2012 Fortune 500 rank: 73 2012 Best Companies rank: 1
No. of U.S. employees: 18,500
Most common job title and/or function: N.A.
Avg. annual compensation for that job: N.A.
Everything was up at Google last year -- revenue, profits, share price, paid search clicks, hiring -- and so, too, was employee love; the search giant climbed three slots in our ranking to reclaim the top spot. The reason? Employees rave about their mission, the culture, and the famous perks of the Plex: bocce courts, a bowling alley, eyebrow shaping (for a fee) in the New York office. Then there's the food: some 25 cafés companywide, all gratis. Wrote one Googler: "Employees are never more than 150 feet away from a well-stocked pantry."