No. 91

Burns & McDonnell

2019 Healthiest 100 Workplaces in America


Burns & McDonnell is a 100 percent employee-owned architecture, engineering, and construction company.


Kansas City, Missouri


Engineering, Architecture, and Construction


Ray Kowalik, Chairman and CEO

"At work it’s important to be healthy, but we also want to be healthy for our family, our friends, and to lead a fun life. I think that’s really what it’s all about.”


Wellness Program Highlights

In 2018, we had the highest employee participation in our wellness incentive program. More than 78% of our employees completed the program and over 85% engaged in the program. With over 6,000 employees, this is an impressive number, as we are reaching many lives and creating a culture of health and wellness. When reviewing our risk scores over the last year, compared to Vitality® benchmarks, Burns & McDonnell is below norms in almost all biometric categories. For example, 33% of our employees have an elevated risk of high blood pressure, compared to benchmark at 43%. Only 29% of our population is considered at risk for cholesterol, compared to benchmark at 34%. The majority of risk factors for our aggregate population decreased. For example, we saw a 3.4% reduction in BMI risk, 2.7% cholesterol decrease, and blood glucose risk was down 10.7%.

Most Proud of ...

At Burns & McDonnell, we care deeply for our greatest asset, which is our employee-owners. But truly caring is more than just implementing work-life balance programs or providing on-site amenities. It’s about maximizing human potential and supporting our employee-owners’ capacities to thrive. We provide remote health coaching through our health center to every employee-owner — not to check a box, but to reduce health risks and create holistic lifestyles. We established a company-wide flextime program because we respect the commitments our employee-owners have to their families and passions outside of work. The more well-rounded our employee-owners’ lives are outside of work, the more inspiration, experience and vision they bring when creating solutions for our clients. Our employees own the company, so we find ways to encourage them to apply the same ownership mentality to their health. At the end of the day, we simply care about our people.
Chairman and CEO

Ray Kowalik

“Health and wellness is important to me, not just as the leader of our company, but it’s important to me, personally. And that doesn’t mean being fanatic. What it really means is having a balanced life. So, my goal is that every employee can reach the maximum potential that they’re capable of for their health and wellness. That’s why we do this, because at work it’s important to be healthy, but we also want to be healthy for our family, our friends, and to lead a fun life. I think that’s really what it’s all about.”
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Vice President of Human Resources

Renee Gartelos

“As a 100 percent employee-owned company, we take a thoughtful, holistic approach to wellness. Our people aren’t just employees – they’re owners. We want them to apply that same mentality to their health. It’s why we give our employee-owners a top-notch wellness incentive program. We want to equip our employee-owners with the resources they need to live healthy lives.”
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