Training magazine Ranks 2019 Training Top 125 Organizations

These are the organizations that excelled at employee training and development in the last year.


Lorri Freifeld

Editor-in-Chief, Training magazine

(516) 524-3504


Excelsior, MN (February 26, 2019)—Retailers flexed their training muscle on the 2019 Training Top 125, with Dollar General Corporation, LLC, earning the top spot and Best Buy ranking third. Leading Real Estate Companies of the World (#2), Nationwide (#4), and BNSF Railway Co. (#5) rounded out the Top 5.

Some 28 new companies broke into the Top 125 this year. The majority of the companies are in the business services, finance/banking, health/medical services, insurance, and IT/technology industries.

Training magazine recognized the 2019 Training Top 125 winners with crystal awards and revealed their rankings during the Training Top 125 Wish Upon a Star Gala held last night during the Training 2019 Conference & Expo at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort in Orlando, FL. The black-tie gala was sponsored by Adobe, Brella, Pelucida, Seiko, and the Training Top 10 Hall of Fame. Adobe provided a special gift for the Gala attendees. Brella spearheaded the event production. Pelucida created the crystal awards. And Seiko served as the official timekeeper of the event and provided keepsake watches and a commemorative clock for the No. 1 winner.

Now in its 19th year, the Training Top 125 is the only awards program that ranks companies unsurpassed in harnessing human capital. Some overall statistics from the quantitative analysis of the winning 2019 Training Top 125 applications include:

  • The mean revenue was $9.7 billion U.S. and $12.2 billion worldwide. The mean training budget was $25 million, representing 7.34 percent of payroll. The mean amount of training cost savings was 13 percent.
  • The mean number of total employees trained per organization (including independent contractors and franchisees) was 38,704, with 19,828 trained in the classroom and 56,548 trained online. A mean of 631 courses were offered as instructor-led sessions; 7,860 were offered as online self-paced modules; and 155 were offered as virtual instructor-led classrooms. All but one of the 2019 Training Top 125ers have a technology infrastructure.
  • The average number of full-time and part-time trainers was 137 and 269, respectively.
  • Some 95 percent of Top 125 winners have a tuition reimbursement program. A mean of 11 percent of eligible employees made use of tuition reimbursement programs in the last year. Median spend on tuition reimbursement programs was $205,248.
  • Some 98 percent of winners use employee satisfaction surveys, while all use competency maps and personal/individual development plans. Some 75 percent tie managers’ compensation directly to the development of their direct reports. 
  • On the evaluation side, 86 percent of applicants utilize Return on Value; 94 percent utilize Return on Investment; 78 percent utilize Balanced Scorecards; and 67 percent utilize Six Sigma. The Kirkpatrick Levels of Evaluation are more widely used: Level 1 (99 percent), Levels 2 and 3 (100 percent), and Level 4 (98 percent).

Yesterday afternoon, Training recognized innovative and successful learning and development programs and practices utilized by some of the Training Top 125 winners. Best Practice and Outstanding Training Initiative winners received crystal trophies during a ceremony on the Expo Stage. They were (in alphabetical order):


  • BayCare Health System
  • CenturyLink
  • Haskell
  • Paychex, Inc.
  • Walden Security


  • Best Buy
  • Birmingham Water Works Board
  • CarMax, Inc.
  • FORUM Credit Union
  • Van Meter, Inc.

“We salute the 2019 Training Top 125 winners’ training brilliance, their out-of-this-world innovation, and their deep dedication to employee learning and development,” says Lorri Freifeld, editor-in-chief of Training magazine. “We hope they will continue to inspire this and future generations with their love of learning and commitment to training! The sky’s the limit!”

The Top 125 ranking is determined by assessing a range of qualitative and quantitative factors, including financial investment in employee development, the scope of development programs, how closely such development efforts are linked to business goals and objectives, and their effectiveness in terms of business impact.

Companies that wish to be considered for Top 125 ranking complete a detailed application, which is scored both quantitatively (73 points) by an outside research and statistical data company and qualitatively (52 points) by Training magazine editors and Top 10 Hall of Fame representatives.

For a profile of each of the Top 5 companies on the Training Top 125, additional information about the training efforts of all 125 companies, and details on the programs receiving Best Practice and Outstanding Training Initiative awards, see the March/April 2019 issue. The digital edition can be found online at

To order a copy of the issue or Training Top 125 merchandise, visit:

2019 Training Top 125 Winners

1         Dollar General Corporation, LLC

2         Leading Real Estate Companies of the World

3         Best Buy

4         Nationwide

5         BNSF Railway Co.

6         Sonic Automotive

7         Birmingham Water Works Board

8         Haskell

9         United Shore

10       WellSpan Health

11       Ascend Federal Credit Union

12       Paychex, Inc.

13       BayCare Health System

14       Edward Jones

15       Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America

16       MasTec Utility Services

17       ESL Federal Credit Union

18       New York Community Bancorp, Inc.

19       ArcBest

20       Florida Blue

21       Valvoline Instant Oil Change

22       Buckman Laboratories International, Inc.

23       First Horizon National Corporation

24       CVS Health

25       Pacific Gas & Electric

26       Mohawk Industries, Inc.

27       Wequassett Resort and Golf Club

28       Janssen: Pharmaceutical Companies for Johnson & Johnson

29       OptumRx

30       Gilbane Building Company

31       ADP, LLC

32       Norton Healthcare

33       MTM, Inc.

34       SE2, LLC

35       Pennrose

36       FORUM Credit Union

37       Applied Materials, Inc.

38       Paycor

39       Anthem Inc.

40       SpawGlass

41       Vi

42       Navient

43       Veeam Software

44       Windham Professionals Inc.

45       Walmart

46       Bell and Howell

47       Gables Residential

48       The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America

49       Rosendin Electric Inc.

50       PPD

51       CarMax, Inc.

52       Johns Hopkins Community Physicians

53       Carilion Clinic

54       Walden Security

55       G4S Secured Solutions (USA) Inc.

56       BKD CPAs & Advisors

57       ConServe

58       Concentrix Corporation

59       Intermedia, Inc

60       One Nevada Credit Union

61       DaVita

62       Aon plc

63       Cartus

64       Rollins, LLC

65       Van Meter, Inc.

66       Avanade, Inc.

67       Williams & Fudge, Inc.

68       AAA Northeast

69       Nicklaus Children’s Health System

70       Ricoh USA, Inc.

71       Mastercard

72       Choice Hotels International

73       Canadian Nuclear Laboratories

74       VSP Global

75       TIAA

76       BB&T Corporation

77       Bankers Life

78       Navy Federal Credit Union

79       Argo Group

80       State Compensation Insurance Fund 

81       Tarkett North America, a division of Tarkett

82       Persistent Systems Ltd

83       Aetna Inc.

84       PPL Electric Utilities

85       FDIC Corporate University

86       C&A Industries

87       University of New Mexico Hospitals

88       Shaw Industries

89       Bass & Associates, P.C.

90       Exchange Bank

91       Miami Cerebral Palsy Residential Services, Inc.

92       Signature Commercial Solutions, LLC d/b/a Signature Consultants

93       Specialist Staffing Group

94       Two Men and a Truck International

95       Penn Station East Coast Subs

96       Emser Tile, LLC

97       New York Life Insurance Company

98       American Fidelity

99       Bright Horizons Family Solutions

100     Workiva Inc.

101     Office of the Comptroller of the Currency

102     Microchip Technology Inc

103     Special Response Corporation

104     Mariner Finance LLC

105     Jones Lang LaSalle

106     Dellbrook | JKS Construction

107     Fisher Investments

108     CenturyLink

109     England Logistics

110     Holman Enterprises

111     LaSalle Network

112     AlloSource

113     Western & Southern Financial Group

114     The Probationary Inspector Training Division of School of Foundation Training in Hong Kong Police College, Hong Kong Police Force

115     NIGP: The Institute for Public Procurement

116     Spectrum Health

117     Electric Power Board (EPB)

118     HGS Inc., USA

119     Solstice

120     DISH Network

121     PSA Airlines

122     Morrison Healthcare

123     Alliance Residential Company

124     PPS Insurance Company

125     Sundt Construction

About Training magazine

Training is a 55-year-old professional development magazine written for training, Human Resources, and business management professionals in all industries that advocate training and workforce development as a business tool. Training also produces world-class conferences, expositions, and digital products that focus on job-related, employer-sponsored training and education in the working world. Training is published by Lakewood Media Group.



Lorri Freifeld
Lorri Freifeld is the editor/publisher of Training magazine. She writes on a number of topics, including talent management, training technology, and leadership development. She spearheads two awards programs: the Training APEX Awards and Emerging Training Leaders. A writer/editor for the last 30 years, she has held editing positions at a variety of publications and holds a Master’s degree in journalism from New York University.