Best Places to Work in IT 2011 Employer Profile

No. 43

American Water

Voorhees, N.J. [Middle Atlantic]

Why you want to work there

Technology advancements are ongoing at this water and wastewater utility in Voorhees, N.J. In 2010, American Water virtualized 28% of its server environment and completed six proof-of-concept exercises, including tests of click-to-call technology, SharePoint 2010, a telepresence system and cloud storage. Training is a key part of the equation. For technical skills training, the IT department partners with two external vendors, Global Knowledge and Microsoft. Soft skills training includes courses on leadership, communication and 11,000-plus other topics. Big-time benefits American Water offers alternative scheduling plans, allowing employees to telecommute up to two days a week or set up flextime arrangements (four 10-hour workdays or staggered start and end times, for example). Approximately 49% of IT employees telecommute or have alternative schedules. The company has two award programs to recognize employees who demonstrate outstanding performance. SPOT awards, which can come with payments of up to $500, give employees timely recognition for contributions that support the organization's values. And Special Achievement Recognition Awards (SARA), which can come with payments of up to $10,000, reward employees for exceptional, unanticipated contributions to American Water's success. All exempt and non-exempt nonunion employees below the director level are eligible to receive SARA awards. IT managers also recognize outstanding employee performance and team efforts with hand-written thank you notes, rewards luncheons, extra time off, companywide or departmental announcements celebrating an employee's achievements, and gift cards.

Rank by company size:
Medium, No. 11

Employee Statistics

Total U.S.-based employees: 7,433

Total U.S.-based IT employees: 202

IT employee turnover in 2010: 14%

IT promotions in 2010: 4%


Training days offered per IT employee in 2010: 5

Training budget per IT employee in 2010: $2,970

Women in IT

Total percentage of women within IT: 25%

Percentage of IT managers who are women: 21%

Percentage of IT staffers (non-managers) who are women: 26%

Minorities in IT

Total percentage of minorities within IT: 17%

Percentage of IT managers who are minorities: 17%

Percentage of IT staffers (non-managers) who are minorities: 17%