No. 27 Best Place to Work in IT: Kaiser Permanente

Ideas bubble right to the top with company-supplied seed money.

Computerworld's 100 Best Places to Work in IT

The best ideas deserve a chance to be implemented, wherever in the management chain they originate. Kaiser Permanente, a health maintenance organization in Oakland, Calif., is a place that fosters such creativity. The company's Innovation Technology Fund is a good example. Initiated two years ago, the fund promotes new ideas that improve the quality of Kaiser Permanente's service, whether by empowering employees with more-efficient resources or by improving the care that customers receive.

"It was really a matter of supporting an innovation culture that was already in the company," says Amanda Higgins, executive director of IT communications and stakeholder management.

As a result of projects launched through the multimillion-dollar fund, administrators now have a real-time digital inventory of which beds are available where, and doctors can be notified on their mobile devices when patients' lab results are available. In 2009, the fund seeded 27 projects.

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