What Are the Qualifications for the Fortune 500 List?

qualifications-fortune-500-list Credit: Petrovich9/E+/Getty Images

Companies qualify for the Fortune 500 by being in the top 500 private or public companies in terms of recent revenue figures, according to Investopedia. The Fortune 500 is compiled annually by Fortune magazine, with companies like Exxon Mobil, Walmart, General Electric and Chevron competing for the top ranking.

Most businesses never make it into the Fortune 500, explains Geoff Colvin for Fortune magazine, but those on the list share five similar traits. The revenue threshold for 2013 was $4.825 billion dollars. To reach those revenue figures, companies must have adaptability, long-term focus, people priority and strong ideas.

Companies must be able to adapt accordingly to the market environment, states Colvin. There are no products or services that are immune to the naturally shifting demands, and companies that adapt remain regulars in the Fortune 500. Regular companies in the Fortune 500 focus on long-term goals and human capital. Companies like Amazon regularly report little to no profit but have support from investors and maintain positive growth. Growth also depends on the quality of employees and leaders within a company, as human capital is the scarcest resource in the market. Strong ideas are necessary to build a Fortune 500 company, more so than large capital.