Message to industry stakeholders from Rhonda Marcucci about the value of attending the annual HR Technology Conference.
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Why we attend HR Tech and why you should too
Posted on 08/23/2018
A message from Rhonda Marcucci, founder and consultant, Gruppo Marcucci
As a Chicagoan, accustomed to short summers, I’m always a bit sad to see fall approach but fall also gives me something to look forward to — the annual HR Technology Conference & Expo, commonly referred to “HR Tech.” Held this year in Las Vegas, September 11-14, HR Tech is the annual industry event and, this year, I’m especially excited because, for the first time, I’ll be attending as an exhibitor as the HR and Benefit Technology (HRBT) Practice of Gallagher. (More on that in a bit.)
What makes HR Tech so great is that it brings everyone (and everything) in the HR technology ecosphere together in one place, making it very efficient to get a first-hand look at new technologies, research service providers and their products, network and connect with colleagues and partners, hear from nationally-recognized thought leaders and much, much more.
One of my favorite things about HR Tech is the start-up pavilion where you get a glimpse of what’s coming. It was here that I first began to see the market’s response to the generational differences in the workforce. Today, the subject is widely discussed but before it was such a hot topic, I observed the trend in new technologies such as PTO Exchange, which allows employees to swap out earned personal time off for such things as helping a colleague or donating the associated value to a charity — both popular options with younger generations.
But HR Tech isn’t just for HR technology consultants. If you are interested in buying, selling, partnering or integrating with, developing or investing in HR technology, then there’s something for you at HR Tech. Here’s why I believe all stakeholders should be there:
Benefit Broker/Consultants – Employers rely on you to be their trusted advisor and to help them identify holistic solutions to address challenges and capitalize on opportunities. HR Tech is a great opportunity for you to educate yourself so that you can better serve your clients.
Employers – If you’re thinking about buying HR technology, HR Tech enables you to see everything available in the market and connect one-on-one with providers. Even if you think you know what’s out there, I guarantee there will be an ah-ha moment. For most, it’s discovering tools that you didn’t know you needed…until you saw them. More importantly, most employers leave with a deeper understanding of how technology can support their people strategy and overall organizational wellbeing — including talent, employee engagement and productivity, cost management and more.
Technology Service Providers – HR Tech can be a key part of your business and marketing strategy, but even if you’re not an exhibitor, there’s no better place than HR Tech to check out your competition.
Carriers – Insurance providers are increasingly pulled into strategies to support the health and wellbeing of a workforce. You offer products that employers provide to help employees manage their healthcare. Understanding the employer’s world and how technology fits into healthcare outcomes is important to achieving your business objectives.
Investors – HR technology is a $14.5 billion marketspace, projected to grow to more than $22 billion by 2022. This does not include recapitalization, IPOs or merger and acquisition activity. If you’re considering investing in this space, HR Tech will give you a better understanding of the market landscape, enable you to identify investment opportunities and connect with key players. If you haven’t considered investing in this space, give it some thought. That’s $14.5 billion, with a B.
It’s not all rosy; not every session is as valuable as some and all the activity means lots of time on your feet, but I do love that I double the number of steps logged on my Fitbit each day! On a more serious note, I find the quality of the general session, keynote and CHRO panel speakers to be very high, and a great barometer of what’s happening in the market. I always stick around for the last day (many don’t) as I find it offers some of the best sessions.
If I’ve given you cause to consider attending, I’m pleased. But without proper planning and preparation, you will be wasting your time and money. This is a huge show and first-time attendees are often a bit overwhelmed. To counter this (and get the most bang for your buck) have a clear objective in mind and do your homework in advance. Who do you want to meet? Are there product demos you want to see? Which sessions/speakers are addressing topics relevant to you? Make a plan and follow it.
My team’s preparation (which consultant will attend which sessions, talk to which providers, schedule private product demos, meet with which clients, etc.) makes us better consultants but it requires discipline — before and after the event. (We spend several hours downloading what we saw and heard and discussing its relevance for our clients and our business.)
HR Tech is a dynamic experience and I’m looking forward to being a first-time exhibitor. It’s one of the benefits of being a part of Gallagher, which understands the growing importance of HR technology in the overall scope of HR and benefits consulting. The timing is ideal, as Gallagher is introducing Gallagher Better WorksSM, which is a holistic, all-encompassing approach to the full spectrum of organizational wellbeing — strategically investing in people and developing benefit and HR programs at the right cost structures to support a multigenerational workforce.
If you’ll be in Las Vegas, stop by booth #622. Our well-qualified marketing and consulting team will be there, talking about Gallagher Better Works and how our team might assist you with HR technology strategy, product identification, implementation or optimization. Even if you’re not in need of our services, I hope you’ll stop by to say hello. In my 12 years attending HR Tech, I’ve met many people, creating relationships for life, that allowed me to connect them with the people or services they need. I’d love to do the same for you.
Gruppo Marcucci (GPM), a division of Gallagher Benefit Services, Inc., provides outsourcing intelligence and associated consulting to stakeholders in the Benefits and HR Technology & Outsourcing industry. Our in-depth understanding of the service provider market and our vast experience sourcing and implementing solutions is key to our clients achieving full operational success.