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Businesses today know that innovative and enticing employee amenities help to attract and keep industry talent. Nowhere is this more apparent than in how companies are going to market with their food and beverage programs. More than ever before, employees are comparing on-site food amenities with the local retail markets and restaurants-putting pressure on businesses to offer competitive, desirable food destinations and services. The most farsighted companies are blurring the lines between urban and office dining options-integrating cutting-edge design trends, technology, innovative food, local brands, celebrity chefs, unique retail services, and food chain transparency to create a dynamic workplace experience for employees-keeping them engaged, productive, and satisfied. At Microsoft corporate headquarters in Redmond, Washington many new and innovative programs are bearing fruit, literally and figuratively, including: Multiple partnerships with homegrown restaurants to bring local chefs, menus, and brands to campus. Integration of urban farming and partnerships with 100+ local farms to incorporate fresh produce. Several full-service restaurants hosted by local celebrity chefs, as well as an on-site pub. Adoption of the "enlightened hospitality" philosophy which includes training staff on the importance of hospitality vs. service and striving to surprise and delight customers every day. This panel explores Microsoft's unique approach from the perspectives of four people who are right in the middle of it: Mark Freeman, Microsoft Senior Manager of Global Dining; Seattle chefs John Howie and Maria Hines; and Craig Tarrant from Compass Group, the company's primary food vendor.
Keywords: Seattle2017, 2017 Seattle Summit