I wanted to be a nurse for as long as I can remember. My aunt is a nurse; my grandmother is a nurse; growing up that is just what I was going be. Two women I admire so deeply had this magical ability to make anything better and I wanted to have that same mystical power of healing. Sure of my path, I went to college for pre-nursing and spent the first three years of college expecting to become a nurse.
While in college, I became a certified EMT. I worked with organizations like Rock Medicine and volunteered with a local paramedic company and hospital. While I filled up trays with supplies and got patients warm blankets and water, I was also included in intense, life-altering situations. One nurse in particular would always yell, “Get in here, you’re going to miss something!” She wanted me to experience everything.
I watched in awe as paramedics and nurses treated patients selflessly and with great skill. I saw them bring a child back to life who’d stopped breathing after a rollover crash. I watched paramedics work in vain on the victim of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. I experienced the compassion of a nurse comforting a young mother after a miscarriage. These professionals were heroic to me. Regardless of the circumstance, they worked with equal compassion and urgency.
Despite these experiences, as I continued my studies I realized I was becoming more interested in the business side of healthcare. There seemed to be so many opportunities to influence and help people from a different angle. I switched my focus and graduated with a degree in health sciences. I decided I wanted to be in the business aspect of the health field, and that eventually led me to the human resources profession.
I spent the first ten or so years of my career focused on employee benefits. Ensuring the company supports employees and provides generous health and financial security benefits has always been a top priority for me. My first couple of roles were at assisted living and skilled nursing facilities. From there I moved into HR in companies focused on technology and renewable energy. Then I had a wonderful opportunity to join Vocera. This company is the right fit for me because I’m helping the employees behind the technology, at a company where I am proud of what we’re doing and the impact it has on healthcare. When I told my aunt I was interviewing at Vocera, her face lit up. She talked excitedly about how fabulous the technology is and where they use it at her hospital. While I thought I’d be the nurse changing a patient’s life, she reminds me that what I’m accomplishing is actually changing hers.
The People Behind the Technology
My driving passion is absolutely the employees. We have a great culture and it is amazing to be at a place where people are so genuinely passionate. Our employees are from different types of backgrounds, geographies, and cultures. Yet we all converge together and share the goal of improving the lives of caregivers, patients, and families.
Earlier this year, I had the opportunity to visit one of our engineering development centers at our office in Bangalore, India. When I asked the employees what they like about working for Vocera, they consistently answered that they like how Vocera technology affects caregivers in such a significant way. I have never experienced a more focused company where everyone shares the mission and vision so cohesively regardless of department or how removed from the actual customer they might be.
My job is to help make this a great place to work, foster creativity, and support learning and development. I’m proud of the employee recognition program we’ve built. It’s a peer-to-peer recognition system that enables employees to recognize and celebrate each other in a public or private way. About 40% of the awards are cross-functional. Our program has raised the awareness and acknowledgement of people’s unique and important contributions, and we are rewarding each other across the organizations.
At Vocera, we talk about the caregivers behind the patients; I translate that into being the caregiver behind our employees. To me it’s the same idea. I’m here to support our employees and make sure they find joy in what they’re doing. I make sure their jobs are easier, and that they’re able to be efficient. I want our employees to have a rewarding experience. Our employees, in turn, are the people behind the technology. They’re passionate about working here and what they do. I’m honored to support them.
We recently asked our employees what they love about working at Vocera. I’d like to share some of their responses.
Vocera Employees Share Their Stories
Clinical Implementation Team
As a bedside nurse, I was passionate about providing the highest level of care for my patients. I love working for Vocera because as a Vocera clinician, I support healthcare providers so they are empowered to provide excellent care for their patients.
Our technology solutions help others to heal and to save lives. I know this because I’ve been there when it happened. I have witnessed firsthand the relief in a nurse’s eyes because she was able to use our solution to get additional help for a patient whose condition was in rapid decline. I’ve seen a child’s joy at hearing something fun through our technology as a distraction during a procedure. I was able to help make those moments happen.
I feel blessed to work at Vocera. From the executive team all the way down to every employee in the company, there is a feeling of pride in the work we do and the impact we are making to improve patient outcomes and to improve communication, collaboration, and efficiency for hospital staff. Almost every week a patient or a hospital employee is sharing a story about how Vocera saved a life or significantly improved an outcome for a patient or a process. The amount of passion and energy that goes into supporting our customers is truly amazing. I have never seen a company as committed to customer success as Vocera.
We make a difference: Our product helps save lives and improve people’s comfort during very trying times. The fact that what we do helps people in need means a lot to me and makes me feel like what I am working on is part of something much bigger. My work truly matters.
Though I’ve always wanted to be an engineer, I’ve also wanted to help others in critical need. At Vocera, it’s not just the technical and professional growth that motivates me – it’s knowing that I can help others save lives that makes me passionate for my career.
The most important thing for me is making a difference – our products help save lives. What could be more fulfilling than that? Compared to building the next cool thing, what we do is much more relevant to humanity. Sure, the new awesome office space, Thursday lunches, and food trucks add to the fun.
In my 7+ years working at Vocera, I’ve watched the company triple in size. Through that level of growth, we have still managed to maintain much of the culture that attracted me to Vocera when I first joined. We are guided by an inspiring group of thought leaders who are passionate about our products, and the success of our company, employees, and customers. I am extremely proud to be part of a company which has a solution that is changing the healthcare experience and making a difference in the lives of people around the world.
A few years ago, I was a recruiter tasked with finding a director of customer care for a gaming company in Silicon Valley. One of the people I tried to recruit worked for Vocera. He said, “You obviously don’t know what we do here. I’d never leave here for a gaming company. We save people’s lives!” Not easily dissuaded, I called him again (and again) and finally convinced him to meet me for coffee. He explained Vocera’s product to me and even gave me a five-minute demo in the Vocera lobby.
After having three premature babies, the first of which was in a 52 bed NICU for five months, I personally experienced the intensity, loudness, and overwhelming feeling of fear and drama that can be present in such a large unit. My first thought was that if Vocera had existed back then, many of the babies treated in that unit would have had better outcomes.
As a recruiter, I may not personally save lives –but I know that the people our products support do!
Vocera challenges me intellectually, emotionally, and spiritually, which is a bonus for the “human” and the “engineer” in me. Vocera has never stayed stagnant, and hence has built and honed my software skills. Our engineers get the opportunity to serve for the larger purpose and share all that love and compassion for humanity, while evolving ourselves as better human beings and engineers.
Quality Assurance Engineering
I love working at Vocera because I know that what I do matters. I am not building just another “thing.” The software I help build could save someone’s life or make a difficult, painful time a little better. Vocera allows me to make a difference while doing what I love.
I never experienced the kind of freedom in my work as I do in Vocera: Freedom to work in my own style, freedom to learn. Vocera cares about my needs and removes all roadblocks in my work. I feel like I own the product I am working on. There is absolutely no limit what you can achieve here. I always wanted to learn latest technologies and apply them in my work and I get that here. I feel like I am directly connected to the vision of Vocera. The code I am writing is going to reduce communication boundaries, enhance decision-making, and maybe save lives. I don’t feel like I am working here; I feel like the kid who is free to play to his heart’s content and create awesomeness. The reason I know I love working here is that I seriously don’t feel bad when it’s Monday.
There are many reasons why I love working at Vocera – the people, the technology, and the opportunities all come to mind. However, top of the list for me is our customer focus. Everyone at Vocera truly has a customer focus and we make decisions around what is best for our customers. We have a surprising number of people on staff who have worked in the same types of environments that our customers work in; so, collectively, we have walked a mile in our customers’ shoes. We use that expertise to test our products internally and to advise our customers on best practices for deploying our products to ensure success. These products improve our customers’ lives and improve – even save – the lives of their customers.