Every year numerous publications list the "best" places to work. You may be surprised to find out why the companies on the list are not the only "best" places to work.
A word of caution when using a "best companies to work for" list: do your own homework. They may have met the criteria established by the organization doing the ranking, but you'll need to supplement the research.
In many cases the business policies that are important to you may not be those evaluated in the "best of" analysis. For instance, they may look at retention rates for workers over fifty, but not say anything about hiring policies for that population. If you're looking for a job, the companies on the "best of" list may be great places to work or retire from, but they may not hire you in the first place.
Whatever your key issues, those are what you should look into for the companies you're interested in, regardless of their affiliation with any list.
So, start with a "best" places to work list, but don't limit yourself to those companies only. Doing a thorough job search will give you a list of the "best" places for YOU to work. And that's the list you should rely on.
Dr. Jan Cannon, Job-Hunt's Mid-Life Career Expert, is author of Now What Do I Do? The Woman's Guide to a New Career, Find a Job: 7 Steps to Success, Finding a Job in a Slow Economy, co-author of Exceptional Accomplishment, and a career professional for 20 years. Visit her website, JobSearchDoctor.com, and circle Jan on Google+ for more career advice and help.