1. Business

10 for 10: These companies have won Top Workplace honors every year for a decade

Bouchard Insurance employees at the hospitality suite at the Valspar Championship, 36750 US Hwy. 19 North, in Palm Harbor on March 21. Pictured (in back, from left) is Ryan McDonald, Phil McElfresh and Colin Buoniello. (In front, from left) Sixto Guerrero, Madison Lieffort, Tori McGee, Shelby Walters and Hayden Threadgill. [DIRK SHADD | Times]
Published Apr. 5

Concern for others, excellent communication and a healthy balance of work and play.

These are among the traits woven into the DNA of the 10 companies that have earned a place on the Tampa Bay Times' Top Workplaces list every year since its launch in 2010.

Not surprisingly, another claim to fame for these winners is longevity — half have been in business more than 30 years. And all but three are homegrown, with roots in the Tampa Bay area.

Further, nearly all either have maintained their rank or surpassed it since last year. Clearwater-based Bouchard Insurance, for example, jumped from No. 5 to No. 3 in the midsize business category.

Top Workplaces: See all the Top Workplaces winners in the small, midsize and large categories.

Founded in 1948, Bouchard chief executive officer Doug Bishop is convinced that community involvement is key to employee satisfaction. He offers his workers one day off with pay each year to incentivize them to volunteer at local nonprofits such as Tampa Bay Watch, Metropolitan Ministries and Habitat for Humanity.

This year, Bouchard earned a Top Workplace special award for its communications efforts. Employees praised the company for conveying policy changes via quarterly meetings and for keeping them informed of the company's strategic direction.

Another Top Workplace long-timer on the rise, moving from No. 30 to No. 28 in the midsize category, is FrankCrum Corporate. At the helm of the FrankCrum "family of employer solutions" is Frank Crum Jr. and two of his children, who along with 300 employees, provide payroll, employee benefits and workers compensation services to clients nationwide.

The Clearwater-based company, founded in 1981, hosts an annual golf tournament that raised more than $140,000 last year to support Trinity Café, a nonprofit that feeds the hungry.

T-Mobile US, one of only three companies with a 10-year Top Workplace winning streak that have headquarters beyond Tampa Bay, moved from No. 6 to No. 4 in the large business category.

This national provider of wireless voice, messaging and data services prides itself on doing business with style and flair — and fun. Employee perks include game rooms and work spaces furnished with beanbag chairs for formal and impromptu gatherings. Management encourages "magenta pride" in everything from clothing to hair color.

Across the board, the 10 companies that continue to make the Top Workplace list year after year prove that keeping employees happy boils down to some relatively simple ideas.


Year founded: 1948

Headquarters: Clearwater

What it does: Specializes in personal and commercial insurance with teams that cater to specific industries including agribusiness, community associations, healthcare and hospitality

Top Workplace rank 2019: No. 3, midsize businesses

Top Workplace rank 2018: No. 5, midsize businesses

Revenues: $47.4 million

Tampa Bay area employees: 207

Why it stands out: An annual 5K run benefiting the Gramatica Family Foundation raised $20,000 last year toward the nonprofit's mission of building mortgage-free homes for combat wounded veterans in the Tampa Bay area.

Interesting fact: The company, which is approaching its 75th anniversary, hired 48 new employees in the past 12 months and plans to hire 50 more over the next year.

What management says: "Our employees like to be here because of the people they work around day in and day out. When life happens, they support each other. When you create the kind of culture where being who you are is accepted and celebrated, everybody becomes very comfortable." –Doug Bouchard, chief executive officer

What employees say: "I've felt at home since the day I started at Bouchard Insurance. My co-workers are friendly and supportive, I feel comfortable sharing my ideas with the leadership team, and honestly, it's just a fun place to work." –Tori McGee, brand manager



Year founded: 1981

Headquarters: Clearwater

What it does: Provides human resources, including personnel management, payroll, workers compensation claims, unemployment insurance claims and risk management for other companies

Top Workplace rank 2019: No. 28, midsize businesses

Top Workplace rank 2018: No. 30, midsize businesses

Revenues: Not provided

Tampa Bay area employees: 300

Why it stands out: FrankCrum Corporate supports Trinity Café, helping to serve free meals to the hungry. The company has raised more than $1 million for this nonprofit since 2001 through its annual golf tournament and "jeans day" contributions from employees.

Interesting fact: FrankCrum is a family business with Frank W. Crum Jr. at the helm as owner and chief executive officer; his daughter, Haley D. Crum, serving as president of FrankCrum Staffing; and his son, Matthew C. Crum, serving as president of Frank Winston Crum Insurance.

What management says: "I've always been able to hire people better than myself at what they do and just let them do their jobs. My No. 1 priority has always been to do the right thing for the right reason. We've never tried to be the biggest or the richest. We've just tried to treat our employees and our clients well." –Frank Crum Jr., owner and chief executive officer

What employees say: "I could have retired five years ago, but I stayed because this is such a great place to work. Management has an open-door policy and they're always interested in hearing suggestions for how we can make things work better for our clients. There's just a real family atmosphere." – Liz Tipton, payroll coordinator



Year founded: 1994

Headquarters: Bellevue, Wash.

What it does: Provides wireless voice, messaging and data services to 33.6 million subscribers nationwide

Top Workplace rank 2019: No. 4, large businesses

Top Workplace rank 2018: No. 6, large businesses

Revenues: Not provided

Tampa Bay area employees: 785

Why it stands out: T-Mobile hosts regularly scheduled new product release parties, inviting employees to visit information booths where they can learn firsthand about the company's products and take advantage of promotional offers.

Interesting fact: T-Mobile keeps its workers engaged and enthusiastic with an annual How We Play work week, encouraging employees to bring the theme of "magenta pride" to life by spiking their hair pink and wearing bright T-Mobile attire.


Here are the companies that have ranked in the Tampa Bay Times' Top Workplace list every year since 2010:

T-Mobile US (No. 4, Large)

Progressive Insurance (No. 7, Large)

American Strategic Insurance Corp. (No. 9, Large)

Capital One (No. 12, Large)

CENTURY 21 Beggins Enterprises (No. 2, Midsize)

Bouchard Insurance, A Marsh and McLennan Agency (No. 3, Midsize)

Banker Lopez Gassler PA (No. 4, Midsize)

SouthEast Personnel Leasing Inc. (No. 14, Midsize)

FrankCrum Corporate Inc. (No. 28, Midsize)

DITEK Corp. (No. 12, Small)


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