18 of 25
Average total pay: $124,496
For: Information Systems Engineer, Lead*
Best companies rank: 69

Most top workplaces offer bonus programs, stock ownership plans and other such perks. Not MITRE. That's because it's a non-profit thinktank chartered by the federal government.

Nevertheless, MITRE's base salaries are higher than the pay levels at research and engineering companies where many of its employees might otherwise work. Researchers and engineers can earn well into the six figures, and hourly administrators make close to $60,000 a year.

Retirement benefits also are generous: MITRE's savings and retirement programs are geared to give employees 80% to 100% of their final pay.

Beyond that, there is the psychic reward that comes from working on projects of national importance, such as the scanning systems placed in airports by the Department of Homeland Security. As one professional said, "I can 'do the right thing' without worrying about the company's profit."

NEXT: Scripps Health

Last updated January 26 2010: 11:14 AM ET
Email | Print | Share  |  RSS
google my aol my msn my yahoo! netvibes
Paste this link into your favorite RSS desktop reader
See all CNNMoney.com RSS FEEDS (close)
*Most common salaried job
Top 100 There's a new No. 1 in town: tech powerhouse SAS. Yes, even in a tough job market, some employers are doling out perks. Meet this year's winners. More
They're hiring! These 22 Best Companies to Work For have at least 500 openings each, totaling more than 87,750 jobs. What are they looking for? More
'I work for a Best Company' Meet 10 people lucky enough to work for one of the top 10 employers on Fortune's list. Interesting assignments, caring co-workers, stints in Europe: No wonder these folks love their workplaces. More

Most stock quote data provided by BATS. Market indices are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer. Morningstar: © 2018 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Factset: FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2018. All rights reserved. Chicago Mercantile Association: Certain market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. Dow Jones: The Dow Jones branded indices are proprietary to and are calculated, distributed and marketed by DJI Opco, a subsidiary of S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC and have been licensed for use to S&P Opco, LLC and CNN. Standard & Poor's and S&P are registered trademarks of Standard & Poor's Financial Services LLC and Dow Jones is a registered trademark of Dow Jones Trademark Holdings LLC. All content of the Dow Jones branded indices © S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC 2018 and/or its affiliates.