We are expanding Top Companies in 2016 to measure three critical areas: representation, employee experience and programs and policies.


To participate in the Top Companies program, companies provide key workforce metrics, including:

  • Representation of women at entry, mid, senior and executive levels
  • Recruitment, retention and promotion of women

Top Companies standardizes each of these metrics by calculating a Z-score, which measures the company’s deviation away from the mean divided by the standard deviation. By using this widely accepted method, our Z-scores represent where a company stands relative to the average of all participants. A company’s total score, the score used to place them on the Leadership Index, is the sum of the Z-scores for each metric.

Programs & Policies

In 2016, we will expand the information we collect from participants. We hope these additional measurements will give us an even deeper understanding of what makes a great workplace for women technologists. We will ask about policies and programs, including:

  • Maternity & paternity leave
  • Flex time
  • Pay equity
  • Accountability for gender diversity
  • Sponsorship programs
  • Leadership development programs
  • Employee resource groups
  • Education on the value of gender diversity

We will analyze this data and provide benchmarking information in the company reports, but we will not score these responses for the 2016 cycle.

Workplace Experience

To fully understand what makes a workplace where technical women can thrive, we need to gain a deeper understanding of the employee experience. ABI is partnering with Kanjoya, a leader in employee experience and workplace intelligence, to give technology companies insights into key cultural drivers that foster inclusive workplaces and engaged workforces.

In 2016, a select group of companies will participate in a pilot survey. This survey will give us new qualitative data by which will allow us to tap into company culture and employee perception. Participants will be asked to indicate their experiences on a variety of issues related to recruitment, retention and advancement. Results from the pilot year will not be included in the official score, but participating companies will receive the additional benchmark data in their final reports.


We recognize companies based on their total score. The company with the highest total score will be the Top Companies Award Winner and will receive recognition at the 2016 Grace Hopper Celebration (GHC) in Houston, TX in October. Companies that score above the mean are recognized in the Leadership Index. Those that participate, but score below the mean, will be included as part of the Change Alliance in acknowledgment of their commitment to measure their technical workforce and gain a deeper understanding of women in their company.

Top Company badges

In 2015, 35 companies participated in the program, representing over 435,000 technical employees, and we recognized 13 companies on our Top Companies Leadership Index. The number of companies on the Leadership Index changes each year based on participants’ scores.
Total employees in 2015Technical employees in 2015