A shopper enters the Blain’s Farm & Fleet store in Janesville in this 2017 photo. The Janesville-based company made Forbes’ list of America’s 500 Best Midsize Employers for the second year running.


Janesville retailer Blain’s Farm & Fleet has made Forbes’ list of America’s 500 Best Midsize Employers for the second year, Forbes announced this week.

And Farm & Fleet isn’t the only company in the area to make Forbes’ annual national ranking. Waukesha-based Generac Power Systems, which has a manufacturing hub in Whitewater, also made the list.

The two companies rank in the middle of the pack, but it’s the second consecutive year that Farm & Fleet has earned the honor.

The list pegged Generac as the 286th-best place to work, and Farm & Fleet ranked 293rd. Forbes used an independent, confidential survey of 50,000 employees across the U.S. to compile the ranking.

Last year, Farm & Fleet landed at No. 253 on the Forbes list and overall was ranked No. 10 of all Wisconsin midsize companies that made the list.

Rankings are based on how satisfied and inspired workers are, and also how a company’s pay compares to other companies, according to Forbes. Surveys are submitted by employees, making the list an analysis of companies based on workers’ own assessments.

The midsize list ranks companies that employ 1,000 to 5,000 workers.

Generac employs 4,556 people, according to the list. Farm & Fleet has grown from about 4,000 employees to about 4,400 over the past few years, in part because of its expansion into Michigan since 2017.

Farm & Fleet’s continued presence on the list is notable because of the upheaval brick-and-mortar retailers face as consumers migrate to online shopping.

According to state workforce data, Rock County lost more than 200 retail jobs over the last year as such major retailers as Boston Store, Sears, Toys ’R’ Us and Shopko closed.

In a statement, Farm & Fleet President and CEO Jane Blain-Gilbertson said the continued ranking shows the company is bucking trends, and it continues to be a workplace favored by longtime employees.

“Many of our associates stay with us for decades. As a company, we know how important it is to invest in our associates, the people who invest so much of their lives in Blain’s Farm & Fleet,” Gilbertson said.

“Of course we’re proud to receive this honor again, but we’re even more proud that its source is our associates themselves, who believe their ‘work family’ deserves this award.”