Eric, that sounds like you have really pretty good communications, and I suspect better than most. Please pardon me for always being the skeptic.
Well, yes, I'd say my current employer is much better at this kind of stuff than where I've worked in the past. Honestly, I never fully realized how bad some of my past jobs were until I started working here. I don't think that most employers understand how important culture and communication are when it comes to employee satisfaction, and even within the same organization or department, it can vary a lot. Especially in IT, once one reaches a certain level of experience and skill, better options are available.
"Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the wise. Instead, seek what they sought." - Matsuo Basho