Looking for the best employers? Don't look at Big Pharma. The annual Fortune magazine list of the 100 "Best Companies to Work For" contains only one Big Pharma name: AstraZeneca, at No. 83. Genentech, a biotech certainly worthy of the "Big" label, made the top 10 for the third year in a row (this year it's No. 5). But aside from AstraZeneca, none of the traditional pharma biggies got the nod this year. Over the past three years, only Eli Lilly popped onto the list, just once.
Given the fact that the industry has been roiled by layoffs and restructurings, the lack of major drugmakers in a best-employer ranking probably isn't that surprising. People working in fear for their jobs don't generate a lot of, shall we say, positive energy. Morale tends to suffer when the axe falls. So this conspicuous absence is just another sign that pharma is living through some interesting times.