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The 11 best large American companies to work for


A new champion has been crowned as the company receiving the most raves from employees.

The best large corporation to work for may be a hit with workers, but it's not winning popularity contests with the hotel industry and some lawmakers. Airbnb, a closely held tech startup with a $25 billion valuation, has ruffled feathers across the world while also winning legions of fans.

In the workplace, however, it's a hands-down winner with its employees, according to a new survey from employment site Glassdoor.

It's the first time Airbnb has appeared on Glassdoor's rankings of the best companies to work for, and it made its debut by overtaking last year's champion, Google (GOOG). While the tech industry is an overall winner in the rankings -- seven of the top 11 are tech outfits -- the "war for talent" means organizations across industries are pushed to do more for their hires, said Glassdoor chief executive Robert Hohman.

"It's still a job seeker's market, so paying attention to employee satisfaction is a critical way companies can help their recruiting and retention efforts," Hohman said in an email to CBS MoneyWatch.

Tech companies, of course, are known for their sometimes lavish perks, ranging from providing paid sabbaticals to paying for employees' housecleaners. Great perks and benefits were a common theme among the companies that made the list, Glassdoor said.

Employees at the top companies also "report feeling valued at work, a sense of community and excitement for their company's business outlook," Hohman said.

Shareholders should also pay attention to what workers are saying about their employers, Hohman said, because satisfaction in the workplace is connected with better performance in the public markets.

"A link between employee satisfaction and a company's financial performance has been anecdotally talked about for years, and Glassdoor research has now found this to be the case," Hohman noted. "Among other studies, a report from Glassdoor chief economist Andrew Chamberlian recently found a positive correlation between employee satisfaction and stock performance.

The best company to work for results are based on reviews shared by employees on Glassdoor between November 2014 and November 2015, with each company on the list receiving at least 75 reviews during that time. Ratings are based on a five-point scale.

Read on to learn about the top 11 large American companies to work for.

11. Eastman Chemical: 4.3

AP Photo/Wade Payne

While Eastman Chemical (EMN) might not be a household name, its former parent company, Eastman Kodak, once reigned supreme with the nation's shutterbugs. In 1994, Kodak spun out the division, which became the 10th largest chemical company in America. The Kingsport, Tennessee-based company employs about 15,000 workers.

Employees say they like that the company encourages a healthy work-life balance, with one worker saying executives "truly believe that happy, fulfilled people make the best employees."

10. Zillow: 4.3

AP Photo/Richard Drew

The Seattle-based online real estate database was founded in 2006 by Rich Barton, who was also a co-founder of Glassdoor, and Lloyd Frink, a former Microsoft (MSFT) executive. Zillow's (Z) data is used by home buyers and seekers to find pricing estimates for houses and neighborhoods. The company currently employs more than 2,100 full-time workers.

Its employees rave about Zillow's cache of free food and drinks and excellent benefits. "Little red-tape and no business politics allow for us to immediately benefit the company and have a huge impact," one employee said.

9. Nestle Purina PetCare: 4.3


This St. Louis, Missouri-based unit of Nestle focuses on making several well-known brands of pet food, from Friskies to Purina Dog Chow. It was created in 2001, when Nestle bought Ralston Purina and merged it with its own pet food business.

Employees praise the company for its work-life balance, according to Glassdoor. "People-oriented company. Heavy investment in employees and endless opportunities. Strong work-life balance and a culture that stresses open communication," one worker said.

8. Google: 4.3

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Google is known not only for its search, email and other Web-based products but also for its tough hiring process. Employees are well rewarded with lavish perks and generous pay. The Mountain View, California-based company employs more than 57,000 people, an increase of 18 percent compared with a year earlier.

"Everyone works together to achieve big and have fun while doing it," one employee wrote in a review. "The perks are unbelievable (food, massage, gyms, discounts, etc.) but the best part is being surrounded by such amazing talent."

7. Boston Consulting Group: 4.3

REUTERS/Denis Balibouse

Boston Consulting Group, a management consulting company, is also known for its demanding interview process. Former employees of the Boston-based company include Mitt Romney, the one-time Republican presidential nominee and ex-governor of Massachusetts, as well as Pepsi (PEP) CEO Indra Nooyi. It employs more than 10,000 people.

"The work is intellectually intense and challenging. Smart colleagues, great teams, excellent culture and some terrific clients," one employee wrote about the company.

6. LinkedIn: 4.4

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

LinkedIn (LNKD) was created in 2003 as a social network for professionals, and the company said its early growth was "slow at first." But a decade later, it had reached 225 million members, who use the site to find new business contacts, search for jobs and keep up-to-date with colleagues.

While it has earned lots of fans in the business community, Mountain View, California-based LinkedIn also rates highly among its more than 9,000 employees.

"Our culture is about transformation, integrity, collaboration, humor, and of course, results," one worker wrote.

5. Facebook: 4.4


Facebook (FB) was founded over a decade ago by then-Harvard student Mark Zuckerberg and some fellow students as a way for other Harvard students to connect. It soon expanded to other colleges, and then to the public, gaining both fans and detractors along the way -- as well as more than 9,000 employees. Still, its workers rate the Menlo Park, California-based social network as a great employer.

"The culture is really amazing and in my opinion even better than the media portrays it," one worker wrote in a review.

4. HubSpot: 4.4


HubSpot (HUBS) might not be a household name, but the marketing company earns top reviews from its employees. Founded in 2006, HubSpot helps other businesses with "inbound marketing," which means attracting customers through content such as blogs, whitepapers and social media marketing, rather than through old-school advertising such as TV and radio spots.

Employees say management values their input and that it provides opportunities for growth. "Transparent culture from top to bottom. Management actually listens to employees, and makes quick changes to structure if/when needed," one worker wrote in a review.

3. Guidewire: 4.5

AP Photo/Richard Drew

Another behind-the-scenes company that ranks highly with its workers is Guidewire Software (GWRE), which provides back-end software for insurance carriers. The company was founded in 2001 and went public in 2012, when it was increasing its headcount by about 20 percent per year. Current openings include jobs in product development, sales and professional services.

Employees say Guidewire has kept the energy of a startup. "Guidewire hits the sweet spot between 'startup culture' and 'big corporate culture,'" one employee wrote. "There is the small company vibe, wherein you can talk to everyone and get things done."

2. Bain & Co.: 4.6

Bain, a management consulting company, was founded in 1973 by former partners from the Boston Consulting Group, including Mitt Romney. It earned a reputation for secrecy and "extreme weirdness," according to a Rolling Stone article published in 2012.

Former employees include Hewlett-Packard (HPE) CEO Meg Whitman and Draper Fisher Jurvetson general partner Steve Jurvetson. Current employees say the company's culture and focus on mentoring are pluses.

"Incredibly supportive culture with an incredible focus on learning and mentoring," one employee wrote. "Highly intelligent, down-to-earth and fun people. Focused on making a real impact for our clients."

1. Airbnb: 4.6


Airbnb has made a splash across the world by connecting homeowners with vacationers who want the convenience (and costs that can be lower than a hotel's) of renting a room or home while away. Still, its growth hasn't come without controversy, ranging from questions about its security processes to a ballot measure in San Francisco that would have made it tougher for residents to rent through the service. (The measure failed.)

Employees, though, give it high marks, according to Glassdoor.

"Amazing people, vibrant workplace, and an unbeatable culture that is real and not just something posted on a wall/website," one employee wrote. "Also, pay, insurance, perks, food, parties, and growth opportunities are top notch."

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