Telecommuting Recognized in Best Workplaces for Financial Professionals

Q BridgeThe Association for Financial Professionals (AFP), Hackett Benchmarking & Research, and CFO magazine recently announced that the inaugural 2001 Best Workplaces for Finance Professionals are FleetBoston Financial, Cargill, Inc., and First Data Corporation.

The results demonstrate that these companies are dedicated to providing satisfying and innovative work environments that attract and retain top-notch finance talent. "The role of financial professionals is growing in importanceas their expertise is increasingly called upon to handle information technology, mergers and acquisitions, and corporate strategy," said Jim Kaitz, AFP' president and CEO. "As competition intensifies for the best and brightest in finance, only those companies that continue to foster positive work environments by developing and deploying best practices will remain successful.

FleetBoston Financial is a $23 billion financial holding company that promotes job rotation, job sharing, telecommuting and flexibility for time off. Its 1,300 finance employees enjoy two days off per year to volunteer for organizations of their choosing, are trained in customer service and communicate via a quarterly newsletter. Attention to changing technology through effective process integration helps staffers think like a team.

Minneapolis-based Cargill, Inc. is an agricultural products supplier that develops its 950 finance personnel into strategic business partners. With $49.4 billion in revenues, Cargill promotes job rotation, flexible work hours, job sharing and volunteerism. More than 70 percent of employees in worldwide audit, for example, telecommute on some level after being employed for six months.

First Data Corporation is a Dallas-based electronic commerce and payments service provider with 1,500 finance employees and $5.7 billion in revenues. Its corporate philosophies of "Respect and Dignity of People, Care and Consideration, and Appreciate Differences" resonate with employees who enjoy job rotation, extensive training and an annual talent review to identify personal preferences and job motivation. Finance at First Data is branded as the "CFO Organization," complete with its own logo and steady flow of newsletters.

The Best Workplaces for Finance Professionals recognition program evaluated organizations based on employee satisfaction surveys, an online company questionnaire, and for program finalists, an executive interview. Nearly 150 organizations participated. The selection process measured best practice utilization in several key dimensions: quality of work life, personal and professional development, employee job satisfaction, technology and tools, and innovation.

To view more on the Best Workplaces results,