Intergalactic tour…

Humpty Dumpty sitting on a wall holding an Epic sign

Humpty Dumpty

A few weeks ago our office staff toured Epic System Corporation’s Intergalactic Headquarters. Epic makes software for managing your healthcare records… specializing in patient care and healthcare technology. When you go to see a doctor and he or she pulls up your records on a computer they are probably using a system built by Epic or one of their competitors.

Epic employs 5,400 people, most at their Verona Wisconsin campus. The campus is located on 800+ acres and while they have built many buildings much of the land is still farmed. Some space is also set aside for employee gardens.

The group of us who toured Epic work on the Careers Conference, a national conference for career specialists and career educators. A tour of Epic is one of the things we are offering during the Conference this year and we decided it would be great to preview the tour.

buildings with a grass court yard

Epic Campus from inside one of the buildings.

We started our tour with lunch in the main dining room in Cassiopeia. After lunch we went out to the tree house before starting our official tour. (I will talk more about the tree house in my next post.)

Our tour consisted of a large loop though Campus 1…. yes 1! They have also built a second campus and are working on a third campus. All the buildings and the 3 campuses are all connected with tunnels so you never have to go outside if you don’t want to. You might choose to go outside, however, because they have a nicely landscaped campus with lots of hidden sculptures and artwork.

hand prints in tiles and a two-story entry

Employee Appreciation Wall (left); Main Entrance (right)

stair way with trees overhanging and a bird as art work

Andromeda — "Tree" stairwell (left); Art in one of the hallways (right).

All the buildings on the Epic campus have a name and a theme. The buildings are named for things found in the galaxy. Accordingly, the first building is Andromeda, where we started and ended our tour. The other 7 buildings we traveled through were: Borealis, Cassiopeia, Deneb, Fomalhaut, Ganymede, Endor and, just before leaving, Heaven.

Epic, like many other high-tech companies across the US, has several things you would expect… a top-of-the line cafeteria with chefs recruited from the Culinary Institute, subsidized food to encourage healthy eating, free milk and juice in all the cafeterias and break rooms. They have well-educated young people recruited from top universities. Epic is self-contained in many things. They maintain their own server farm with back-up generators. They produce much of their own renewable energy… geothermal and solar. They have a general store where you can grab small things you might need, including a gallon of milk on your way home. Epic has a clearing house that matchs employees with other employees with similar interests, such as bowling teams. What Epic does not have that other large companies have is a gym! Epic, while it provides for its employees, also believes that their employees should be part of the general community.

giraffa and signs

Deneb — Jungle Hall (left); Fomalhaut with a New York Theme (right)

Hallway looks like a subway car.

New York Tunnel — Passage between Fomalhaut and Ganymede looks like a subway car. The windows transition from very urban Fomalhaut (New York theme) to rural Ganymede (garden theme) as you move from one building to the other.

conference room with long table and many chairs

Ganymede — One of the many conference rooms. Each has a theme; this one is called The Hanger.

collage of computer parts painted white

Ganymede — Across from the 2500-square-foot server farm is this piece of artwork. A collage of computer parts, all painted white with some of the lights on.

women on a scooter and grand central

Ganymede — Danielle (one of my co-workers) demonstrates the use of one of the scooters her husband (an IT member at Epic) uses to navigate the interconnected buildings throughout the day (left); Grand Central is a place everyone in Campus 1 passes through to get to and from their cars. It has a post office, dry cleaner, Epic store and a general store, where you can grab a gallon of milk on your way home.

hallway and doorway to hell

Heaven — The hallway to heaven is lined with fun house mirrors (left); no trip to heaven is complete without first standing outside the door to hell and listening to a message from the Devil, Satan, Lucifer... (right).

the slide

Heaven — The top of the slide on the third floor (left); inside the slide (center left); Daneille waiting at the bottom of the slide (center right); the bottom of the slide on the first floor (right).

The creativity of the themed buildings and all the artwork are what captivated me most. I could have wandered around and discovered something new around every corner. All of the artwork throughout Epic, inside and out, are all from local artists. As I walked around I recognized many of the artist as ones I had seen at Art Fair on the Square. I later learned that Epic selects employees and give them money to buy art that they like at Art Fair on the Square.

I would love to go back and wander more through the campus. I encourage anyone who has an opportunity to tour Epic to do so. It is an interesting place to visit.

To see all the photos from this trip go to my Epic album.

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2 Responses to Intergalactic tour…

  1. Pingback: Visiting Endor… | Reflections from the Prairie

  2. Pingback: Intergalactic tour – Words of the Wild Wes

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