For the twelfth year in a row, Fortune has ranked Apple number one in its list of “most admired” companies.
Despite Apple’s iPhone-lead decline in recent months, the publication considers that Apple has beaten the opposition in nine different criteria. These include innovation, people management, use of corporate assets, social responsibility, quality of management, financial soundness, long-term investment value, quality of products and services, and global competitiveness.
Unlike many similar rankings, Fortune‘s list doesn’t just rely on a few tastemakers or journalists to assemble. In addition to revenue requirements, the list asked industry executives to rank companies they hold in high regard. As it explains:
“As we have in the past, Fortune collaborated with our partner Korn Ferry on this survey of corporate reputations. We began with a universe of about 1,500 candidates: the 1,000 largest U.S. companies ranked by revenue, along with non-U.S. companies in Fortune’s Global 500 database that have revenues of $10 billion or more. We then winnowed the assortment to the highest-revenue companies in each industry, a total of 680 in 30 countries. The top-rated companies were picked from that pool of 680; the executives who voted work at the companies in that group.
To determine the best-regarded companies in 52 industries, Korn Ferry asked executives, directors, and analysts to rate enterprises in their own industry on nine criteria, from investment value and quality of management and products to social responsibility and ability to attract talent. A company’s score must rank in the top half of its industry survey to be listed.
To select our 50 All-Stars, Korn Ferry asked 3,750 executives, directors, and securities analysts who had responded to the industry surveys to select the 10 companies they admired most. They chose from a list made up of the companies that ranked in the top 25% in last year’s surveys, plus those that finished in the top 20% of their industry. Anyone could vote for any company in any industry.”
Other tech companies which had impressive showings in the top 10 include Amazon (in second place), Microsoft (in sixth), Alphabet (in seventh), and Netflix (in eighth.)
While plenty of ink (or, well, pixels) have been spilled writing about Apple’s problems as of late, it’s a reminder of just what high regard the company is held in. Given that Apple first ranked no. 1 on the list back in 2007 — the year the first iPhone shipped — it’s also impressive longevity.
What was your most admired company of 2018? Does Apple deserve the spot? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.