The following companies have been researched for this book. For you to find the best comparison for your own organisation, I have included some basic statistics about each company. Further information can be found via their specific websites.
MICROSOFT's computer software and business solutions help businesses realise their potential, and through its vision empowers people through great software any time, anywhere and on any device. Microsoft is recognised as the employer of choice in the IT sector, and was voted number 1 in the Sunday Times Best Companies to Work For 2003 survey. In the UK there are 1,605 employees who produce annual sales of $32,187 million globally.
RICHER SOUNDS is Britain's largest hi-fi and home cinema retailer. Founded in 1978 by Julian Richer, it has 450 colleagues and an annual turnover of £100 million from 47 stores. It was named as the second- best company to work for in the UK in 2003. David Robinson is the CEO.
FLIGHT CENTRE is part of a global travel business and has been in the UK since 1995. It has 80 shops with 352 colleagues and annual sales of £100 million. The company was number 3 in the Sunday Times 100 Best Companies to Work For list, number 6 in the Financial Times Great Workplaces UK list and in the TOP 100 Great Workplaces EU in 2003. Gary (‘Boxer') Hogan is the CEO.
BROMFORD HOUSING GROUP was formed in 1963, and is a group of housing organisations, owning, managing and developing rented, shared ownership and other homes. They have more than 14,000 homes in management and are dedicated to the provision of affordable housing and associated care and support services. They have 520 colleagues and were number 5 in the Sunday Times Best 100 Companies to Work For list in 2003. Mick Kent is the CEO, Liz Walford is the operations director.
TIMPSON is a service retailer with 2,700 employees in over 750 branches and annual sales of £110 million. They were named as number 6 in the Sunday Times 100 Best Companies to Work For in 2003. John Timpson is the Chairman and CEO, James Timpson is the managing director.
ASDA is one of the biggest supermarkets chains in the UK. It has 265 stores, plus two stand-alone George Stores. There are 137,541 colleagues and annual sales have reached £13.2 billion. It is part of the Wal-Mart family and was voted number 1 in the Sunday Times 100 Best Companies to Work For list in 2002 and number 7 in 2003. Tony DeNunzio is the CEO, David Smith is the HR director.
HISCOX PLC is a specialist insurance group operating both inside and outside Lloyd's. It has 430 employees, is listed on the London Stock Exchange with a market capitalisation of approximately £450 million, and is a member of the FTSE 250.
The Group provides insurance and reinsurance at Lloyd's for large complex risks. Outside Lloyd's, its business in the UK and Europe provides insurance cover for business and professional customers through to high-value content insurance for high-net-worth individuals. Hiscox was named as the Sunday Times' tenth Best Company to Work For in the UK in 2003. Robert Hiscox is the Chairman, Bronek Masojada is the Group CEO.
HONDA (UK) is a subsidiary of Honda Motor Europe Ltd and was founded in 1965. The global company is the largest manufacturer of motorcycles and engines, and the seventh largest producer of cars in the world. Honda (UK) has annual sales in excess of £1 billion and employs over 350 Associates (employees). It was named as number 18 in the Sunday Times 100 Best Companies to Work For list in 2003.
A further 4,000 Associates are employed in the UK to work at Honda's manufacturing plants in Swindon. Mark Davies is the general manager of the motorcycle business, Ken Keir is the European managing director.
ASTRAZENECA is a major international health care business engaged in the research, development, manufacture and marketing of prescription pharmaceuticals and the supply of health care services. It is one of the top five pharmaceutical companies in the world, with health care sales of over $17.8 billion and leading positions in sales of gastrointestinal, oncology, cardiovascular, neuroscience and respiratory products. AstraZeneca is listed in the Dow-Jones Sustainability Index (global and European) as well as the FTSE4Good Index. The company was placed at number 21 in the Financial Times list of 50 Best Workplaces in the UK in 2003.
WRAGGE & CO. LLP is a major UK law firm providing a full range of legal services for businesses worldwide. At the start of the 1990s the firm employed 321 people with 29 partners and had a turnover of £11 million. By 2003 it had grown to 108 partners, 1,100 people, and had a turnover of £77.8 million. Wragge & Co. LLP was listed at 34 in the Sunday Times 100 Best Companies to Work For list in 2003. John Crabtree was the senior partner (but has now retired from this post).
KENT MESSENGER GROUP is a family-owned media company which is passionate about serving the people of Kent. It publishes 18 local newspapers (including the UK's biggest-selling weekly newspaper, Kent Messenger), has five local radio stations (branded KM-fm), runs Kentonline.co.uk the local news website, produces monthly magazines and offers contract printing services.
Locally, the company is known as the ‘KM' and the 760 colleagues work hard to strengthen the company's position as Kent's leading local media company by providing the best-quality media. Annual turnover is £44 million. KM was listed at no 92 in the Sunday Times 100 Best Companies to Work For list in 2003
ST LUKE'S is a London advertising agency with 80 share-holder/ employees. Named as UK Agency of the Year in 1997 St Luke's creates advertising for clients such as British Telecommunications plc, Clarks Shoes and The UK Government. In 2003 the agency was awarded The City of London Dragon Award for Corporate Social Responsibility.
CORGI is the national watchdog for gas safety in the United Kingdom, providing registration for all gas installers. The company has 287 colleagues, with an annual turnover of £17.5 million. It registers, monitors and provides technical advice for approximately 44,000 gas businesses and about 94,000 individual gas operatives. It provides information services for the general public on matters relating to gas safety and investigates complaints against gas installing businesses. Bob Henry was the CEO until his recent retirement.
TD INDUSTRIES is a lifecycle provider of mechanical and electrical construction, facility management and service. With more than 1,350 partners (employees) they have an annual turnover of $240 million. TD has been in the Fortune magazine list of the Best Companies to Work For in the US since 1998 - being named consistently in the top ten throughout. Jack Lowe, Junior, is the CEO.