The Washington Post partnered with Philadelphia-based WorkplaceDynamics, an employee survey firm, to determine the region’s top workplaces.
Beginning in December, The Post ran articles and advertisements encouraging employees in the region to nominate their companies as Top Workplaces. WorkplaceDynamics then invited the nominated companies, as well as other organizations in the region, to participate in the program.
Anyone could nominate a company. The sole requirement was that the organization employs at least 50 people in the greater Washington area. The organization could be public, private, nonprofit or governmental.
To identify the Top Workplaces, WorkplaceDynamics went straight to the experts — the employees.
In total, we invited 1,672 companies to participate, and we surveyed 244 of them.
The surveyed firms employ 74,773 people in the greater Washington area. Receiving questionnaires were 56,641 employees, of whom 33,832 responded, either on paper or online.
The survey included 22 questions, covering how employees view their job and how they view the health of their organization.
After the surveys were completed, WorkplaceDynamics ran statistical tests to look for any questionable results. It disqualified a small number of employers based on those tests.
Employers were then categorized into size bands because smaller employers tend to score higher than midsize employers, and midsize employers tend to score higher than large employers.
The employers were ranked within their size band based solely on employee responses to the survey statements. The top employers in each size band were then selected as the Top Workplaces for 2014. We also determined a list of special awards based on standout scores on specific survey statements.
You may wonder why your employer is not on the list. One possibility is that the company took the survey and scored too low. Another is that it chose not to participate. We hope that next year more employers take part to see where they stand.
Doug Claffey is chief executive of WorkplaceDynamics.