BestCompaniesAZ and Career Connectors Host Diversity & Inclusion Career Event on November 1

Hundreds of Positions Available with Arizona’s Award-Winning Employers 

Phoenix, AZ (September 25, 2017) – BestCompaniesAZ is hosting its annual Diversity & Inclusion Career Event in partnership with Career Connectors on November 1, 2017 at the N. Phoenix Baptist Conference Center from 9-12, and is free to job seekers but advance registration is recommended at DiversityAZ.org 

A roster of award-winning companies will be offering hundreds of positions, at all levels, in the fields of finance, IT, healthcare, customer service/client relations, sales and hospitality. Sponsoring companies must have programs in place that support diversity and/or have earned at least one prestigious state and national workplace award to participate.  Most have earned many best practices awards, such as Diversity Inc.’s Top 50, Arizona’s Most Admired Companies, Top Companies to Work for in Arizona, Arizona’s Best Companies to Watch, FORTUNE 100 Best Companies to Work For® in America, FORTUNE Most Admired Companies, US Veterans Magazine’s Best of the Best and others. 

On event day, on-site registration and check-in for job seekers begins at 8:30 a.m.  Company representatives will be available to answer questions about their recruitment process and meet one-on-one with candidates. 

BestCompaniesAZ Career Events are unlike other job fairs because we feature award-winning companies meeting one-on-one with candidates in a casual, comfortable environment. BestCompaniesAZ has selected and will showcase ‘the BEST’ hiring companies in the state, those that are deeply dedicated to the principles of diversity in the workplace.  Each company has a distinct culture, and this is the place to come and learn about their differences. Additionally, we have joined forces with the dynamic nonprofit Career Connectors to share valuable resources with job seekers in advance of the event and on-site, all free of charge,” said Denise Gredler, BestCompaniesAZ founder and CEO. 

“We’re excited to be a part of this year’s Diversity & Inclusion Career Event. Most job seekers leave BestCompaniesAZ events very enlightened — with new contacts, resources, and hiring leads, all for taking the time to attend. Year-round at Career Connectors, we offer free networking events and many resources, including career coaching, resume writing and even assistance creating LinkedIn profiles to help people prepare for events and great hiring opportunities such as this,” said Jessica Pierce, Executive Director of Career Connectors. “It’s a win-win situation.” 

Featured 2017 BestCompaniesAZ hiring sponsors include Charles Schwab, Dignity Health Arizona, Progrexion, USAA, GoDaddy, Hyatt Regency-Phoenix, Vanguard, Direct Energy and Vixxo. Career Connectors partners that will be on-site include State Farm, Freedom Financial Network, NESCO Resource, Allstate, AFP Professionals, OPEN, New Horizons Learning Center, Coder Camps, and Goodwill of Central and Northern AZ.  Visit DiversityAZ.org for the full list of participants. 

About BestCompaniesAZ
BestCompaniesAZ has been at the forefront of identifying, developing and promoting Arizona’s best companies for more than a decade. As co-founder of the very first workplace award program in Arizona, BestCompaniesAZ is committed to helping companies maximize their branding, recruitment and retention results by offering consulting services in the areas of employee surveying, best practices, culture development and human resources. Outstanding achievement in these fields is promoted to the national workforce and H.R. communities through social media and local public relations outreach programs. BestCompaniesAZ offers quarterly events and annual award programs that promote and reward corporate best practices within Arizona. Companies interested in becoming a sponsor can reach BestCompaniesAZ at 480-545-5151. 

About Career Connectors
Career Connectors’ mission is to connect professionals in career transition to hiring companies and quality resources. As Arizona’s fastest growing job seeker program, the organization hosts no-cost job seeker events in Glendale, Chandler/Gilbert, Phoenix, and North Scottsdale. For more information, visit careerconnectors.org, or call 480-442-5806. 

#  #  # 

BestCompaniesAZ Media Contact:
Stephanie Burchfield
Burchfield & Wolin Public Relations
480-460-4111 O
602-418-2501 M
sburchfield@bwprinc.com 

 

Giving a Voice to the Largest Minority Group: DUNAMIS at USAA

By Lee Vikre | @LeeVikre

People with disabilities are twice as likely to be unemployed as the general working population. While this is disappointing, it also represents an opportunity for organizations who tap into this underutilized hiring market. 

Hiring people with disabilities isn’t just socially responsible, it benefits the company. People with disabilities tend to be experts in overcoming obstacles and innovation. They’ve had to be, since everyday situations that able-bodied people take for granted call for creative thinking for people with disabilities. Employers also find their disabled employees to be loyal, dependable, hardworking, and longer tenured.

Some employers still believe that hiring people with disabilities will cost more, but more than half of the accommodations people request cost little to nothing. Many accommodations include scheduling flexibility, dress code modifications, or sitting/standing adjustments – all of which are popular requests from employees in general. Honest communication during the interview process helps smooth the way, while focusing more on strengths than disabilities. Most of the time, accommodations are not a big deal.

What is a big deal, however, is building an inclusive environment. Existing employees are typically very accommodating if they understand the co-worker’s disability and the appropriate ways to interact.

Employee Resource Groups or Diversity Business Groups (DBGs) are powerful influencers for employees and employers alike. USAA’s DUNAMIS DBG has a dual purpose, according to Dareion Johnson, CPM, Program-Project Manager and DUNAMIS group chair. DUNAMIS stands for Disabled United iN Action to Make an Inclusive Society and is also a Greek word that means mighty, powerful, capable and “to have the ability to do more than what is perceived.” This newest DBG at USAA’s Phoenix campus provides a platform for people to be welcomed, valued, heard and respected; and if someone’s voice is not loud enough, DUNAMIS will speak loudly on their behalf.

Explains Johnson, “This is the one minority group any person can be a part of without ever wanting to and without any notice. It is one of the minority groups that is often forgotten, but has the largest membership of all the minority groups.”

One example of how a DBG can have a direct impact; DUNAMIS is creating awareness about service animals in the workplace, and how to interact with both employees and service animals. At an employee event, the DUNAMIS team brought in four service dogs and their handlers. Not only did they educate employees, but encouraged a number of USAA employees who are now becoming involved with service animals through donations, fostering, or training. Although USAA has always supported employees with service animals, the Phoenix Campus had their first two employees with service animals start in 2016. Now, USAA has over 6 employees with service dogs employed at this campus, with a projection of 10 by the end of 2017.

Johnson is enthusiastic about his experience with DUNAMIS. “When I hear the words, ‘I thought I was alone’ or ‘I am glad I am not the only one experiencing…’ I know we’ve made a connection, an impact.” He goes on to stress communication; “The only way we are going to be truly inclusive is to know when we are not being all-encompassing. Often not knowing is blocked by fear or the unknown consequences. DUNAMIS hopes to wipe away those fears and encourage real conversation without worry of any kind from all levels of USAA employee population.”

Best companies agree that diversity is more than race and gender. “It’s the collective strength of unique characteristics, experiences, skills, backgrounds, perspectives and cultures,” says Johnson. “USAA strives to deepen its employee population with most qualified candidates that fit within our core values, standards and meet the mission.”

Learn more about USAA, their culture and current career opportunities. You can also meet hiring representatives from USAA’s Phoenix Campus at our 3rd Annual Diversity & Inclusion Career Event, Wednesday, November 1. Register today!

About the Author
Lee Vikre – Hiring Jedi
A workplace culture maven, writer, and speaker, Lee Vikre has helped numerous companies develop “best company” cultures, gaining recognition at the local and national level. Lee has been called the Jedi Master of hiring because of her exceptional recruiting abilities and friendships with people who love Star Wars. Her favorite activities involve matching people with their dream jobs at award-winning best companies. Lee coaches CEOs but still hasn’t been able to train her three dogs not to bark during conference calls.

Turning Personal Struggles Into a Support Network at Work

By Lee Vikre | @LeeVikre

Do you like being inspired by others? Dareion Johnson inspires us. He’s a great example of overcoming adversity and using his own difficult experiences to help others. At USAA, Dareion, CPM, Program-Project Manager is the chair of the Phoenix chapter of DUNAMIS, a Diversity Business Group that supports those with disabilities. (DUNAMIS stands for Disabled United iN Action to Make an Inclusive Society.) Read on for some of Dareion’s insights on diversity, disabilities, courage, and connections.

BCAZ: Why did you decide to get involved in DUNAMIS?

DJ: I like the saying used by both Mikhail Gorbachev and Emma Watson, “If not me, who? And if not now, when?” I felt it was important to be a part of something that is greater than myself. DUNAMIS is an Employee Business Group that promotes diversity for our disabled community, both our fellow employees and the members we serve, through employee engagement.

This is the one minority group any person can be a part of without ever wanting to and without any notice. It is one of the minority groups that is often forgotten, but has the largest membership of all the minority groups. There are two reasons I wanted to be involved with DUNAMIS:

  1. I have been in and out of this minority group for various reasons over the years. I have been in two severe car accidents (one which took the life of my daughter), a freak jumping accident that left me dependent on a walker and a wheelchair to maintain my independence. A couple years later, I was diagnosed with life-threatening disease, which requires strict medication intake regiment. All too often individuals only look at the physical disabilities and forget about the hidden ones that affect individuals every day. To put it in full perspective, imagine the psychological hurdle I had to endure after finding out my daughter killed while trying to still maintain a household psychologically and financially. Or having normal autonomy ripped from you and having to learn a whole new skillset to maintain that same level of value and contribution.
  2. I wanted to a part of a group that sets the grassroots for making a difference for not only the organization as a whole, but for the advancement of understanding and awareness for both employee and member experiences. DUNAMIS has a dual purpose: it provides a platform for people to be welcomed, valued, heard and respected; and if someone’s voice is not loud enough, we will speak loudly on their behalf.

BCAZ: What types of activities does DUNAMIS focus on?

USAA Service Dog Panel

2017 Service Dog Panel

DJ: We recently just had our 1st Anniversary event since our launched in Phoenix, July 2016. Since the launch, we have held several events on campus which included a Service Dog Panel, bringing awareness to the proper etiquette when approaching a service handler and dog team. We also held a mental awareness workshop inviting our internal DUNAMIS members to listen to a USAA Executive provide his personal store and how he dealt his own situation. This event inspired the DUNAMIS team to launch DUNAMIS Shares, which will focus on various disability topics in which members of DUNAMIS can listen and share their own experiences. We feel this platform will provide others they are not alone and there is a platform within USAA that can be supportive and help when/where needed. We strive to ensure we get out into the community (internally and externally), bring awareness through impactful events, and provide educational opportunities via fairs and other meaningful activities.

Community involvement is extremely important to USAA and DUNAMIS. Recently DUNAMIS sent volunteers to United Cerebral Palsy of Central Arizona for a painting project outside of their normal working hours so they can remain focused on their mission. We will continue to be heavily involved in the community by volunteering at other various non-profit organizations that need assistance (e.g. Wounded Worrier Project, feeding the homeless project, veteran service support, and other disability organizations). The plan is to make a difference in Phoenix that can be seen and heard.

BCAZ: How is DBG leadership chosen? What potential impact does DBG leadership have on careers?

DJ: We specifically reached out to our Executive Sponsor to support our mission and goals. It was an easy “yes” from him as he saw our passion in making a difference here at the Phoenix Campus. Getting involved — taking action for a cause that is greater than ‘you’, shows commitment to the organization, its members, and your fellow employees. Nothing is ever promised, but leadership can be an advocate for you during your career progression. How I see it, positive work tends to be accompanied by positive conversation about the end results and those that made it happen.

BCAZ: What sorts of experiences have you had by being part of DUNAMIS?

DJ: When I hear the words, “I thought I was alone” or “I am glad I am not the only one experiencing…” I know we’ve made an impact. Our DBG is about showing the value of change and one way we do that is connecting with people with real and true personal stories. I was one of five employee panelists during the official launch of Phoenix DUNAMIS DBG, broadcasted to all our campuses in the U.S. I shared the story of what happened to me after my car accident and loss of my daughter.

After each event my team and I host, we are often thanked for being so open and honest. We let our passion shine by being our authentic selves. When we are those things… we tend to connect with people at a much deeper level. That connection tends to provide others with the courage to move forward and to speak up (e.g. DUNAMIS Shares). In the end, having that real one-on-one conversation with someone about how my story had a positive impact on his/her life always puts a smile on my face.

The only way we are going to be truly inclusive is to know when we are not being all-encompassing. Often not knowing is blocked by fear or the unknown consequences. DUNAMIS hopes to wipe away those fears and encourage real conversation without worry of any kind from all levels of USAA employee population.

BCAZ: Why do you recommend your company as a good place for diverse candidates to apply?

DJ: Diversity is not just about race or gender – it is about more than that. Diversity is about the people and is defined broadly as the collective strength of unique characteristics, experiences, skills, backgrounds, perspectives and cultures that help achieve organizational cohesiveness. USAA strives to deepen its employee population with the most qualified candidates that fit within the core values, standards and meet the mission.

Would you love to work for an organization like this? Learn more about USAA’s Phoenix campus, check out their current career opportunities then apply!

You can meet hiring representatives from USAA who are just as passionate as Dareion at our 3rd Annual Diversity & Inclusion Career Event! Join us Wednesday, November 1 from 9 am – 12 PM. It’s free for job seekers – secure your spot today!

About the Author
Lee Vikre – Hiring Jedi
A workplace culture maven, writer, and speaker, Lee Vikre has helped numerous companies develop “best company” cultures, gaining recognition at the local and national level. Lee has been called the Jedi Master of hiring because of her exceptional recruiting abilities and friendships with people who love Star Wars. Her favorite activities involve matching people with their dream jobs at award-winning best companies. Lee coaches CEOs but still hasn’t been able to train her three dogs not to bark during conference calls.

Career Progression at Charles Schwab: Employee Q&A

Stationed in Denver, Colorado, Paul Bowen has been with Charles Schwab for four and a half years. Paul was previously a CSR (customer service representative) and shares some insight on his tremendous professional growth at Schwab, even coming from an educational background unrelated to finance. Keep reading to learn about Paul’s career progression at Charles Schwab.

Career Progression at Charles Schwab: Paul Bowen

Tell us how you came on board at Charles Schwab.

I finished my college degree a little bit later in life. I was 31, and I had a friend who worked for Schwab for close to 15 years at the time. My degree was in political science, and with that, I wanted to go to law school. But law school was a bit unreasonably priced for the prospects at the end as far as income-wise. My friend said, “Why don’t you come work for Schwab?” I said, “I don’t know anything about finance.” He said, “Well, Schwab will teach you.” And he sent me a referral.

So, I got the referral and was hired on a few months later. I came in as a CSR rep and learned everything from the ground-up. I started off doing some password resets and moved on to bigger and better roles. It was a tough study for the Series 7, which was a difficult thing to overcome.

What attracted you to Charles Schwab?

The thing that really drew me in was the culture — the dynamics of the company. That was passed onto me by my friend Chris, who told me about Schwab. He described how open and how diverse of a community they had here, and how they would really help you achieve your goals, whatever they may be. That included inside the firm as well as in your personal life. They really value you as a person.

How would you describe the culture here in a few words?

I’d say it’s a very open culture, very diverse, very fun in a lot of ways.

What support does Charles Schwab provide for you to advance your career?

Schwab has many open lines of communication. They do encourage a lot of cross-boosting with other departments to explore different opportunities that may be out there and also help you set the groundwork to them. I depend on them for help and guidance. I also do the same thing for my colleagues who may need help in certain areas. They can depend on me for similar guidance in different aspects.

Tell us more about the Series 7 Financial Certification exam.

When I came in, they hired me as a customer service rep, which was not required for a Series 7 license. When I did decide to pursue the Series 7 after I felt more comfortable with Schwab as a place of employment, I took the book home with me and that’s where I studied – at home on the weekends and in the evenings. It was a tough thing to study for. It took me four attempts to pass the Series 7. Certainly after that third attempt, having to wait six months was very discouraging. But at the same time, Schwab also said, “Keep doing what you’re doing,” and was very supportive. There wasn’t that derailment of, “You can’t do this.” There was encouragement to pass. Once I passed, it was a huge relief.

The Series 7 provides an individual with the qualifications necessary in order to make different types of trades with all types of corporate securities, excluding commodities and futures. The Series 7 exam must be passed in order to take many other principal licensing exams offered by FINRA. 

Click here to learn more about Charles Schwab’s career opportunities and culture.

Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona and Cartel Coffee Lab Brew Up Something Special for World Habitat Day — Oct. 2

Free Bag of Private-Reserve Builders Brew Coffee for New Online Monthly Givers

Phoenix – Sept. 26, 2017 – Do something wonderful for your community and enjoy an extra special treat for yourself.  Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona has teamed up with Arizona’s celebrated Cartel Coffee Lab (cartelcoffeelab.com) to create a steamy promotion with lots of buzz that new monthly Habitat donors can savor while knowing their monthly contributions are making life better for others here in Valley communities.

New Habitat donors who register to make recurring monthly donations of $20 or more will receive a bag of whole-bean, private reserve Builders Brew coffee roasted by Cartel Coffee Lab, one of Phoenix’s most celebrated coffee enterprises. To qualify for this special limited-time offer, visit the Habitat website (habitatcaz.org/buildersbrew/) and click on the “Donate Now.” The promotion runs Oct. 2, 21017 through Dec. 31, 2017.*

Dusty Parsons, Marketing Director for Habitat, states, “We wanted a way for people to connect with that ‘warm feeling’ you get when helping others. Each donation directly helps Arizona families build affordable housing, revitalize neighborhoods and improve communities across the Valley. Now each new donor can celebrate World Habitat Day by savoring some of the best coffee in the city, knowing that their monthly gift is making a difference and changing lives locally.”

*This offer is open only to new donors who establish a recurring monthly donation of $20 or more during the designated promotional period. Donations through this program qualify for the Arizona Tax Credit. Monthly donations may be cancelled at any time.

 

About Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona

Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona (habitatcaz.org) (Habitat) is a local affiliate of Habitat for Humanity International, the renowned humanitarian organization based in Atlanta. Each affiliate operates as a separate 501c3 nonprofit, and is responsible for leading its own fundraising and operations management, while adhering to the Habitat for Humanity mission of serving communities within its area.  Habitat, named two consecutive years as one of Arizona’s Most Admired Companies, also promotes volunteer programs with corporations, groups, churches and individuals. Their services include new home construction, re-constructions, renovations, repairs (even emergency repairs) and most recently, entire neighborhood revitalization projects.  Consistently ranked among the Top 10 of 1,400 affiliates nationally, Habitat has built more than 1,100 homes in the metro Phoenix area since 1985. To learn more, please visit habitatcaz.org or find us on Twitter @habitatcaz.

###

 

Media Contact:

Dusty Parsons
Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona
602-448-5758
dusty@habitatcaz.org
habitatcaz.org

4 Tips on Networking Your Way to Your Dream Career

By Lee Vikre | @LeeVikre

There is an 80% chance you will get your next job through someone you know. Networking is a career development necessity. In our inaugural Career Coach Radio podcast Latasha Causey, Director of Regional Site Management for USAA’s Phoenix Campus recommends to job seekers, “Number one: network. It’s all about networking.”

Here are 4 tips on networking your way to your dream career: 

Network before you need a job. Think of networking like an investment account. It can make you prosperous, but first you have to invest in it. Reach out to each of your contacts once or twice a year. Provide referrals, introductions, and links to relevant blog posts. Give more than you get. Make more deposits than withdrawals. Don’t take your network for granted. Your investment account will help you retire in style, but your network will help you grow your best career.

Network before you even know what you want to do. Causey recommends that once someone determines they are going to leave the military, for example, they should start networking in the civilian community. “You may not know exactly what you want to do, but networking and knowing a variety of people will help you make a decision.” This good advice relates also to those who are starting to consider a career change, but don’t yet know what it will be.

Find your sweet 16. Not all great companies are great for everybody. One person’s dynamic excitement is another person’s chaotic stress. One person’s stability is another person’s boredom. Before you become desperate for an offer, find the right culture for you. “You want a place you can bring your whole self to work every day. Your whole self, thoughts, culture and values, and not leave any of that at home”, Says Gay Meyer, AVP of HR for USAA. “That’s what we expect of employees at USAA.”

Your diverse background will be welcomed at some companies, so why not work where you can contribute to your fullest? Target your “Sweet 16” companies where you would really like to work. Keep a spreadsheet or database of these companies. Find out more by regularly reading local business news, set Google alerts for companies you find interesting, and search sites like BestCompaniesAZ and LinkedIn. Any more than 16, and it’s hard to keep up with it. Fewer than 16, and you may miss opportunities. Keeping up with your Sweet 16 is work, but worthwhile.

Grow your network. Expand your network, especially within your Sweet 16. Send out at least one LinkedIn invitation a day. Don’t be intimidated by LinkedIn’s restrictions on who you can connect to. LinkedIn is like a huge virtual networking event. Just as everyone expects strangers to introduce themselves at a Chamber of Commerce mixer, almost everyone now knows to accept LinkedIn connections, just as you’d accept a business card. “We’ve done business together” is a good vague choice to connect with someone you don’t personally know.

Who should you connect with? The CEO and the executive team, the head of the function you’re interested in, administrative assistants, and people doing jobs similar to the job you may want. Anyone you have a second-degree connection with. Anyone you see mentioned in the news. Recruiters and HR pros can also be helpful.

Don’t overlook your built-in network of family and friends; they know people who know people. “You may not know it, but your next job may come through someone in your house”, says Causey. As employee referrals become increasingly important sources for recruiters, your friends and family may be more helpful than you realize.

Don’t forget to ask, “who else should I be talking to?”

Balance in-person and online networking. Online networking is powerful, but don’t hide behind your computer. Targeted career events, association meetings, and meetups can put you in touch with managers who want to hire you. Causey emphasized that specialized career events are created specifically to meet diverse candidates. Unlike the “job fairs” of the past, these career events often involve mid-career positions and are attended by leaders who are focused on hiring great people from diverse backgrounds.

A great opportunity to network and meet hiring representatives from USAA and many more award-winning employers is at the 3rd Annual Diversity and Inclusion Career Event, November 1, 2017. Get all the details and then reserve your spot!

Hear more insider tips from the hiring experts at USAA on landing your dream career in our Career Coach Radio podcast.

About the Author
Lee Vikre – Hiring Jedi
A workplace culture maven, writer, and speaker, Lee Vikre has helped numerous companies develop “best company” cultures, gaining recognition at the local and national level. Lee has been called the Jedi Master of hiring because of her exceptional recruiting abilities and friendships with people who love Star Wars. Her favorite activities involve matching people with their dream jobs at award-winning best companies. Lee coaches CEOs but still hasn’t been able to train her three dogs not to bark during conference calls.

5 Foundations of a Destination Workplace: Charles Schwab

Everyone wants to work for a company who values them, offers opportunities for advancement, creates an engaging culture and gives back to their communities. So how can you identify a destination employer, or turn your company into a talent magnet? Charles Schwab was just named one of Arizona’s Most Admired Companies for the 5th consecutive year. And this year they were honored with the Spotlight Award for Workplace Culture. We found several great qualities that make Charles Schwab a destination workplace and worthy of their many awards!

5 Foundations of a Destination Workplace

Employee Engagement

Schwab fosters employee engagement through a strengths-based approach. All employees complete a Gallup assessment to identify their top strengths. Focusing on strengths creates a positive, empowering work environment. As the second-largest Charles Schwab location, Arizona is home to 21% of its employees. Schwab is proud of the fact that the Arizona workforce experiences a very low single digit voluntary turnover rate that outperforms the industry average of 14.4% and regional average of 25.8%.  

What influences this low turnover rate here in Arizona is Schwab’s attractive workplace culture.  As a five-time winner of the azcentral Top Companies to Work for in Arizona program (2013-17), Schwab is most proud of the strong employee engagement score, which is multiples higher than the national average as reported by Gallup.

Work-Life Balance

Schwab encourages employees to improve their physical health and well-being, offering financial rewards for completing healthy actions, like a fitness class or undergoing a physical.  Schwab also offers Lifestyle and Health rewards for all employees across the country reimbursing them up to $300 for individuals who are in good health or for making health improvements. Employees are eligible for an additional $250 for participating in Weight Watchers or nutritional classes, 5k-type running events, gym memberships, etc.  

And perhaps the most unique and coveted employee benefit, eligible employees have the ability to take paid sabbaticals (28 calendar days) after every five years of service. This important time off promotes personal and professional development, community service, and higher levels of future performance and engagement.

Diversity & Inclusion

Schwab has created an inclusive work environment, encouraging employees to celebrate their diversity through a network of Employee Resource Groups. ERGs foster employee growth and development, offering opportunities to network internally, participate in community events, volunteer with nonprofit organizations, build business knowledge, and connect with clients and consumers from diverse communities at investor education events.

Employee Resource Groups are formed by employees who share characteristics or life experiences and are committed to enhancing diversity and inclusion at Schwab.  More than 25% of Schwab employees belong to at least one ERG. More than 60 ERG chapters have been created to date. Schwab ERGs include groups for Women, Veterans, Latinos, Blacks, Asian Pacific Islanders, LGBT and more!

Leadership Development

Employees benefit from the same visionary leadership that Schwab clients and shareholders have come to expect and value from Schwab. Leadership qualities include trustworthiness, transparency, integrity, innovation and a willingness to question convention.

Leadership initiatives are plentiful at Schwab. One example is the Aspiring Leader Program for individual contributors who demonstrate high potential and a strong desire to grow their leadership skills. The purpose is to build a talent pipeline of equipped candidates for future leadership positions. This increases the breadth of leadership who champion our clients’ goals with passion and integrity.    

Community Service

As a past recipient of the Arizona Most Admired Companies Spotlight Award for Corporate and Social Responsibility, community service is more than just an idea at Schwab. It’s an ingrained part of their culture. “Schwab Volunteer Week” is a long-standing tradition celebrating Schwab’s culture of service, when thousands of Schwab employees and executives (“Schwabbies”) across 170 cities participate in their annual week-long volunteer event held every May for the past 14 years. During Schwab Volunteer Week, thousands of employees coast to coast donate their intellectual capital as well as sweat equity for the benefit of local nonprofits. In May 2017, nearly 1,000 AZ employees contributed 4,000 volunteer hours to 51 projects for 20 nonprofits.

Schwab has created an enviable workplace and is deserving of their fifth Arizona’s Most Admired Companies recognition. So what’s stopping you from taking a look at their current career opportunities? You may just find a new “home” at Charles Schwab!

Arizona’s Most Admired Companies: Spotlight On The 2017 Winners

Last week, BestCompaniesAZ and Az Business Magazine celebrated 46 companies at the 2017 Arizona’s Most Admired Companies award reception in Scottsdale.

Arizona’s Most Admired Companies are chosen based on how an organization has performed in the following categories: Workplace Culture, Leadership Excellence, Corporate & Social Responsibility, Customer Opinion and Innovation. This year, a special spotlight award for Healthy Workplace also received recognition. Meet some of the Most Admired Companies in Arizona below.

Arizona’s Most Admired Companies 2017

SPOTLIGHT WINNER: Workplace Culture — Charles Schwab

most admired companiesFor the fifth consecutive year, Charles Schwab has not only been an Arizona’s Most Admired Company, but they also have been recognized by Gallup Great Workplace for having one of the top 40 most engaged workforces in the world. They consistently win state and national “best place to work” awards, including Top Companies to Work for in Arizona, Best Places to Work for LGBT equality, and multiple awards for fostering a military-friendly work environment. As the second-largest Charles Schwab location, Arizona has a single-digit voluntary turnover rate compared to the industry average of 14.4%; driven by a strong workplace culture and high employee engagement.  Schwab supports employees through a variety of ways; including several Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) for veterans, women, LGBTQ, and parents, to name a few.

SPOTLIGHT WINNER: Healthy Workplace – USAA

most admired companiesEvery day, USAA inspires employees to live their core values of Service, Loyalty, Honesty and Integrity. And USAA believes in taking care of the people who take care of their members. USAA employees enjoy access to an onsite health services clinic, a fitness center with a covered basketball court, volleyball quad and jogging/walking trails, wellness programs, a recharge zone, and an onsite cafeteria. By tracking their fitness activities as well as healthy eating habits, employees can receive a reduction in health insurance premiums. These efforts earned the organization the inaugural “Healthy Workplace” spotlight award among the Most Admired Companies in 2017; their third time being recognized as an #AZMostAdmired. USAA also was named one of the Valley’s Healthiest Employers in 2017.

Direct Energy

most admired companiesDirect Energy’s office environment and floor plan both encourage and foster approachable leadership. While formal meetings take place in conference rooms, there are no individual offices. This creates an open atmosphere, from the CEO to entry-level. Direct Energy’s appreciation for approachability, comfort and sharing prove highly valued — making them one of Arizona’s 2017 Most Admired Companies.

GoDaddy

most admired companiesGoDaddy has earned a spot on the Most Admired Companies in Arizona for the sixth time — and it’s evident why. Just this year, GoDaddy launched GoCommunities, a social impact program to empower entrepreneurs in low-income areas. GoDaddy also works with local nonprofit partners in each of their locations to provide skill-building experiences using a crew of coaches and a support network. That way, small business owners can develop the confidence needed to pursue their ventures.

Hyatt Regency Phoenix

most admired companiesNow a five-time winner of a Most Admired Companies in Arizona award, Hyatt participates in Hyatt Thrive, a global program that impacts the property’s local community. Through Jeans Day Fridays last year, colleagues raised more than $7,000 for 12 different organizations. Additionally, their Culinary team remains involved in Chefs to End Hunger. Many employees have donated their time to various charity walks as well as Junior Achievement.

Vanguard

most admired companiesVanguard, a five-time recipient of Most Admired Companies in Arizona recognition, offers employee benefits that support its crew at all stages of their life and careers. They focus on continuing education, welcoming children, acting as a caregiver and also transitioning after a career at Vanguard. They see their work as being caretakers of their clients’ investments, a responsibility they take to heart.

Habitat for Humanity of Central Arizona

most admired companiesA second-time Most Admired Companies winner, Habitat for Humanity of Central Arizona is more than just home building. Habitat of Central Arizona has expanded on that, designing an innovative program for Neighborhood Revitalization. While new home construction continues to play a key role, a broader range of offerings (including repairs and other services) allows Habitat to serve more families in central Arizona.

Arizona has much to be proud of in the organizations that employ our residents, who positively impact the economy and give back to our communities. And most of them are hiring, so if you’re considering a new career, start your search with the companies above, or any of the 2017 Arizona’s Most Admired Companies!

Az Business Magazine and BestCompaniesAZ Selects Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona as One of Arizona’s 2017 Most Admired Companies

Phoenix, September 15, 2017 — Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona Chapter (Habitat) is one of the 2017 Arizona’s Most Admired Companies, according to Az Business Magazine and BestCompaniesAZ, the second consecutive year it has been named to the prestigious list.

habitat for humanity logoThe 2017 winners were recognized at an awards reception in Scottsdale and are featured in the September/October issue of Az Business Magazine.

Arizona’s Most Admired Companies are selected based on how a company or organization has performed in the following areas: Workplace Culture, Leadership Excellence, Corporate and Social Responsibility, Customer Opinion, and Innovation.

“This is one of the most comprehensive corporate awards programs in Arizona. Organizations who are selected join an elite group of employers that represent the best of the best. The Most Admired Companies program was created to recognize the wonderful contributions and impact these most admired organizations bring to the state,” says Denise Gredler, founder & CEO of BestCompaniesAZ and co-founder of the MAC program.

Jason Barlow, CEO of Habitat, stated, “We are very honored to be recognized as one of Arizona’s 2017 Most Admired Companies for the second consecutive year.  Our greatest assets are the hardworking and passionate staff who deeply care about our mission, a dedicated group of volunteers and corporate backers, and the outstanding men, women, and families that we serve. We are deeply grateful to everyone who has supported our organization this year, and plan to continue serving Valley communities long into the future.”

Other Habitat accomplishments at a glance FY 16/17:

  1. Served 345 Arizona families including 37 newly homes built – This puts Habitat Central Arizona as the top producing affiliate in the country.
  2. Engaged 12,343 local volunteers and remained a Guide Star Gold Participant and Charity Navigator 4 Star Charity.
  3. Habitat won the Judge’s Choice Award for their “commitment to LEED® certification and bringing healthier, more energy efficient homes to all,” according to USGBC Arizona.
  4. Neighborhood revitalization project in Phoenix named a Mutual of America 2016 Community Partnership Award Winner.

About Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona
Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona (Habitat) is a local affiliate of Habitat for Humanity International, the renowned humanitarian organization based in Atlanta. Each affiliate operates as a separate 501c3 nonprofit, and is responsible for leading its own fundraising and operations management, while adhering to the Habitat for Humanity mission of serving communities within its area.  Habitat also promotes volunteer programs with corporations, groups, churches and individuals. Their services include new home construction, re-constructions, renovations, repairs (even emergency repairs) and most recently, entire neighborhood revitalization projects.  Consistently ranked among the Top 10 of 1,400 affiliates nationally, Habitat has built more than 1,100 homes in the metro Phoenix area since 1985. To learn more, please visit habitatcaz.org or find us on Twitter @habitatcaz.

About BestCompaniesAZ – Arizona’s Employer Branding Partner 
BestCompaniesAZ specializes in helping corporate clients develop, strengthen and market their unique employer brands through a variety of events, awards and communications programs. Specialized services include employee opinion surveys, benchmarking, employment branding, recruitment strategies, award consultation and promotional services. BestCompaniesAZ is proud to be chosen as the Consulting Partner for the Top Companies program, serving five consecutive years, and Founding Partner for Arizona Most Admired Companies. For more information, visit BestCompaniesAZ.com or call 480-545-5151.

About AZ Business Magazine
Az Business magazine is one of eight publications produced by AZ BIG Media. With circulation of 25,000 and readership of more than 122,500, Az Business is the authoritative voice of business news, trends, issues and successes in Arizona.  In every issue of Az Business, readers find the business news on finance, healthcare, law, technology and tourism.  Publishing bi-monthly, each issue of Az Business carries an overarching theme.  Az BIG Media also includes AzBIGmedia.com, which BUZZFEED lists as a website that everyone in Phoenix needs to know, five weekly digital newsletters and 11 signature events.

###

Habitat Media Contact:

Dusty Parsons
Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona
602-448-5758
dusty@habitatcaz.org
habitatcaz.org

46 Companies Honored as Arizona’s Most Admired Companies for 2017

PHOENIX, AZ  (September 15, 2017) – BestCompaniesAZ and Az Business magazine honored 46 companies at the 2017 “Arizona’s Most Admired Companies” award reception last night in Scottsdale, and are featured in the September/October issue of Az Business Magazine and online at BestCompaniesAZ.com.

Arizona’s Most Admired Companies are selected based on how a company has performed in the following areas: Workplace Culture, Leadership Excellence, Corporate and Social Responsibility, Customer Opinion and Innovation. This year we included a special spotlight award for Healthy Workplace.

In addition to honoring all 46 winners, five companies were recognized with Spotlight Awards:

  • Customer opinion:  UnitedHealthcare
  • Leadership excellence:  American Express
  • Social responsibility: CopperPoint Mutual Insurance Company
  • Workplace culture: Charles Schwab
  • Healthy Workplace:  USAA

“Arizona’s Most Admired Companies is the most comprehensive corporate awards program in the state because winners must demonstrate excellence in all six areas. It identifies the vast contributions and impact the Most Admired Companies bring to our state,” says Denise Gredler, co-founder of the Most Admired Companies program.

Cheryl Green, publisher at AZ Big Media, which publishes Az Business magazine, adds, “The qualities recognized by Arizona’s Most Admired Companies program are the characteristics that build great companies. The companies honored with this award truly represent the best of the best in Arizona.”

To see the complete list of winners, click here.

About BestCompaniesAZ – Arizona’s Employer Branding Partner 
BestCompaniesAZ specializes in helping corporate clients develop, strengthen and market their unique employer brands through a variety of events, awards and communications programs. Specialized services include employee opinion surveys, benchmarking, employment branding, recruitment strategies, award consultation and promotional services. BestCompaniesAZ is proud to be chosen as the Consulting Partner for the Top Companies program, serving five consecutive years, and Founding Partner for Arizona Most Admired Companies. For more information, visit BestCompaniesAZ.com or call 480-545-5151.

About Az Business Magazine
Az Business magazine is one of eight publications produced by AZ BIG Media. With circulation of 25,000 and readership of more than 122,500, Az Business is the authoritative voice of business news, trends, issues and successes in Arizona.  In every issue of Az Business, readers find the business news on finance, healthcare, law, technology and tourism.  Publishing bi-monthly, each issue of Az Business carries an overarching theme.  AZ BIG Media also includes AZBIGmedia.com, which BUZZFEED lists as a website that everyone in Phoenix needs to know, five weekly digital newsletters and 11 signature events.

###

BestCompaniesAZ Media Contact:
Stephanie Burchfield
Burchfield & Wolin Public Relations, Inc.
sburchfield@bwprinc.com
Office: 480-460-4111
Mobile: 602-418-2501