39. Quality Bicycle Products

Bloomington, MN

From the Company

Outside editors excerpted this information from the Employer Questionnaire submitted to the Best Companies Group.

Quality Bicycle Products (QBP) is a leading distributor in the bicycle industry. With a 28-year track record of growth and profitability, QBP is a high-performance company with the objective of being a world-class business. We have a broad stakeholder base to which we are responsible for delivering results, including our 5,000 customers, 120 vendors, and 400 employees, as well as being advocates for bicycling, our community, and the environment.

We have open offices (no doors or walled offices). We teach QBP financials to all employees who attend the High Performance Distribution class. Casual work attire means casual work attire: jeans in the winter; shorts, cut-offs, sandals (except in the warehouse as necessitated by safety) in the summer. We recently surveyed our employees to see how they would describe our culture. The top answers were: green, bike, passion, accepting, employee-oriented, friendly, diverse, community-oriented, minimal-bureaucracy, relaxed, fun, high-performance, and casual.

We are located adjacent to a nature reserve with miles of hiking and biking paths in the summertime, along with cross-country ski trails in winter. We routinely have bicycles on trainers set up for riding, and this past summer we set up a few disc golf baskets on the property as well. We have locker rooms with showers. Employees earn permanent locker space by commuting to work by bike, and there are several lockers left open for daily use. We have a monthly activity scheduled and available to all employees. This year we went kayaking, longboarding, golfing, cross-country skiing, kickboxing, skating, disc golfing, and fishing. We have an on-site massage therapist offering 15-minute massages, plus yoga, meditation, and stretching classes. We also offer classes on a variety of topics, such as cooking, nutrition, winter commuting, and budgeting. Our wellness program organizes monthly events aimed at increasing employee activity. Participation in those events, along with other healthy lifestyle choices, allows employees to save costs through our healthcare provider.

We rarely pay employees to volunteer, but we match their volunteer time with money to the organization they volunteer with. For each hour the employee volunteers, QBP donates $10 to that organization with a maximum of $400 per employee per year. Additionally, if employees participate in a walk/run/bike fundraiser (like the MS150), QBP will match employee donations up to $500.

We revamped packaging on a number of items to include recycled content for hang-tags or boxes, soy inks, reduction in the size of packaging, etc. We distribute products from more than 120 vendors whom we actively educate on best practices when it comes to packaging. We have a 40 KwH solar array on our roof, which provides us between 4–6 percent of our electricity. The newest part of our distribution center is LEED Gold certified. In addition to solar panels, sustainable features include: native prairie grass; rain gardens and porous pavers; waterless urinals and dual flush toilets; solar tubes; and motion-sensor lighting. Many of the tables and counters are made from renewable or recycled materials such as sunflower, bamboo, or wood.

All supervisors receive $250 per full-time employee and $125 per part time employee each year to reward and recognize their employees. Often supervisors use this money to give cash bonuses, gift cards (of which they have a multitude of choices), or other rewards including taking their employees out to lunch, giving department employee of the month awards, etc.

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