Where Everybody Wants To Work
The survey by human resources services company Randstad drew responses from 200,000 people in 23 nations. It offers insights into employees' perceptions of what it would be like to work at any of the 50 largest global companies.
BMW ranked highest globally, with 61 percent saying they want to work for the luxury automaker. The company topped the list for its reputation for a pleasant working atmosphere, strong management, and competitive salary and benefits. Sony, the Japanese electronics giant, and Samsung, the South Korean conglomerate, rounded off the top three on the global list.
But in a breakdown by country, Google came out on top among American respondents, with 61 percent of respondents saying it would be their top choice of employers.
Rounding off the top three among U.S. workers were Amazon, at 61 percent, and Microsoft, at 60 percent.
Randstad maintains that a company's reputation as an employer is a key factor in its brand identity, and a contributor to its financial success. "In an increasingly mismatched global labor market, strong employer brands are crucial to attract and retain the right talent," Randstad CEO Jacque van den Broek said in a statement.
But what traits are most important in an employer? For Americans, it's honesty.
The survey asked respondents to pick the most important personality traits they want in an employer. Honesty was ranked as the most important characteristic, or one of the top five characteristics, by a large majority of workers surveyed.
They also looked for potential employers to be reliable, secure, well respected and intelligent.
Those qualities beat out other choices ranging from "down to earth" to "exciting" and "high status."
The Americans surveyed showed a clear preference for companies in the media and information business, and in information technology. Those two sectors were seen as most likely to offer a competitive salary and benefits, career opportunities and a good working atmosphere.
Other attractive industries included aerospace and defense; pharmaceuticals and health care, and hospitality and entertainment.
The differences in choices across nations were intriguing. Chinese workers rated three American technology companies as tops in the world: IBM, Intel and Apple. Russians preferred BMW, Mercedes and Toyota. Spain chose IBM, Nestle and Bayer.
National pride, or perhaps local knowledge, also comes into play. Italians want most to work for Thales Alenia Space Italia, a space systems designer, followed by Ferrero, the chocolate maker, and Feltrinelli, a book publisher. British workers placed BMW in first place, but also cited Rolls-Royce and John Lewis, a department store chain.