Top 50 companies and people inspiring the creative sector, according to Working Not Working members

The creative network has ditched its annual list of the top 50 companies to work for, because this year it “didn’t sit right,” opting instead to champion innovators in the field.

11 March 2021


Since 2014, Working Not Working has published an annual list of the Top 50 companies that creatives want to work for, informed by a survey of its international membership. And while audiences were always keen to know which brands had featured, the list had recently become a little predictable, with Google, Nike, Apple, Droga5, Wieden + Kennedy, Netflix and Disney unsurprisingly recurring. So, rather than “releasing last year’s list in a slightly different order,” WNW says wryly in a statement, this year’s survey asked members to instead name the companies who’d most impressed them and individuals who’d most inspired them in the past 12 months. As a result, the list is completely different.

“After six years, culminating in a year like 2020, the idea of putting out the familiar ranked list just didn’t sit right,” says the network’s statement. “Many of the companies that make the cut are mainstays. Creatives should know them and other companies should study them.” Following the events of 2020, WNW thought it more relevant to champion the people and companies who had responded to the global emergency in an innovative way with creative projects. “The creativity that stood out didn’t just keep up with the times but offered a way through them.”

The results are gathered from a survey of WNW’s community of nearly 100,000 creatives around the world, and feature well-known names alongside emerging talents, from Melina Matsoukas to Hassan Rahim, Tishk Barzanji, Jade Purple Brown, Oriel Davis-Lyons, Eric Hu and Mona Chalabi. Companies on the list, which notably includes none of the previous top ten, include Studio Moross, Ben & Jerry’s, Headspace, Uncommon and Pulse Films. You can see the full list in the image below, or on the WNW statement here.

Last month, Working Not Working announced the contentious news that it had been acquired by freelancer hiring site Fiverr.

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Artwork by Chris Burnett, courtesy of Working Not Working

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About the Author

Jenny Brewer

Jenny oversees our editorial output across work, news and features. She was previously It’s Nice That's news editor. Get in touch with any big creative stories, tips, pitches, news and opinions, or questions about all things editorial.

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