20 best retirement plans from Google, Apple and other major companies

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The modern 401k was invented by accident in 1978. Lawmakers inserted the provision into the IRS tax code in an effort to quell rising anxieties about the tax status of profit-sharing plans. This was a minor item that would affect just a handful of companies, according to Morningstar News. Originally, 401ks were expected to have a negligible impact on tax revenue.

By 2013, that "negligible" amount was $57 billion. That's enough money to run the Army Corps of Engineers; the Departments of the Treasury, Interior and Labor; the National Science Foundation; and the Social Security Administration and Small Business Administration — at the same time.

Today, most employer retirement plans come in the form of 401ks, as companies with pensions are becoming harder and harder to come by. Employees at businesses that don't offer 401ks will have to open an IRA or Roth IRA on their own. When comparing different types of retirement plans, keep in mind that the amount your employer matches will have a big impact on your life after your earning years have passed. Because of compound interest, a variation of just a few percentage points could mean the difference of hundreds of thousands of dollars over the course of a career.Tech Company Offerings

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50. Wegmans Food Markets

Score: 4.2

Wegmans Food Markets is a regional supermarket chain with stores in the mid-Atlantic and New England.

"Great employer that looks out for employees. Great benefits. Great pay. Easy to move up and advance." — Wegmans Food Markets service team leader (Charlottesville, Virginia)

Photo credit: Getty

49. Gensler

Score: 4.2

Gensler is an architecture, design, planning, and consulting firm.

"Fast-paced atmosphere with wonderful people who are eager to help teach younger staff. The benefits are great and you have access to a variety of great resources." — Gensler technical designer (Washington, DC)

Photo credit: Facebook.com 

48. QuikTrip

Score: 4.2

QuikTrip is a regional chain of convenience stores in the Midwest and South.

"Full benefits, excellent full-time weekly hours, set schedule, focused on employee growth and wellbeing. Charity- and donation-centered." — QuikTrip night assistant (Tucson, Arizona)

Photo credit: Facebook.com 

47. E. & J. Gallo Winery

Score: 4.2

E. & J. Gallo Winery is a family-owned winery and distributor.

"Fantastic people, fascinating industry, fast-paced, high level of employee engagement. As an employee, you're able to have a significant direct impact on the business and the company's success." — E. & J. Gallo Winery Senior Manager (Modesto, California)

Photo credit: Facebook.com 

46. Aegis Living

Score: 4.2

Aegis Living provides senior assisted living and memory care.

"Management truly cares about our employees, and when our employees are supported, loved, and fulfilled, they can provide heartfelt care to our residents." — Aegis Living life enrichment director (Bellevue, Washington)

Photo credit: Facebook.com 

45. Ikea

Score: 4.2

Ikea is a multinational group of companies that designs and sells ready-to-assemble furniture, appliances and home accessories.

"Flexible, very friendly environment with coworkers. Great benefits including health and education assistance and holiday and social gatherings. Great environment for working moms." — Ikea shopkeeper (Detroit, Michigan)

Photo credit: Getty

44. Mayo Clinic

Score: 4.2

Mayo Clinic is a nonprofit medical practice and medical research group.

"The company offers excellent benefits. It provides a variety of departments, which allows employees the flexibility to move around the company. The employees understand and respect diversity." — Mayo Clinic PMO Manager (Rochester, Minnesota)

Photo credit: Facebook 

43. Raising Cane's

Score: 4.2

Raising Cane's is a fast-food restaurant chain specializing in chicken fingers.

"Many opportunities to move up. Awesome management. Good pay and vacations." — Raising Cane's crew member and certified trainer (Allen, Texas)

Photo credit: Facebook.com 

42. Texas Instruments

Score: 4.2

Texas Instruments designs and manufactures semiconductors, which it sells to electronics designers and manufacturers globally.

"The culture at TI is awesome. The environment is laid back, and the people you get to work with are always willing to help out when needed." — Texas Instruments software engineer (Dallas, Texas)

Photo credit: Reuters

41. BASF Corporation

Score: 4.2

BASF is a multiational chemicals manufacturing corporation.

"Values its employees' wellbeing, great benefits, marketplace discounts, global presence allows for more opportunities to grow your career." — BASF Corporation lab manager (Columbus, Ohio)

Photo credit: Getty

40. SpaceX

Score: 4.2

SpaceX is an American aerospace manufacturer and space transport services.

"Awesome coworkers. Exciting, fast-paced projects. Meaningful and fulfilling work. Good pay and stock options." — Space Exploration Technologies engineering manager (Hawthorne, California)

Photo credit: Reuters

39. FedEx Freight

Score: 4.2

FedEx Freight, a subsidiary of delivery giant FedEx, provides less-than-truckload transportation services throughout the US, Canada, and international points.

"Good salary, excellent benefits, great equipment, and the best management." — FedEx Freight road driver (West Jefferson, Ohio)

Photo credit: Reuters 

38. Lululemon

Score: 4.2

Lululemon makes athletic apparel.

"Great company and corporate culture. Lots of perks like free workouts at surrounding gyms and studios." — Lululemon keyleader (Dallas, Texas)

Photo credit: Getty

37. Microsoft

Score: 4.2

Microsoft develops, manufactures, licenses, supports, and sells computer software like Microsoft Windows and Microsoft Office, consumer electronics, and personal computers and services.

"Competitive salary, good community involvement, strong global presence, great products, cares about employees." — Microsoft employee

Photo credit: Getty

36. Apple

Score: 4.2

Apple makes iPhones, iPads, and other devices and software and sells music and movies through iTunes.

"Great pay and bonuses. Excellent healthcare benefits and work environment. Every individual is responsible for his or her work, when at the same time, everyone is part of a team." — Apple senior engineer (Cupertino, California)

Photo credit: Reuters 

35. Airbnb

Score: 4.2

Airbnb is a peer-to-peer online marketplace and homestay network that matches those with spare rooms/condos/homes to rent with travelers wanting to rent them.

"Everyone is genuinely smart, enthusiastic, and friendly. The employees deeply care about the company mission and the well-being of the Airbnb community." — Airbnb data scientist (San Francisco, California)

Photo credit: Getty

34. Costco Wholesale

Score: 4.2

Costco Wholesale is a membership-based chain of retail stores that sells wholesale goods to the public and businesses.

"People matter here. The culture is casual and job security is strong. Many managers take employee development to heart." — Costco Wholesale change management specialist (Issaquah, Washington)

Photo credit: Getty

33. Trader Joe's

Score: 4.2

Trader Joe's is a chain of neighborhood grocery stores.

"Coworkers treat each other like family. Exceptional customer service standards, amazing management, and the company allows people to shine as individuals." — Trader Joe's crew member and sign artist (Manhattan Beach, California)

Photo credit: Getty

32. Genentech

Score: 4.2

Genentech is a pharmaceuticals and biotechnology company.

"Great benefits (including long maternity leave), good team environment, flexibility with schedule, people are really passionate, intelligent and driven." — Genentech employee (San Francisco, California)

Photo credit: Getty

31. Keller Williams

Score: 4.2

Keller Williams is an American international real estate franchise.

"Support from leadership. Great training. Lovely people and very friendly office. Great meetings and learning opportunities." — Keller Williams realtor (Combine, Texas)

Photo credit: Getty

30. NVIDIA

Score: 4.2

NVIDIA is a technology company that designs graphics processing units for the gaming market.

"This is an exciting and fun place to work, where coworkers are intelligent, driven, and passionate about what they do." — NVIDIA director of software (Santa Clara, California)

Photo credit: Reuters 

29. Zillow

Score: 4.2

Zillow is an online real-estate site.

"Innovative, fast-moving, fast-growing company with great people who love to come to work every day." — Zillow software development engineer (Seattle, Washington)

Photo credit: Getty

28. Southwest Airlines

Score: 4.3

Southwest Airlines is a major US airline that focuses on low-cost fares.

"Flight benefits, amazing 401(k) matching, many insurance options, and a great company culture. You can tell they really value their employees." — Southwest Airlines associate analyst (Dallas, Texas)

Photo credit: Reuters 

27. H E B

Score: 4.3

H E B is a food retailer that operates more than 340 stores in a number of formats, including superstores, supermarkets, and gourmet markets.

"The culture is fantastic, partners work hard, and everyone seems to understand how their role fits to the success of the company." — H E B manager (San Antonio, Texas)

Photo credit: Reuters

 

26. Johnson & Johnson

Score: 4.3

Johnson & Johnson is an American multinational medical devices, pharmaceutical, and consumer packaged goods manufacturer.

"This company fosters a great teamwork atmosphere and allows for plenty of growth opportunities. Woking here provides me with a sense of security and pride that what I do here impacts our customers." — Johnson & Johnson process excellence employee (Lancaster, Pennsylvania)

Photo credit: Reuters 

25. Akamai

Score: 4.3

Akamai offers a "content delivery network" that helps large websites and media sites run faster.

"I have never worked with so many smart and talented individuals who are always willing to help each other out." — Akamai Finance Director (Cambridge, Massachusetts)

Photo credit: Facebook.com 

24. Concur

Score: 4.3

Concur offers business travel and expense-management cloud software.

"Good growth opportunities as a professional. Awesome work life balance. Great people and coworkers." — Concur lead software design engineer (Bellevue, Washington)

Photo credit: Facebook.com 

23. DocuSign

Score: 4.3

DocuSign makes electronic signature technology.

"Growing company, amazing people, good work-life balance, and lots of opportunities for career growth and development." — DocuSign solution engineer (Seattle, Washington)

Photo credit: Facebook.com

22. Memorial Sloan Kettering

Score: 4.3

Memorial Sloan Kettering is a cancer-treatment center.

"Very intelligent, friendly, and team-oriented group of people. I love working for MSK. There is a great sense of pride and responsibility to our patients and ensuring things get done right." — Memorial Sloan Kettering employee (Franklin, North Carolina)

Photo credit: Facebook.com 

21. Delta Air Lines

Score: 4.3

Delta Air Lines is one of the world's biggest global airlines.

"Challenging, fast-paced industry, and Delta treats employees well. Good compensation and great benefits. Diverse work environment and everyone loves travel. Good opportunities to advance." — Delta Air Lines team leader (Atlanta, Georgia)

Photo credit: Reuters 

20. Intuit

Score: 4.3

Intuit is a business and financial software company.

"Everyone is encouraged to innovate, not just engineers. It's expected, it's supported, and we cherish the learnings, good or bad. We have some of the brightest people I've ever worked with in my career." — Intuit director (Mountain View, California)

Photo credit: Reuters 

19. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Score: 4.3

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is a nonprofit religious organization commonly known as the Mormon Church. It employs over 1,000 people, from accountants to IT professionals.

"A job where you feel trusted and respected, and where the employer has a high level of loyalty to the employee." — The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints Seminary Teacher (Salt Lake City, Utah)

Photo credit: Getty

18. Forrester

Score: 4.3

Forrester is a business and technology research and advisory firm.

"You have an opportunity to make a difference, take charge of your own career and aspirations. The culture is one that fosters accountability and action in all of us." — Forrester vice president of technology management (Cambridge, Massachusetts)

Photo credit: Facebook.com 

17. Salesforce

Score: 4.3

Salesforce offers a business software as a cloud service that helps companies manage their sales, marketing, and application programming projects.

"My coworkers are smart, motivated, and talented. We have fun! And, the culture is not one of the 60 t0 90 hour work weeks. People here are more mature." — Salesforce senior director (San Francisco, California)

Photo credit: Reuters 

16. MathWorks

Score: 4.3

MathWorks makes mathematical computing software.

"Just an amazing place full of smart and passionate people that want to do the right thing. Very positive and constructive culture. Management team truly lead by the values they preach." — MathWorks sales support employee (Natick, Massachusetts)

Photo credit: Facebook.com 

15. SAP

Score: 4.3

SAP is a multinational enterprise application software company.

"A lot of career growth opportunities and the ability to move into new roles and new groups. A company that truly values its employees and treats them well. Great benefits." — SAP account manager (Chicago, Illinois)

Photo credit: Getty

14. Paylocity

Score: 4.3

Paylocity is a payroll and human capital management software developer.

"Paylocity values employees and creates a culture that allows employees to be happy and comfortable at work. Paylocity still feels like a small business even with rapid growth. Fun and upbeat place to work." — Paylocity ACA product support specialist (Arlington Heights, Illinois)

Photo credit: Facebook.com 

13. Nestlé Purina PetCare

Score: 4.3

Nestlé Purina PetCare is a pet food manufacturer.

"Competitive salaries, encouraged work-life balance, professional development, and a great culture that makes 'big' feel personal and family friendly." — Nestlé Purina PetCare assistant brand manager (Saint Louis, Missouri)

Photo credit: Reuters 

12. Clorox

Score: 4.3

Clorox is a multinational manufacturer and marketer of consumer and professional products.

"Great learn and grow culture with emphasis on work-life balance. The people are great and foster a mentoring environment." — Clorox F&A manager (Pleasanton, California)

Photo credit: Reuters 

11. McKinsey & Company

Score: 4.3

McKinsey & Company is a global management consulting firm.

"Smartest people, best projects, truly incredible internal support staff. McKinsey is defined by a set of values, not a book of rules." — McKinsey & Company associate (Chicago, Illinois)

Photo credit: Facebook.com

10. Power Home Remodeling Group

Score: 4.3

Power Home Remodeling Group is a home-remodeling company best known for replacement windows, siding, roofing, and entry doors.

"The career growth opportunity is outstanding. Everyone in the office genuinely cares about each other and wants to see you be successful." — Power Home Remodeling marketing manager (Iselin, New Jersey)

Photo credit: Facebook.com 

9. Adobe

Score: 4.3

Adobe is a software maker best known for its design and photo-editing software.

"Great company culture, benefits, and overall atmosphere to work. People are very open, knowledgeable, and potential for advancement is very much available." — Adobe order management employee (Lehi, Utah)

Photo credit: Getty

8. LinkedIn

Score: 4.4

LinkedIn is a job-hunting site and social network for business professionals.

"They truly invest in the professional development of employees. Very proactive at making sure that you're in a role you want to be in. Their benefits are fantastic." — LinkedIn product marketing manager (Mountain View, California)

Photo credit: Getty

7. In-N-Out Burger

Score: 4.4

In-N-Out Burger is a chain of fast-food burger restaurants.

"Always busy. Time flies. With hard work you move up pretty quickly. Everyone is so nice and friendly. Great positive atmosphere." — IN-N-Out Burger employee (Stockton, California)

Photo credit: Getty

6. Fast Enterprises

Score: 4.4

Fast Enterprises is a software development and installation company for government agencies.

"The family atmosphere makes working together as a team satisfying and successful, as well as the out of office adventures and team building. I have met a lot of different and unique people after being with FAST for 10 years." — Fast Enterprises controller (Centennial, Colorado)

Photo credit: Facebook.com 


 

5. World Wide Technology

Score: 4.4

World Wide Technology is a technology-consulting company.

"Extremely caring towards their employees as well as their customers. The benefits are amazing. The company thrives on making their employees happy, knowing it will make their customers happy." — World Wide Technology supply chain coordinator (Edwardsville, Illinois)

Photo credit: Facebook.com 

4. Google

Score: 4.4

Google is the world's largest internet search site.

"Smart people, data-driven decisions and culture, a mission I can feel good about when I go to sleep every night. This is as good as it gets." — Google engineering manager (Mountain View, California)

Photo credit: Getty

3. Boston Consulting Group

Score: 4.4

Boston Consulting Group is a global business and management-consulting company.

"Great career progression, opportunity to learn, collaborative culture, very smart teams, great benefits." — Boston Consulting Group employee (Boston, Massachusetts)

Photo credit: Facebook.com 

2. Facebook

Score: 4.5

Facebook is the world's largest social network.

"From its openness to its diversity, Facebook has truly surpassed all tech companies in terms of culture, perks, and employee lifestyle." — Facebook software engineer (Menlo Park, California)

Photo credit: Reuters

1. Bain & Company

Score: 4.6

Bain & Co. is a management consulting firm.

"Fast-paced, dynamic work environment with fun and very supportive people. The company embraces driving results for their clients based on data driven insights. Personal and professional development is prioritized for every team member. Even at the entry level there are opportunities to work with senior executives at influential companies across every industry." — Bain associate consultant (New York, New York)

Photo credit: Facebook.com 

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Modern tech giants like Google are lauded for their employee-centric work cultures, creative incentives and all-around awesome benefits that include perks like cooking classes, guitar lessons and great parental leave policies. Many also shine when it comes to offering generous investment accounts for retirement planning.

Here's how the retirement accounts from the biggest tech companies stack up:

  • Google: Known for offering what might be the best perks in the world, Google's 401k ranked No. 8 on Bloomberg's list of top 50 401ks. No tech or communications company ranked higher. The company matches 100 percent of employee contributions up to $3,000.
  • Apple: This retirement plan is also in the upper echelon with a 6-percent match of eligible employee pay. Its 401k consists of 14 funds.
  • Oracle: Oracle matches 50 percent of up to 6 percent of employees' savings. In 2016, however, the company was named in a class-action suit alleging excessive 401k fees.
  • Facebook: Facebook offered no matching contributions at all as late as 2014. Today, however, the social media giant ranks No. 38 on Bloomberg's list of the 50 best plans. The company matches 50 cents on the dollar up to 7 percent.
  • Amazon: This 401k falls far short compared with most of its tech giant peers, according to Bloomberg. Bloomberg ranked Amazon dead last in its list of the Standard and Poor's 500 index's 50 top companies. A new worker earning $80,000 would be eligible for a maximum company match of just $1,600.

Learn: 12 Secret Moves to Double Your 401k

10 Best Large-Company 401k Plans

Some of the best 401k plans are included in the retirement packages offered by the biggest companies in the world. This year's list of nontechnical giants features some familiar names as well as some new companies. Among the companies that didn't make the cut this year — after appearing in last year's top 10 — are Halliburton, Monsanto, DuPont, Aetna and Time Warner.

  1. ConocoPhillips: This is the best big company in the world to retire from, according to Bloomberg. The ConocoPhillips retirement plan matches 900 percent of 1 percent contributions.
  2. Boeing: Boeing ranks second with a 75 percent match of up to 8 percent.
  3. Amgen: This health care giant's retirement plan matches 100 percent of employee contributions of up to 5 percent.
  4. Citigroup: Citigroup matches 100 percent of up to 6 percent of employee contributions.
  5. McDonald's: The fast-food giant provides a super-sized benefits program — it contributes $3 for every dollar an employee puts into a 401k up to 1 percent. After that, it matches 100 percent up to 4 percent.
  6. MasterCard: MasterCard contributes a full 125 percent up to 6 percent of what its employees put into their 401ks.
  7. Philip Morris International: Philip Morris matches its employees' contributions dollar for dollar up to 5 percent.
  8. Altria: This tobacco maker comes in right behind Google with a 401k plan that matches 100 percent of employee contributions up to 3 percent.
  9. Visa: Visa contributes 200 percent of what its employees save for up to 3 percent of their pay. That's a complicated way of saying it will match up to 6 percent.
  10. 3M: 3M also matches up to 6 percent of employee contributions.

Find Out: 5 Major Employee Perks That Help You Save Money

Good Plans From Lesser-Known Companies

The best retirement plans aren't always hosted by the most well-known companies. Here are some of the best plans from businesses that might not be household names.

  1. Navy Federal Credit Union: This credit union matches 100 percent of up to 7 percent of pre-tax savings. It also provides employees with retirement workshops and seminars.
  2. Perkins Coie: Perkins Coie matches 50 percent of the first 6 percent that employees save.
  3. JM Family Enterprises: JM Family Enterprises offers a 3-percent match, supplemental pension plan and profit-sharing plan that fully vests workers after six years of service.
  4. TMG Health: TMG Health offers a 100 percent match of the first 1 percent saved, then a 50-percent match for the next 5 percent. Employees become 25-percent vested after one year and 100-percent vested after two years.
  5. Gilead: Gilead matches 100 percent of employee contributions up to $10,000 a year. Not only are company contributions immediately vested, but employees can buy company stock at a discount.

See: How to Master Your 401k in Your 60s

Check If Your Company Stacks Up

Companies with pension plans used to be the key to aging comfortably. But with the arrival of the 401k in 1978, workers took more control over their retirement savings — and the best candidates began expecting more from their employers. Today, millions of Americans depend on their 401ks for security and independence in life after their earning years, and companies that lure the top talent are often the companies with the best retirement plans.

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