SEATTLE – Amazon.com has reclaimed the top spot as America’s most-loved company in an annual ranking of some of the country’s largest companies.
Market research firm Harris Poll recently released its 17th annual ranking of the public’s perceptions of the 100 most visible companies in the U.S.
Despite news reports over the years about Amazon’s tough – some say brutal – working conditions, the Seattle-based online retailer ranked in the top 10 for the eighth consecutive year and even scored highly for the reputation of its workplace conditions.
Last year, Amazon was No. 2 on the list behind Wegmans Food Markets, while Costco was No. 4. The online retailer was No. 1 in 2014 and 2013.
Two other Pacific Northwest companies joined Amazon in the Top 20 this year, with Costco coming in at No. 13 and Microsoft at No. 20.
Nordstrom came in 37th, Starbucks 62nd and T-Mobile 73rd.
At the very bottom? Scandal-plagued Volkswagen Group.
Harris Poll, owned by Nielsen, surveyed more than 23,000 people to get their perceptions of companies’ reputations in the six areas of social responsibility, emotional appeal, products and services, vision and leadership, financial performance, and workplace environment.
Amazon, along with Google (No. 3 on the list, behind Amazon and Apple), ranked among the top five in all six reputational areas, according to the Harris Poll’s summary report of the findings. The online retailer showed particular strength in its product offerings and emotional connection with customers. It ranked fifth in workplace environment.
Starbucks dropped in the rankings from No. 31 last year to No. 62 this year. The company experienced declines in all six reputational areas, notably vision and leadership, social responsibility, and financial performance, according to Harris Poll spokeswoman Jennifer Frighetto.
Affecting the social responsibility rating decline is that, last year, the study measured the impact of Starbucks’ announcement to offer free college tuition to its baristas. “This year is likely leveling out after that news,” Frighetto said.
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