'Perks are epic' at SAS

Posted January 20, 2011

— SAS is the best company to work for – again.

Fortune magazine puts SAS at No. 1 on its "100 Best Companies To Work For" list in a repeat of an honor bestowed on the Cary-based company last year.

"This year, strong employee feedback sent its numbers even higher," the magazine said in its report, which was issued Thursday.

Employee Ashley Prince said she loves the on-site pre-school and health care offered by SAS. She said she can have lunch with her son and take him for a quick check-up if he's not feeling well without missing much work.

"I’ve been here for nine years. I’ve spent almost my entire career here," Prince said. "They definitely want to compensate people, and the benefits – that’s an added something they do on top.”

SAS had made the list of top workplaces in each of the 14 years Fortune has compiled it. As Prince noted, the privately held company's many benefits being among the reasons.

"Its perks are epic," Fortune wrote, listing unlimited sick days, childcare at $410 per month, summer camp for kids, car cleaning and beauty salon.

"It’s all enough to make a state-of-the-art, 66,000-square-foot gym seem like nothing special by comparison," the magazine wrote.

Gale Adcock, SAS' director of corporate health services, said providing employees easy access to medical care for them and their families allows them to focus on their work.

"You can leave you office and come right to us on campus and come here for 15 minutes and be back in your office within 30 minutes," Adcock said.

Jim Goodnight, chief executive officer and co-founder of SAS, takes great pride in the company's work force, calling them "the lifeline of our success."

"You have two choices," he said. "You can spend money on employees or headhunters and training, and it's about the same amount of money. So why not spend it on the employees?"

SAS on Thursday reported a record $2.43 billion in sales last year, up more than 5 percent from 2009.

SAS day care Salon, child care among perks for SAS employees

The company boasts that its employee turnover rate is 2.6 percent, compared with the software industry norm of 22 percent. It employs about 11,500 people worldwide, including 4,600 on its 21-building campus in Cary.

Goodnight said SAS plans to hire about 300 people this year.

The Fortune report is compiled in partnership with the Great Place to Work Institute, which conducts work force surveys. More than 300 companies participated this year.

Two thirds of a company's ranking is based on the employee survey.

The remaining third is based on company data provided to the Great Place to Work Institute's Culture Audit.

Two other companies with presences in the Triangle made the top 10.

NetApp, which operates a major campus in Research Triangle Park, placed fifth. Google, which has a software operation in Chapel Hill and maintains a huge data center in Lenoir, placed fourth.

Cisco Systems, one of the world's biggest networking companies, which has about 3,400 workers in the Triangle, ranked 20th. Biotechnology company NovoNordisk, which has workers in Clayton and Morrisville, ranked 47th.

The top 10 companies:

1. SAS
2. Boston Consulting Group
3. Wegmans Food Markets
4. Google
5. NetApp
7. Camden Property Trust
8. Nugget Market
9. REI
10. Dreamworks


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  • Supie Jan 21, 2011

    I am so jealous. the company where i work would take the stuffing out of our chairs if they could sell it. They make us come in early so our lunch break is "our time" then they make us work thru lunch. illegal you say ? lots of illegal stuff, but no one will complain. Modern day slavery.

  • ar979 Jan 21, 2011

    They have tons of 'non-computer scientist' type jobs. If you would actually take the time to look at the job listings, you would see that. There were actually 2 housekeeping jobs up just a couple days ago.

  • cas-65 Jan 21, 2011

    It's tough to get an interview there. I have a CSC degree from NCSU with 12 years of IT experience, applied for several jobs at SAS but never heard back.

  • kikinc Jan 21, 2011

    The people that I know that work at SAS aren't programmers. They're the art director, food court manager, grounskeepers, etc. They all found their jobs when SAS advertised. Can't say they only advertise for software development positions.

  • didisaythat Jan 21, 2011

    I love how much information people have on a company that they do not work for. Thank you to the people that do work for SAS to give us more information and personal experience. I am sure the naysayers will not believe you.

  • pmck Jan 21, 2011

    Yeah, I work at one of those places where they say, "be thankful you have a job..." when anyone dares to make any constructive criticism. Congrats to those who work for companies like SAS where the value of great employees is recognized (and they are rewarded).

  • dirkdiggler Jan 21, 2011

    "Madam, a software company needs other types of employees to run the company, too. But when do they post other types of jobs?"

    All the time. Maybe you just arent qualified for any of them.

  • dirkdiggler Jan 21, 2011

    its funny...all my friends at SAS are extremely happy working there. I work at a company that made Triangle Business Journal's top places to work 5 years in a row. I'm sure the negative nancy's would be on here talking about how horrible my place of employment is, too, but let me tell you....when you have benefits out the wazoo, an on site health club, free personal trainer, massage therapist, awesome health care that is dirt cheap for employees, 6 weeks vacation, and your employer's rate of pay is ranked in the top 99th percentile, you get, and KEEP, happy, loyal, hard working employees.

    I work hard for my employer because I'm appreciated and my hard work is rewarded. I know that's hard to comprehend if you've never been in that sort of environment. It took me 2 years to realize the honeymoon feeling was never going to end. We are left to do our jobs and arent micromanaged to death, we're paid very well, and we have great benefits. Yep, sounds like a reason to complain...

  • RGMTRocks Jan 21, 2011

    Babeedoll, puleeeze, maybe it is that great. You don't work there and you're bitter because they didn't hire you. Sheesh.

    I see a trend here that I see everywhere else too - people who think they're entitled and the world and employers owe them something. To reap rewards, one must sow the proper seeds. If you want a great job at a great company, then you have to be what that company is about. I'm an IT manager at another company that is also great to work for - IF you're of the right mindset and skill level and you have the right attitude. My staff have told me they wouldn't work at SAS (when they really could) because I'm not there. I treat them well, as does our company and WOW you should see the work they put out as a result. These people have the skills and attitude and they are the cream of the crop! People, don't be stupid...BE the people that make a company great and you too will be rewarded in many ways.

  • usmalenurse Jan 21, 2011

    "try to be a little more positive. Or at least talk about something that you ACTUALLY know about and not just what you assume." --ar979
    Talk about cutting down the number of golo posts...that would do it!