I have just arrived in Paris ahead of HR Tech World Congress. Having been swept onto a motorbike outside the Gare du Nord (complete with not so chic hairnet and helmet, ahem) I arrived at the Palais de Congres buzzing with excitement at the opportunities that await at this rapidly expanding event, in this most beautiful of cities.
Last year’s Amsterdam event got me thinking about what the organisation of the future will look like. This year’s agenda promises to continue pushing boundaries and challenging HR professionals across a broad remit from talent and recruitment, to learning, social and data and analytics. I am going to challenge myself to depart more from my learning heartland to hear more about the broader organisational view of people development and understand some of the other hot topics across HR.
The keynote is Sir Richard Branson who I am looking forward to hearing from. How such an entrepreneurial mind approaches some of the processes and systems that surround (transactional) HR is interesting to me. He has also learnt a lot of what he knows on-the-job and as someone who often learns as they go (deliberate link to blog name) I am hoping for some real pearls of wisdom. Interestingly though not everyone feels the same and quite a few attendees I have spoken to prior to the event are not convinced of the value he will add. This surprised me a little so I await that session with great anticipation and am sure the #HRTechWorld stream will highlight the general reaction from the audience.
Another highlight on the main stage promises to be Yves Morieux who I thought quietly and intelligently blew attendees away in 2014. You can view his TED talk here which is similar to the session I saw in Amsterdam. This year he will be exploring ‘Smart simplicity in a complex world’ and with the (sometimes crazy) layers of bureaucracy and organisational hierarchy that often surround HR initiatives, I am looking forward to hearing some practical insights from him.
I love the concept from the organisers of the disruptHR lounge which showcases new start-ups. This kind of platform can get new entrepreneurs noticed in an arena that most could never afford to exhibit in. I am aiming to pop along to a few and will try and grab some of the founders for quick Periscope interviews.
The influencers panel featuring a number of industry analysts should provide some good – and I imagine impassioned – debate. The team at Fosway, formerly Elearnity, always share great real-world insights so I’ll be going along to David Wilson’s session. The case studies always interest me and I’m particularly keen to hear stories of social and collaborative working within large enterprises like Jaguar Land Rover. Encouragingly, I also think I have only seen one session title that has the word ‘millennial’ in it. Hurrah.
Intriguingly the event will close with a session from Marco Tempest who is an illusionist and Fellow of MIT. Not your everyday speaker at a HR event!
Stay tuned to the backchannel over the next two days and be sure to check out some of the excellent writing from my fellow Blog Squad contributors. There is expertise from every end of the HR spectrum and there will be immediate live reaction plus more considered reflection to absorb, whether you’re there in person or not.