Certification standards explained.

To join, companies must:

1. Meet our EO standards:

  • A. Ownership - the company must be at least 30% owned by an ownership program
    • - Additional certification for Majority EO (at least 50%) and 100% EO
  • B. Access - reasonable access to the program must be open to all employees
  • C. Concentration - ownership in the program cannot be too concentrated

We use answers to our Certified EO questionnaire and company documents to verify that the company meets our standards.

2. Share information about organizational practices:

Members must share high-level information on employee engagement, governance, recruitment, and marketing. We do not use this information to make the certification decision, so all that matters is that the information is shared and that it is as accurate as possible.

We use this information in a variety of ways. First, we calculate benchmarks on management practices to help employee-owned companies make the most of their ownership program. Second, we calculate engagement and governance scores that will be shared the company’s profile on our website. Finally, we use this information in original research on employee ownership.

Certification Levels

There are three certification levels to highlight companies at different thresholds of employee ownership.

Certified eo small black

Certified (30%)

Majority eo small black

Majority (51%)

100percent eo small black