2018 When Work Works Awards Recognize Workplaces with Positive Cultures that Breed Success

Prestigious national SHRM awards honor employers committed to workplace flexibility, training employees and valuing individuals

November 5, 2018
ALEXANDRIA, Va. — The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) today announced the winners of the prestigious 2018 When Work Works Award. The 97 winning worksites in 35 states and the District of Columbia provide insight into the best practices of effective workplaces and related emerging trends.

Among the effective practices of winners, workplace flexibility was a common theme that inspired innovative efforts aimed at developing a dynamic workplace culture. The winners are organizations that embrace building positive work environments, promoting workplace learning, growing talent in their communities, and providing customized work schedules that support the needs of businesses and employees. Many winners also came up with creative activities and programs to promote teambuilding, inclusion and communication among all employees. 

For instance, one winning company has an “intrapreneuring” program that encourages any employee to submit and own new business ideas to advance organizational goals. Another implemented a culture-building initiative that has improved employee engagement and financial performance outcomes. All of these winners offered some kind of flexible scheduling, opportunities for education and career development, wellness activities, and other perks. 

“Each of the 2018 When Work Works Award winners tells a different story about how it created a dynamic, positive and effective workplace culture,” said Johnny C. Taylor, Jr., SHRM-SCP, president and CEO of SHRM. “But there are common themes among all winners’ practices. They are committed to workplace flexibility, mentoring and training employees, and having at the heart of their organizations an appreciation of the value of individual workers.”


The When Work Works Award—part of the SHRM When Work Works — recognizes employers that excel at employee initiatives such as work/life fit policies, flexible scheduling and transition to parenthood programs.

“The 2018 When Work Works Award winners found that cultivating a positive, caring workplace culture was ground zero for building a dynamic, engaged and committed workforce,” said Lisa Horn, SHRM vice president, Congressional Affairs. “These organizations developed HR policies and programs to support and maintain this environment, and they are reaping the benefits with increased retention, productivity and overall success for their investment.”

The award is earned after a rigorous assessment that emphasizes the real-life experiences of employees and incorporates national benchmarks of employer practices from SHRM’s National Study of Employers and the National Study of the Changing Workforce. Two-thirds of an organization’s winning score is based on a survey of its employees.

The top 10 winning workplaces are:

  • Worldwide101, New York, N.Y. 
  • Navy’s Credentials Program Office/Naval Education and Training, Pensacola, Fla.
  • The Autumn Group, Windham, N.H.  
  • Take Flight Learning, Marlton, N.J. 
  • iHire LLC, Frederick, Md.
  • NPC Research, Portland, Ore.
  • Harvest Group, Rogers, Ark. 
  • Corner Alliance Inc., Washington, D.C.
  • Purple Ink LLC, Carmel, Ind.
  • Isthmus Engineering Inc., St. Paul, Minn.

The top-scoring workplaces are small employers that offer substantial flextime and flexibility in where their employees can work. One large employer that won, BDO USA LLP, supports work-schedule customization for all levels of employees by providing “Flex Lead” volunteers in every office to help make this happen.

“Workplace learning, customized workflex, mentorship and employee-based innovation are just a few of the exciting workforce trends becoming a reality for those employed by the 2018 When Work Works Award winners,” said Cassidy Solis, senior advisor for workplace flexibility. “These organizations understand that workplace flexibility helps build great cultures and contributes to the success of employees and business.” 

To learn more about the awards, visit an interactive map that lists winning organizations by state and a list of winners by name.

Additional information about the When Work Works initiative also is online.

Media: For more information or to schedule an interview, contact Sundra Hominik at 703.535.6273 and Sundra.Hominik@shrm.org or Kate Kennedy at 703-535-6260 and Kate.Kennedy@shrm.org.

About When Work Works
When Work Works is a national initiative led by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) to help businesses of all sizes and types become more successful by transforming the way they view and adopt effective and flexible workplaces. When Work Works is one of the foremost providers of resources, rigorous research and best practices on workplace effectiveness and flexibility in the nation. The initiative administers the prestigious annual When Work Works Award, which recognizes exemplary employers for creating effective workplaces to increase business and employee success. Visit whenworkworks.org and follow us on Twitter @WhenWorkWorks.

About the Society for Human Resource Management
The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) is the world’s largest HR professional society, representing 300,000 members in more than 165 countries. For nearly seven decades, the Society has been the leading provider of resources serving the needs of HR professionals and advancing the practice of human resource management. SHRM has more than 575 affiliated chapters within the United States and subsidiary offices in China, India and United Arab Emirates. Visit us at shrm.org and follow us on Twitter and Instagram @SHRMPress.



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