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For a competitive business, technology is only one piece of the puzzle

Embracing Digital Culture

The benefits of digital transformation no longer need to be justified.

There is no question that adopting technology such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), moving data and services to the cloud, and embracing remote working tools can help a business improve and grow.

And yet, purchasing new equipment and migrating to new technology alone is not a magical, instant solution to helping employees increase their productivity and engagement.

To help businesses understand how to best empower their workforce, Microsoft has conducted research investigating the impact of company culture on the effectiveness of technological tools.

The survey was carried out with more than 20,000 people working in medium and large companies, from a range of industries, in 21 different countries across Europe. Respondents were asked about the technology they use at work, and their attitudes towards their job and their job performance.

The report clearly shows that to compete in today’s technology-first world, quality tools alone aren’t enough – for technology to be most effective, it needs to sit within a strong digital culture.

The importance of culture
by Michel van der Bel, President Microsoft EMEA
I spent some time discussing the importance of culture with Dr. Michael Parke from the London Business School, with a particular focus on the important role that organisational leaders have in getting the best out of their employees. I hope it provides some useful insights.

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The secret of productivity
There’s no doubt that moving data to the cloud, adopting AI, and implementing remote working tools is helping businesses to scale and innovate like never before, the question on leaders’ minds is not if, but how, to digitally transform. Leaders must focus on how can technology empower their employees and drive growth. Microsoft’s research clearly shows that to compete in today’s cloud-first world, quality tools alone aren’t enough: for technology to be most effective, it needs to sit within a strong digital culture.

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Digital culture – your competitive edge
By Michel van der Bel, President, Microsoft EMEA
In today’s cloud-first world it’s no longer enough just to keep a close eye on your direct competitors – new threats can come from anywhere. When I speak with business leaders facing this reality, it’s clear they already know what needs to happen. They need to transform too, and transform fast. Many decision-makers think it’s about adopting new technologies such as the cloud or AI. But to be truly impactful, digital transformation must go further…

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The new world of work

Microsoft House, Milan
Microsoft House – the headquarters of Microsoft Italy – is nestled away in the beautiful district of Porta Volta in Milan – and it has been designed from the ground-up with productivity and inclusion in mind. Out of its six floors, three are open to the public, with teachers, students, and professionals able to take advantage of the facilities on offer. Dedicated private and public workspaces allow employees to focus and collaborate as needed, with technology forming an integral backbone throughout. Since opening its doors one year ago, Microsoft House is a prime example of how a modern workplace environment can be designed to help encourage employee engagement, fostering a positive digital and company culture.

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Microsoft Prague
The journey to a new world of work has three phases – technology, people and place – all of which impact one another. When combined in the right way, employee satisfaction, performance, efficiency and happiness can increase, creating benefits for everyone. We have already seen the positive impact that digital culture can provide for all businesses, and have showcased two Microsoft offices – one in Milan, and the other in Munich – as examples of work environments which are harmonious in fostering a strong digital culture – and Microsoft’s stunning office in Prague, is another fitting ambassador.

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Microsoft in Munich
Microsoft Germany’s Munich headquarters in the city’s northern district of Schwabing is a sleek, modern building, built from the ground-up with the future workplace firmly in mind. Embracing the new world of work – where obligatory office hours set in stone are a thing of the past – the new headquarters is designed to offer everything employees require to ensure maximum engagement and productivity, allowing them to achieve a state of flow. From an on-site gym, to conference rooms kitted out with the latest equipment for remote collaboration, to public areas, quiet sections, and a futuristic lobby with a digital chandelier, Microsoft’s Munich office has embraced the future.

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