Great Places to Work

Permanent three-day weekends. Temporary assignments in Hawaii. A company trip to the Tour de France. Where do you find a job with perks like that? Right here in the ’Burgh, where happy campers nominated their companies for our first-ever Great Places to Work survey.

True, the dragging economy has kept a death grip on business expense accounts, and few of us who are gainfully employed are complaining about having a job these days. Still, some companies are finding creative ways to help employees feel the love.

Our survey, crafted by Next Generation Consulting, of Madison, Wis., wasn’t all about the Benjamins. It measured intangibles, such as workplace rewards, professional-development opportunities and family-friendly policies, which showed that our winners scored high in all aspects of employee engagement.

If there’s one big trend that local companies are embracing, it’s the open-collar job—the one that allows staffers to work from home. The virtual office is a reality for many of the places included in our lineup. Other surprising trends: Nerf guns and sugar. A handful of offices report arming workers with Nerf weapons to blow frustrations away and slipping a box of fresh doughnuts next to the coffeepot—well, it’s never a bad idea.

So, here’s the lowdown on the highest-ranking companies in two sizes: those with more than 100 staffers and those with fewer. Each company’s score out of a possible 100 percent reflects the weighted average of responses in seven categories: trust, management, development, connection, rewards and life-work balance. Take a look to get new ideas for your company or for your job search. And if it’s your company that made the list, lucky you. Keep the day job.

Here are the companies that made this year's list:

Large Companies

More than 100 employees

ddi heffren tillotson

Development Dimensions International



pa cyber school pj dick

Pennsylvania Cyber Charter School

PJ Dick/Trumbull/Lindy Paving


Small Companies

Fewer than 100 employees

alcoma alphagraphic cresa danaura deeplocal

Alcoma Dental Association



Danaura Enterprises




neighbors in the strip showclix wall to wall

 Krol Media


 Neighbors in the Strip


 Wall-to-Wall Studios


Honorable Mentions

Bombardier Transportation
D. B. Root & Co.
Vietnam Veterans Leadership Program
Law Offices of Ira Weiss
Hillel JUC of Pittsburgh
Radiance Plastic Surgery
Beyond Spots & Dots
Coro Center for Civic Leadership
Cowden Associates, Inc.
Grossman Yanak & Ford LLP
The Pittsburgh Promise
Weinstein Imaging Associates
Edgar Snyder & Associates

The Method

Pittsburgh magazine's “Great Places to Work” rankings were compiled by Next Generation Consulting from an anonymous 40-question survey that had to be completed by at least half of a company’s employees.

The survey didn’t differentiate by types of businesses, just size: those with more than 100 employees and those with fewer. Participants had to choose their levels of trust, management, professional development, connections, rewards and life-work balance. To validate the results, the survey also asked if respondents would recommend their company to other job seekers.

Next Generation experts consider a score of more than 80 percent to be exceptional; the lowest score that any of our winners received was a remarkable 87.9 percent.

Christine H. O’Toole last wrote about hot college majors for the magazine’s August issue. She considers her home office to be a great place to work.

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