Glassdoor released its 10th annual list of the best-reviewed workplaces by employees on Wednesday, and Facebook is ranked No. 1, topping the list for the first time since 2013. It’s the eighth year in a row the social media giant has landed on the list, known as the Employees’ Choice Awards, since it was started in 2009, back when Facebook had just launched the “Like” button and had “only” 360 million users. (Today there are more than 2 billion.)
But three companies can actually top that record with an appearance each of the past 10 years, according to Glassdoor: Google, Apple and the management consulting firm Bain & Co. Only two of those — Google and Bain — have been in the top 25 each year, with Bain among the top five every year Glassdoor has done the list. (Consulting giants McKinsey and Boston Consulting Groups are close behind, making the top 25 in nine of the past 10 years.)
Google, of course, is known for being a much-copied trendsetter for technology companies on employee benefits and workplace perks; Bain gets good reviews from Glassdoor users not only for its benefits and employees, but for its worldwide managing director, Bob Bechek, who was the highest-rated chief executive by employees on a Glassdoor list in 2016.
For a list where the difference in scores between No. 1 and No. 100 — Glassdoor expanded its list from 50 companies this year — is only four tenths of a point on a five-point scale, looking at repeat performers may be more telling about employee opinion than where it falls from year to year. Facebook’s rating is 4.6, for instance, while Bayada Home Health Care (No. 100) received a 4.2. The average company reviewed on Glassdoor received a 3.3.
Companies can also make wild swings from one year to the next in terms of their ranking when the difference in their scores is actually quite small. For instance, Apple this year appeared at No. 84, receiving a 4.3. Last year, it ranked at No. 36, with a rating that was actually slightly lower, at 4.2.
Meanwhile, companies are commonly added or fall off the list. This year, there were 40 new companies to the ranking of 100 companies, including Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants, T-Mobile and Adidas. And the cross-industry list compares very different organizations: Global corporations like SAP (No. 11) and Delta Air Lines (No. 17) intermingle with health care outfits (St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, No. 9) and organizations like The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (No. 19).
This year, the company that rounded out the top five, in addition to perennial favorites Facebook, Bain, Boston Consulting Group and Google, was In-N-Out Burgers, the restaurant chain that’s been on the list five times.
Winners, Glassdoor says, are decided using a proprietary algorithm based on anonymous employee reviews that are provided voluntarily through Glassdoor’s site. It pulls together workers’ opinions on the pros and cons of working at the company, their CEO and issues like compensation and benefits. A company must have at least 75 ratings on Glassdoor and at least 1,000 employees to be considered for the primary list.
Glassdoor also produces a list of the best-rated small- and medium-size workplaces, as well as rankings in four other countries: Canada, Britain, France and Germany. For the first time, two companies — Microsoft and SAP — were listed on all five global rankings.
Glassdoor wasn’t the only organization to release a ranking of workplaces on Wednesday. The Partnership for Public Service also released its annual list, with NASA, the Department of Health Human Services and the Department of Commerce taking the top spots among large federal government agencies. Meanwhile, the Department of the Air Force, the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of Homeland Security got the lowest rankings — though the numbers for DHS were also the most improved, rising 6.2 percentage points from 2016.