REI Recognized on FORTUNE’s “100 Best Companies to Work For” List

16th consecutive year the outdoor retailer named an employer of choice

Jan 16, 2013

Leading outdoor gear and apparel retailer REI (Recreational Equipment, Inc.) has once again been named to FORTUNE’s “100 Best Companies to Work For” list, marking the co-op’s 16th consecutive year.

Ranked number 17, REI is one of only five companies recognized each year since the list was created in 1998. The retailer is the highest-ranked company in Washington state on the list, which includes five others.

With 127 stores in 31 states, REI offers unique benefits to its more than 11,000 employees, including gear and apparel discounts, free equipment rentals and challenge grants to help employees reach their personal outdoor goals, healthcare coverage for full- and part-time employees, generous retirement plan contributions, public transit subsidy, adoption assistance and paid sabbaticals after 15 years of service. For more information about REI’s benefits, visit

Employee Enthusiasm

When asked why they like working at REI, employees offered:

“In addition to supporting my strong sense of adventure, it’s an organization I believe in. I get to provide customers with more than just a retail experience. I truly believe we inspire, educate and outfit for a lifetime of outdoor adventure and stewardship.”

“Employees constantly invite each other to new adventures!...With inspiration from co-workers, we have backpacked, ‘muddy buddied,’ kayaked, snow shoed, cycled, winter camped and so much more! Working at REI is fabulous because of the people and the bonds we create through and outside of work.”


To pick the 100 Best Companies to Work For, FORTUNE partners with the Great Place to Work Institute to conduct the most extensive employee survey in corporate America: 259 firms participated in this year’s survey. More than 277,000 employees at those companies responded to a survey created by the institute, a global research and consulting firm operating in 45 countries around the world.

Two-thirds of a company’s score is based on the results of the institute’s Trust Index survey, which is sent to a random sample of employees from each company. The survey asks questions related to their attitudes about management’s credibility, job satisfaction, and camaraderie. The other third is based on responses to the institute’s Culture Audit, which includes detailed questions about pay and benefit programs and a series of open-ended questions about hiring practices, methods of internal communication, training, recognition programs, and diversity efforts.

About the REI Co-op

REI is a specialty outdoor retailer, headquartered near Seattle. The nation’s largest consumer co-op, REI is a growing community of 23 million members who expect and love the best quality gear, inspiring expert classes and trips, and outstanding customer service. REI has 181 locations in 42 states and the District of Columbia. If you can’t visit a store, you can shop at REI.comREI Outlet or the REI shopping app. REI isn’t just about gear. Adventurers can take the trip of a lifetime with REI’s active adventure travel company that runs more than 100 itineraries across the country. In many communities where REI has a presence, professionally trained instructors share their expertise by hosting beginner-to advanced-level classes and workshops about a wide range of activities. To build on the infrastructure that makes life outside possible, REI invests millions annually in hundreds of local and national nonprofits that create access to—and steward—the outdoor places that inspire us all.