There’s no doubt that salary is an important part of anyone’s job. But these days, company benefits also play a big role in attracting — and retaining — job candidates. Most companies offer employee benefits such as health insurance and paid vacation. Many also offer 401(k) plans, which have become a key tool in helping employees plan their financial futures. According to a May 2019 report from Fidelity, employers contributed an average of 4.7% of employees’ salaries to their 401(k)s in the first quarter of 2019, which was a record high.
But not all 401(k) plans are created equal. Some employers match employee contributions at a higher percentage and some include profit-sharing in the deal. A competitive 401(k) plan should have both low fees and a good company match. Although not all of the companies here provide specifics on their fees or what they match, they all have one thing in common — their employees love their job benefits, and that includes their 401(k)s.
AAA Club Alliance
AAA Club Alliance scored 4.3 stars out of five on Glassdoor for its benefits package. That’s not surprising given the fact that the company matches employee contributions to the 401(k) plan at 7%. AAA Club Alliance also offers employees four weeks of paid time off and paid holidays as well as a paid training and tuition reimbursement program.
Accenture helps clients grow and transform their businesses. New employees don’t have to wait to become active in the 401(k) program at Accenture — everyone is immediately eligible to contribute. Employees do have to complete one year of service before matching kicks in. Once that happens, employees get a matching contribution for each dollar they contribute up to to 6% of their eligible compensation. Employees are 100% vested in their own contributions immediately and have to wait only two years to become 100% vested in Accenture’s matching contributions.
Aya Healthcare is a travel nurse agency that was voted a top workplace five years in a row by The San Diego Union-Tribune. The company offers a matching 401(k) plan but doesn’t disclose the percentage. Other benefits include reimbursement for nurse’s licenses, healthcare coverage from the first day on the job and wellness and nutrition programs.
Bain & Company
Boston-based Bain & Company, a global management consultancy, treats its employees well enough to earn 4.8 stars out of five on Glassdoor’s benefits rating. In addition to a 401(k) match, Bain offers a top-notch health insurance plan as well as maternity and paternity leave and an employee well-being program.
Chick-fil-A’s 401(k) plan ranks first among companies in the accommodations and food services industry, according to a June 2019 analysis conducted by Money. A Chick-fil-A employee’s average 401(k) balance was $158,188, the analysis found, which was more than triple the industry average of $47,788. All eligible, full-time Chick-fil-A employees can enroll in the 401(k), and the company matches up to 5%.
CNX Resources Corporation
CNX Resources, an independent gas exploration and production company, offers its employees a long list of benefits. One of those benefits is a 401(k) plan that provides employees with a 6% company match. The plan boasts about $797 million in assets and more than 4,400 participants. CNX also offers other corporate perks such as on-site exercise facilities, paid parental leave, flexible work schedules and employee assistance and relocation programs.
Costco wants its employees to retire comfortably. To help them reach that goal, the company matches employee contributions at 50 cents on the dollar for the first $1,000 each year, for a maximum match of $500 a year ($250 a year for West Coast Union employees). Once employees meet eligibility requirements, Costco makes a contribution to their accounts once a year. Eligibility is based on a percentage of employees’ eligible earnings. That percentage rises as an employee puts in more years of service.
E. & J. Gallo Winery
E. & J. Gallo Winery is a family-owned company that treats its employees like family. In fact, employees gave its benefits program 4.8 stars out of five on Glassdoor. In addition to offering employees a profit-sharing retirement plan, it offers pretax and after-tax 401(k) plans with a company match. Employees get a 100% match of contributions of up to 6% of their salaries, according to the BenefitsPro website. There’s also no vesting period.
An automaker that once filed for bankruptcy might not seem like a good candidate to offer competitive employee benefits, but General Motors does just that. Its 401(k) plan provides employees with both a match and GM retirement contributions. According to one employee on Glassdoor, “GM contributes 4% no matter what and matches an additional 4%.”
GoFundMe is a crowdfunding site that caters to individuals, groups and organizations. The company takes care of its employees with 401(k) matching, though it doesn’t disclose the percentage. On Glassdoor, one former GoFundMe employee said the company has an “extremely strong culture, interesting perks like (30-minute) long massages and catered lunches, nice 401(k) match, generous healthcare and regular volunteer projects on site.” Other perks include performance bonuses and unlimited sick time.
In 2018, natural yogurt maker GoGo squeeZ earned a spot on Glassdoor’s list of the best places to work. One reason is its comprehensive benefits package, which keeps employees happy with top-notch health insurance, gym stipends, bonuses and social events. The company’s 401(k) plan features a company match of 4% and a full vesting period of only 90 days.
In 2018, Honeywell looked to bolster its workers’ retirement savings by increasing how much it matches employee contributions to its 401(k) plan. According to an article on Forbes’ site, Honeywell employees who had been getting a 75% match on the initial 8% of pay had their match boosted to 87.5%. The maximum company match for these workers rose to 7% from 6%. Workers who had been getting a 37.5% match on the first 8% of pay had their match hiked to 43.75%, while the maximum employer match climbed to 3.5% from 3%.
Imgur is an online image-sharing community that scored 4.7 stars out of five on Glassdoor for its benefits program. The company offers 401(k) matching but doesn’t disclose the percentage. One reviewer on Glassdoor put the match at 4%. Other benefits Imgur offers include up to 12 weeks of paid maternity or paternity leave and flexible paid time off.
Kimley-Horn & Associates
Fortune named this planning and design consultant one of the 100 best companies to work for in 2019. No doubt its benefits package played a role in the honor. The company states on its website that its average employee’s 401(k) plan is on track to replace 70% of their income in retirement, which is nearly triple the percentage on the average 401(k) plan. Kimley-Horn provides a two-to-one 401(k) match on the first 4% an employee contributes. The company also offers a generous profit-sharing program.
Lone Pine Capital
Founded in Greenwich, Connecticut, in 1997, Lone Pine Capital is a hedge fund that started 2019 with $19 billion in assets under management. Employees here seem to have no problem building lucrative retirement accounts. Lone Pine Capital’s average 401(k) account balance is $1.04 million, according to Money. That’s far above the industry average of $148,684. Lone Pine’s 401(k) plan has more than $136 million in assets and more than 100 active participants.
RealSelf is a healthcare marketplace that lets users browse patient reviews and read medical expert opinions on treatments and providers. The company got 4.8 stars out of five on Glassdoor for its benefits package. RealSelf offers a matching 401(k) but doesn’t disclose the percentage. It does say the plan has a profit-sharing component, more than $5.1 million in assets and more than 200 active participants.
SES Americom is a provider of satellite and ground communications solutions. The average account balance in its 401(k) plans is $290,142, or more than twice the industry average balance of $106,066. One Glassdoor user said SES has a “[g]reat 401(k) match up to 5% and PDO (personal days off) of 20 to 25 days.”
Employees of Southwest Airlines can save for retirement through both Roth and pretax 401(k) plans. The company matches employee contributions dollar-for-dollar for up to 9.3% of their eligible earnings. Not only is Southwest’s 401(k) plan very competitive, the company also offers employees a profit-sharing benefit equal to 10.8% of their eligible compensation.
Simpson, Thacher & Bartlett
The average 401(k) account balance at the Simpson, Thacher & Bartlett law firm is $667,815 — more than twice the industry average. The firm’s other benefits include flexible work arrangements, off-site emergency child care, a subsidized on-site cafeteria, a $2,000 technology stipend and matching donations to law schools.
Ultimate Software develops and sells UltiPro, a cloud-based human capital management software system for businesses. Its 401(k) savings plan features a 45% company match on every dollar an employee contributes, with no cap. Other benefits include unlimited personal time off, 100% covered health insurance premiums and in-vitro fertility coverage.
Vimeo is a video-sharing platform formed by a group of filmmakers in 2004. Today it serves more than 80 million creators who can share and promote their work on the platform. Employees gave its benefits program 4.4 stars out of five on Glassdoor. In June 2019, one employee wrote that Vimeo has the “best 401k program in the industry, by far. [It] just increased to a 100% match of up to 10% of an employee’s salary, [with a] max match of $10k a year.”
Despite what you might have read or heard about Walmart as an employer, the retail giant is very competitive in terms of matching 401(k) contributions. After one year of service, Walmart will match employees’ contributions dollar-for-dollar for up to 6% of their eligible pay. Say you earn $30,000 a year at Walmart and contribute 6% of your salary, or $1,800, to your 401(k). Walmart will match that with a $1,800 contribution of its own. Even hourly associates can contribute to Walmart’s 401(k). They can also buy company stock. Bonus: Walmart matches stock purchases with shares equal to 15% of those that employees buy.
Willowtree, an app development company with offices in Virginia, North Carolina and New York, has earned kudos from Fortune, Glassdoor and Inc. for being a top place to work. The company’s benefits include a 401(k) match, stock options, flexible work hours and gym memberships. Employees gave its benefits package a 4 1/2 out of five stars rating on Glassdoor, with one employee noting that workers receive company matching of up to 6% on 401(k)s.
With a 4.7-star rating out of five stars on Glassdoor, Zeta Associates’ benefits certainly seem popular enough. The company’s incorporated profit-sharing plan includes a 401(k) as well as a profit-sharing component. The plan has more than 500 participants and its assets total more than $304.2 million. Zeta doesn’t say what percentage it matches in its 401(k), but it does list the average employee 401(k) balance as $589,469, according to Money. That’s more than four times the industry average.
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Photo Disclaimer: Please note photos are for illustrative purposes only. As a result, some of the photos might not reflect the actual companies listed in this article.
About the Author
Barri Segal has 20+ years of experience in the publishing and advertising industries, writing and editing for all styles, genres, mediums, and audiences. She has been writing on personal finance topics for 12 years and gains great satisfaction from making a difference in consumers’ lives.