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Building the hybrid workplace: Insights and inspirations from Workplace Next

Our global online event, held in November, explored ways to create seamless, safe digital workplaces across sites, facilities, campuses, and home offices – and everywhere in-between.

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By Jennifer Brent, Director, Business Operations & Strategic Planning for Global Real Estate, Hewlett Packard Enterprise

Our Workplace Next online event in November was perhaps a world first: a virtual, in-depth look at a new paradigm for the digital workplace, one that enables today’s fluid, distributed, dynamic workforces – the hybrid workplace.

I covered some of the main themes of Workplace Next in an earlier post (see Learn how to reinvent the way you work). What really was really striking for me about the event was not so much the excitement around new strategies and technologies (though there was plenty of that throughout) but the inspiring ways that people are using them.

I was a participant in one of the panel sessions, titled Real World Experiences, where I shared the story of HPE’s own digital workplace transformation. It was fascinating to hear from leaders at two other organizations on the panel about their workplace initiatives – Dr. Albert Chan, VP and Chief of Digital Patient Experience at Sutter Health, a not-for-profit healthcare network; and Shaun Flaharty, Head of Technical Services with The Kraft Heinz Company.

Here are the most compelling insights that emerged, for me:

It’s possible to achieve amazing results, amazingly quickly. As the edge-to-cloud platform-as-a-service company, HPE was well positioned to take action when the pandemic hit. We’ve invested heavily in building remote capabilities for our own workforce over many years, and we have global expertise in delivering flexible, intelligent workspaces. But it was impressive to learn how much Sutter Health was able to accomplish in just a matter of months. They ramped up their tele-health capabilities, and the speed with which they mobilized was really astonishing. Before the outbreak, they were doing around 20 video visits a day; now they’re above 17,000.

Bold, agile leadership is key. This was a dominant theme in my session, and in the event at large – the sheer power of a “yes we can, yes we will” attitude. For a food and beverage company like The Kraft Heinz Company, remote work can only be part of the workplace solution. Leaders took decisive action to ensure the safety of on-site workers, including digital signage to remind employees about social distancing; temperature checks; refitted break rooms and staggered lunch hours; and a policy of limiting visits to plants.

The hybrid workplace reflects, and influences, an organization’s culture. Sutter Health’s commitment to the clinician-patient relationship was reflected in its decision to train some 4,700 already tech-savvy clinicians to deliver care virtually. The organization also provisioned, in a socially safe manner, several thousand i-Pads to ensure that clinicians could continue to provide exceptional patient care. Kraft Heinz’s “culture of we” helped the company adjust to the pandemic and develop more flexible, efficient ways of working.

You can watch the Real World Experiences session in the video below.

In addition, here's where you can find Workplace Next on-demand presentations on these topics:

  • Adoption and change management
  • Knowledge work anywhere
  • Safe return to work
  • Secure remote connectivity

Learn more about the hybrid workplace and how HPE helps you reinvent the way you work:



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