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For the fourth time and the second year in a row, Fortune has crowned Google the "best company to work for" in its annual tally of employers. Other tech firms on the list included SAS (2), NetApp (6), Ultimate Software (9), Qualcomm (11), Salesforce.com (19), Intuit (22), World Wide Technology Inc. (24), Rackspace Hosting (34), Cisco (42), Autodesk (54), Hitachi Data Systems (63), Intel (68) and Microsoft (75).
About Google, Fortune wrote, "The Internet juggernaut takes the Best Companies crown for the fourth time, and not just for the 100,000 hours of subsidized massages it doled out in 2012. New this year are three wellness centers and a seven-acre sports complex, which includes a roller hockey rink; courts for basketball, bocce, and shuffle ball; and horseshoe pits."
Slate's Farhad Manjoo noted, "At times Google’s largesse can sound excessive—noble but wasteful from a bottom-line perspective. In August, for example, Forbes disclosed one previously unannounced Google perk—when an employee dies, the company pays his spouse or domestic partner half of his salary for a decade. Yet it would be a mistake to conclude that Google doles out such perks just to be nice. POPS rigorously monitors a slew of data about how employees respond to benefits, and it rarely throws money away. The five-month maternity leave plan, for instance, was a winner for the company. After it went into place, Google’s attrition rate for new mothers dropped down to the average rate for the rest of the firm. 'A 50 percent reduction—it was enormous!' [Google's Laszlo] Bock says. What’s more, happiness—as measured by Googlegeist, a lengthy annual survey of employees—rose as well. Best of all for the company, the new leave policy was cost-effective. Bock says that if you factor in the savings in recruitment costs, granting mothers five months of leave doesn’t cost Google any more money."
PCMag's Stephanie Mlot observed, "Last year, Google jumped three spots from No. 4 in 2011 to No. 1."
The SFGate commented, "Noticeably absent from the list were both Twitter and Facebook. Both have spent big bucks on new offices in the last year — in San Francisco and Menlo Park, respectively — to attract new talent."