The Story of Hewlett-Packard A Brief History of The Company

The Story of Hewlett-Packard: A Brief History of The Company

Hewlett-Packard (HP) is a computer, printer and other electronics company that was founded in 1939. It’s now one of the largest information technology companies in the world, employing over 250 thousand employees in 167 countries. You may already be familiar with HP products, like laptops, tablets, printers and calculators. But how did it all begin? In this post, we’ll explore some of the most notable moments in HP’s history as well as its evolution into one of today’s top global brands. We will also discuss some of the challenges faced by the company as well as what it means to be an HP employee.


The Beginning of HP

HP’s journey began with two friends, Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard. The duo met while they were in college at Stanford University where they both studied electrical engineering. In 1939, Bill and Dave started their own company – the Hewlett-Packard Company – to make test meters for electrical equipment.

Soon after, their company became one of the leading producers of scientific instruments in the country. They also had a successful line of audio products that allowed HP to grow its customer base beyond just scientists and engineers. As the years went by, HP began expanding into other areas such as medical technology, calculators, printers and personal computers.

In 1966, HP became a public company and then went on to become Silicon Valley’s most valuable company a decade later. In 1999, the founders retired from their positions but remained active board members until 2005 when they left their positions on the board completely. Two years later in 2007, HP was split into two separate entities: one called Hewlett Packard Enterprise which focuses on business customers and another called HP Inc which focuses on consumers.

 


HP's evolution into a global company

HP’s first product, the HP200A, was a low-cost signal tracer developed by Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard. The company was officially incorporated in 1947 as Hewlett-Packard and became public in 1957.

HP has grown into one of the largest information technology companies in the world with over 250 thousand employees and 167 countries. The company has seen its share of challenges, but it perseveres to innovate and bring new products to market like the HP TouchPad tablet which is their first webOS device.

HP employees are part of a diverse community that spans a range of cultures and belief systems. HP values diversity not just as an employee but also as a customer. In fact, they have specific programs aimed at better serving diverse communities like hiring bilingual customer service reps to serve Spanish-speaking customers or providing customers with alternate means of communication such as chat, email or phone calls if they don’t speak English fluently or at all.


How did HP become a top global brand?

HP is one of the largest IT companies in the world, with over 250 thousand employees. The company that started in a small garage has now become a top global brand. How did HP rise to fame?

The “discovery” of Hewlett-Packard was an accident and an experiment. Bill Hewlett and David Packard were both engineering graduates from Stanford University when they founded their company. They set up shop in Palo Alto, California and made their first product, an audio oscillator for testing sound equipment. Unfortunately, this was not a huge success and it took them some time to come up with a new idea that would suit their business needs better.

They found their breakthrough opportunity by accident when they met Walt Disney at an event and he said he needed a fast, accurate way to calculate taxes paid on his films. Bill and Dave’s answer – the HP 200A Calculator – proved to be very successful so they switched gears from audio products to calculators full-time. “We didn’t know how much demand there would be,” said David Packard later on, “but we built as many as we could as fast as we could.” That first year, they sold 5,000 units of the calculator at $160 each.

 


Challenges faced by the company

Hewlett-Packard has faced many challenges throughout the years. In 1987, it released the HP-150, a personal computer with a built-in printer. By the 1990s, HP had made its first acquisition by purchasing Apollo Computer. After that, they ventured into Japan and grew their global presence in China and Europe.

In 1999, HP merged with Compaq and created an era of innovation for the company with products like the HP Slate. The merger also gave them access to Compaq’s technology expertise which allowed them to compete more effectively in international markets.

HP has been known for innovation throughout its history but their most significant moment was when they decided to focus on printing devices instead of computers during the PC revolution of the 2000s. This was a risky move during this time but it paid off as their printers were selling at twice the rate of computers in 2001. It seemed like everything was going well until September 11th when HP was one of two major sponsors at the World Trade Center complex which led people around the world to boycott Hewlett Packard products due to their connection with terrorism.

Despite these challenges, Hewlett-Packard is still successful today because they adapt quickly to keep up with new technology trends and changes in markets across the globe.

 


What does it mean to be an employee at HP?

Employees are the backbone of any company, yet for many people, it can be difficult to imagine what their day-to-day lives would be like at a large and global corporation.

The first thing to keep in mind is that HP is a highly diverse company, with over 250 thousand employees spread across 167 countries. This gives employees the opportunity to work on projects that they’re truly passionate about and find fulfilling. It also means they’ll have opportunities to learn new skills and grow personally as well as professionally.

Another way HP makes it possible for employees to thrive is through its numerous benefits. These include healthcare options, paid parental leave, tuition reimbursement for courses related to your job, various discounts and much more. And that’s not even mentioning the countless social events hosted by HP just for its staff!

As you can see, there are many reasons why you might want to consider working for Hewlett-Packard and what it means to be an employee at this major corporation.


Conclusion

HP is one of the most recognizable brands in the world. But it didn’t start out that way.

In fact, when the company was founded by Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard in 1939, they had no idea that they would be creating one of the most important companies in the world, or that it would be one of the largest employers of scientists and engineers.

To learn more about HP’s history, as well as its past, present and future, go to hp.com/thestory.

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