Almost everyone has a dream company they would love to work for, regardless of the career stage they are in. Whether it is to earn a high pay check, the perfect work-life balance, cool perks and benefits, terrific growth opportunities, or for something as simple as flexible work hours or short commute (or none at all, think work from home opportunities).   

So, how does a company become a ‘dream’ company?   

Numerous reports and surveys have shown that employee engagement is one of the biggest factors that directly contribute to the success of an organization. 

But employee engagement isn't driven by abstract feelings. Companies witness greater engagement when they consider their employees as stakeholders. This includes focusing on involving employees in management activities, fostering a more collaborative relationship with co-workers, conducting interactive training workshops, and creating opportunities for development. 

Forward-thinking companies understand this and go above and beyond in terms of offering compensation and benefits, work-life balance, culture and values, career opportunities, work environment, and effective leadership within senior management. These are the companies that are considered some of the world’s most coveted employers. 

While the famed tech giants — Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Microsoft, and Google — make it to every “dream company” list you’ll come across, in this article, we’re going beyond the Silicon Valley to shine the spotlight on top 10 dream companies to work for because of their actionable, innovative employee engagement concepts and the best work culture. 

1. American Express

As one of the world's largest employers with 64,500 employees (2019), the 170-year-old U.S. multinational financial services corporation, American Express, recognizes that in today's fast-changing workplace, employee engagement is more than just money — it's more about emotional attachment.

With revenues of $43.556 billion as of 2019, the American Express, which is one of the thirty components of the Dow Jones Industrial Average, places great emphasis on employee well-being, equal opportunities, and the best work culture, providing benefits that employees value the most.

Salary Satisfaction: 76%

Employee Benefits: 

Stock options | Health insurance | Life insurance | Flexibility at work | Parental leave |Paid time off | Childcare | Performance bonus | Tuition reimbursement | Retirement plan | Visa sponsorship | Employee mentoring program

2. CarMax

A winner of the Gallup Great Workplace Award in 2008, 2009, 2014, and 2015, CarMax heavily invests in their 25,000-strong workforce to build employee engagement. 

Even during the volatile economy that followed the 2008 recession, CarMax, the largest retailer of used cars in America, did not slash employee perks and benefits.

Instead, the Fortune 500 Company, founded by Circuit City Stores Inc. in 1993, invested in employee recognition, development, and training programs, supporting employees, and helping them grow.

Salary Satisfaction: 47%

Employee Benefits: 

Employee mentoring program | Signing bonus | Bonus pay | Stock purchase plan | Referral program | Employee discount | Stock options | Yearly bonus | Tuition reimbursement | Health insurance | Pet insurance | Parental leave | Paid time off | Retirement plan  

3. Best Buy

American multinational consumer electronics retailer, Best Buy®, headquartered in Minnesota, USA, is one of the great places to work, thanks to its unique vision of employee engagement that empowers workers and uplifts their morale. 

The multinational company, with 125,000 employees (2019), and an operating income of $1.90 billion (2019), actively communicates with its employees, engages them in idea generation activities, and involves them in strategic decision making, which helps create better engagement, leading to improved customer experience.

Listening to employees, and trusting them, allows Best Buy to respond effectively to the latest market trends. The creation of an interactive Experience Store in Montreal was the outcome of insights gained from employees.

Salary Satisfaction: 61%

Employee Benefits: 

Employee assistance program | Retirement plan | Tuition reimbursement | Stock purchase plan | Daily bonus | Stock ownership plan | Childcare | Health insurance | Life insurance

4. Home Depot

Home Depot, Inc., the world's largest retailer of home improvement tools and products, is recognized as one of the great places to work because of the support the company extends to its employees.

Based in Atlanta, Georgia, USA, The Home Depot, Inc., popularly known as Home Depot, currently employs over 400,000 professionals (2019) worldwide. The multinational company with an operating income of $15.84 billion (2019) is well known for providing full autonomy to its personnel.

Chosen as Canada's Best Diversity Employers (2020) and Canada's Greenest Employers (2020), The Home Depot, Inc. also empowers its employees to accomplish their individual goals through a variety of employee mentoring and assistance programs.

Salary Satisfaction: 50%

Employee Benefits: 

Tuition reimbursement | Health savings account | Employee discount | Bonus pay | Stock options | Childcare | Bereavement leave | Parental leave | Health insurance | Vision insurance | Life insurance | Retirement plan

5. Hyatt

Hyatt Hotels Corporation, which has received the FORTUNE World's Best Workplace® award on numerous occasions, believes that the welfare of its employees is the key to their business success as it is their employees who ensure an unparalleled experience for the guests.

An industry-leading, multinational hospitality company, Hyatt Hotels Corporation, headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, USA, is committed to creating an ambiance where all employees are free to be their own selves to establish meaningful relationships with visitors.

Of Hyatt's 100,000 employees (2019), 100 percent take pride in being a part of the organization, while 75 percent feel that they have significant avenues for career growth at Hyatt.

Salary Satisfaction: 58%

Employee Benefits: 

Parental leave | Paid time off | Health insurance | Vision insurance | Life insurance | Flexible schedule | Tuition reimbursement | Bonus pay | Flexible spending account | Employee discount | Stock options | Employee mentoring program | Retirement plan

6. Nordstrom

Founded by John W. Nordstrom and Carl F. Wallin in 1901, Nordstrom, Inc, an American luxury department store chain based in Seattle, Washington, USA, is one of the dream companies to work for, as it focuses solely on solutions that meet the interests of its clients and the wellness of employees at all levels who serve them.

At Nordstrom, employee engagement is promoted through a variety of initiatives, such as mentoring programs and tuition reimbursement. According to 73 percent of Nordstrom employees, winning and teamwork are the two most important factors that make them proud to be part of the multinational company. 

Salary Satisfaction: 66%

Employee Benefits: 

Parental leave | Paid time off | Health insurance | Vision insurance | Life insurance | Gym membership | Flexible schedule | Retirement plan | Bonus pay | Flexible spending account | Employee discount | Stock options

7. REI

In 1938, 23 adventure-loving individuals founded the Recreational Equipment, Inc., an American outdoor recreational services corporation, which sells travel clothing, equipment, camping gear, and sporting goods via 165 retail stores.

Recreational Equipment, Inc., commonly known as REI, believes that a company can only be successful when its employees do well. REI promotes this philosophy by giving back over 70 percent of the business' profits to its employees.

To facilitate the best work culture, and to foster employee engagement, REI makes employee-centric investments, focusing on wellness, health, and work-life balance. One of REI's unique engagement programs is the Employee Challenge Grants, which offers products worth $300 for challenging outdoor activities.

Salary Satisfaction: 61%

Employee Benefits:

Paid Sick Leave | Life Insurance | Health insurance| Company Store Discount | Flexible Schedule

8. Sephora

Featuring an impressive portfolio of 3000+ brands, the French multinational Sephora is a leading retailer of beauty and personal care products, including skin and hair care items, cosmetics, body fragrances, beauty tools, and more.

According to an internal survey, 74 percent of Sephora employees feel more valued at work, 45 percent of the employees have a better chance of staying in their jobs, and 69 percent would be more inclined on telling their acquaintances about how they like to work at Sephora.

The French multinational company achieved these remarkable numbers through increased data collection and analysis, which provided them with crucial actionable insights that helped improve both customer experiences and employee engagement.

With employee engagement as its top priority, Sephora relies heavily on its best work culture to attract and keep the right mix of talent aligned with the company's core values.

Salary Satisfaction: 52%

Employee Benefits:

Health insurance | Flexible schedule | Parental leave | Tuition reimbursement | Bonus pay | Employee discount | Employee mentoring program | Retirement plan

9. Wegmans

The privately-owned U.S. supermarket chain, Wegmans Food Markets, Inc., has consistently been named on Fortune's list of "Best Companies to Work For ™" for twenty-two years in a row.

Wegmans Food Markets, Inc. has an employee-friendly ecosystem in which every employee is empowered to pursue their success and feel that they are a valuable asset to the company.

In accordance with the company's various employee engagement programs, Wegmans, since 1984, has awarded 105 million dollars in scholarships to over 33,000 employees.

Salary Satisfaction: 68%

Employee Benefits:

Employee mentoring program | Retirement plan | Tuition reimbursement | Bonus pay | Employee discount | Health screening | Gym membership | Wellness program | Flexible schedule | Paid time off | Health insurance | Vision insurance | Life insurance

10. Southwest Airlines

America's premier airline, Southwest Airlines Co., headquartered in Dallas, Texas, believes that if they treat their employees well, in turn, they will serve the customers well, resulting in higher business and profits for all.

Southwest Airlines Co., the world's largest low-cost airline, has superior employee engagement programs that include open communication, employee empowerment, professional development, effective supervision, and recognition.

One of the great places to work, Southwest Airlines Co. strives to establish a friendly work environment where employees do not miss out on fun at work. The company even allows its employees to add humor to in-flight announcements, thus enhancing their passengers' experience.

Salary Satisfaction: 70%

Employee Benefits:

Health insurance | Vision insurance | Life insurance | Flexible schedule | Paid time off | Childcare | Stock options | Retirement plan | Employee mentoring program | Visa sponsorship

What Does it Take to Join These Dream Companies?

In today's digital age, most high-paying job opportunities are in the technology domain. Therefore, if you aspire to join any of the above-mentioned dream companies, you may want to sharpen your skills at a world-class institution, such as Simplilearn.

Recognized as the world’s #1 certification provider and online bootcamp, Simplilearn, in partnership with the California Institute of Technology, Purdue University, UMass Amherst, and IBM, offers a variety of certification programs on Digital Marketing, Machine Learning, Data Science, Artificial Intelligence, Business Analysis, Six Sigma, and more. Learn about Simplilearn’s industry-recognized courses here

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