Best Places to Work 2016

April, 2016

Now in its 12th year, Hawaii Business magazine ranks the state’s top employers. Read on and learn what makes these companies one of the best places to work in the state.


What It Takes to Keep Employees Engaged

Every company and nonprofit wants employees who are willing to go the extra mile, but only a few earn such loyalty. If you want your organization to be in that select group, read on to learn about the formula. It’s not rocket science, but it does take time, effort, leadership and (here’s the secret sauce) integrity. And there’s a surprise: Pay rarely makes the list of the Top 10 factors.

Each year, Hawaii Business magazine partners with the research firm Best Companies Group to administer the Best Places to Work survey. The main part of the survey is a confidential questionnaire sent to all employees or a statistically representative sample at large companies. There are 78 questions and open-ended statements, and the employee responses make up 75 percent of a company’s score. The rest of the score is based on 80 questions answered by the HR department about benefits, working conditions and more.

This year, some 100 companies and nonprofits in Hawaii nominated themselves; only 70 made the cut as Best Places to Work.

Those 70 have employees who are “engaged.” Peter Burke, president at Best Companies, which is based in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, says engaged employees score high on these four factors:

• Plan to stay with the organization at least two more years, which reduces turnover and ensures stability.
• Willing to recommend the company to a friend as a workplace, which replenishes the talent pool.
• Willing to recommend the company’s products and services to a friend, which can attract new customers.
• Willing to give an extra effort to help the organization succeed, which can yield a culture of excellence.

Hawaii’s Best Places to Work have those kind of engaged employees. The organizations did not all use the same strategies, but the following 10 factors were the most common responses among the employees at the Best Places to Work:

1. I feel I am valued in this organization.
2. I have confidence in the leadership of this organization.
3. I like the type of work that I do.
4. Most days, I feel I have made progress at work.
5. Overall, I’m satisfied with this organization’s benefits package.
6. This organization treats me like a person, not a number.
7. There is room for me to advance at this organization.
8. My supervisor treats me fairly.
9. Quality is a top priority with this organization.
10. The leaders of this organization care about their employees’ well being.

Employee engagement boils down to how emotionally connected workers are to their company, Burke says. Company leaders play a huge role in creating those ties; look at those 10 factors and notice how many depend on leadership integrity and communication.

Pay is not mentioned in the top 10, but benefits are. All Hawaii companies are required to provide health insurance for full-time employees. But, 56 percent of the companies on this year’s list pay 100 percent of the premiums. The next two pages show how BPTW company’s benefits and initiatives stack up.

The top 10 factors vary only slightly from year to year; for instance, the top six factors from this year’s list were also on last year’s top 10.

More insight into how to create a Best Place to Work can be found in each of the profiles that describe the winning companies and nonprofits. Those profiles show there are many different paths to an engaged workforce.


None of the companies on the Best Places to Work started that way.

They all built a workplace full of engaged employees over time, and used the BPTW survey as a tool to understand their strengths and weaknesses. The confidential survey of your employees reveals the good and the bad, and there is no question that the BPTW is the most useful annual survey in Hawaii.

Take the first step in creating a productive workplace culture. Sign up today for the 2017 survey at By the way, there’s no risk, because if your company doesn’t make the list, no one else will know.







Company Name COMPANY PROFILE % of employee’s medical premium paid by employer Allows additional paid time off for volunteer work Allows tele-commuting Allows job sharing Allows flex hours/ compressed work week Helps pay for gym or wellness program Average number of annual training & development hours Helps pay for advanced or post-graduate degree
Ala Moana Dental Care 100%  N  N Y Y N  40
American Carpet One  75-99%  N  N  N  N  N  120  –
American Savings Bank  75-99%  N  N  N  N  Y  30 Y
Aqua Engineers Inc.  75-99%  Y  Y  N  N  N  80  Y
Architects Hawaii Ltd 75-99%  N  N  N  Y  N  40  –
Atlas Insurance Agency 100%  Y  N  N  Y  Y  37  –
Bank of Hawaii  75-99%  N  N  N  N  Y  19 Y
Bowers + Kubota Construction 100%  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  30  Y
Brett Hill Construction 100%  Y  Y  Y  Y  N  5  –
Central Pacific Bank   75-99%  N  N  N  N  Y  120  Y
City Mill Company Ltd  75-99%  N  N  N  Y  N  50  –
Coffman Engineers Inc.  100%  Y  N  N  Y  N  20  Y
CW Associates CPAs  100%  Y  Y  N  Y  N  50  –
Edward Jones  75-99%  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  55  Y
EnviroServices & Training Center LLC 100%  N  N  N  Y  Y  8  Y
Fair Wind Cruises 75-99%  N  N  N  Y  N  8  –
Finance Factors Family of Companies  100%  Y  N  N  N  Y  4  Y
First Hawaiian Bank  75-99%  N  N  Y  N  Y  31  Y
Gourmet Events Hawaii 100%  N  Y  N  Y  Y  24  –
Group 70 International  75-99%  N  Y  N  Y  N  8  –
Grove Farm Company  50-74%  Y  Y  N  Y  N  8  –
Hawaii Dental Service 100%  N  Y  N  N  Y  8  –
Hawaii Diagnostic Radiology Services  100%  Y  N  Y  Y  Y  32  –
Hawaii Dialogix Telecom 100%  N  Y  N  Y  Y  –  –
Hawaii Foodbank 100%  N  N  N  Y  N  30  –
Hawaii Forest & Trail Ltd 75-99%  N  N  N  Y  N  16  –
Hawaii Information Consortium  100%  N  –  Y  N  Y  –  Y
Hawaii Information Service  100%  N  N  Y  Y  N  –  –
Hawaii Mortgage Experts 100%  Y  Y  Y  Y  N  10  –
Hawaii National Bank 75-99%  N  N  N  N  Y  12  Y
Hawaii News Now  75-99%  N  N  N  Y  N  –  –
Hawaii State FCU  100%  N  N  N  N  Y  20  –
HawaiiUSA FCU  100%  Y  N  N  N  Y  60  Y
Honolulu HomeLoans  100%  N  Y  Y  Y  N  6  Y
Hospice Maui  100%  N  N  N  Y  N  12  –
Imua Family Services  100%  Y  Y  N  Y  N  40  Y
Integrated Security Technologies Inc.  100%  Y  Y  N  Y  Y  92  Y
Island Insurance  100%  Y  N  N  N  Y  47  –
Island Palm Communities  75-99%  Y  N  N  Y  N  35  Y
Kiewit Corporation 50-74%  N  N  N  N  Y  96  Y
Legacy of Life Hawaii  100%  N  N  N  Y  N  15  Y
Life Foundation 100%  N  Y  Y  Y  N  10  –
Maui Family Support Services  75-99%  N  Y  N  Y  N  32  Y
Na Hoku Inc. 75-99%  N  N  N  N  Y  40  –
Nagamine Okawa Engineers 100%  N  N  N  Y  N  –  –
Navy FCU  75-99%  N  N  N  Y  Y  60  Y
Nordic PCL Construction  75-99%  Y  N  N  Y  Y  59  Y
Okahara and Assoc.  100%  Y  N  N  Y  N  12  –
Pacific Administrators 100%  N  N  N  N  N  30  –
Pacific Biodiesel Tech.  100%  N  Y  N  Y  N  40  –
Pacxa 100%  Y  Y  N  N  Y  40  –
Panda Restaurant Group 75-99%  N  N  N  N  N  –  –
Pearl Hawaii FCU 100%  Y  N  N  N  N  –  Y
ProService Hawaii 100%  Y  Y  N  Y  N  15  –
Ronald N.S. Ho & Assoc. 75-99%  N  N  N  N  N  8  –
Servco Pacific Inc.  75-99%  Y  Y  N  N  N  20  –
Servpac Inc. 75-99%  N  Y  N  N  N  104  –
Simply Organized LLC  75-99%  N  N  N  Y  N  52
Sleep Center Hawaii  100%  Y  N  Y  Y  N  20  –
Spire Hawaii LLP  100%  Y  N  N  Y  N  40  –
Swinerton Builders  75-99%  Y  Y  N  Y  N  100  Y
The Hawaii Group  100%  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  60  Y
The Howard Hughes Corp.  75-99%  N  Y  N  Y  Y  20  –
The Wedding Ring Shop  100%  N  N  N  N  N  15  –
T-Mobile Hawaii 75-99%  N  N  N  Y  N  150  –
Turtle Bay Resort  100%  Y  N  N  Y  Y  48  –
Waikiki Parc Hotel 75-99%  Y  N  N  N  Y  12  –
Wealth Strategy Partners 50-74%  Y  –  Y  Y  N  260  –
ZR Systems Group LLC  100%  N  N  N  N  N  40  –


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