Second day report from SHRM Atlanta 2014

Day two in Atlanta started off with major thunderstorms in the Atlanta area. Despite the rain the quality of presentations was not dampened.

Buying software

I started off the day by listening to William Tincup talk about how HR should buy software. William’s great points included:

  • There are 22,000 HR software vendors, it is ok to be confused;
  • Use your peer group to learn what will work for you;
  • Look for integration of at least 100 times, don’t be a guinea pig unless you get a discount;
  • You must have a great process, more important than product;
  • Don’t do business with someone who makes you feel dumb;
  • The CEO’s dilemma is your dilemma; and
  • The best time to buy is the end of the quarter, even better the end of the year.

The Exhibit Hall

From the break and the majority of the rest of the afternoon I spent time talking to vendors. I met some very interesting people with some great products and services. Many were first time exhibitors who had come because they had heard what a good crowd the SHRM Atlanta group is. Most would have like to have had more traffic but they were generally happy with the contacts they were making. I would like to have had more time to talk to all of them. I always tell people to go to the exhibit hall because you will find new stuff and new ideas. The one that stands out for me this year is who has uses gamification to help make your employees more fit. I am going to be trying it out and will write a blog post about it in a couple of weeks. You can be “gamified” by yourself or with other employees. So watch for that.

Saving money in attracting talent

The last session I attended was presented by Miriam Salpeter of Keppie Careers. She is an oft quoted expert in the use of social media in the job search process. She has been seen in the Wall Street Journal and on CNN. She talked about the use of social media to increase your ability to attract talent without spending a dime. Her advice included:

  • The cost of voluntary turnover is $15,000 per person;
  • People are surprised you can use Twitter to recruit;
  • Use your employees’ LinkedIn profiles as a tool. Make sure they fill it out because it is often the first place job hunters looks to see if a company is interesting;
  • Not getting back to candidates can ruin your employment brand and harm your ability to attract people;
  • People consider themselves applicants the moment they apply, whether you do or not;
  • 83% of employees who are featured on your company video don’t leave the company; and
  • You need to know your company’s reputation.

It was great information.

The Finish

The keynoter was Coretha Rushing, the CHRO of Equifax. She talked about global challenges and as someone said “What an executive presence!”
Congratulations to SHRM Atlanta,  the leadership, the volunteers and the folks from Meeting Expectations for a superb conference.

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