November 27, 2019

The HR Innovation and Tech Fest kicked off last Monday at the ICC in Sydney. For those who weren’t able to make it, allow me to set the scene before I share my highlights from the event.

Monday 08:00 

There were warm welcomes and searches for the best coffee beans (we think the L&D side won) ... there were team scrums, neighbourly introductions, colourful and slick looking stations (some with yummier, or more environmentally friendly giveaways than others) … there were intention settings, handshakes, concerns for the bushfire smoke outside and a great many “oh my goodness, how ARE you?!” … (~pause for breath here~) 

Monday 09:00

The main stage kicked-off with dancers in lit-up robot costumes and sabres, Andrew Dado with dad jokes about Antarctica, double chins and Instagram filters (he was very, very good) and the ever-humble industry leader and first cab off the rank keynote speaker, Josh Bersin!

With HR and L&D tech industry experts all cocooned under one smoke-free roof for a 2-day festival of innovation, it was time for all of us to harness our own interpersonal skills (en garde AI and Tengai) and connect with other humans!

So, without further ado (drumroll please ...) here are our top *human* highlights! 



Aman Dhaliwal - Employer Brand and Talent Manager, AA New Zealand

I’m going to take a stab in the (not so) dark here and say that many of us wish Aman had an hour slot instead of half. As he got his ‘END’ card to prompt him to wrap up, the raised hands and questions kept streaming in. 

Aman shared how he and his team were able to create an integrated talent technology strategy to build their employer brand. On powerpoint it looks light a beautifully designed solar system and one that’s totally worth orbiting, so check out his conference slide pack when you can!  

He spoke about the importance of early buy-in with stakeholders. He was real about the bumps and challenges of integration and he offered many creative suggestions and cost-effective ways to build employer brand even when you don’t have the big bucks! 

At the heart of his strategy was research. He made calculated guesses and took calculated risks. With so much learning going on in the Employer Branding space, I’m sure we’ll be seeing him at more events and conferences like this (I think he’s Melbourne bound in February next year!)



Miranda Murray and Samantha Payne - Fertility in the Workplace

I met Miranda Murray and Samantha Payne in one big human injection Monday hit. As soon as we started talking, I remembered what I love most about conferences. It’s the unexpected conversations, the unexpected connection and resonance with a human being that you’ve only just met. 

Their purpose-driven lives, personally and professionally, are tangible and this kind of interaction impresses, personalises and leaves an imprint on your conscious because you’re learning and witnessing people do brilliant things for humankind in real-time.

Until HR Tech Fest, I didn’t know that ‘fertility coaches’ or The Pink Elephant Support Network existed, although I was not blind to the importance of this work. Miranda and Sam are pioneers and they are tackling very vulnerable and very human experiences - at work.



Josh Bersin - The Rise of Wellbeing and Employee Experience Takes Over

The VideoMyJob team were all keen to see industry heavyweight Josh Bersin speak, perhaps the most excited amongst us was none other than our very own CEO, David Maccoccia. So when David managed to snag an interview with Josh, all of us at the VideoMyJob booth were pretty chuffed!

Josh opened and closed HR Tech Fest. Humble as ever in his delivery and in-person, he conducted his time on stage with ease and packed our brains with data, research and future projections. 

In summary (and this will by no means do him justice!), Josh is some kind of human encyclopaedia for HR and tech, which for him actually translates to the employee and the employee experience.

He discussed new ways of learning, experience management, the changing paradigms of management, team learning, soft skills, the explosive growth in micro-learning, the need for behavioural and communication skills in the workplace, wellbeing strategy and resilience, 2020 talent apps and data systems … just to name a few!  

In essence, Josh’s presentation was information-rich. There was never a dull moment and to top off his awesome intro, he came along for the interview ride with David and was open, willing, creative and an all-round awesome human being! 



Lars Schmidt - The Future of Employer Brand

The engagement factor of speakers at this year’s HR Tech Fest was impressive.  Add in their topic of expertise and passion and we were off and away. 

Lars Schmidt was right up there for us and whether you’re in HR, want to improve your interpersonal, speaker or leadership skills or simply connect with a really fabulous person - Lars was the person for all of this.

He is an industry leader in the HR space. He has his podcast, he is the founder of Amplify, co-founder of HR Open Space (seriously, where does one get the time for all of this??) and has a lot to say to companies when it comes to employer brand and how this component in your business strategy has everything to do with retaining the staff you have and everything to do with attracting new talent!



So, there you have it! Some of our favourite moments from an immersive HR Tech Fest last week. For those of you who couldn’t make it, I hope you see these people at conferences near you soon. I hope their ideas, philosophies, strategies, industry knowledge and humanness propel you forward with your own initiatives and goals for 2020 and beyond.

Disclaimer: Please note that we couldn’t add in all our favourites - there were simply too many! On behalf of the team at VideoMyJob, we want to say thank you for doing what you’re doing - the passion and purpose and human kindness resonated with us at this conference! If you want to debrief further, reach out or connect with us on LinkedIn!

Tis The Season to boost your employer brand, foster team spirit or engage with your clients and candidates in a meaningful way!


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