With nearly 3,000 attendees from 47 countries and 14 industries, this year’s Workday Rising Europe set a new record for the company’s European conference. And over the course of three days, from Nov. 13 – 15, those attendees were given an incredible opportunity to learn together in the beautiful city of Vienna. Thought leaders from Workday and other participating organizations shared their expertise and encouraged attendees to fully embrace the importance of transformation, innovation and diversity in a world that is constantly changing.
Here are some highlights from each day of the conference.
This year’s emphasis on transformation and innovation got off to a great start Tuesday during the opening keynote, which featured Gonzalo Benedit, president of EMEA and APJ for Workday. Benedit used this year’s attendance numbers to emphasize the impact that Workday’s focus on innovation has had so far in Europe.
“Those who will succeed are those who are willing and able to rethink everything,” he said.
To illustrate this point further, the keynote also featured interviews with leaders of Tamedia, ForFarmers and Lloyds Banking Group—all 100-year-old companies—talking about how transformation and innovation have contributed to the longevity of their organizations.
“Digital revolution within the organization doesn’t happen by chance,” said Stuart Langan, COO of People & Productivity for Lloyds Banking Group. “You have to consciously make it change. If you do not transform your organization, you will not survive.”
Transformation and innovation were front and center during the second day of the conference as well. Executives from every corner of Workday took the stage to talk about the company’s new emphasis on machine learning and all the ways it will enhance their applications, from providing oversight and automating routine tasks to improving the decision-making process and helping employees develop and expand their skillset.
Wednesday was also a busy day for OneSource Virtual. In the morning, Senior Vice President of Service Delivery Michael Roseman, Director of Finance and Accounting Outsourcing Pam Walker, and Solutions Consultant Kaylan McDuff led a session on AP Automation with IMC, a technology-driven trading firm. Over the course of one hour, they went deep on the benefits of automating the accounts payable process and took questions from the audience.
Later that night, OneSource Virtual and Mercer kicked off a joint customer appreciation party at Vienna’s Albertina Passage Dinnerclub. Nearly 800 people joined us for great music and refreshments at one of the best clubs in the city.
The last day of the conference shifted from an emphasis on innovation to an emphasis on culture. Michael C. Bush, CEO of Great Place to Work, spoke about the importance of respect, fairness and credibility in the workplace.
“Every employee at your company should be treated equally, no matter who they are or how long they’ve worked for the company,” he said.
Bush closed by directly linking the employee experience with the quality of service your customers receive.
“How your employees are treated reflects how your customers are going to be treated,” he said.
The conference’s closing keynote featured an insightful conversation between two professional golfers—Nick Dougherty and Thomas Bjørn. Throughout their conversation, they talked about the ups and downs in their careers, with Bjørn concluding, “I never thought it was about how I handled my success, it’s about how I handled my failures.”
We Can’t Wait to See You Next Year
There were more attendees at this year’s Workday Rising Europe than ever before, and we’re confident that next year’s conference in Milan, Italy will be even bigger. We’re thankful for the opportunities we had to reconnect with old friends and make new ones, and we’re already counting down until next November. Until then, Ciao!