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To produce the annual list of Top Workplaces, the Post-Dispatch partners with WorkplaceDynamics, a survey firm based in Exton, Pa. We launched the process early this year by inviting readers to nominate local employers.

Participants allowed WorkplaceDynamics to survey their employees, gauging how they felt about their workplaces.

In all, 1,270 workplaces received invitations to participate and 177 agreed to be surveyed. The organizations that agreed to participate employ 65,062 people in the St. Louis area. Of those employees who received questionnaires, 38,965 responded, either on paper or online.

The employee survey seeks responses to 24 statements covering seven factors.

Key to those are organizational health factors, which measure how well employees are working together toward a common cause. They include “alignment,” a measure of where the company is headed, its values and cooperation; “effectiveness,” how the company is getting to where it aims to go; and “connection,” a gauge of whether employees feel appreciated and that their work is meaningful.

“Time and time again, our research has proven that what’s most important to them is a strong belief in where the organization is headed, how it’s going to get there, and the feeling that everyone is in it together,” said Doug Claffey, CEO of WorkplaceDynamics.

Other factors measure how employees feel about their jobs day-to-day. That includes how they feel about pay and benefits, managers and company leadership. Finally, the survey measures employee engagement: retention, motivation and referral.

To ensure that the survey results provided accurate reflections of workplace satisfaction, WorkplaceDynamics required a response rate of at least 35 percent of employees. Organizations with 85 or fewer local employees had to have at least 30 responders; large employers were allowed to randomly sample their workers.

Based in part on national benchmarks it has developed since 2006, WorkplaceDynamics again this year identified 100 St. Louis area firms with high-enough scores to be named Top Workplaces.

Sixty-nine employers make repeat appearances this year, including 12 that have been Top Workplaces winners in each of the past five years.

The dozen St. Louis-area employers that have been Top Workplaces ever since the Post-Dispatch launched this competition are: Brown & Crouppen, Brown Smith Wallace LLC, Budnick Converting Inc., Copying Concepts, Cornerstone Mortgage Inc., Distribution Management Inc., Edward Jones, GL group Inc., HDIS, Nestlé Purina PetCare Co., Rodgers Townsend and Scott Credit Union.

Thirty-one employers joined Top Workplaces for the first time this year, including the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, which achieved the top spot in the large employer category.

Other newcomers this year are American Bottoms Regional Wastewater Treatment Facility; Balke Brown Transwestern; Bayless School District; Buckingham Asset Management; C.H. Robinson Worldwide; Cambridge Engineering Inc.; Cat5 Commerce; CI Select; Clearent LLC; Colliers International; CSC; Gainsight; Jefferson R-VII School District; Midtown Home Improvements; Paric Corp.; PayneCrest Electric Inc.; RedKey Realty Leaders; Ross & Baruzzini Inc.; RSI Kitchen and Bath; Safelite AutoGlass; Southwestern Hearing Centers; St. John Vianney High School; St. Louis Community Credit Union; Streib Company; The Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod; Tiger Plumbing, Heating, Air Conditioning & Electrical Services; Travel Travel Kirkwood Inc.; West County Radiological Group Inc.; Williams Venker & Sanders LLC; and Windsor C-1 School District.

Competition for workplace recognition has heated up, and this year, the Post-Dispatch is naming 25 employers as Workplace Achievers. These organizations did not score high enough to make it into the rankings of our Top 100 companies, but they meet the national standards benchmark set by WorkplaceDynamics for being considered a Top Workplace.

This special section, which includes profiles of the highest-scoring employer in the large, midsize and small categories as well as lists of all the winners, offers a glimpse of what it takes to be considered one of the St. Louis area’s Top Workplaces.

To learn more, we encourage you to go to stltoday.com/business/workplaces, where we provide additional information about each employer. And if you’d like to recommend an employer for Top Workplaces 2017, please go to stltoday.com/nominate.

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Roland Klose • 314-340-8128

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rklose@post-dispatch.com

WORKPLACE SATISFACTION

The Post-Dispatch and WorkplaceDynamics surveyed employees at workplaces across the region about their job satisfaction. The importance values below shows how strongly each statement correlates with how employees in the St. Louis area rate their workplaces. The closer importance is to 100 percent, the more important the factor is to employees.

Field 1 Field 2
I feel genuinely appreciated at this company 67%
I believe this company is going in the right direction 67%
My job makes me feel like I am part of something meaningful 63%
I have confidence in the leader of this company 63%
This company enables me to work at my full potential 62%
This company encourages different points of view 62%
Senior managers understand what is really happening at this company 61%
At this company, we do things efficiently and well 60%
This company operates by strong values and ethics 59%
This job has met or exceeded the expectations I had when I started 58%
New ideas are encouraged at this company 56%
I feel well-informed about important decisions at this company 55%
There is good inter-departmental cooperation at this company 55%
My manager cares about my concerns 55%
My manager helps me learn and grow 53%
My manager makes it easier to do my job well 52%
There is not a lot of negativity at my workplace 51%
I get the formal training I want for my career 51%
My pay is fair for the work I do 43%
I have the flexibility I need to balance my work and personal life 41%
My benefits package is good compared to others in this industry 31%