Each year, the Stockholm-based research firm Universum skips all the hype and goes straight to college students to ask them where they would like to work. The survey contacts more than 160,000 business and engineering students in the biggest markets, from Brazil to China to the U.S., and asks them to identify what they regard as top employers.

The favored companies, nonprofits, and government agencies are organizations that tend to offer flexible work options, great benefits, mentoring, and such perks as discounts on day care, free food, and places to play. Not surprisingly—considering public sentiment on banking—the companies that dropped off the list this year included ING Direct (ING) and Barclays Bank (BARC:LN).

Technology is big, with the top spot held by a tech giant. Again, the Big Four accounting firms all placed well in Universum’s ranking. Last year, the firm's list reflected major changes that accompanied the economic downturn, with such companies as Apple (AAPL) and American Express (AXP) appearing for the first time. This year's list changed far less as many companies maintained their honors.

Above, the new design for Apple's headquarters in Silicon Valley.

Here are the top 50 employers, in reverse order.

Methodology: Universum surveyed more than 160,000 undergraduate business and engineering students worldwide, asking each to identify the five employers for which he or she would most like to work. Students chose from a list of employers compiled from those identified as ideal in Universum's 2010 survey and tailored to each of the 12 major global markets in which the survey was conducted; they were allowed to write in the names of desirable employers not on the list. The ranking is based on the percentage of business students that placed each employer among the top five. (A separate roster based on engineering students’ responses was also created; General Motors (GM), Oracle (ORCL), BP (BP), Schlumberger (SLB), Philips (PHG), Bayer (BAYN:GR), Bosch, Lenovo (992:HK), BASF (BAS:GR), Ericsson (ERIC), and ABB (ABBN:VX) were top 50 employers in the engineering ranking that were not included in this slide show.) Of the top 50 employers in the business student ranking, 11 are Universum global consulting clients. NR=not ranked in top 50.

Above photo: Courtesy of City of San Bernardino. All following photographs by Bloomberg.

Each year, the Stockholm-based research firm Universum skips all the hype and goes straight to college students to ask them where they would like to work. The survey contacts more than 160,000 business and engineering students in the biggest markets, from Brazil to China to the U.S., and asks them to identify what they regard as top employers.

The favored companies, nonprofits, and government agencies are organizations that tend to offer flexible work options, great benefits, mentoring, and such perks as discounts on day care, free food, and places to play. Not surprisingly—considering public sentiment on banking—the companies that dropped off the list this year included ING Direct (ING) and Barclays Bank (BARC:LN).

Technology is big, with the top spot held by a tech giant. Again, the Big Four accounting firms all placed well in Universum’s ranking. Last year, the firm's list reflected major changes that accompanied the economic downturn, with such companies as Apple (AAPL) and American Express (AXP) appearing for the first time. This year's list changed far less as many companies maintained their honors.

Above, the new design for Apple's headquarters in Silicon Valley.

Here are the top 50 employers, in reverse order.

Methodology: Universum surveyed more than 160,000 undergraduate business and engineering students worldwide, asking each to identify the five employers for which he or she would most like to work. Students chose from a list of employers compiled from those identified as ideal in Universum's 2010 survey and tailored to each of the 12 major global markets in which the survey was conducted; they were allowed to write in the names of desirable employers not on the list. The ranking is based on the percentage of business students that placed each employer among the top five. (A separate roster based on engineering students’ responses was also created; General Motors (GM), Oracle (ORCL), BP (BP), Schlumberger (SLB), Philips (PHG), Bayer (BAYN:GR), Bosch, Lenovo (992:HK), BASF (BAS:GR), Ericsson (ERIC), and ABB (ABBN:VX) were top 50 employers in the engineering ranking that were not included in this slide show.) Of the top 50 employers in the business student ranking, 11 are Universum global consulting clients. NR=not ranked in top 50.

Above photo: Courtesy of City of San Bernardino. All following photographs by Bloomberg.

College Students' Top Employers

Big Four Accounting Firms Dominate Top Ten
Big Four Accounting Firms Dominate Top Ten

Each year, the Stockholm-based research firm Universum skips all the hype and goes straight to college students to ask them where they would like to work. The survey contacts more than 160,000 business and engineering students in the biggest markets, from Brazil to China to the U.S., and asks them to identify what they regard as top employers.

The favored companies, nonprofits, and government agencies are organizations that tend to offer flexible work options, great benefits, mentoring, and such perks as discounts on day care, free food, and places to play. Not surprisingly—considering public sentiment on banking—the companies that dropped off the list this year included ING Direct (ING) and Barclays Bank (BARC:LN).

Technology is big, with the top spot held by a tech giant. Again, the Big Four accounting firms all placed well in Universum’s ranking. Last year, the firm's list reflected major changes that accompanied the economic downturn, with such companies as Apple (AAPL) and American Express (AXP) appearing for the first time. This year's list changed far less as many companies maintained their honors.

Above, the new design for Apple's headquarters in Silicon Valley.

Here are the top 50 employers, in reverse order.

Methodology: Universum surveyed more than 160,000 undergraduate business and engineering students worldwide, asking each to identify the five employers for which he or she would most like to work. Students chose from a list of employers compiled from those identified as ideal in Universum's 2010 survey and tailored to each of the 12 major global markets in which the survey was conducted; they were allowed to write in the names of desirable employers not on the list. The ranking is based on the percentage of business students that placed each employer among the top five. (A separate roster based on engineering students’ responses was also created; General Motors (GM), Oracle (ORCL), BP (BP), Schlumberger (SLB), Philips (PHG), Bayer (BAYN:GR), Bosch, Lenovo (992:HK), BASF (BAS:GR), Ericsson (ERIC), and ABB (ABBN:VX) were top 50 employers in the engineering ranking that were not included in this slide show.) Of the top 50 employers in the business student ranking, 11 are Universum global consulting clients. NR=not ranked in top 50.

Above photo: Courtesy of City of San Bernardino. All following photographs by Bloomberg.

Daimler
Daimler
Headquarters: Stuttgart, Germany
Employees: 266,114
Industry: Automotive
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 50 (NR)
Engineering: 32 (NR)

Many companies put out the idea that it’s fine to work on your own schedule. Daimler (DAI:GR) really means it. Among the great benefits of working for the high-class maker of Mercedes-Benz vehicles, Daimler offers numerous flexible working models to let employees work when they are most productive, rather than sit at desks for a set period of time.

Above, Dieter Zetsche, chief executive officer of Daimler. 
Cisco Systems
Cisco Systems
Headquarters: San Jose
Employees: 71,825
Industry: Technology
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 49 (48)
Engineering: 13 (11)

Cisco’s (CSCO) business frequently focuses on improving the workplace at other companies, so it’s no surprise that the IT powerhouse focuses on its own employees. The company invests in e-learning as well as classroom-style sessions for employees. Its offices are designed to encourage working together, with functional furniture and innovative floor plans.


Pfizer
Pfizer
Headquarters: New York
Employees: 110,600
Industry: Pharmaceutical
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 48 (46)
Engineering: 37 (32)

The world’s largest pharmaceutical company offers employees three weeks of paid vacation, 13 holidays, and a medical plan with 100 percent coverage for prescription drugs, plus other benefits. Those are a few reasons why Pfizer (PFE) is an attractive place to work for those who want careers in business, biology, or both.

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Ford Motor
Ford Motor
Headquarters: Dearborn, Mich.
Employees: 166,000
Industry: Automotive
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 47 (47)
Engineering: 17 (20)

The company that builds everything from the Fiesta to the Mustang to the Escape offers much for employees. As part of a recent annual event created by Ford (F), 12,000 employees, retirees, and employees of dealerships worked on 200 volunteer community projects. Ford is known for its competitive pay, benefits, and flexible work options.

Above, Alan Mulally, chief executive officer of Ford Motor. 
Dell
Dell
Headquarters: Round Rock, Tex.
Employees: 103,300
Industry: Technology
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 46 (45)
Engineering: 31 (22)

Dell (DELL) is family friendly, with many of its locations offering discounted child care and college coaches for employees' kids. Employees receive discounts on Dell products and their children can get help accessing college counseling and scholarships.

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ExxonMobil
ExxonMobil
Headquarters: Irving, Tex.
Employees: 83,600
Industry: Energy
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 45 (43)
Engineering: 19 (16)

ExxonMobil’s (XOM) reputation is strong enough that the company warns against recruiting scams. The world's largest corporation by market capitalization, ExxonMobil also offers employees discounts to purchase gas.

Above, Rex Tillerson, chairman and chief executive officer of ExxonMobil. 
Bloomberg
Shell
Shell
Headquarters: The Hague, Netherlands
Employees: 97,000
Industry: Energy
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 44 (40)
Engineering: 16 (14)

Along with great pay and benefits, Shell (RDSA:LN) offers employees company stock at a reduced price and provides discounts on such perks as gym memberships and car parking. Shell also offers extensive training-and-development programs attractive to new graduates.


Bloomberg
Nokia
Nokia
Headquarters: Espoo, Finland
Employees: 133,184
Industry: Telecommunications
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 43 (42)
Engineering: 25 (27)

Nokia (NOK), the Finnish cell phone maker, offers a world of job opportunities, with operations in more than 160 countries. The company draws grads who want to work in mobile technology.

Bloomberg
Toyota Motor
Toyota Motor
Headquarters: Toyota City, Aichi, Japan
Employees: 322,046
Industry: Automotive
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 42 (41)
Engineering: 18 (18)

The Japanese carmaker offers employees such benefits as full medical, dental, and retirement plans. Toyota (TM), makes vehicles under brands that include Lexus, Hino, and Daihatsu. The company draws large numbers of engineers and technically skilled workers.
3M
3M
Headquarters: St. Paul, Minn.
Employees: 80,057
Industry: Technology
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 41 (NR)
Engineering: 26 (21)

3M (MMM) hires undergraduates to work in 35 laboratories and offices that span 65 countries. In addition to competitive pay and benefits, numerous development programs foster employee growth.
Bloomberg
Heineken
Heineken
Headquarters: Amsterdam
Employees: 65,730
Industry: Food & Beverages
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 40 (34)
Engineering: 50 (48)

Based on TV ads, Heineken (HEIA:NA) seems as if it would be a fun place to work. Behind the cool façade, the brewer's brands include Foster’s and Amstel. New employees can look forward to training at Heineken University, as well as great benefits and pay.
Siemens
Siemens
Headquarters: Munich
Employees: 421,000
Industry: Technology
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 39 (NR)
Engineering: 9 (8)

Siemens (SIE:GR) hires to fill jobs in information technology, engineering, finance, sales, marketing, and other areas. The company offers employee health plans, dental plans, and many possibilities for insurance, as well as retirement savings plans.

Above, Peter Loescher, chief executive officer of Siemens.
Intel
Intel
Headquarters: Santa Clara, Calif.
Employees: 82,500
Industry: Technology
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 38 (44)
Engineering: 5 (6)

Intel (INTC) employees are offered flexible work options and tuition reimbursement. After seven years on staff, they qualify for paid eight-week sabbaticals. The technology company behind many of the most popular computers and gadgets hires aggressively in areas such as engineering, information technology, finance, sales, and marketing.


Volkswagen
Volkswagen
Headquarters: Wolfsburg, Germany
Employees: 435,279
Industry: Automotive
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 37 (38)
Engineering: 14 (17)

The creator of brands that include Audi, SEAT, Bentley, Bugatti, Lamborghini, and Škoda, Volkswagen (VOW:GR) offers flexible work arrangements and great benefits. The so-called graduate program attracts recent college graduates. Many participants are hired after they rotate through various job positions within the organization.

American Express
American Express
Headquarters: New York
Employees: 62,600
Industry: Consumer Credit
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 36 (35)
Engineering: NR (NR)

Employees of American Express (AXP) enjoy flexible options that include programs for women on maternity leave, employees nearing retirement, and others who need compressed work weeks. The company also offers training online and in the classroom.
UBS
UBS
Headquarters: Zurich
Employees: 65,707
Industry: Banking/Finance
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 35 (30)
Engineering: NR (NR)

The news that a UBS trader lost $2 billion of the bank’s money has brought a surge of bad press. That won’t likely discourage college students from picturing UBS (UBS) as a great place to work. The company filled 9,101 positions in 2010, with 2,360 of those jobs in investment banking. UBS offers top pay and good benefits.
Hewlett-Packard
Hewlett-Packard
Headquarters: Palo Alto, Calif.
Employees: 324,600
Industry: Technology
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 34 (37)
Engineering: 12 (13)

Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) offers employees health, savings, and retirement plans. The company grants significant amounts of training time: On-the job activities account for 70 percent of employee training, with mentoring and formal training making up the rest.
Credit Suisse
Credit Suisse
Headquarters: Zurich
Employees: 50,700
Industry: Banking/Finance
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 33 (31)
Engineering: NR (NR)

Financial-services group Credit Suisse (CS) is a big draw for college students. The six-month internship presents one of the sector's better opportunities; the company offers summer internships, too. Credit Suisse is hiring in private and investment banking, asset management, shared services, and information technology.


Bain & Co.
Bain & Co.
Headquarters: Boston
Employees: 4,800 (consulting only)
Industry: Consulting
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 32 (33)
Engineering: NR (NR)

Bain & Co. is deemed attractive by both globally and socially minded college graduates. The firm has 46 offices in 26 countries, sponsors teams on service projects, and has set a goal of being 100 percent carbon neutral by 2012.

Above, Orit Gadiesh, chairman of Bain & Co. 
Kraft Foods
Kraft Foods
Headquarters: Northfield, Ill.
Employees: 127,000
Industry: Food
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 31 (32)
Engineering: 40 (38)

The maker of some of America’s favorite foods, from Oreos to Oscar Meyer, Kraft (KFT) designed its offices to encourage collaboration and a more open work environment. Kraft operates in more than 160 countries, with employees who are, as Kraft puts it, “passionate about food.”
PepsiCo
PepsiCo
Headquarters: Purchase, N.Y.
Employees: 294,000
Industry: Food & Beverages
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 30 (28)
Engineering: 47 (NR)

PepsiCo (PEP) offers such perks as a stock purchase plan, company-funded retirement benefits, and employee discounts on cell phones. With brands including Pepsi, Frito-Lay, Tropicana, Quaker, and Gatorade, the company offers employee mentoring, job rotation, and flexible work options. 
Citigroup
Citigroup
Headquarters: New York
Employees: 263,000
Industry: Banking/Finance
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 29 (29)
Engineering: NR (NR)

With 12,000 offices in 140 countries, Citigroup (C) offers employees pension benefits, life insurance, health insurance, and help with continuing education. The company recruits from colleges and hires regularly from its pool of interns.

Accenture
Accenture
Headquarters: Dublin
Employees: 223,000
Industry: Consulting
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 28 (25)
Engineering: 21 (24)

Accenture (ACN) slipped a few spots in Universum’s rankings by business students but gained among engineering students. The company offers employees a profit-sharing plan, retirement plan options, and “above market” rewards to top employees, according to Accenture.com.

Above, William "Bill" Green, chairman and chief executive officer of Accenture. 
LVMH
LVMH
Headquarters: Paris
Employees: 83,542
Industry: Luxury Goods
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 27 (39)
Engineering: NR (NR)

From Louis Vuitton to Tag Heuer to Moët & Chandon, LVMH (MC:FP) defines luxury across 60 brands, 2,500 stores, and more than 80,000 employees. The company offers training, talent development, and opportunities for internal mobility.

General Electric
General Electric
Headquarters: Fairfield, Conn.
Employees: 287,000
Industry: Manufacturing
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 26 (27)
Engineering: 8 (7)

GE (GE) is a technology and manufacturing giant that spans such areas as aviation, health care, finance, entertainment, and energy. College student do-gooders are attracted to the company for a chance to help build the 12,000 wind turbines GE produces each year, just as other students look to the company for the $1 billion it spends annually to educate employees.
Unilever
Unilever
Headquarters: London
Employees: 165,000
Industry: Food & Beverages
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 25 (26)
Engineering: 41 (42)

Unilever (UL) operates in more than 150 countries, selling such brands as Lipton, Dove, Hellmann’s, and Pond’s. The company's benefits package includes a pension, medical insurance, and at certain levels of management, a company car.

Above, Paul Polman, chief executive officer of Unilever. 
Bank of America/Merrill Lynch
Bank of America/Merrill Lynch
Headquarters: Charlotte, N.C.
Employees: 287,839
Industry: Banking/Finance
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 24 (22)
Engineering: NR (NR)

After just one year or 1,000 hours of work at Bank of America (BAC), associates are eligible for a pension plan. BofA attracts new employees with perks that include two paid hours per week of volunteer time, commuter benefits, and tuition reimbursement.

Adidas
Adidas
Headquarters: Herzogenaurach, Germany
Employees: 46,353
Industry: Footwear
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 23 (24)
Engineering: 43 (43)

Adidas (ADS:GR) has a motto for employees: “As few rules as necessary, as much flexibility as possible.” According to the company website, the concept applies to vacation time. Further generous perks include free language courses, personal trainers, company-wide sporting events, and the chance to meet visiting athletes.
Boston Consulting Group
Boston Consulting Group
Headquarters: Boston
Employees: 4,800 (consulting only)
Industry: Consulting
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 22 (15)
Engineering: 42 (36)

With more than 70 offices in 42 countries, Boston Consulting Group is a great place to work for those who want to travel, with options like temporary cross-office staffing and interoffice transfers. The company grants such breaks as a temporary leave of absence along the traditional career path, which starts at the associate level and climbs to project leader, principal, and even partner.

Above, Hans Paul Burkner, chief executive officer and president of the Boston Consulting Group. 
Deutsche Bank
Deutsche Bank
Headquarters: Frankfurt
Employees: 101,694
Industry: Banking/Finance
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 21 (20)
Engineering: NR (NR)

With offices in more than 70 countries, Deutsche Bank (DB) is a global financial powerhouse employing more than 100,000 people. The company offers pension plans, flexible work arrangements, and competitive pay.

Ikea
Ikea
Headquarters: Leiden, Netherlands
Employees: 12,300 (US)
Industry: Home Furnishings
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 20 (23)
Engineering: 33 (35)

The popular maker of fashionable, simple, well-designed furniture and household items, Ikea hires in fields that range from design to finance to logistics. Employees have options. “If co-workers get tired of what they’re doing or just want to try something else, they can move to a new role within Ikea, not outside Ikea,” according to Ikea.com.

Nestlé
Nestlé
Headquarters: Vevey, Switzerland
Employees: 281,000
Industry: Food & Beverages
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 19 (21)
Engineering: 27 (19)

The maker of a vast variety of products and brands that range from Perrier to Gerber to Cheerios, Nestlé (NESN:VX) hires across many areas, including sales, manufacturing, finance, and engineering. The company emphasizes continuing education and language training.
Morgan Stanley
Morgan Stanley
Headquarters: New York
Employees: 62,964
Industry: Banking/Finance
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 18 (17)
Engineering: 46 (50)

Morgan Stanley (MS) teamed up with employees to donate more than $80 million in 2010. Some 20,000 workers also donated volunteer time on 900 projects last year. Apart from a focus on doing good, the company offers great pay and benefits.
McKinsey & Co.
McKinsey & Co.
Headquarters: New York
Employees: 16,000 (8,000 consultants)
Industry: Consulting
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 17 (16)
Engineering: 23 (26)

The culture at McKinsey & Co. encourages teamwork and collaboration, with groups working on specific projects for periods that range from two months to six months. New hires receive mentoring and coaching, as well as more formal education.

Above, Dominic Barton, managing director of McKinsey & Co. 
IBM
IBM
Headquarters: Armonk, N.Y.
Employees: 426,751
Industry: Technology
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 16 (19)
Engineering: 2 (3)

With new technology companies crowding the market, it’s sometimes hard to remember that IBM (IBM) remains an innovator, even as the company turns 100. With a culture of constant reinvention, it should come as no surprise that IBM was ranked second this year among engineering students. The company offers employees a performance bonus, stock purchase plan, and pension program.

Johnson & Johnson
Johnson & Johnson
Headquarters: New Brunswick, N.J.
Employees: 114,000
Industry: Pharmaceutical
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 15 (14)
Engineering: 11 (12)

Maker of Tylenol, Listerine, and Neutrogena, Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) is also a giant in the fields of medical devices and pharmaceuticals, with more than 250 companies located around the world. Johnson & Johnson stresses flexible work options, education, and wellness programs for employees.

BMW
BMW
Headquarters: Munich
Employees: 95,453
Industry: Automotive
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 14 (12)
Engineering: 4 (5)

At BMW (BMW:GR), driving a BMW is part of the deal. The company stresses “a working familiarity” with its cars, encouraging employees to use BMWs through assignment and vehicle lease programs. Other generous benefits include a pension plan, life insurance, and paid time off.

L’Oréal
L’Oréal
Headquarters: Paris
Employees: 64,643
Industry: Cosmetics
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 13 (11)
Engineering: 22 (29)

New employees at French cosmetics, beauty products, and perfume company L’Oréal (OR:FP) are tracked into the L’Oréal FIT program, a two-year, personalized program for starting a career at the company, which emphasizes development. Each year, 4,500 employees shift positions within L’Oréal, according to its website.

Coca-Cola
Coca-Cola
Headquarters: Atlanta
Employees: 139,600
Industry: Food & Beverages
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 12 (8)
Engineering: 15 (15)

Available from Afghanistan to Macedonia to Zambia, Coca-Cola may have created the world's singular beverage. As a company, Coca-Cola (KO) is much more. It sells more than 3,500 products in 200 countries and hires in areas such as finance, information technology, marketing, and logistics.

Sony
Sony
Headquarters: Tokyo
Employees: 168,200
Industry: Technology
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 11 (13)
Engineering: 6 (4)

Sony (SNE) offers starting employees an initial three weeks paid time off, among such additional benefits as discounts on Sony products. The company lures brilliant young minds to work in sectors from legal to manufacturing to engineering in workplaces that feature cafeterias and fitness centers.

Goldman Sachs
Goldman Sachs
Headquarters: New York
Employees: 34,100
Industry: Banking/Finance
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 10 (10)
Engineering: 30 (34)

Goldman Sachs (GS) encourages continuing education through more than 4,000 programs offered at Goldman Sachs University. The company rewards employees with an annual year end bonus, equity awards, and great benefits.

Apple
Apple
Headquarters: Cupertino, Calif.
Employees: 46,600
Industry: Technology
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 9 (18)
Engineering: 7 (10)

You could work for Apple (AAPL) in legal, marketing, or financial jobs, or you could help design some of the world's most-loved gadgets as part of the iPhone or iPod engineering departments. The company's products are part of the lure for prospective employees, along with the possibility of working at one of four hip “campuses” located in Silicon Valley, Austin, Tex., Singapore, and Cork, Ireland.

J.P. Morgan
J.P. Morgan
Headquarters: New York
Employees: 250,095
Industry: Banking/Finance
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 8 (9)
Engineering: 36 (41)

A banking and financial services company with more than 200 years of history, J.P. Morgan (JPM) has offices in more than 50 countries. Employees get discounts on car loans, refinancing, gym memberships, and computers made by Apple and Dell.

Procter & Gamble
Procter & Gamble
Headquarters: Cincinnati
Employees: 129,000
Industry: Consumer Goods
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 7 (6)
Engineering: 10 (9)

Owner of such brands as Gillette, Pantene, and Crest, Procter & Gamble (PG) hires young people and sticks with them through a development philosophy of “build from within.” One of Universum's top 10 companies, it’s not surprising that applicants must compete for P&G openings. The company reports that nearly 500,000 people apply each year, with fewer than one percent hired.

Microsoft
Microsoft
Headquarters: Redmond, Wash.
Employees: 90,000
Industry: Technology
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 6 (7)
Engineering: 3 (2)

Microsoft (MSFT) gives employees such benefits as free health screenings at work, tuition reimbursement, and gym memberships. Popular employee programs like the the mentor program and the breakfast series that features speakers and free food help keep current employees and attract new ones.

Deloitte
Deloitte
Headquarters: New York
Employees: 50,000 (U.S. only)
Industry: Professional Services
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 5 (5)
Engineering: 38 (40)

Paid time off at Deloitte starts at 20 days and eight holidays. The company also offers an unpaid one-month sabbatical or three- to six month sabbaticals at 40 percent pay. The company's main areas of hiring: audit, risk services, consulting, financial advisory, internal services, and tax.
Ernst & Young
Ernst & Young
Headquarters: New York
Employees: 141,000
Industry: Professional Services
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 4 (3)
Engineering: NR (49)

Last year, Ernst & Young organized a day of community service and fun that amounted to 38,000 volunteer hours. Day to day, the company focuses on training and education for employees. Every year, a few thousand newly promoted managers and directors are brought together for a week-long meeting. Such perks, along with great benefits and pay, help build strong interest in working for Ernst & Young.
PricewaterhouseCoopers
PricewaterhouseCoopers
Headquarters: New York
Employees: 161,000
Industry: Professional Services
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 3 (4)
Engineering: NR (NR)

With offices in 154 countries, PricewaterhouseCoopers provides a wide range of opportunities beyond top pay and good benefits. The company has been known to give employees surprise gifts or paid days off over holidays, including a week off during recent December holiday seasons and around July 4th.

Above, Dennis Nally, global chairman of PricewaterhouseCoopers. 
KPMG
KPMG
Headquarters: New York
Employees: 138,000
Industry: Professional Services
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 2 (2)
Engineering: NR (NR)

For the second year, KPMG took second place in Universum’s ranking of attractive employers. The company encourages young employees with more than 8,000 mentoring relationships among 11,000 employees and partners. The company also pushes such fun stuff as a Super Bowl challenge with iPads and Kindles for prizes, as well as a vacation photo challenge.

Google
Google
Headquarters: Mountain View, Calif.
Employees: 28,768
Industry: Technology
2011 Rank (2010 Rank)
Business: 1 (1)
Engineering: 1 (1)

For the third year in a row, Google (GOOG) ranks as the most attractive employer. It helps that the company offers such perks as free food and massages. There’s also the excitement of working at a popular technology company known to be at the forefront of innovation and business. Among Google’s “Top 10 reasons to work at Google” are the following: “Life is beautiful,” “we love our employees,” and “work and play are not mutually exclusive.”