WORKING MOTHER MAGAZINE FINDS NO DROP IN
ANNOUNCES 100 BEST COMPANIES FOR WORKING MOTHERS
New York, NY (September 23) - Payroll may be down but
work/life benefits are up at many of America's top companies, according
to Working Mother magazine, which today released its 18th annual list
of the "100 Best Companies for Working Mothers."
"Even these tough economic times haven't swayed the commitment
of our forward-thinking 100 Best companies," says Working Mother
Editor-in-Chief Jill Kirschenbaum. In fact, the magazine finds that
companies have increased benefits - ranging from child-care programs to
massages to take-home dinners straight from the company cafeteria - in
order to cut stress and keep employees healthy.
What this means, says Kirschenbaum, is that "workplace
cultures at the best places to work have changed and now reflect the
permanent impact of working mothers. And companies also are responding
to pressure from both men and women in Generations X and Y, who want a
balanced life. Work/life benefits are here to stay."
Working Mother Media CEO Carol Evans, who was the publisher of
Working Mother when it began evaluating work/life programs 18 years
ago, points to "the growing competition and attention to the list as
having played an important role in the work/life revolution, one whose
impact will be felt for years to come."
This represents "a seismic shift at companies around the
country," says Kirschenbaum, "turning work/life into an essential part
of business strategy." Even as little as four years ago, only 30
percent of companies on the 100 Best list had a wide array of child
care and flexibility options. Now most companies do - and they're
getting stronger, with additions like afterschool, holiday, and
emergency care for kids and elders, as well as fitness programs.
In another trend: Companies are offering afterschool programs
for teens and tweens in day-care centers, as well as support groups and
counseling for parents. This is important for families who are now
caring for both their growing children and aging parents, according to
Kirschenbaum. "Just as they are reaching the peak of their careers,
women are facing the biggest challenges in their family lives.
Companies that offer tween and teen programs and support for other
family members keep employees at work and on track." One notable
program sends a specialist into the home to evaluate the needs of a
geriatric parent; 98 percent of the Best Companies offer some form of
elder-care resource and referral.
Kirschenbaum calls these changes "common sense on the part of
the companies," because both employees and employers benefit. "When an
employee's personal life runs smoothly, her productivity continues
uninterrupted," she says, pointing to such cutting-edge offerings as
sending a trained caregiver to the employee's home when her child is
sick. Adds Kirschenbaum: "These programs markedly cut absenteeism."
The complete list of the 100 Best Companies for Working
Mothers appears in the October issue of Working Mother (on newsstands
today and at www.workingmother.com). Working Mother will honor the
companies at a gala awards ceremony at the 100 Best Companies WorkLife
Congress in New York September 29-October 1 (www.worklifecongress.com).
How the 100 Best companies compare with
other companies in the U.S.:
(National figures based on the Society for Human Resource Management's
2003 Benefits Survey)
o 100% of 100 Best offer flextime vs. 55% companies nationwide
o 99% of 100 Best offer an employee assistance program vs. 67%
o 98% of 100 Best offer elder-care resource and referral
services vs. 20%
o 96% of 100 Best offer child-care resource and referral
services vs. 18% nationwide
o 94% of 100 Best offer compressed workweeks vs. 31% nationwide
o 93% of 100 Best offer job-sharing vs. 22% nationwide
o 77% of 100 Best offer therapeutic massages vs. 11% nationwide
o 47% of 100 Best sponsor sick-child care vs. 7% nationwide
o 44% of 100 Best offer before/afterschool care vs. 4%
o 39% of 100 Best offer paid paternity leave vs. 12% nationwide
o 27% of 100 Best offer paid maternity leave beyond the
period vs. 14% nationwide
Working Mother gives special mention to this year's Top 10 companies
· Abbott Laboratories, IL
· Booz Allen Hamilton, VA
· Bristol-Myers Squibb Company, NY
· Eli Lilly and Company, IN
· Fannie Mae, DC
· General Mills, MN
· IBM Corporation, NY
· Prudential Financial Inc., NJ
· S. C. Johnson & Son, Inc., WI
· Wachovia Corporation, NC
Best in Class
Using company survey scores, this year Working Mother highlights as
BEST IN CLASS those companies excelling in specific categories: Liz
Claiborne, Inc. (representation of women), Booz Allen Hamilton
(advancing women), JPMorgan Chase (total compensation), IBM Corporation
(child care), S. C. Johnson & Son (flexibility) and Wachovia
Corporation (family-friendly/company culture).
Companies that shine as BEST IN INDUSTRY are:
Financial & Professional Services Wachovia Corporation
Health Care Northwestern Memorial HealthCare
Information Technology IBM Corporation
Manufacturing & Retail S. C. Johnson & Son, Inc.
Media & Advertising Discovery Communications Inc.
Pharmaceuticals & Biotech Eli Lilly and Company
Travel & Hospitality Noel Group
Working Mother names Pernille Spiers-Lopez, president of IKEA North
America (Plymouth Meeting, PA), as this year's FAMILY CHAMPION for
helping the furniture retailer's employees design a life that works.
Spiers-Lopez's personal mantra helps drive her company: "Take care of
your personal issues, and the work will follow." Spiers-Lopez has made
a good company better by applying her personal philosophy to her
corporate mission. On her watch, IKEA has instituted flextime, full
benefits for part-time workers and a diversity plan, among other
100 Best List Methodology
To be named to the 100 Best Companies for Working Mothers list, public
or private firms of any size and in any industry (except those in the
business of providing work/life or child-care services) complete a
comprehensive application, including questions about a company's
culture, employee population and policies on work/life and women's
advancement. With the help of industrial research firm eXpert Survey
Systems, applications are validated and scored on more than 500 points
of information, including the number of work/life programs offered, the
employee usage of such programs and the representation of women
throughout the company. This year, Working Mother gave particular
weight to three issues: flexible scheduling, advancement of women and
About Working Mother
Working Mother magazine, founded in 1979, reaches almost 3 million
readers and is the only national magazine for career-committed mothers.
Its 18-year signature initiative, 100 Best Companies for Working
Mothers is a benchmark for work/life practices in corporate America.
The magazine is part of Working Mother Media (WMM), which also owns the
National Association for Female Executives (NAFE), NAFE Magazine, and
the annual 100 Best Companies WorkLife Conference. In 2003, WMM
published its first annual list of the Best Companies for Women of