-Ranked #9 for medium-sized companies, #17 overall; highest ranking Michigan-based Company; makes “most unusual perks” list-
Livonia, Mich. – Jan. 08, 2007 – Quicken Loans Inc has been ranked in the “Top 20” on FORTUNE Magazine’s list of the “100 Best Companies to Work For” list for the fourth consecutive year. The company is ranked #9 on the list of medium-sized companies, #17 overall, and also was cited on a list of companies with the “most unusual perks.”
Quicken Loans Inc consists of Quicken Loans, the nation’s largest online retail mortgage lender; Rock Financial, Michigan’s largest mortgage company; and Title Source, a national title and settlement services company.
Of the 1,500 companies that requested to be considered, 446 companies were invited to participate in the process this year. “The 100 Best Companies to Work For” list is compiled for FORTUNE by Robert Levering and Milton Moskowitz of the Great Place to Work Institute in San Francisco, based on two criteria: an evaluation of the policies and culture of each company, and the opinions of the company’s employees.
Two-thirds of the total score comes from employee responses to a 57-question survey which goes to a minimum of 400 randomly selected employees. The survey asks about attitudes towards management, job satisfaction, and camaraderie within the organization. The remainder of the score is based on an evaluation of each company’s demographic makeup, pay and benefits programs, and culture.
“The key to success for any organization is not just in hiring great people, but in creating an entrepreneurial culture that encourages and rewards them for thinking big and acting on these great ideas,” said Dan Gilbert, founder and chairman of Quicken Loans/Rock Financial.
“This award really comes from our employees as two-thirds of the FORTUNE score is based on their survey responses. Our people enjoy working here because we’ve created a unique culture that is based on trust and empowerment,” he continued.
“We encourage our team members to have a high level of awareness and take initiative when they come up with new ideas or notice something that can be improved or fixed. You have to empower people to take action, which means trusting them to make the right decisions,” Gilbert concluded.
Quicken Loans/Rock Financial has created a culture that provides opportunities for employees to develop and grow, and rewards them for performance. The company has attracted exceptional people who’ve created innovative mortgage programs, streamlined the mortgage process, developed unique technology, and delivered superb client service.
The result has been record growth in a year that saw most mortgage lenders downsizing. In contrast, the company grew its closed loan volume another $2 billion to nearly $18 billion in residential mortgage volume closed in 2006 and added 600 new positions. The company opened an Internet Home Lending Center in Cleveland, Ohio, in March 2006, and another this month in North Scottsdale, Ariz.
As Quicken Loans/Rock Financial continues to grow – it is now hiring nearly 200 new team members each month – both Gilbert and CEO Bill Emerson believe maintaining the culture is their most important responsibility. As part of an extensive, three-day orientation process held monthly, Gilbert spends an entire day discussing the company’s philosophies, known as “ISMS” and Emerson drives home the importance of communication and doing the right thing.
“Spending this time with all our new team members during their first few days here is extremely important and ensures they understand and embrace our ‘ISMS’,” said Emerson. “This helps them know who we are and what we stand for, so they can make the right decisions going forward.”
As part of the selection process, FORTUNE also evaluates each company’s pay and benefits, recognition and reward programs, and opportunities for camaraderie and fun.
Compensation and benefits. The company’s results-based compensation plan includes a generous performance-based pay and annual bonus plan, spot bonuses and more. In addition to tuition assistance, the company offers unique benefits such as leadership training which includes a SWAT-type obstacle course, and empowerment training in which family members are encouraged to participate.
Family-focused benefits include discounted home loans, interest-free computer loans, Internet and gym reimbursement, and a scholarship program for team members’ children. Emerson also sends hand-signed birthday cards to all team members, and cards and gift certificates to their children on their birthdays.
Awards and recognition. Several times each year, employees have opportunities to win trips, such as last year’s four-day cruise to the Bahamas for 600 people. Top employees and teams receive golden statuettes in recognition for a job well done at an annual black-tie awards ceremony similar to the Oscars.
Founder Gilbert also is majority owner of the NBA’s Cleveland Cavaliers and employees are invited to attend several Cavs home games each year. The trips include transportation, tickets, team merchandise and overnight accommodations. Rock Financial, the company’s branch system in Michigan, is Presenting Sponsor of the NBA’s Detroit Pistons and employees also attend Pistons games.
Motivational guest speakers at the annual “All Employee Meeting,” held at Detroit’s historic Fox Theater, range from this year’s Mark Cuban, owner of the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks, to Anthony Robbins and author Mort Crim.
Other fun and family-focused perks. FORTUNE also named Quicken Loans/Rock Financial to the list of most unusual perks. The company’s annual gala holiday party features headline entertainment, such as this year’s performance by Kid Rock. Last year’s 20th Anniversary Celebration featured The Black-Eyed Peas, with the company’s in-house rock band “The Loaners” as opening act. The band plays company events and has been a finalist in FORTUNE’s “Battle of the Corporate Bands” the last two years.
Fun isn’t limited to a few special events each month, but instead part of the daily life, beginning with a workplace where walls are painted in vibrant shades of blue, orange, purple and green. The lobby of the Cleveland Internet Home Lending Center has wood floors painted like a basketball court.
Free popcorn, slushies and cappuccinos are available all day in the “Soft Rock Café” employee lounges located on each floor. CEO Emerson regularly awards tickets to concerts and sporting events over the company’s PA system, and there are daily contests and activities.
“Our people are the key to our growth and success. Every single person here makes a difference. It’s important to recognize them for the contributions they make and to create an environment they enjoy being a part of each day. These are just a few of the ways we’ve found to express our appreciation for the many things they do on behalf of the company and our clients,” Emerson concluded.
For more information about careers with Quicken Loans or Rock Financial, visit www.Quickenloanscareers.com.
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