Qualcomm, USA

Qualcomm is an American multinational innovative technology company headquartered in San Diego, California. Qualcomm has 41,000 employees across 170 offices in more than 30 countries. Many of the employees are engineers and scientists and before the pandemic they were largely office and lab-based.


During the pandemic, Qualcomm was forced to re-evaluate its real estate portfolio and flexible work policy. The business strategy team worked closely with the real estate teams to launch dedicated spaces called ‘Mobile Work Environments’ in which certain employees are offered increased flexibility to work either in the office or at home.

The Mobile Work Environments initiative was piloted in Qualcomm’s headquarter building in San Diego. Three of the building’s 10 floors were dedicated to Mobile Work Environments and over 300 employees were asked by HR teams to use this space on a flexible basis.

In order to enable flexible working, Qualcomm recognised it needed flexible solutions, including day use lockers for employees. The company selected the Vecos smart locker system which accommodated for a flexible approach. Instead of provisioning for one locker for every employee, Qualcomm decided that a 60 percent ratio would best fit their Mobile Work Environment.

Employees use the iOffice app to reserve space, desks and equipment and they use their employee badge to reserve a smart locker. The iOffice app and data from the smart lockers allows the building managers to see how space, technology and lockers are being used in these areas. Vecos lockers can be assigned to a specific department or team that frequently share items so everyone in that group has access to it. If an individual locker is used every day the employee can retain it for as long as it is used. However if the locker is not used for 12 consecutive days, the employee who has reserved it will get an automatic notification to nudge their use or release of the locker, and on the 14th day the employee will be blocked from that locker.

Qualcomm has decided to roll out the Mobile Work Environments program globally – based on initial signs of success – using Vecos as their vendor for all locations. For the most part employees in the US are very receptive to the concept of shared desks
and lockers, supporting the more mobile work style. In the APAC region, the change is being handled differently, with employees still being allocated their own personal lockers. Qualcomm is still in the early stages of rolling out its Mobile Work Environments and it will continue to collect data on the performance of these spaces, via its smart technology ecosystem, when employees start returning to the office across all locations.

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