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DES MOINES, Iowa — It may be based in Wisconsin, but Kwik Trip Inc. has been named one of the top places to work in Iowa.
The Des Moines Register recognized 122 companies and organizations in Iowa, including Kwik Trip, as part of its Top Workplaces 2014 report. These companies were recognized based solely on surveys about the workplace completed by their employees.
La Crosse, Wis.-based Kwik Trip is a privately owned company that operates more than 400 convenience stores in Wisconsin, Minnesota and Iowa. With $4.5 billion in annual sales, Kwik Trip specializes in quality products delivered with a level of customer service that is unmatched in the industry, serving 5 million customers each week, according to the newspaper.
Kwik Trip not only serves its customers with clean retail shopping centers, but also produces private-label products. Its headquarters operates its own commissary, bakery, dairy, beverage plant and ice plant.
"The company cares about others and stands up for what they believe in," said one survey respondent.
"They are a very generous company," said another employee. "They have great benefits and they treat workers right."
Kwik Trip operates 48 convenience stores in Iowa under the Kwik Star banner. Although there are no Kwik Star stores in Des Moines, the company operates seven Tobacco Outlet Plus stores in the metro area.
Much of Kwik Trip's success is due in part to its employee benefits, which helps with employee retention. "They make employees feel like they have a stake in the company," Don Longo, editorial director of Convenience Store News, told the newspaper.
Kwik Trip shares 40 percent of its profits with employees and puts 6.2 percent into every employee's 401(k), whether the employee matches any of it or not. It also has a health-savings account for employees who qualify for health insurance and puts a deposit in each worker's account.
All of this contributes to more vested workers and low turnover, Longo said. Kwik Trip's turnover rate is about 24 percent, compared with the industry average of about 77 percent.