Continental Airlines Makes the FORTUNE '100 Best Companies to Work For' List For Fifth Year in a Row
Monday January 6, 4:21 pm ET
Continental Ranks No. 42
HOUSTON, Jan. 6 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- For the fifth consecutive year, Continental Airlines today was named one of the "100 Best Companies to Work For" by FORTUNE magazine in a study conducted in conjunction with the Great Place to Work Institute of San Francisco. Continental, the only passenger airline on the list, moved up to No. 42 from last year's ranking of No. 55. Since the list's inception only 28 companies have made the list five or more years.
"The unprecedented challenges of the past 17 months have truly tested our company's culture," said Gordon Bethune, Continental chairman and chief executive officer. "However, we firmly believe that employees are the key to success. Our commitment to treating each employee with dignity and respect hasn't wavered in spite of the events that have seriously harmed our industry and our country."
The rankings will appear in the Jan. 20, 2003, issue of FORTUNE magazine.
Continental employees created the company's entry by sending a "brag bag" across the system. Employees placed their reasons why the airline is a great place to work in the bag, which was then delivered to the Great Place to Work Institute in San Francisco.
Houston Lead Customer Service Agent Mike Cofer, who helped deliver the entry, said Continental deserved the recognition.
"Our brag bag turned into a trunk because there are so many reasons Continental is a great place to work," Cofer said. "Leadership is involved in every aspect of the airline, communicates what is happening throughout the ranks and shows appreciation for our work."
The study selects the nation's best companies to work for by evaluating work environment and company culture, compensation and benefits, and other measures of job satisfaction.
In addition to company-provided information, a survey sent to randomly selected employees determines the company's ranking on the list. FORTUNE and the Great Place to Work Institute created the random selection process and the survey, which asks employees to evaluate trust in management, pride in work and relationships with co-workers.
Despite the dramatic economic challenges the airline industry faced in 2002, Continental maintained employee benefits and its company culture.
* Continental gave all work groups scheduled pay increases.
* The company successfully negotiated a long-term collective bargaining agreement with its mechanics.
* The airline dramatically minimized additional lay-offs with voluntary leaves of absences.
* Continental introduced coairFares that allow employees and their dependents to purchase discounted revenue tickets. The tickets are less expensive than fares that are available to the public online at low-fare distributors.
* Continental continued with a modified On-Time Bonus program and Ford Explorer Perfect Attendance Giveaway.
* Continental expanded its electronic employee communications program, now reaching 24,000 employees with daily updates electronically. Daily updates are also posted in breakrooms and recorded on a toll- free number that all 48,000 employees can access while traveling.
Continental Airlines is the world's sixth-largest airline and has more than 2,000 daily departures. With 121 domestic and 90 international destinations, Continental has the broadest global route network of any U.S. airline, including extensive service throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia. Continental has hubs serving New York, Houston, Cleveland and Guam, and carries approximately 45 million passengers per year on the newest jet fleet among major U.S. airlines. With 48,000 employees, Continental is one of the "100 Best Companies to Work For in America." Fortune ranked Continental the No. 2 Most Admired Global Airline and No. 30 Most Admired Global Company in March 2002. For more company information, visit continental.com
Source: Continental Airlines