Participation Is The Prize: How to Become a 'Best Company'

by Arkansas Business Staff  on Monday, Sep. 23, 2013 12:00 am  

Unlike most newspaper or magazine awards programs, Arkansas’ Best Places to Work offers a prize just for playing — not a consolation trophy or a certificate of completion but real, tangible benefits to the leaders of participating companies and organizations.

More than anything else, the payoff in signing up for Arkansas’ Best Places to Work is the valuable employee feedback and insight companies receive from the process.

Other programs intended to recognize superior workplaces often rely exclusively on the responses of the employer. The application process typically involves an executive completing a form that asks about employee benefits, compensation and other extra goodies at work. But they fail to consult the best gauge of what it’s like to work somewhere — the candid opinions of an organization’s employees.

After all, any human resources manager can wax boastfully about company picnics, flexible spending accounts and the like. But if you really want to know what it’s like to work someplace, would you ask someone with a corner office or the receptionist?

The largest component to the Arkansas’ Best Places to Work program is a 76-question employee survey aimed at determining workplace engagement and satisfaction. It contains statements to which respondents can agree or disagree at varying levels, like “There is adequate planning of corporate objectives” or “I feel I am valued at this organization” or “My supervisor treats me with respect.”

Employee responses are anonymous, but participating organizations receive an aggregate of the responses that can be sorted into different demographics, like gender, age, duration of employment and job role. Additional employee comments are also included. What’s more, companies get a benchmark report to compare their employee responses to other participating companies, as well as a report comparing company practices and policies to other Arkansas organizations.

Sure, the marketing and recruiting benefits of being recognized as one of Arkansas’ Best Places to Work are considerable. They’re, however, icing on the cake to an already smart investment in your organization’s most valuable resource, its people.

Sign up for Arkansas’ Best Places to Work and receive:

• A detailed view of aggregated responses to the 76-question employee survey, including response rates for different demographics like gender, age, duration of employment and job role

• A full transcript of employee comments to open-ended questions

• A benchmark report comparing employee responses to other participating companies

• A benchmark report comparing company practices and policies to other Arkansas organizations

Participation Fees

Number of Employees in ArkansasNumber of Employees SurveyedOnline Survey*Paper Survey*
15 - 24 All $625 $780
25 - 99 All $650 $950
100 - 199 All $750 $1,180
200 - 499 Up to 250† $800 $1,310
500 - 2499 350† $870 $1,480
2500 + 400† $910 $1,675

* Fees are non-refundable.
† To ensure the credibility of the information, companies with 15-24 employees must have
an 80% (or better) response rate to be considered for the list.

 

 

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