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The employee interviews, company rankings and profiles for the 2016 Best Places to Work in Vermont awards.

SMALL/MEDIUM Companies (15 - 149 employees)

AllEarth Renewables

ASIC North, Inc

Basin Harbor Club

Cathedral Square

Farm & Wilderness Foundation

Fuse, LLC

Gallagher, Flynn & Company, LLP

Hickok & Boardman Financial Planning & HR Intelligence

Instrumart

*iSystems, LLC.

*Jasper Hill

Liquid Measurement Systems, Inc.

Renewable NRG Systems

Rhino Foods, Inc.

SunCommon

*The Richards Group

*The University of Vermont Foundation

Union Mutual of Vermont

Vermont College of Fine Arts

*Vermont Housing Finance Agency

Vermont Public Radio

Wild Apple Graphics, Ltd.

 

LARGE Companies (150 or more employees)

*Burlington Laboratories, LLC

Comcast -- Western New England Region

*Counseling Service of Addison County

Country Home Products

*Crowe Horwath LLP

Edward Jones

King Arthur Flour

LORD MicroStrain Sensing Systems

*Marathon Health

Okemo Mountain Resort

Seventh Generation Inc

Southwestern Vermont Health Care

*Stantec Consulting Services Inc.

Stowe Mountain Resort

Vermont Energy Investment Corporation

*Vermont Mutual Insurance Group

*First time on the list

 Company Descriptions:

SMALL/MEDIUM EMPLOYER

 (15-149 U.S. EMPLOYEES)                         

1              Vermont Housing Finance Agency

VHFA's mission is to finance and promote affordable, safe and decent housing opportunities for low and moderate income Vermonters. They provide access to low-cost, flexible, innovative programs for individuals in need of affordable mortgage financing. The impact of VHFA's work is to stimulate development, financing and preservation of affordable housing, including rental and home ownership and to encourage mechanisms to ensure that housing remains perpetually affordable. VHFA addresses the special needs of Vermonters who have disabilities or require supportive services or are homeless. VHFA heightens the general awareness of housing needs for low and moderate income Vermonters. 

For their employees, their goal is to create and sustain a workplace conducive to attracting and retaining a quality staff. VHFA pays 10% of pay into a 403(b) with no required match by the employee. All employees start with 31 holiday and vacation days and it increases a day each year up to 41. There are monthly lunches and community building activities for staff. Recognition awards are given for going above and beyond or doing something special, and managers can request spot bonuses for employees.

VHFA was created in 1974 and have financed over 28,000 homes and 8,000 apartments.

2              Instrumart

Instrumart is proud and honored to be one of Best Places Companies named this year. Instrumart attributes its success to being an employee focused company. Instrumart takes excellent care of their employees which in turn allows the employees to take excellent care of their customers. The company has an extensive benefits package that includes 100% employer paid health care and a corporate gym membership for the whole family. Employee turnover has been under 2% over the past 5 years. One of Instrument’s core values is a healthy work/life balance. They work hard every day but they also have a lot of fun while at work. Some of the things that employees enjoy include monthly birthday cake celebrations, breakfast sandwich Friday’s, trick-or-treating and an Easter Egg Hunt for employee’s families ... the ice cream truck even comes every Friday in the summer! Instrumart is truly one of the Best Places to work in Vermont.

3              Vermont College of Fine Arts

Vermont College of Fine Arts is a national center for graduate arts education, fostering the excellence of established and emerging artists while advancing the arts to create a more humane world. The college is home to seven low-residency and one residential graduate arts programs, which includes Art & Design Education, Film, Graphic Design, Music Composition, Visual Art, Writing, Writing for Children & Young Adults, and Writing & Publishing. 

Employees understand both short- and long-term institutional goals. There is flexibility and transparency across all employee levels, and they maintain this by their 100 percent open door policy — including the President's Office — and ongoing all-staff meetings.

There is a work culture that respects and supports the creative lives and practices of staff. Employees have opportunities to attend faculty lectures, author readings, musical performances, and film screenings as they occur during program residencies. There are also regular departmental luncheons, gatherings, and holiday parties. 

Employees have a flexible work schedule, tuition remission and generous health, vacation and retirement benefits.

Staff is given ample time off in appreciation of their hard work, and their workplace is environmentally conscious, promotes a healthy lifestyle, and is pet-friendly!

4              ASIC North, Inc

ASIC North is extremely proud to again be named as one of the Best Places to Work in Vermont. They could not be what they are without their employees. ASIC North was founded upon the fundamental belief that providing for the needs of employees enables employees to be productive and successful, thus strengthening the company. They feel very strongly about hiring and retaining the best talent, and they do that by providing a generous compensation package, including an excellent suite of benefits – fully paid health and dental insurance for employees and their dependents, disability insurance, life insurance, company sponsored family and community events, generous paid time off, flex time, and contributions to retirement accounts. They also provide an annual incentive program based on the growth of the company. ASIC North’s management team has an open door policy, and they hold quarterly review meetings for all employees to discuss the results of the most recent quarter as well as review their forecast for the foreseeable future. 

They provide free snacks and beverages in break rooms and catered lunches for meetings, sponsor fun employee events (that include family) - summer BBQ, baseball outing, holiday party. This year employees were invited to participate in a family event at a golf course which included games, a band and food.

There is paid time off for volunteering in the community. In certain circumstances employees receive bonuses for a successful project completion.

They believe all of these factors make ASIC North a great place to work. They clearly value their employees’ opinions and will strive to do their best!

5              Fuse, LLC

Fuse, LLC is a youth culture marketing agency that connects brands with teens and young adults.  This marks the sixth consecutive year that Fuse has been named to the list! The Fuse staff, led by partners Bill Carter, Issa Sawabini and Brett Smith, is comprised of marketing professionals and cultural experts who have worked for some of the most prominent brands and agencies in the country.

Fuse’s employees receive substantial benefits and are encouraged to pursue a healthy work-life balance by taking advantage of unique perks such as generous vacation time, a winter season’s pass to a local mountain resort of their choice, an annual fitness stipend, dog-friendly offices, an on-site mini skateboard ramp and fitness equipment, and half-day Fridays in the summer. 

Fuse also encourages its staff to engage with the local community, offering paid time off for volunteering and organizing monthly volunteer opportunities. 

Employees who reach their five- and ten-year milestones with the company receive personalized tenure packages such as heli-boarding trips to British Columbia and scuba diving trips to Costa Rica. 

Fuse's services include consumer insights, brand strategy, experiential marketing, creative services, and social media.

6              Cathedral Square

Cathedral Square is a company with a heart and a purpose. They live by their mission of creating healthy homes, caring communities, and positive aging; they want to make a difference in the lives of others. As a recognized leader in service enriched housing, they provide a quality of life to elderly and disabled individuals that may not have had it otherwise. 

Cathedral Square provides a positive atmosphere, encourages self-growth and values their employee’s ideas and accomplishments. What sets them apart is their excellent benefit package, wellness program, genuine care for employees and a family friendly atmosphere. 

They are a strong team with a common goal.

Best practices include holiday parties, free pint of ice cream employee birthdays, paid time off for social and wellness events, service awards. The company participated in Vermont Corporate Cup Challenge in May 2015.

They even celebrated being number 9 for the 2015 Best Places to Work at Magic Hat Brewery: cheers with Magic Hat #9!

7              Gallagher, Flynn & Company, LLP

Gallagher Flynn continues to live by their vision statement: “Gallagher Flynn strives to be the best by contributing profoundly to the success of our clients, employees and community.”  In order to be successful in these key areas, it is critical that they provide the highest level of service to their clients so that they can continue to grow and be successful.

They are passionate about their staff and they strive to treat each of them fairly and with dignity, keeping a healthy perspective about life and work and fostering a positive and enjoyable work environment. They encourage their staff to live values by being of service to their community by providing time off and financial support whenever possible.   

Best practices include the office closing at 2 PM on summer Fridays, a 4/15 tax deadline party and a formal holiday party, annual chili/dessert contest, flexible/reduced schedules to accommodate their family life, sponsoring a company softball team, and on-the-spot monetary recognition. And this year for the first time: The Ugly Sweater Contest!

8              Vermont Public Radio

Vermont Public Radio provides an essential and trusted independent voice for news, information, music and cultural exploration for the people of our region. This is a fantastic place to work for so many reasons: every member of the team is committed to excellence in their respective disciplines, including high journalistic standards. They have built a culture of curiosity about the world and also about each other. They are inspired by the rich working environment, filled with smart, curious, funny, and passionate people. VPR’s public service mission is an opportunity to contribute in a meaningful way to their community. 

As a member of the VPR team, every person has a voice, and not just on the radio. All participate in the strategic planning and are empowered to be innovative and creative together. As in any family, they love to share food and laughs with each other. The VPR team cares for one another and helps each other in times of need. VPR has created a flexible work environment that invites everyone to explore their work/life balance. They strive to focus on learning new skills and disciplines from each other and experts around the world. 

They are constantly evolving the way they provide all the things listeners love about VPR. They are excited to move into their facility expansion in the next few months. The VPR team feels very fortunate to be a part of this incredible community.

9              Farm & Wilderness Foundation

At Farm & Wilderness employees work in a place that values creativity, families, and joyful play in a gorgeous Green Mountain setting. Farm & Wilderness operates seven summer camps and the employees get to enjoy the bounty of the gardens and dairy, inviting trails and sparkling lakes – which beckon all to leave their desks briefly and relish the outdoor times.

Set on a beautiful 500-acre campus in the Green Mountains of Vermont, Farm & Wilderness programs are rich in adventure, community, history, and spirit and foster an individual relationship with the natural world. While each camp and initiative provides unique programs based on age and interests, all F&W activities are shaped by Quaker principles and the common belief that individuals and communities are strengthened by justice, honesty, self-reliance, diversity and respect for all persons.

Best practices include an open door policy with management, a child friendly office, up to 5 days of paid professional development, a CSA and other local produce made available, and monthly potluck lunches where staff appreciations are encouraged.

10           AllEarth Renewables

Everyone at AllEarth Renewables is passionate about what they do, and the team reflects that. They want to change the world. They have built a company filled with talented, dedicated people who share a commitment to renewable energy. They are working to make renewable energy available to all and to create a cleaner future. The employees embody this mission both professionally and personally.

It's AllEarth's employees that make the company one of the Best Places to Work in Vermont. They work really hard to show their gratitude by offering a great benefits package that includes a well-funded cafeteria plan to purchase insurances or take the exact equivalent in pay, profit sharing, generous time off, a Sabbatical program, a 401K Plan that matches 50% of the employee's contribution, a free and healthy family-style lunch program, a wellness allowance, and paid community service time. Full staff meetings every month track the successes and challenges of employees. 

Their REWIRE program generously incentivizes employees to achieve or maintain a low carbon footprint.

AllEarth’s culture of innovation translates to the phenomenal team they have built. They value their people as much as they value the products they manufacture, and that makes all the difference.

11           The University of Vermont Foundation

The UVM Foundation exists solely to benefit the University of Vermont, serving as the preferred conduit for all private contributions to all areas of the University. Working with University students, faculty and staff, the Foundation stewards relationships with alumni, parents and friends, identifying volunteer opportunities, cultivating and soliciting support, and communicating the impact of support. The UVM Foundation also encompasses the UVM Alumni Association.

Best practices include generous vacation policies and terrific benefits.

They provide access to financial/retirement planners to ensure employees are making good savings decisions and preparing for their financial futures.

Employees are eligible for tuition to UVM or any other VT State College.

There are winter and summer staff parties, lunch time BBQs, free fitness center access.

They have Staff Appreciation Day and the P.R.I.D.E. Award - Peer selected award presented annually to employee who best embodies the organizational values of Pride, Respect, Integrity, Dedication, and Excellence.

12           Renewable NRG Systems

RNRG is honored to be selected as a recipient of the Best Places to Work in Vermont award, and to be recognized amongst the many well-deserving organizations in this State. 

Renewable NRG Systems (RNRG) began inventing products for the wind industry more than 30 years ago, when the industry was just in its infancy. Today, nearly two-thirds of all wind energy produced on the planet can be tied back to their broad line of products, most of which are designed and manufactured right here in Vermont. You’ll find their products being used by electric utilities, turbine OEMs, project developers, research institutes, and government agencies in more than 150 countries from Australia to Zimbabwe.

The company-wide goal is to manage a well-run, profitable company where employees feel good about coming to work every day and have opportunities to do their very best work. 

The BPTW award is a great recognition of their resilience in a volatile industry and their tenacity in sustaining a dedicated and passionate workforce. Organizational change does not happen quickly nor without risk and discomfort. In 2014-2015, their focus has been on four key areas: fueling existing products, growing into new sectors, innovating up and down the value chain, and aligning their people and processes in a forward-focused direction. The alignment goal has helped them focus especially on clear and open communications, driving decision-making deeper into their organization, formalizing leadership development efforts, and emphasizing collaboration and innovation throughout. 

13           Hickok & Boardman Financial Planning & HR Intelligence

At Hickok & Boardman Financial Planning & HR Intelligence the employees deserve credit for creating an environment of trust, camaraderie, and fun. They have a forward-thinking and collaborative team and encourage everyone to proactively share their ideas and creativity. Employees are supported and empowered through the culture committee to use those ideas and creativity to engineer and sustain their workplace environment and culture. Employees give their personal best, working and celebrating together as a family.

This is not your typical workplace. It is a family of passionate, highly skilled, and fun-loving people who care about the wellbeing of teammates, clients, and community. They support workplace programs like flexible schedules that allow employees to get their work done while balancing their personal lives. They take great pride in working together to give back to the community in which they live and work. 

Having fun is part of their mission: playing bocce ball, writing on the graffiti wall in their office, team meeting breakfasts, an annual pumpkin decorating contest, and a chocolate competition. The monthly "Tigger" award recognizes employees who do the right thing while embracing H&R values to positively impact workplace spirit.

14           Union Mutual of Vermont

Union Mutual is a property-casualty insurance carrier that has been dedicated to the greater Vermont community for over 140 years, providing outstanding customer service to their independent agents and a challenging, spirited work environment to their highly engaged employees. The Company is built on a foundation of long-term relationships, and the employees value that dependability – their longest-tenured employee has been with the company for 42 years! Union Mutual offers a professional work environment, competitive salaries and a comprehensive benefit package that goes well beyond the expected. The Company invests in its employees as well, encouraging continued learning opportunities to further their development and the achievement of individual and Company goals. Union Mutual employees enjoy an amazing array of activities and events that foster an overall spirit of teamwork: Spring Spirit Week, ping pong tournaments, an in-house gym to go along with a company wellness initiative, charitable giving and volunteering opportunities including a Casual for a Cause program that allows employees to wear jeans to work any day of the week, random BBQs on sunny days, a Free Ice Cream Day for the city of Montpelier, raffles for tickets to shows and sporting events, and so much more.

15           Wild Apple Graphics, Ltd.

Wild Apple publishes and licenses art ... and they love it. Creativity may be at the core of their business but they wouldn't be able to achieve their goals without their amazing, dedicated and talented staff that share the Wild Apple vision to "find, create and deliver great art for the world." Family is important so they continue to focus on creating a casual, creative, fun and fast-paced environment where staff can feel supported both professionally and personally. Being part of a collaborative team is critical to the company’s success. They hold full staff meetings biweekly and everyone participates in annual company planning and goal setting. 

They believe in generous paid time-off as well as paying 100% of health insurance premiums. They have an “open book” policy on financials, and quarterly profit sharing for all employees. 

In 2015 they provided extensive EQ training for employees so that they could grow together as a team. They also implemented 2 major technology upgrades improving the systems and process to create opportunities for success. 

Finally, and as always. They try to live by the Golden Rule, and they consume extraordinary amounts of chocolate.

16           Rhino Foods, Inc.

Rhino Foods is a global leader in the development and manufacture of bakery-style ice cream ingredients.  Rhino is known world-wide as the company that created chocolate chip cookie dough for ice cream.

Rhino, a Certified B Corporation, believes that to be a successful business they must invest in their human capital. Rhino takes this belief beyond their four walls and beyond work hours to impact the employees’ development at work, at home, and in their community.

The Rhino Foods Employee Principle states: “We establish relationships with our employees and their families founded upon a climate of mutual trust and respect within an environment for listening and personal expression. We provide a vehicle for our people to develop and achieve their personal and professional aspirations.”

To that end Rhino has Employee Appreciation Days with meal, family events, summer picnics and winter bowling party and monthly birthday celebrations. They offer on-site personal development and/or stress management seminars, and financial education workshops.

17           iSystems, LLC.

The number one factor behind iSystems winning this Best Places to Work in Vermont award is that the Leadership Team has made a “Winning Culture” a strategic goal for the organization. They use this strategic purpose to drive their hiring, development and engage goals and decisions. The employees know that they are genuinely cared about, not just another number. Employee’s trust the leaders and managers of the organization and understand how their job function contributes to iSystems success. 

They have a highly engaged and dedicated social committee that they call, “The Spirit Committee.” The Spirit Committee solicits employee ideas through surveys on desired employee activities and fund raisers opportunities which the Committee then implements with flare and charisma!

Best practices also include FOOD - they have many potlucks & order food often for special occasions, and there is an annual dinner cruise on the lake. They created and hosted a company "Jeopardy" game, spent teambuilding time at Northern Lights Rock & Ice, and the company participated in the 2015 Dragon Boat Festival.

18           Basin Harbor Club

Basin Harbor is committed to creating memorable experiences that keep their guests, members and local community happy. They understand and celebrate the fact that this starts with their employees. They go to great lengths to find the best people they can, and it shows in guest comments on friendly, helpful staff. They strive to not only provide excellent customer service to their guests but also remember that often their fellow staff members are customers too. They aim to treat everyone with respect and courtesy. Basin Harbor’s location on Lake Champlain nestled in between The Green Mountains and The Adirondacks enables their employees to enjoy the local area and the resort's amenities just as their guests do. Their goal is everyone works hard yet plays hard during the summer at BHC! Basin Harbor is truly one of Vermont's Best Place to Work!

19           SunCommon

SunCommon believes that everyone has the right to a healthy environment and safer world. Their mission is to tear down the barriers that have made renewable energy inaccessible. They make going solar easy and affordable, so that all Vermonters can together create a healthy environment.

During their first 3 years in business, SunCommon installed over 1000 solar systems in our state. Founded as a pioneering Benefit Corporation, and recognized as a Certified B Corp, SunCommon is committed to the triple bottom line of people, planet and profit. The majority of the 65 employees work out of the Energy Mill, New England's largest net-zero office building. 

Their field staff are provided with hybrid vehicles. Employees are honored with solid benefits, including all of their family's health and dental insurance. Lunch is provided weekly, along with weekly all-company meetings when open-book financials are shared and operations advanced. Employees can participate on the B Team, which is convened to address areas in which they can do better for their workers, neighbors, and our environment. SunCommon celebrates work and life with frequent parties, recognition and appreciation. And they also have their own bouncy house!

20           Liquid Measurement Systems, Inc.

Liquid Measurement Systems supplies world class fuel gauging and management systems to the aerospace industry.

They know that as a Company their greatest asset is their people. Their highest priority is to build a Company whose culture reflects their core values: Engagement, Excellence, Integrity, Innovation and Teamwork. LMS is committed to smart strategic growth that stays true to these values. They hire and retain only those who bring the highest level of energy, commitment and integrity to their work, and they are rewarded with a great package of compensation and benefits.

The people create a dynamic environment of growth, meaningful work, challenge and opportunity with focus on the future. The company inspires this environment by offering fun and rewarding events like BBQ Wednesday's during the summer, Ground Hog Chili Cook-Off, picnics, winter party with award presentations, gift cards to the team that built the 100th or 1000th product, National Walk at Lunch Day, ice cream socials and ugly sweater day.

LMS measures their success by the integrity with which they treat their customers, users, and employees. That’s what makes LMS a great place to work.

21           Jasper Hill

Jasper Hill Farm was borne out of the desire to find meaningful work in a place they love. The company mission is to make the best possible quality artisanal cheese in a way that supports Vermont’s working landscape. They are driven to be the standard bearer of quality and innovation in the artisan cheese industry, while promoting regional taste of place.

The Jasper Hill family of businesses now includes two dairy farms, two creameries, hay drying facility, and a state-of-the-art cheese aging facility. As business has grown, they have fostered a culture of teamwork that focuses on the quality of work they do, sharing the successes when they succeed and working together when they need to improve. 

The company practices open-book management and strives for transparency and clear communication across departments and management levels, to empower every team member to make decisions that improve the company’s standing.

Best company practice embraces subsidized health care, flexible schedules to accommodate working families, vegetable CSA in the summer, and celebrations that include pizza parties and family meals where they cook and eat together.

22           The Richards Group

The Richards Group is a full-service insurance and financial services firm that provides comprehensive risk management, employee benefits and investment solutions for clients throughout Vermont, New Hampshire and Massachusetts. Clients and employees are their most valued relationships and they continually strive to deepen these connections.

The success of The Richards Group and their clients can be directly attributed to the engagement of their employees – something that they nurture and never take for granted. Many of their benefits they offer to employees include: wellness initiatives like on-site biometric screening, flu clinics, ergonomic testing and lunch time yoga classes, employee appreciation parties, generous paid time off, yearly profit sharing, and support for employee community engagement activities.

Other fun initiatives for employees are lunch time pizza during inclement weather, recognition awards, holiday gift certificates and free frozen yogurt breaks. There was a wellness initiative called "Walk to Miami" that even provided pedometers and incentives for staff.

LARGE EMPLOYER

(150 OR MORE U.S. EMPLOYEES)

1              Edward Jones

Financial Advisor Karen Ward in Newport chose Edward Jones over other firms because of their award-winning training program. She hasn’t been disappointed. 

“It's been more than six months now and I wake up smiling every single day,” Karen marvels. “The formal training is world class, but that is just the tip of the iceberg. There is a whole community of experienced Edward Jones financial advisors right here in Vermont who have helped me to get off to an amazing start as I work to make a difference in our clients' lives. Everyone around me is invested in my success working with serious, long-term individual investors. Without a doubt, I chose the right financial investment firm. It feels great to be home.”

That is just one reason Edward Jones associates rank the firm as a best place to work and why the company continues to attract talented people to be financial advisors and branch office administrators as they grow in Vermont and other states. Financial advisors and branch office administrators located in two-person offices all over Vermont find they are supported and appreciated in many ways. With rewarding work serving clients comes work-life flexibility, trimester bonuses, and annual profit sharing. Ownership in the firm is like being an entrepreneur, with no financial investment, but with extensive firm support. 

2              Marathon Health

Marathon Health has been named one of Vermont’s “Best Places to Work” for one reason—their people.

The employees refer to themselves as “Ambassadors” because they believe passionately in the company’s mission to change the way healthcare is delivered and inspire people to take control of their own health. Marathon Health has been very successful in hiring Ambassadors who not only fit in with the company’s culture, but truly “live the mission” through their integrity, compassion, respect, exceptional service and teamwork.

Since the Ambassadors make it their mission to improve the lives of others, it’s only natural for the company to strive to improve the Ambassadors’ lives as well. They are rewarded for their hard work and passion through a support system that includes free onsite health coaching services, an in-depth initial training program and robust Learning Management System for ongoing professional growth and development, and an open-door policy with all of their executive leadership team. There is also a generous vacation plan, encouragement to volunteer in the community in events like Penguin Plunge, an Employee of the Month STAR program, anniversary recognition, and office gatherings such as pot lucks & holiday parties.

3              Comcast -- Western New England Region

Comcast Corporation is a global media and technology company with two primary businesses, Comcast Cable and NBCUniversal. Comcast Cable is one of the nation's largest video, high-speed Internet and phone providers to residential customers under the XFINITY brand and also provides these services to businesses. Comcast's Western New England Region (WNER),  one of Comcast Cable's 15 regions nationally, which extends from the Canadian border to Long Island Sound, was named the company's Region of the Year for 2014. Residential and business customers are covered in Connecticut, Vermont and western Massachusetts, as well as small parts of western New Hampshire and eastern New York. The WNER has more than 1,700 employees across those states.

Employee benefits include free or discounted cable, Internet and phone services. The company generously contributes to benefits, including a 100% employer match up to 4.5% on 401(k) contributions, an employee stock purchase plan, and bonus programs.

A culture of collaboration and philanthropy exists from their recognition programs to their annual Comcast Cares Day. Employees appreciate Comcast as a company that acknowledges their collective efforts and that gives back to their communities.

4              Stantec Consulting Services Inc.

How was Stantec selected as one of the 2016 Best Places to Work in Vermont? It’s simple. They put people first. They do what is right. They are better together. They are driven to achieve. At Stantec, they are part of a team that embraces, inspires, and supports each individual professionally and personally. They are people who are deeply involved with their local communities and who strive every day to design/build remarkable projects that add value, accessibility and appeal to our beautiful towns, cities, and state. Staff/client relationships are based on mutual trust, understanding and professionalism that stand the test of time. They design with community in mind. Stantec management continually promotes growth and creativity, while cultivating enjoyment through friendly in-house competitions such as the annual chili cook-off, monthly all-staff gatherings, and recognizing the best in each other with Paper Plate Awards. More importantly, they give back to their communities by volunteering time and money to worthy causes that touch both personally and on a global level. Stantec aims to make a difference in the places where they live and work.

5              Seventh Generation Inc

The employees at Seventh Generation believe in their mission. Their mission isn’t just “something cool” that they get to brag about the company doing, it is a way of working and a lifestyle for each of them. They believe that an engaged employee is a happy employee, and they rely on their insight and honest feedback to make sure that they continue to push for what’s right. There are too many challenges in the world, and too many communities to sit idly by.  By leveraging their people’s passions and meeting them wherever they are at on their personal sustainability journey, they offer people a chance to do more good. 

Best practices for their employees include massages, shortened workdays on Fridays in the summer, and take your child to work day events. Their VIBE team surprises employees on a regular basis, i.e.: dressing in lederhosen and bringing bratwurst and beer to employees for Octoberfest.

From using their hands and hearts to help neighbors in need to advocating for meaningful environmental & social policy reform, they rely on the collective wisdom and will of their team to make it happen. That’s caring today for Seven Generations of tomorrows.

6              Vermont Mutual Insurance Group

“At Vermont Mutual, we appreciate the unique talents every individual brings. Here we have an energetic, respectful and cooperative working environment where careers flourish. Our team is dedicated and hard-working, enjoying both the challenges and the rewards that come from working in a respected and established insurance company. It’s no wonder why over 285,000 people trust Vermont Mutual to protect their homes and businesses.”

Vermont Mutual protects individuals and businesses. Their personal lines of business include insurance for automobiles, dwelling fires, home-owners, inland marine, and umbrella coverage. They also offer commercial lines of insurance, including automobiles, business-owners and umbrella coverage. Underwriting for these lines of coverage, as well as addressing claims for their insurance holders are conducted in-house.

Employees are valued at Vermont Mutual with Employee Appreciation events like the Ice Cream Truck and holiday lunches, ski ticket lottery, popcorn day and seasonal contests such as a Halloween costume contest, cook-offs, Employee Appreciation Day with a game show on a cruise ship. They enjoy flex-time, casual dress and early release every Friday.

They also have computer and health club reimbursement programs and on-site personal development.

7              Crowe Horwath LLP

In 2015, Crowe Horwath LLP (Crowe) expanded its national footprint into Burlington, Vermont, when it combined practices with Saslow Lufkin & Buggy, LLP.  Crowe’s Burlington personnel continue to focus on providing exceptional audit, accounting and tax services to captive and traditional insurance clients throughout the country. Crowe fosters a values-driven environment that encourages their people to challenge themselves in their career, while maintaining the firm’s core values of Care, Share, Invest and Grow. Their progressive work environment offers their people a high degree of flexibility through its mobility strategy which dictates what to wear and where to work are up to you at Crowe. Additionally, personnel can choose to work wherever it’s convenient and they’re most productive, with support from their managers. People enjoy other outstanding benefits including a generous PTO program, fitness center reimbursement, talent referral bonuses and bonuses for passing the CPA exam. More than the perks the firm provides, however, are the types of people they hire. Hardworking, committed and loyal, their people are part of a tight-knit family who enjoy spending time together outside of the office. 

8              Stowe Mountain Resort

“Stowe Mountain Resort is a special place where you can build relationships, challenge yourself to learn new skills and enjoy the benefits of living and working in a year round recreational community." They strive to hire staff that is committed to a workplace environment that is positive, healthy and safe. Most importantly, they are all proud of what they have to offer their guests and they share that enthusiasm with them every day.

They have on-site personal development and/or stress management workshops, seminars, and classes. Stowe Mountain Resort staff is encouraged to use the recreational facilities during working hours: they get to ski and golf! 

There are monthly summer staff appreciation events - ice cream, hot dogs, sausage days, talent shows, and competitions such as the Annual Caddy Shack and the Stowediterod. They have a Stowe Star Recognition Program for employees who go above and beyond the call fop duty, and a Stowe Rewards Program.

9              Country Home Products

Country Home Products (CHP) is a national and international retailer of its DR Power and Neuton brand lawn and garden equipment. CHP is headquartered in Vergennes, VT with an assembly facility in Winooski, VT. CHP has approximately 190 regular, full time employees and adds an additional seasonal workforce. 

CHP is very proud of their dedicated employees who make their company successful. All share a commitment to quality - in everything they do - and take great pride in the products they sell. They strive to treat their customers, vendors and one another with fairness, respect and appreciation with the service they provide. Everyone in the company has the opportunity to make a direct and meaningful impact on the company’s success and their own personal success as well.

Factors that make them unique include: management team who maintains an open door policy, generous benefits offering, paid volunteer days, a weekly fresh, organic veggie delivery, onsite foosball & ping-pong tables

 and onsite massages and chiropractic services.

Country Home Products has created a sought-after work environment - one that continually attracts the very best people. That’s why they have won a Best Places to Work Award 7 times!

10           Burlington Laboratories, LLC

Michael and Jodie Casarico founded Burlington Labs because they knew that outstanding drug testing would make addiction treatment more successful – which would help save lives. Over the last decade, that team of 2 has become a force of nearly 200, and the company’s passion for that mission has also grown exponentially. Every employee who joins Burlington Labs brings a genuine admiration for the individuals who have the courage to envision a better life for themselves, free from addiction, and who make the commitment to treatment. Employees find daily inspiration in knowing their work directly supports those individuals and is critical to their success. Burlington Labs hires people in recovery and donates a significant percentage of profits to help strengthen communities. The company has invested in recovery centers; funded documentaries that have inspired community conversations about addiction; and, in 2015, organized a walk that raised more than $20,000 for recovery centers around Vermont.

The company caters free lunch on Friday's as well as offers snack wagon and smoothies, birthday cake parties each month, Annual Employee Appreciation Day, seasonal and holiday parties, team building activities and they also sponsored and participated in the Dragon Boat event.

11           Vermont Energy Investment Corporation

VEIC is dedicated to reducing the economic and environmental costs of energy use, working with utilities, government agencies, and foundations on the design and delivery of energy efficiency and renewable energy services.

They have been named among the Best Places to Work in Vermont six years running.

VEIC views employee engagement as a key component of achieving its mission. Included in its long-term sustainability goals is a commitment to reduce the average GHG footprint per staff person by 50%. VEIC provides financial incentives to encourage employees to make their homes more energy efficient, and to encourage their investment in sustainable technology such as electric vehicles.

VEIC emphasizes the importance of work-life balance, providing a flexible work schedule and bright, open, lively office space with ample daylight, artwork and color.

VEIC also promotes fun and health, making a bike fleet available to all staff, providing benefits and incentives to support active lifestyles, hosting monthly employee birthday celebrations, holding an annual family picnic, and many other activities that build a sense of community and family.

12           Okemo Mountain Resort

At Okemo, everything they do as a family business reflects their desire to support the staff in what they do to create “The Okemo Difference” for their guests. Each day the Okemo team takes on challenges and opportunities with a work ethic that is second to none. The staffs’ desire to succeed is mixed with smiles, laughter and cherished friendships. Okemo is in the people business! They provide exceptional vacations for their guests, while creating a great team atmosphere for the employees – sharing their passion, making memories – they call their culture and experience - “The Okemo Difference.” Living Values of Safety, Service, Sustainability and Teamwork, they work together, giving the extra 1% in everything they do. They believe it is through this focus and dedication that they have been fortunate enough to achieve Best Places to Work in Vermont 2014, 2015 and 2016. They feel honored to represent the ski industry as the first ski resort in the state to have achieved this designation. This is a tremendous accomplishment for everyone on the Okemo Team.

13           Southwestern Vermont Health Care

Southwestern Vermont Health Care is proud to be named one of Vermont’s Best Places to Work in 2016.

SVHC employees receive thoughtful, mission-driven training; mentorship from leaders who model organizational values; the tools they need to complete their work; and as many professional growth opportunities as possible.

Nurses at SVMC find an energized, empowered, and supportive environment, all qualities necessary to have maintained the ANCC Magnet Recognition for Nursing Excellence since 2002.

Each employee—whether they have worked with SVHC for 20 years or 20 days—is encouraged to share thoughts for improving patient care. And when the organization does well, everyone celebrates success together.

Competitive pay and benefits, a healthy living program, on-site childcare, and an excellent paid-time-off program allow SVHC employees to take care of themselves and their families. 

Employees’ favorite thing about working at SVHC is the culture of caring and teamwork. In a survey one employee commented, “We truly are a family here. In difficult situations, everyone goes out of their way to help.” By caring for each other, employees improve their ability to care for patients.

All of these factors combine to make SVHC a great place to work and receive health care.

14           King Arthur Flour

Celebrating over 225 years in business, King Arthur Flour is America's oldest flour company and premier baking resource, offering the company's high-quality flour, with more than 1,000 tested and trusted baking tools and ingredients that are available through their Baker's Catalogue. Their mixes, tools, recipes, and educational opportunities have been an inspiration to bakers everywhere since 1790. King Arthur Flour has been 100% employee-owned since 2004, became a founding B Corporation in 2007, and a major sponsor of 1% for the Planet starting in 2014.

Beyond being 100% employee-owned, additional benefits for all full- and part-time employees includes: medical, vision, and dental coverage, paid volunteer time, employee stock ownership plan, 401(k) retirement savings plan, long and short term disability, tuition reimbursement, subsidized exercise classes and CSA program, financial incentives for participating in the Wellness and Green Commute programs that encompasses all: physical, emotional and spiritual, a generous discount at The Baker’s Store, café, and Baking Education Center in Norwich, Vermont. 

Volunteering includes teaching Veterans and inspiring young bakers across America how to bake.

And, of course, Recognition! … as an employee owner with knighting/vesting ceremonies; and as a veteran.

15           Counseling Service of Addison County

The Counseling Service of Addison County has provided a wide range of mental health services to the communities of Addison County since 1959. Their mission is to promote stable and safe communities by helping people live safe and satisfying lives. They offer psychiatry, employment support, substance abuse treatment, counseling, social work, residential homes, emergency services, and child and family therapy. They work collaboratively with many local community organizations to help improve the quality of life for all Addison County residents.

Meaningful work where they can make a difference; Great clinical supervision; Flexibility

Best company practices for employees include on site, modern gym facilities with cardio machines, weights, shower and lockers, and on site delivery of fresh veggies for CSA shareholders. The company hosts a celebration during work hours with healthy snacks and cupcakes to recognize years of service. They do a "Get Up and Go for PTO" - a team competition where employees work towards wellness goals and win paid time off. They have celebrations throughout the year, picnics in summer and holiday parties.

16           LORD MicroStrain Sensing System

LORD MicroStrain Sensing Systems in Williston, Vermont, is a global, ISO-9001 certified, award-winning developer of sensing technology, including inertial sensors, wireless sensing systems, displacement sensors, and custom software. From rapidly-deployed test and measurement technology to customized, long-term embedded solutions, LORD MicroStrain’s innovations are designed for a wide variety of applications, including structural health monitoring, condition-based maintenance, navigation and control, environmental monitoring, and rotating component health.

LORD MicroStrain’s technological advances have been recognized by Sensors magazine with more than a dozen Best of Sensors Expo awards, and by Machine Design magazine, the State of Vermont, the Manufacturing Leadership Council, and many others. MicroStrain was founded in 1987. In 2012 it was acquired by LORD Corporation.

Since 2013 LORD MicroStrain has been proud to be named the annual Best Places to Work in Vermont list. This is due to the many employee perks and benefits which include a company-wide Wellness program that encourages exercise, de-stressing, and a healthy diet, a day of paid volunteer leave with organizations such as Habitat for Humanity, a generous benefits package, including Friday flex-days, summer cook-outs with Cornhole tournaments, free coffee all the time, …and the famous Bagel Fridays!