Q We have several companies operating in the United States under one parent holding company. Each company has its own EIN (Employer Identification Number) and each has its own set of benefits and working environments. Do I need to register each company?
A Yes. Since each company is its own entity with its own benefits and working environment, we will treat each company as a separate employer and send each location a separate set of surveys, etc. Each subsidiary company must have at least 15 full and part-time permanent employees to be eligible.
Q We have several offices/facilities in the United States that operate using the same EIN and same set of employee benefits and procedures. Should I register each company separately?
A No. If you are one company with multiple locations you should submit only one registration for all locations. We will then conduct a survey of employees that are randomly selected from the various business units that you operate in the United States, up to a total of 400 employees.
Q Our company employs seasonal, temporary, per diem and independent contractor employees. Should they be included in the survey?
A No. Seasonal, temporary, per diem, independent contractors, interns, volunteers or consultants should not be included in the survey process. We only want to survey the permanent full and part-time employees.
A No! Participation in the "Outside's Best Places to Work" program is absolutely FREE if you choose the online survey process! If your company should need paper surveys for your employee base, there is a nominal paper survey fee to cover printing, shipping and processing. Please see the Assessment Process Page for the paper fees.
Q Should the paper survey fee, report fee or survey translation fee be submitted with our registration?
A If your company chooses to purchase the Employee Feedback Report, needs survey translation or paper surveys, you may pay online with a credit card at the time of registration, or you may choose to receive an invoice following your registration.
A If you have 250 or fewer employees in your company, then the answer is Yes! If you employ more than 250 associates throughout the United States, a random sample of up to 400 employees will be asked to complete the survey. Please see the Assessment Process page for more information.
Q We have more than 250 employees to be surveyed. Who decides which employees will receive the surveys and how they are distributed? Do we have to give you a list of who is being surveyed?
A The random selection will be conducted by Best Companies Group for the online survey process. Companies choosing the online survey process will be asked to upload a list of all employee email addresses into an online portal. Best Companies Group will then randomly select the appropriate amount of employees (based on company size) to receive the survey. Companies will be asked to upload the employee email addresses via an online upload portal sent shortly after registration has closed. Companies choosing the paper survey process will be required to tell Best Companies Group how they conducted the random selection of their employee population. Please see the Timeline for dates surrounding the portal.
A Yes. All employees will be asked to complete a survey unless the company has more than 250 employees. At companies employing over 250 associates, a random sample will be chosen, and even then, managers are not excluded.
Q How long will it take to complete the employer questionnaire (EQ)? Will it require a lot of research?
A The employer questionnaire may take between 8-10 hours to complete, depending upon how easy it is to retrieve your company's information regarding policies, practices and demographics. Some research may be necessary. The EQ is completed and submitted online. A list of questions can be found on the Survey & Report Samples page. You may begin gathering the information requested on the EQ prior to the survey start date. That way when the actual invitation is sent, you can simply enter the requested information online.
A Best Companies Group will send your company a box of paper surveys and postage-paid return envelopes that must be distributed to employees. Employees complete the survey, place it in the envelope, seal it and then drop the completed surveys in the US mail. Completed surveys are mailed back to our processing facility by each employee.
Q What if not all of the employees complete and return the surveys? Is there a minimum response rate?
A We are looking for a response rate of approximately 65% or greater but a minimum of 40% is what we need to receive from organizations having 25 or more employees. Therefore, it is not absolutely necessary that all who receive a survey fill it out. Companies that have not reached 40% likely will not be considered for the list. Response rates are taken into account during the analysis process. The higher the response rate the more representative it will be of your company as a whole and the more valuable your company’s data will be at the end of the process.
Companies with 15-24 employees must have an 80% (or better) response rate from their employees filling out the survey.
A To conduct the online survey process, companies submit a list of employee email addresses. Best Companies Group will perform the random selection of survey recipients for companies having over 250 employees. Employees are then directly sent an individual survey invitation via email containing unique access information from Best Companies Group. The invitation directs employees to a unique Web page where they can submit their confidential responses. We can only send email invitations to company email accounts.
Q Not all of our employees have email addresses. Can we still utilize the online survey?
A Yes! You can still use the online survey provided that at least 70% of your employees have company email. If you have some employees without email addresses, they will still be included in the survey. We can provide access codes for those employees, if they represent 30% or less of your employee population. Click to learn more about Access Codes.
In order to maintain the integrity of the survey process, if fewer than 70% of your employees have company email addresses, you will have to utilize the paper survey process.
Q I am concerned about the confidentiality of the survey responses.
A We will make every effort to maintain the anonymity of the employees completing the survey as well as protect the summarized data of all participating companies. Please note, that in order to maintain respondent anonymity, we do not report any response data for less than five (5) individuals in any one demographic category on the Employee Demographic Report. Please see our Statement of Confidentiality for more information.
Q Can the job role and department demographics on the employee survey be customized to more closely align with our organization?
A Yes, for a fee, the job role and department demographic categories can be customized. Please call Best Companies Group for more information or select the “Customization” option on the registration form and you will be contacted with more information. What's this?
Q What information is included in the Employee Feedback Report and when will we receive it? What is the benefit of purchasing this report?
A Purchasing the Employee Feedback Report will allow you to gain valuable insight into what your employees are thinking. The Employee Feedback Report comes in a folder and will contain large spreadsheets detailing and summarizing your employees' responses (in percentage format) to the 78 survey questions as well as the employee comments. It will also include detailed instructions on how to interpret the results. The reports will be mailed to each company shortly after the companies are notified whether or not they have made the list. National benchmarking is also included so companies can compare themselves to the “Outside's Best Places to Work” list-making and non list-making organizations. The final portion is the Employer Benchmark Summary. This report offers a sample of company averages on standard employee benefits and best practices -- for both list-making and non list-making organizations. The benchmarking reports will be sent after the rankings are revealed.
A The benchmark report will represent the average responses for each of the seventy-eight (78) statements for all the nation's list makers and non list makers. This information will allow your company to compare itself to the "Outside's Best Places to Work."
Q How do I order my company’s Employee Feedback Report?
A An Employee Feedback Report can only be ordered once you have registered to participate in the "Outside's Best Places to Work" program. To register click here. If you have already registered, please call Best Companies Group toll-free at (877) 455-2159 or visit the Order Your Report link.
Q When will we find out if our company made the list and where we rank?
A You will receive a notification letter informing your company whether or not you made the list. If you make the list, you will find out where you rank in the special publication. See the Timeline for more details.
Q A portion of our employees do not speak English. Do you offer employee surveys in alternate languages?
A We offer employee surveys in a variety of languages. Additional languages are available at $205 per survey translation. If you need alternate language surveys, please select the "Languages" button on the registration form and you will receive additional information.
Q How will my company be notified throughout the survey process? Will I receive regular updates?
A Yes, you will receive periodic updates regarding the survey timeline via email. However, we do recommend that your company place the dates that we send to you in your calendars. Best Companies Group primarily works through email. It is important that you read all instructions and details sent to you from Best Companies Group.
Q What is my company registers for the program and then needs to withdrawal? Is it possible to be removed from the process?
A All companies that submit a registration form are considered active participants in the “Outside’s Best Places to Work” program. If your company wishes to withdrawal from the survey process, Best Companies Group must be notified immediately. Missed deadlines will be considered an automatic withdrawal from the process. To reactivate your company from an automatic withdrawal during the survey timeframe, a $100 fee will be charged. Once the survey process has begun (after May 6, 2016), a $250 withdrawal fee will be applied in addition to the total fees incurred for any special requests (customization orders, language translations, paper survey processing, etc.). Please contact a Best Companies Group representative to withdraw from the process.
Q Does Best Companies Group have any other programs or conduct any other surveys or services?
A Yes! Best Companies Group is identifying and recognizing great workplaces on national, state, regional and industry stages. For a complete list of programs or to learn more about our additional services, please visit www.bestcompaniesgroup.com.