An Invitation from a Conference Junkie

I have a confession.  I am a conference junkie.  Over the last five years I have attended more events than I care to admit.  At first, I was a HR practitioner starved for any learning opportunity.  Once I became a HR blogger in my free time (in addition to my daytime HR role), the offers to attend and cover the event came fast and furious.  As I launched head-first into public speaking, my attendance became driven by opportunities to present and even keynote.  Now, as an analyst, I also attend events specifically geared around a certain vendor or solution.

All this means that there are many choices when it comes to where to spend your time, money and attention.  At Brandon Hall Group, we’re excited to launch the HCM Excellence Conference 2015 in Fort Lauderdale, FL, Jan. 28-30.   What makes this event different and worthy of taking notice?  My colleague Madeline Laurano does a great job detailing why and how we are different.  I’d like to elaborate a bit on the sessions I am involved with in an effort to lure you to join me in the fun and learning.

As a former practitioner, I know that data is increasingly the ‘must have’ resource for HR leaders. Leveraging that data from a wide swath of industries and millions of data points gives organizations a better understanding of how their workforce trends stack up to their peers’. It also means using data and decision support tools to ensure the organization is making the right decisions and remaining compliant with complex requirements.

What we don’t always know as HR pros is how can you find out about best practices when it comes to using the data your company has.  We also don’t have much guidance on how to avoid the pitfalls that can come when you start analyzing data and making recommendations.  It’s easy to misinterpret that data and it’s important to understand how to avoid that mistake.

Two of the people I have learned the most from as it relates to technology and data are Steve Boese (co-chair of the HR Technology Conference and Expo), and Mike Psenka (SVP, Workforce Analytics, at Equifax).  I thought the best thing to do is invite them to participate with me so that you, our attendees, will be able to learn just as I did.  I guarantee that our session, HCM Measurement and Analytics: How to Leverage Data to Drive Organizational Results, will be a robust conversation about data and you’ll walk away with a new sense of direction on how to tackle this in your organization.

In addition, I’m excited to be hosting an unconference-style session with my colleague, Ben Eubanks.  Ben and I have been hosting unconferences since 2009 so we know how to take an HR topic and blow it up into something fun, creative and wild that you can sink your teeth into.  I promise it will be completely driven by what the session attendees want to discuss and learn.  You’ll not only learn from me and Ben, you’ll be learning from the other attendees in this highly interactive session.

Whether you’re a conference junkie like me or not, I do hope you’ll join us at Brandon Hall Group’s HCM Excellence Conference 2015. Check out our super-early bird rates, which are in effect through Aug. 31. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to me.  I’d love to meet you in January!

Trish McFarlane, VP of Human Resources Practice
and Principal Analyst, Brandon Hall Group

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Trish McFarlane



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Trish McFarlane