A deep dive: culture, society and innovation

At an event like Microsoft Future Decoded, regardless of what sessions you attend, and which keynotes you watch, you’re always going to come away feeling motivated, inspired and educated. And to help you keep that feeling going, we’ve put together three in-depth podcasts, featuring a range of Microsoft employees, speakers and customers, all experts in their fields.

Driving cultural transformation

Digital transformation has been felt in all sectors around the UK. It’s offering an unprecedented number of opportunities to better serve customers and employees, and is revolutionising business processes and systems. However, while it looks like a glittering landscape of new revenue streams and improved customer loyalty, there’s a dark side to it as well. Many organisations are struggling to take advantage of the changing environment, and if they don’t keep up, they can say goodbye to a successful future.

So, on the first day of Microsoft Future Decoded, Clare Barclay, COO at Microsoft UK, launched a brand-new report: Creating a Culture of Digital Transformation. This report investigates how UK organisations can empower the modern workforce, and create the right culture for digital success. In the first episode of this series, we hear from Clare, and how the report can help shape organisations.

You’ll also hear from customers such as Ian McLaren, Finance and Contracts Director at London Midland. London Midland feature as a case study in the report, and have hands-on experience of driving cultural transformation. Likewise, Patience Wootton, Office 365 Product Owner at Dentsu Aegis Network shares their story of digital transformation, in a global media organisation. Then you’ll hear the incredible story of how digital transformation and technology is changing the service provided by NHS Blood and Transport, courtesy of Aaron Powell, the Chief Digital Officer.

And then you’ll hear how you can give this digital revolution to firstline workers – those workers who often have the closest and the most contact with your customers. To share how you can do this, we’re joined by Andrew Cook, one of Microsoft’s Senior Product Marketing Managers who has responsibility for the firstline area, and Hector Minto, Microsoft’s Accessibility Evangelist for the EMEA Region.

From differentiating through data to empowering the modern workforce, episode one is full of key insights and actionable takeaways.

Listen to the Driving Cultural Transformation podcast on Soundcloud
Read more and download the Creating a Culture of Digital Transformation report

Technology for good

While episode one looks at how we can use technology to drive our organisations, episode two looks at how technology is helping us on a personal level. First up is the incredibly inspiring Haiyan Zhang, Innovation Director at Microsoft Research Cambridge. Haiyan was behind the life-changing Project Emma – a watch strap that will help people suffering from Parkinson’s Disease. You’ll have the chance to hear her speak about this experience, as well as her latest project: Project Fizzyo.

Following on is the latest about a new education project: UA92. Craig Parker, Microsoft’s Education Partner Lead, Professor Amanda Broderick, CEO at Newcastle University’s London Campus, and former Manchester United and England footballer Gary Neville, joined us to talk about University Academy 92. The first university to open in 23 years, UA92 will not only focus on closing the digital skills gap by developing skills for the fourth industrial revolution, but also help students develop their own personal skills, like self-analysis and resilience. By combining work placements, character development and learning skills, UA92 aims to offer something very different.

Bringing episode two to a close is the return of Andrew Cook and Hector Minto, talking about accessibility and embracing diversity. You’ll hear how Microsoft is ensuring that no one is left behind in digital transformation, through the use of a blueprint for accessibility. This inspirational talk looks at how we want companies to employ new, diverse views, and proactively employ people with disabilities.

Listen to the Technology for Good podcast on Soundcloud

Technology and innovation

Episode three brings together everything discussed in the first two podcasts. Without innovation, there’s no chance to help people. There’s no chance to drive business and succeed. This podcast is your chance to learn all about the latest in tech innovation, from people close to the heart of Microsoft. From learning about best practices for productive working and possibilities for the modern workplace, to hearing about the next in collaboration and communications tools, there’s plenty to get engrossed in.

You’ll hear from Scott Allen, Chief Marketing Officer at Microsoft UK, about how we can differentiate through data, using AI. Michael Wignall, Microsoft’s National Technology Officer discusses the latest in tech trends, and most notably, how you can apply them to your business. You’ve also got the chance to hear from a mixed reality expert, and a Fellow of the Royal Society.

The possibilities for the modern workplace – and for our society – are growing every day. And this podcast gives you a sneak peak into what’s coming, and how you can make it relevant to your industry.

Listen to the Technology and Innovation podcast on Soundcloud