Hollis Gentry and Shawn Buckholder, McCarthy Building Cos. Inc.

Hollis Gentry and Shawn Buckholder, McCarthy Building Cos. Inc. Photo by Bob Thompson/Fotowerks

 Said Burkholder:  “As employee owners, it’s great to validate that our coworkers/partners agree that McCarthy is the best place to work in San Diego.”

2.C and S Cos.

Top local executive: Michael Hotaling,

Senior Vice President

Address: 2020 Camino Del Rio N., Suite 1000,

San Diego 92108

U.S. employees: 491

What they do: Engineering, architectural and construction services

C&S Cos. puts considerable effort into its employee engagement programs, which it tracks closely and ultimately measures in retention. The local office achieved a 1 percent voluntary departure rate in 2017. It sponsors a softball team and has company parties twice a year — once during the holidays and also with a summer outing.

A number of employee recognitions are given out throughout the year to highlight performance and community involvement.

A Founders Award was established to recognize staff members that exhibit the spirit of the company’s founders in their day-to-day duties, and the company recognizes community contributions. Locally C&S employees regularly donate time and funds to Feeding San Diego, Habitat for Humanity and homeless outreach.

Companywide benefits and initiatives include a profit-sharing plan and a program called C&S Universitys.

The company was the SDBJ large company category winner in 2017 for Best Places to Work.

3. Seismic

Top local executive: Doug Winter, CEO

Address: 12770 El Camino Real, Suite 300, San Diego 92130

U.S. employees: 560

What they do: software company whose platform generates marketing collateral for sales teams.

Seismic has managed to retain its employee-focused work culture even as it has grown in only eight years into one of San Diego’s biggest software companies with 560 employees spread across eight offices. The company has been on the Best Places to Work list for three consecutive years and founder and CEO Doug Winter was named SDBJ Most Admired CEO for large, privately held companies this past spring.

The company has a generous policy of allowing autonomous work schedules and a flexible sick time policy for employees to take as much time off as need to get well.

Its Del Mar Heights headquarters includes a game room with Ping-Pong, Cornhole, Darts, Xbox and AppleTV. It hosts barbecue cook-offs and an annual free-throw competition at a local rec center.

Seismic had a voluntary turnover rate of only 7 percent in 2017.

4. Athens Administrators

Top local executive: Sabrina Darsey, Division Manager

Address: 404 Camino

Del Rio S., Suite 550, San Diego 92108

U.S. employees: 287