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2013 AARP Best Employers

Massachusetts General Hospital


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Industry: Hospitals/Health Care    Location: Boston    Website:

Winning Years: 2013, 2011, 2008, 2007, 2006

Highlights of 2013 Winning Strategies

Massachusetts General Hospital’s BeFit workplace nutrition and exercise program teaches employees about eating healthy and being physically active. Participation is free and offers weekly meetings with hospital nutritionists and personal trainers. The hospital hosts a monthly Eldercare Discussion group for employees. Older employees benefit with the education and instruction given in the MicroBytes computer courses. MicroBytes are short courses on programs such as Microsoft Word, Office, Excel and Outlook.

Additional Policies and Practices

  • Recruiting: Mass General uses senior placement agencies to target mature workers. In addition, the hospital works with Operation A.B.L.E., which provides employment opportunities and training to mature workers.

  • Workplace Culture/Continued Opportunities: Mass General employees working 20-plus hours per week are eligible for a tuition reimbursement benefit. In-house classroom training, Mass General’s Leadership Academy, and online training are learning and development opportunities offered to all employees. During a recent 12-month period, 98 percent of employees participated in at least one of the training opportunities with an average of six hours spent in training. Long-service anniversaries are celebrated with announcements, parties, awards and gifts. In response to Mass General’s employee opinion survey, nursing leadership developed a system to evaluate patient care and satisfaction, and the Innovation Unit project was implemented that tests new practices and procedures for patient care. Employees have opportunities to gain new experiences by working on temporary assignments in other departments, on team projects, and by having access to formal job rotation and mentoring programs. Mass General’s Occupational Health department makes ergonomic accommodations to employee work areas when unique needs are presented.

  • Benefits/Health: Employees working 20-plus hours per week receive individual and family medical coverage, individual and family prescription drug coverage, individual and family vision and dental insurance, individual and family long-term care insurance, and short- and long-term disability. Retirees pre-65 and retirees age 65-plus are offered individual and spouse medical and prescription drug coverage. New hires are eligible for these benefits upon retirement. Flexible spending accounts (FSAs) are available to help employees cover out-of-pocket health care costs. Wellness benefits offered to full- and part-time employees include flu shots, health screenings, health risk appraisals, smoking cessation programs, health club discounts, physical activity and weight loss programs, and stress management training. Seventy-nine percent of Mass General employees utilized at least one of these wellness-related benefits in a recent 12-month period. Employee Assistance Program (EAP) services are available to full- and part-time employees as well as their family members.

  • Benefits/Financial: Employees working 20-plus hours per week are offered a cash balance or other hybrid plan. Employees age 50-plus can make catch-up contributions to their plan and may choose to invest in lifecycle funds that automatically reallocate assets based on age or proximity to retirement. Employees are offered short- and long-term leave of absences without pay for caregiving needs. Mass General employees working 20-plus hours per week are offered on-site child care as well as backup care to assist with child care. Referral services to assist with child care, grandchild care and eldercare are offered to all employees.

  • Benefits/Alternative Work Arrangements: Flextime, compressed work schedules, job sharing and telecommuting are alternative work arrangements offered to all employees. Full-time employees are eligible to move to part-time work on a permanent or temporary basis.

  • Opportunities for Retirees: Mass General has 2,010 retirees and formally acknowledges employees upon their retirement. The following work arrangements are offered to retirees: temporary work assignments, consulting or contract work, as well as full- and part-time work.

  • Age of Workforce: Twenty-nine percent of Mass General employees are age 50-plus. The average tenure of employees age 50-plus is 15.6 years.

Also of Interest: More AARP Best Employers for Workers Over 50

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