work win?

How did you initiate those changes? I think the most important change is an increased focus on diversity and inclusion. Not only have we made them business imperatives across the business, but we in recruiting employ these values in the way we recruit, retain and develop the best talent. We strongly believe our workforce must reflect the patients we serve.

PRO TIP

Diversity and inclusion programs are more than just a current trend: research shows that a diverse workforce is good for business and company culture. When you hire for diversity and manage for inclusion, you’re making a critical step toward becoming a recruiting and employer branding powerhouse.

Kronos Incorporated U.S. Best Places to Work: 2018 (#63)

Kronos is a global provider of workforce management and human capital management cloud solutions, including the industry’s most powerful suite of tools and services to manage and engage an organization’s entire workforce from pre-hire to retire. The fundamental belief at the core of Kronos is that great businesses are powered by great people. And to be a great business, you need to create and manage an engaged workforce. So Kronos is committed to making workforce solutions that are purpose-built for every industry and all employees.

How do you screen candidates to ensure they’ll be engaged and thrive within your culture?

We consider the recruiting process as Day 1 in their life as a Kronite, so we work to ensure the process matches our WorkInspired employee experience: Responsiveness, trust, transparency, and communication are at the forefront.

We hire for the long term. In an organization with a very tenured team in most areas, the fit is crucial. Therefore, during the interview process, we are constantly representing the ‘two-way street’ — as much as we are interviewing the candidate, they are interviewing us.

We use behavioral interviews. We find out who the candidate is, what motivates them, what their career goals are, and then we provide a thorough overview of Kronos, the products, our culture, benefits, and amenities. We talk about our awards, our accomplishments, our customers, and our great managers, led by our inspiring CEO.

How do you onboard to boost retention?

When the candidate officially starts, the experience they expected from the interview process should continue. We work hard to find innovative ways to engage employees, even with our all-time high marks of 87% engagement. Some programs include:

  • We survey employees globally twice a year to seek critical input about the things they care most about, which includes, starting in 2017, the opportunity to directly rank their managers on more than a dozen key attributes as part of our Manager Effectiveness Index (MEI) program.
  • We care about employee wellbeing and invest heavily in our LiveInspired wellness and benefits program, which includes having a full-time wellness coach, fitness classes three times a day, and great benefits like unlimited paid time off, student loan reimbursement, childcare financial support, and pet insurance.
  • Open communication through Salesforce Chatter (e.g. share relevant information on business topics, provide opportunities for employees to express their opinions, join together in areas of expertise and/or interest).
  • Visibility of the CEO at all levels of the organization (e.g. regular Aron@work video blog series, strong presence in the office and around the globe; he reads and personally answers nearly every email).
  • We also provide many opportunities for employees to give back through our GiveInspired corporate giving initiative, including through our flagship grant relationships, community events, and an employee giving match program.
What are your plans in 2018 to maintain a spot on the Best Places to Work list?

We will place continued emphasis on our culture of trust and transparency, searching for innovative and unique ways to hardwire this into our infrastructure (e.g. performance process, communications, development, pay, Courage to the Lead Awards program, Manager Effectiveness Index, and so on). We’ll also continue to place a strong focus on work/life balance because for us it’s more than just a tagline.

While we work hard at it, our senior leadership team — led by two-time Highest Rated CEOs winner Aron Ain — makes our job easier by leading by example. They genuinely care about employee engagement and the Kronite employee experience, walking the talk every single day. Aron is known to tell employees (like on the main stage at the annual sales kickoff event) that Kronos should never be their top priority. Family comes first…if Kronos is second or third on their list, we’re happy with that!

PRO TIP

Get leadership invested in your recruiting process. Just like employees value facetime with your leadership team, candidates will be looking for the same thing. Try to include senior team members in interview loops and during your onboarding. That kind of recognition can be the difference in making a hire. And take every opportunity to level-up your interviewing techniques.

Conclusion

To summarize, here are all the takeaway tips that you can implement at your own company. Done right, your company could be awarded a spot on Glassdoor’s esteemed Employees’ Choice Awards list for the Best Places to Work.

  1. Use the Glassdoor Employer Center to your advantage.
  2. Be transparent during the recruiting process.
  3. Create opportunities for your employees to connect and your candidates to experience those connections.
  4. Collect feedback to truly understand how to make your employees, both present and future, happy.
  5. Get leadership invested in your recruiting process.
  6. Hire for diversity and inclusion.

Citations

1. Source: Based on app-to-hire ratios in a 2015 study of 30 million applicants from a leading third-party recruitment agency
2. Source: Aptitude Research Partners, 2017