Mercer is a human resource consulting firm, headquartered in New York City, New York, that is recognized as one of the leading business institutions in the world. It has been ranked by Vault.com, Inc. as the #1 human resource consultancy for several years running, including most recently in 2008. Among all consulting firms, Mercer is currently ranked #8 for prestige.
Started in the United States in 1937 as the employee benefits department of Marsh & McLennan, Inc., the company took the name of “William M. Mercer” in 1959, when Marsh & McLennan acquired William M. Mercer Limited, a Canadian firm founded by William Manson Mercer in 1945. In 1975, Mercer became a wholly-owned subsidiary of Marsh & McLennan Companies, Inc. In 2002, its name was changed to Mercer Human Resource Consulting. In 2004, the company acquired Synhrgy HR Technologies
Recently in 2007, the company became simply "Mercer. Currently, Mercer is the world's largest human resource consulting firm.
Worldwide Cost of Living Survey
Major clients include:
- Defense: Boeing, Northrop Grumman, Science Applications International Corporation
- Financial Services: AIG, Citigroup, Wachovia
- Healthcare: Aetna, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Cigna, Kaiser Permanente, UnitedHealth Group, Health Net, Inc.
- Industrial Good & Products: Deere & Company, Johns Manville, Lowe's, Toyota, TRW Automotive
- Insurance: Allstate, Metlife
- Media: Fox Entertainment Group
- Retail & Consumer Products: Energizer, J.C. Penney, Mervyn's, Neiman-Marcus, PepsiCo, Wal-Mart, Yum! Brands
- Public Sector: City of Los Angeles, State of Washington
- Professional Services: Automatic Data Processing
- Publishing: Advance Publications
- Technology: Computer Sciences Corporation, Google, Toshiba
- Telecommunications: AT&T, Sprint Nextel Corporation
- Travel: American Airlines, JetBlue
Mercer's major competitors include Watson Wyatt Worldwide
, Hewitt Associates
, Towers Perrin
, and Hay Group
Stock Exchange Scandal
In 2004, Mercer admitted giving the NYSE
board a compensation report that contained "omissions and inaccuracies" that led to a $139.5 million pay package for former NYSE Chairman Richard Grasso. Mercer had been brought in to advise the stock exchange on Grasso's 2003 contract and his request for $139.5 million. The consultancy, however, assuaged the matter, giving back $440,000 in fees it collected from the NYSE and providing key documents in the lawsuit.