Top Workplaces in New Jersey: Celebrating the culture builders in 2021

Employees and employers alike have faced unprecedented challenges throughout the past year as a result of the pandemic. Most were forced to pivot by shifting schedules and finding ways to work from home while still acting as a cohesive unit and delivering goods and services with little to no interruption. Though it was not an easy feat, 63 Garden State companies garnered praise and admiration from their associates, who named them to New Jersey’s Top Workplaces list. 

As this past year was unlike any other, communication was a main focus for employees in this year’s Top Workplaces list. Photo courtesy of Family First Funding

How did these organizations achieve this distinction? Employee engagement platform, Energage, reached out to New Jersey-based employers with at least 50 employees and surveyed staff members to determine the state’s Top Workplaces. Public and private companies, nonprofit organizations and government entities were eligible. This is the third year of the initiative, which is run in partnership with and Jersey’s Best.  

Employers whose staff members took the 24-question survey received a free overview of the results, providing insight into where their company succeeded and where there was room for improvement. 

“You don’t get on this list by accident,” said Bob Helbig, media partnerships director of Pennsylvania-based Energage. “We give credit to every company that asks their employees, ‘How are we doing?’ and is open to that feedback. The really good companies — that’s how they operate. They’re willing to hear the criticism because that’s the only way you can improve. Otherwise, you’re just operating in a vacuum, and you don’t know what’s wrong until it’s too late.” 

LS Technologies (small, No. 3) empowers its employees to support the Federal Aviation Administration’s mission, and that effort has paid off with a 2021 Top Workplaces award. Photo courtesy of LS Technologies

Communication is the Key to Staying Connected 

As this past year was unlike any other, Helbig noted that communication was a main focus for employees. 

“Because of the fact that more people are working remotely, companies have had to go the extra mile to communicate with their employees, and employees are really appreciative of that,” Helbig said. “People are feeling more in the loop than ever. They’re feeling more connected with their companies, and that’s so important even during normal times. But, because of the pandemic, everybody’s stepped up in terms of what they’re communicating, how they’re communicating and making sure the message is received.” 

Communication is a hallmark at LS Technologies (LST), (small, No. 3), which provides engineering, technical and professional services for federal and state government agencies, and was named a Top Workplace in the small company (50-149 employees) category. 

LST CEO Alison Poltorak said the company “strives to create a safe, inclusive environment conducive to open communication that respects, informs and empowers all employees so we can be more innovative, productive and successful.” Poltorak added that the company is very proud of this workplace recognition, and of the LS Technologies employees in New Jersey who work so hard to support the Federal Aviation Administration’s mission.” 

Dawn Coyle, a program analyst who joined LST during the pandemic, said working with the company has been a great experience.  

“LST makes it a priority to stay connected and consistently engaged by providing a level of communication and transparency unmatched by any other entity I have worked for in the past,” Coyle said. 

Plymouth Rock Assurance (large, No. 1), a financial services company based in Woodbridge, was a standout among large-sized organizations. Photo courtesy of Plymouth Rock Assurance

Working as a team during a global crisis was a challenge for larger organizations as well, but again, communication and collaboration prevailed at Plymouth Rock Assurance, (large, No. 1), a financial services company, which placed in the top three among large-sized organizations (500 or more employees). 

“The last year has been difficult amid the ongoing pandemic, but our employees have worked exceptionally hard to benefit our customers, agents and local communities,” said president and CEO Jeff Briglia. “The culture and spirit that the Plymouth Rock team has built is special, and it is wonderful to be recognized as one of the state’s top employers.” 

Briglia’s sentiments were echoed by employees of the Woodbridge-based company. One anonymous staffer who responded to the survey stated, “I am able to work in an environment that feels encouraging and safe. Now, working from home during the pandemic, we still have that feeling of camaraderie and feel connected to make sure our work is complete and we continue to grow and learn as a team.”   

A culture of caring is one of the primary reasons residential mortgage lender AnnieMac, (midsize, No. 3),  was named one of the Top Workplaces in the midsize company category. Photo courtesy of AnnieMac

Residential mortgage lender AnnieMac, (midsize, No. 3), was named one of the Top Workplaces in the midsize company (150-499 employees) category. CEO Joe Panebianco attributed this honor to the culture of caring that’s been cultivated “since day one. 

“Our entire working dynamic changed in 2020 when we shifted to working remotely, but with everyone’s commitment, our bond as teammates remains stronger than ever,” Panebianco said. “We help, teach and appreciate each other like we always have, and we’re delighted that this award is decided by input from our own employees. It tells us that they feel genuinely fulfilled working with our company, and we couldn’t be more pleased to hear it.” 

Toms River-based mortgage lender Family First Funding, (midsize, No. 1), was named to the list in the midsize company category for the second consecutive year. Photo courtesy of Family First Funding

Fellow mortgage lender Family First Funding, (midsize, No. 1),was named to the list in the midsize company category for the second consecutive year. Diane Kinoian, training and development coordinator at the mortgage company, said this is just the beginning. 

“The year of 2020 will go down in history, not only due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but also the record low mortgage rates that resulted in tremendous growth for our company,” Kinoian said. “With all of the pivoting that was required to equip employees to work remotely, service our clients virtually, hire and train many new ‘Family’ members, all while remaining poised throughout a challenging year, we couldn’t be more thrilled that our employees and New Jersey have taken notice.” 

Digital Marketing Coordinator Leah Beganie added, “Working here, our employees know that Family First Funding is one of the best places to work; we love that New Jersey knows it, too!” 

Edison-based MTF Biologics (large, No. 3) advances the science of tissue transplantation by awarding grants that fund groundbreaking research. Photo courtesy of MTF Biologics

Making a Difference 

In a year when many felt powerless and isolated, having an opportunity to make a difference in the lives of others fostered a sense of connection and gave employees feelings of positivity and well-being. 

Edison-based MTF Biologics, (large, No. 3), named one of the state’s Top Workplaces in the large company category, advances the science of tissue transplantation by awarding grants that fund groundbreaking research.  

Joe Yaccarino, president and CEO of MTF Biologics (large), noted that the company workplace is defined by ‘inclusion and impact.’ Photo courtesy of MTF Biologics

Joe Yaccarino, president and CEO of MTF Biologics, stated that being named to the list “validates our company-wide efforts of not only achieving our mission but of creating a workplace of both inclusion and impact,” adding, “At MTF Biologics, all of our employees are committed to one singular mission — saving and healing lives.”   

MTF Biologics’ employees value knowing how much their work matters. 

“I know that when I come to work, I have a greater purpose,” wrote one survey respondent. “To be a part of that greater goal inspires me every day. My favorite part of the job is getting to hear the stories from both our donor families and our tissue recipients on how the foundation has changed their lives for the better. I worked in other jobs for 30 years before I came here and never once felt the level of inspiration I do now working for MTF Biologics.” 

A fellow MTF employee agreed, stating, “I feel as if I am part of something that is actually making a difference. The real-world application of our daily endeavors are widely apparent.” 

Helbig noted that many of the companies that made the list received “high marks for innovation,” which shows that employees are “feeling really invested in what they do.”  

“Now it doesn’t mean it’s easy,” Helbig said. “It means that everyone is working harder to make sure that they’re getting things done effectively.” 

In addition to feeling connected and part of a forward-thinking company, employees also treasured knowing that they’re part of a shared mission.  

Fun, employee-focused events have created an impressive level of connection and camaraderie at Manasquan Bank, (midsize, No. 2). Photo courtesy of Manasquan Bank

Chairman, president and CEO James S. Vaccaro of Manasquan Bank, (midsize, No. 2), said he and his colleagues are honored that the financial institution was once again recognized as a Top Workplace in New Jersey in the midsize category. 

“At Manasquan Bank, our employees have always been the epicenter of our fine institution, and this award reaffirms that we have created a workplace where colleagues feel motivated, inspired and connected to our shared mission,” Vaccaro said. “By fostering and practicing our people-first culture, we continue to build meaningful employee experiences that are collaborative, transparent, engaging and rewarding.”

Employees appreciate that level of connection and camaraderie. “I have a great group of people that support me and the bank,” said one survey respondent. “I get to make a difference in our customer’s lives, whether it’s purchasing a home, starting a business, having a baby, we are with them every step of the way. I also get to lead and mold and develop new talent and help them get to where they desire to be.” 

The management at Prominent Properties Sotheby’s International Realty, (large, No. 2), in Ridgewood have focused on making sure their employees are fulfilled by their jobs. Photo courtesy of Prominent Properties Sotheby’s International Realty

Finding Fulfillment 

Chief Operating Officer of Prominent Properties Sotheby’s International Realty, (large, No. 2), in Ridgewood, Michael Oppler, said the company is grateful to receive this recognition of Top Workplace in the Garden State in the large company category “because it means we have created an environment where people feel fulfilled in their work. 

“We have always focused on building relationships in our business, and that produced great results for our company as well as the clients and community we serve,” Oppler added. 

Helbig noted that the survey illustrates that people are motivated by more than money.  

“You could be paid very well, but if you are treated poorly, you are not going to want to give your very best,” he said. “When we look at how you get the very best out of people, you make sure to create an organization where everybody’s headed in the same direction and people feel important and people feel valued, that what they’re doing matters. They feel appreciated. They have trust in the people they work with, particularly the leadership of the organization. If you don’t have those things, I don’t care how big your paycheck is, you are not going to want to give your best. But you do want to give your best when all those other factors are present.”

The following are 63 companies named to New Jersey’s Top Workplaces list as nominated by their employees and evaluated by Energage, based on questionnaires answered by their employees. They’re broken down by size and ranking. 

Large Companies (500 employees or more) 

1. Plymouth Rock Assurance 

Headquarters: Woodbridge 

NJ Location: Woodbridge

Industry: Financial services  

Founded: 1992 

Employees: 982 

2. Prominent Properties Sotheby’s International Realty 

Headquarters: Ridgewood 

NJ Locations: 3

Industry: Agents/brokers 

Founded: 2008 

Employees: 730 

3. MTF Biologics 

Headquarters: Edison 

NJ Locations: 3

Industry: Biotechnology  

Founded: 1987 

Employees: 724 

4. CACI 

Headquarters: Arlington, Va. 

NJ Location: Florham Park 

Industry: National security, expertise and technology for enterprise 

Founded: 1962 

Employees: 533 

5. CompoSecure LLC 

Headquarters: Somerset 

NJ Locations: 3 

Industry: Secure payment products 

Founded: 2000 

Employees: 717 

6. Cedar Crest Village – Erickson Living 

Headquarters: Catonsville, Md. 

NJ Location: Pompton Plains 

Industry: Senior living 

Founded: 2001 

Employees: 932 

7. RWJBarnabas Health 

Headquarters: West Orange 

NJ Locations: 14 

Industry: Health care  

Founded: 2015 

Employees: 35,000

Midsize Companies (150 to 499 employees) 

1. Family First Funding LLC 

Headquarters: Toms River 

NJ Locations: 8 

Industry: Mortgage lending 

Founded: 2011 

Employees: 215 

2. Manasquan Bank 

Headquarters: Wall Township 

NJ Locations: 15 

Industry: Banking 

Founded: 1874 

Employees: 207 

3. AnnieMac Home Mortgage 

Headquarters: Mount Laurel 

NJ Location: Mount Laurel 

Industry: Residential mortgage lending 

Founded: 2011 

Employees: 438 

4. Robert Half 

Headquarters: Menlo Park, Calif. 

NJ Locations: 9 

Industry: Staffing and recruiting 

Founded: 1948 

Employees: 168 

5. Bridgeway Senior Healthcare 

Headquarters: Bridgewater 

NJ Location: Bridgewater 

Industry: Care and rehabilitation  

Founded: 1987 

Employees: 383 


Headquarters: Parsippany 

NJ Locations: 2 

Industry: Flavors and fragrances 

Founded: 1871 

Employees: 190 

7. Computer Design And Integration LLC 

Headquarters: Teterboro 

NJ Locations: 2 

Industry: Value added reseller – IT 

Founded: 1995 

Employees: 150 

8. Sax LLP 

Headquarters: Parsippany 

NJ Location: Parsippany 

Industry: Accounting, tax and advisory 

Founded: 1956 

Employees: 150 

9. Express Stores 

Headquarters: East Brunswick 

NJ Locations: 25 

Industry: Wireless phone sales  

Founded: 2008 

Employees: 213 

10. Knipper 

Headquarters: Lakewood 

NJ Locations: 4 

Industry: Biotechnology 

Founded: 1986 

Employees: 366 

11. Pine Belt Enterprises Inc. 

Headquarters: Lakewood 

NJ Locations: 3 

Industry: New and used car sales, leasing, parts and service 

Founded: 1937 

Employees: 226 

Small Companies (50 to 149 employees) 

1. Staffing Alternatives 

Headquarters: North Brunswick 

NJ Location: North Brunswick 

Industry: Temporary staffing service 

Founded: 1994 

Employees: 68 

2. Primary Financial 

Headquarters: Edison 

NJ Location: Edison 

Industry: Life insurance, annuities and retirement investments 

Founded: 2013 

Employees: 70 

3. LS Technologies LLC 

Headquarters: Fairfax, Va. 

NJ Location: Atlantic City 

Industry: Federal contractor 

Founded: 2000 

Employees: 46 

4. All American Ford in Old Bridge 

Headquarters: Old Bridge 

NJ Location: Old Bridge 

Industry: Auto dealerships 

Founded: 2009 

Employees: 101 

5. Slalom 

Headquarters: Seattle, Wash. 

NJ Location: TBD 

Industry: Consulting 

Founded: 2001 

Employees: 131 

6. Senior Helpers Bergen County 

Headquarters: Paramus 

NJ Location: Paramus 

Industry: Home health care 

Founded: 2013 

Employees: 90 

7. RegentAtlantic Capital LLC 

Headquarters: Morristown 

NJ Location: Morristown 

Industry: Financial advisers 

Founded: 1982 

Employees: 56 

8. DPR Construction 

Headquarters: Redwood City, Calif. 

NJ Location: Edison 

Industry: Commercial construction services 

Founded: 1990 

Employees: 56 

9. Fire and Safety Services LTD 

Headquarters: South Planfield 

NJ Location: South Plainfield 

Industry: Emergency vehicle sales and service 

Founded: 1964 

Employees: 59 

10. DLA LLC 

Headquarters: Fairfield 

NJ Locations: 2 

Industry: Accounting 

Founded: 2001 

Employees: 54 

11. Madison Trust 

Headquarters: Montvale 

NJ Location: Montvale 

Industry: Self-directed IRAs 

Founded: 2009 

Employees: 50 

12. Resources Real Estate 

Headquarters: Shrewsbury 

NJ Locations: 3 

Industry: Residential and commercial real estate 

Founded: 2000 

Employees: 103 

13. Institute of Management Accountants 

Headquarters: Montvale 

NJ Location: Montvale 

Industry: Education 

Founded: 1919 

Employees: 123 

14. Panda Restaurant Group 

Headquarters: Rosemead, Calif. 

NJ Locations: 11 

Industry: Restaurants  

Founded: 1973 

Employees: 111 

15. DOWC 

Headquarters: Ringwood 

NJ Location: Ringwood 

Industry: Automotive service contract provider and administrator 

Founded: 2014 

Employees: 52 

16. PB Roofing 

Headquarters: Elmwood Park 

NJ Locations: 2 

Industry: Commercial roofing 

Founded: 2007 

Employees: 50

17. Princeton Child Development Institute 

Headquarters: East Windsor 

NJ Location: East Windsor 

Industry: Autism intervention 

Founded: 1970 

Employees: 70


Headquarters: Landing 

NJ Location: Landing 

Industry: Commercial outdoor power equipment and snow/ice management 

Founded: 1957 

Employees: 52 

19. EverythingBenefits 

Headquarters: New Providence 

NJ Location: New Providence 

Industry: HR technology software 

Founded: 2015 

Employees: 73 

20. InspiriTec Inc. 

Headquarters: Philadelphia, Pa. 

NJ Location: Newark 

Industry: Contact center and IT help desk services 

Founded: 2000 

Employees: 52 

21. Visiting Angels 

Headquarters: Marmora 

NJ Location: Marmora 

Industry: Private duty home care 

Founded: 1998 

Employees: 90 

22. Horizon Pest Control 

Headquarters: Midland Park 

NJ Location: Midland Park 

Industry: Consumer services 

Founded: 1970 

Employees: 60    

23. Certified Financial Services 

Headquarters: Paramus 

NJ Locations: 2 

Industry: Financial advisers 

Founded: 1986 

Employees: 104 

24. Savvas Learning Co. 

Headquarters: Paramus 

NJ Location: Paramus 

Industry: K-12 education publisher 

Founded: 2019 

Employees: 106 

25. Reverse Mortgage Funding LLC 

Headquarters: Bloomfield 

NJ Location: Bloomfield  

Industry: Reverse mortgage 

Founded: 2012 

Employees: 62 

26. Otterstedt Insurance Agency Inc. 

Headquarters: Englewood Cliffs 

NJ Locations: 7 

Industry: General insurance 

Founded: 1919 

Employees: 114

27. Discovery Data 

Headquarters: Eatontown 

NJ Location: Eatontown 

Industry: Financial services, insurance data and analytics  

Founded: 2002 

Employees: 50 

28. AvePoint  

Headquarters: Jersey City 

NJ Location: Jersey City  

Industry: Software company 

Founded: 2001 

Employees: 80

29. Viking Pest Control 

Headquarters: Liberty Corner 

NJ Location: Liberty Corner  

Industry: Full-service pest control company  

Founded: 1980 

Employees: 71 

30. Merola Tile 

Headquarters: Manalapan 

NJ Location: Manalapan 

Industry: Wholesale distribution 

Founded: 1988 

Employees: 98 

31. Eastern Christian School 

Headquarters: North Haledon 

NJ Locations: 4 

Industry: K-12 education 

Founded: 1892 

Employees: 128 

32. CMC Food LLC 

Headquarters: Elizabeth 

NJ Locations: 3 

Industry: Production plant – eggs 

Founded: 1984 

Employees: 86 

33. Visual Lease  

Headquarters: Woodbridge 

NJ Location: Woodbridge 

Industry: Lease management software 

Founded: 1995 

Employees: 111 

34. All American Subaru in Old Bridge 

Headquarters: Old Bridge 

NJ Location: Old Bridge 

Industry: Auto dealerships 

Founded: 2009 

Employees: 54 

35. Health Recovery Solutions 

Headquarters: Hoboken 

NJ Location: Hoboken 

Industry: Health care – other 

Founded: 2012 

Employees: 111 

36. A3 Technology Inc. 

Headquarters: Egg Harbor City 

NJ Location: Egg Harbor City 

Industry: IT – other  

Founded: 2001 

Employees: 76 

37. Woodmont Properties LLC 

Headquarters: Fairfield  

NJ Locations: 10 

Industry: Integrated development, construction and management  

Founded: 1963 

Employees: 122 

38. Capitol Lighting  

Headquarters: Boca Raton, Fla. 

NJ Locations: 3 

Industry: Lighting, home furnishings and accessories  

Founded: 1924 

Employees: 65 

39. Iris Software Inc. 

Headquarters: Edison 

NJ Location: Edison 

Industry: IT services  

Founded: 1996 

Employees: 81 

40. Sunovion Pharmaceuticals Inc. 

Headquarters: Marlborough, Mass. 

NJ Location: Fort Lee 

Industry: Pharmaceutical manufacturing – other  

Founded: 2010 

Employees: 88 

41. PLM Trailer Leasing Inc.

Headquarters: Newark 

NJ Locations: 2 

Industry: Refrigerated trailer leasing  

Founded: 1971 

Employees: 73 

42. Collabera 

Headquarters: Basking Ridge  

NJ Locations: 2 

Industry: IT – other  

Founded: 1991 

Employees: 109 

43. Advanced Digital Data Inc. 

Headquarters: Flanders 

NJ Location: Flanders 

Industry: Computer software  

Founded: 1973 

Employees: 132 

44. Navicore Solutions  

Headquarters: Manalapan 

NJ Locations: 2 

Industry: Nonprofit financial services  

Founded: 1991 

Employees: 106 

45. Marketsmith Inc. 

Headquarters: Cedar Knolls 

NJ Location: Cedar Knolls 

Industry: Advertising and marketing  

Founded: 1999 

Employees: 61 

 If you wonder why a particular company is not on the list, it might be because it chose not to participate in the survey, or because it did not score well enough in the survey process. Sometimes, Energage disqualifies employers based on questionable results detected through statistical tests it runs to ensure organizations are accurately administering the survey.