FORTUNE -- SAS takes the prize again! When it comes to workplaces, few companies offer the kinds of perks the privately held software giant does: Employees at its Cary, N.C., campus can help themselves to everything from a tailor, a manicurist, and a hair salon, to summer camp programs for kids, to car detailing -- all of which helped land the company at the top of our list of the 100 best workplaces last year.
This year the feedback from employees -- the core of our survey -- was even stronger than last year, and SAS's scores increased significantly. "They were head and shoulders above anybody else," says Milton Moskowitz, the co-author of the list.
Landing the top spot twice in a row is a feat on the Best Companies to Work For list, where on-site gyms and 401(k) matches are de rigueur. (Free cafeterias, tanning beds, and an on-site life coach? Now we have a conversation.)
The top five this year reflect some names familiar to readers of our list: Boston Consulting Group at No. 2, Wegmans Food Markets in third place, Google (GOOG, Fortune 500) once again in the No. 4 slot, and data-storage company NetApp (NTAP) (No. 1 in 2009) -- is fifth.
This year we welcome 10 newcomers to the list, including Hasbro (HAS), Morningstar (MORN), Stryker, and Darden Restaurants. We also welcome back many stalwarts: 13 companies have earned a spot on our list each of its 14 years, among them Cisco (CSCO, Fortune 500), Wegmans Food Markets, Microsoft (MSFT, Fortune 500), and -- yes -- Goldman Sachs (GS, Fortune 500).
How do we put the list together? Simply stated, we ask the employees themselves. We partner with the Great Place to Work Institute to conduct an extensive survey of hundreds of employees at each company. Two-thirds of a company's score is based on employees' answers to questions about such factors as job satisfaction, management credibility, and camaraderie. (The other third is based on the companies' responses to detailed questions about pay, benefit programs, hiring practices, recognition programs, diversity efforts, and more. )
So who are this year's Best Companies and what's so great about them? Read on.
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