CRC gets 4th straight Best Places to Work in SE Minnesota award

Published 10:35 am Monday, May 9, 2016

Cooperative Response Center Inc. staff accepts the 2016 Best Places to Work award on April 28 in Rochester.  -- Photo provided

Cooperative Response Center Inc. staff accepts the 2016 Best Places to Work award on April 28 in Rochester.
— Photo provided

For the fourth consecutive year, Cooperative Response Center Inc. (CRC) has been recognized as one of the Best Places to Work in Southeast Minnesota by Workforce Development, Inc. Fifteen local companies were recognized as “best workplaces” in either small- (75 employees or less), medium- (76 – 300 employees), or large- (over 300 employees) sized categories at a banquet held on April 28 in Rochester.

CRC’s Austin facility was first honored with the designation in April 2013 in the small company category. Since 2014, CRC has been ranked in the medium-sized company category each year. Some of the attributes that have made CRC a stand out for this honor is its employee benefit program, employee growth, percentage of employees promoted, bonus program, annual increases in pay, and its focus on training and wellness.

At the banquet, Michael Postma, placement specialist for Workforce Development, noted that one of the things that makes CRC great is the company’s strong focus on employee wellness and engagement.

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“Each year they hold a health and wellness fair which includes multiple days of seminars, demonstrations and activities for all employees,” Postma said in a press release. “They also have a leadership development program that allows employees to complete customized modules to help them prepare for promotion.”

CRC’s commitment to training was also a standout to the judges. “On average, companies who submitted for the Best Places to Work designation trained their employees for 40 hours over the last year. CRC averaged 300 hours,” Postma added.

Nancy Morrison, CRC’s vice president of human resource development, said that CRC continually strives to raise the bar with regard to employee relations.

“We consistently seek out new programs, added benefits and ways to enhance our wellness programs,” she said in the release. “Participating in the Best Places to Work program is a great way to compare our programs with other top notch employers and ensure that we are continuously improving our employee programs. Our goal continues to be to provide our employees with a culture that sets us apart as a best place to work.”

The recipients of the Best Places to Work program were part of a commissioned study by Workforce Development, Inc. Each company that participated in the study completed a 40-question survey that allowed their employment practices to be analyzed by the consulting firm Personnel Dynamics Consulting of Florida. The data measured included parameters such as turnover, rate of growth, promotion rates, employee evaluations and feedback, percentage of employee injuries, diversity of management, benefits offered, training expenditures, paid days off and increase in pay.