We’d like to take a moment to congratulate our friends at SAS for being awarded the prestigious title of the ‘Best Company To Work For’ by Fortune Magazine. Given our association with SAS, via Gabor’s address at the company’s Global Forum in 2007, and his contribution to the recently-published Radical Action for Radical Times by Jonathan Hornby, SAS’ Director of Worldwide Marketing, we applaud the recognition. And given CEO Jim Goodnight’s focus to make sure his “chief assets” come to work cheerfully every day, it seems very well-deserved.
Though companies in Silicon Valley get lots of press about perk-friendly workplaces, it's here in the less go-go South that employees reign supreme. SAS is not only the world's largest privately held software business -- with revenues of $2.3 billion, it's about the size of publicly traded Intuit -- but also the paragon of perks.
In fact when Google, a SAS customer, was putting together its own campus freebies some years ago, it used SAS as a model. SAS (pronounced sass) has been on Fortune's list of Best Companies to Work For every one of the 13 years we've been keeping score. But this is the first time SAS is in the No. 1 slot.
While its pampering of employees might give corporate scrooges a coronary, CEO Jim Goodnight says the policies make estimable business sense. "My chief assets drive out the gate every day," Goodnight likes to say. "My job is to make sure they come back."
His motives aren't charitable but entirely utilitarian, even a bit Machiavellian. The average tenure at SAS is 10 years; 300 employees have worked 25 or more. Annual turnover was 2% in 2009, compared with the average in the software industry of about 22%. Women make up 45% of its U.S. workforce, which has an average age of 45…
[Image via CNN Money.]