The General Electric subsidiary, which announced last year it was moving its headquarters from the U.K. to Chicago, plans to move its Barrington operations to the downtown office where GE Transportation is also headquartered.
The 500 W. Monroe St. office is currently home to 600 employees, including GE Healthcare’s executive management team and GE Transportation’s Digital Solutions business.
GE Healthcare is the latest in a line of suburban companies moving downtown, including ConAgra Brands, Kraft Heinz and Motorola Solutions, which also moved into the 500 W. Monroe St. building last year.
The company would not disclose the exact number of jobs moving downtown from Barrington, but said the move will ultimately bring GE’s total employees at 500 W. Monroe St. to over 1,000. The positions moving to Chicago include software engineers and developers, data scientists, product managers and other roles.
GE Healthcare CEO John Flannery told Blue Sky the company wanted to be near Chicago’s health ecosystem and its universities, startups, health care systems and other players — giving the company close proximity to customers, influencers and companies that build applications on its cloud-based platform, the GE Health Cloud.
“More and more, you really want to be in an area where it’s not just your employees,” he said. “The fundamental premise of this move is to increase the intensity of our investment in the digital platform and do it in downtown Chicago, where we think there’s a really top-tier technology ecosystem.”
Flannery said the company was not eliminating any jobs through the move.
“I think, net-net, we’re going to be adding jobs on the digital side of things here,” he said.
Flannery said a stronger emphasis on technology will allow it to help customers manage costs, improve the quality of patient outcomes and widen access in health care. He said the company plans to invest $500 million in software by 2018.
“Digital technology, data and analytics can radically change the capability of the industry to manage those issues,” he said. “This is an industry at a tipping point in terms of starting to really embrace digital technology in the practice of the industry.”
The company said the move from Barrington should begin in the third quarter of this year.
“This move is a vote of confidence in our city, and I look forward to watching GE continue to build an exciting future here,” Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said in a statement emailed by GE.
GE Healthcare moving hundreds of jobs from Barrington to Chicago