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Marc is Founder & CEO of HRN, HR Tech World, disruptHR and iRecruit.

One of the key reasons business, HR and IT leaders flock to HR Tech Europe is to meet the leaders of the industry face-to-face. Where else but at HR Tech Europe can you see and evaluate the Who’s Who of the HR marketplace showcasing over 140 speakers, 2000 delegates from over 50 countries and 1,000’s of solutions on hand from our vendor showcase. Check out the event website and decide for yourself.

The Numbers speak for themselves, as the largest European Conference & Expo for enterprise decision makers on the Future of Work, HR Tech Europe is the only hybrid event in Europe offering an agenda premised on live research sourced from a very healthy and growing community. Delving into our 2014 survey here are some quick tid-bits to wet your appetites.

When we asked our members how satisfied they were with their current HR Tech vendors we discovered 20% were very satisfied, 72% were somewhat satisfied and some 7% not very satisfied so suggestions on previous years that the middle area (somewhat satisfied) is growing and not very satisfied is shrinking and not surprisingly – the angry people are in the 1 percentile. Bersin by Deloitte and Gartner were the 2 analyst firms that were most mentioned amongst our community … by a mile.

Regarding HR Tech budgets for 2014-2015, I felt our research best compared with some of the research shared by Josh Bersin so far this year. Talent management is again top of the list commanding 41% of the investment vote and learning was a nose behind on 39% with MOOC’s (Massive Open Online Courses) entering into our Top 40 for the first time. Perhaps more importantly is a look at where company initiatives are because many practitioners may look to buy new technology, however in my experience in talking to HR leaders at either end of the year it is the functions initiatives that tend to railroad the direction and consumption of annual HR budgets – here are the top 3 initiatives in our network with #1 taking a 15% lead on silver and bronze medal positions.

  1. Reengineering Key HR Processes
  2. Investing in HR Analytics/HR Reporting/Big Data HR
  3. Implementing Employee Self Service Strategy and Technology

HR Tech Europe is designed to make you more successful, have better, faster, more cost effective reporting for your leadership team – the answers they need to be more successful and execute business strategy.

What are your leadership looking for from HR Tech?

Better and faster HR Reporting tools (and cost effective) – some of that buzz around Big Data has waned I feel in Europe especially if I look back to our first installment in London which ran with Big Data for HR theme – not much has happened since then (March 2012) if Google and IBM were giving themselves 6 out of 10 that still leaves alot of European companies in the starting gates. HRN Europe as a Corporate HR Network we have always invested a good amount of time and resources into understanding what the CEO and Line leaders need from HR and Technology. The same items at the higher echelons are unchanged, just depends which report you read – Talent, Transformation, Leadership, Technology and Innovation are all in for the group hug.

What else are line leaders telling us – what do they need from HR?

  • An inspired employer brand (exciting place to work) – as exciting gets in business.
  • Help in strengthening current strategy.
  • Help going beyond product innovation by formulating the right talent pools that help the company achieve/fuel this.
  • Help in bringing company culture back to life.
  • Help creating shared value.
  • Help executing strategy faster than the competition? Is the first bird to fly, the first to get shot down in our current age of innovation? Argh dare I say it – DISRUPTION? … risky risks – right time, right place, right people, right products …. are we on the right path forward?
  • Saving the best for last because as mentioned above it is interesting to note that our members mentioned Re-engineering Key HR Processes as their #1 Initiative for 2014-2015, this sits PERFECTLY with what line leaders are telling us. Line leaders are telling us that they need help from HR with business model regeneration – how to energise,  innovate and execute that model through talent?

Relaxed – scheduling and matchmaking software and onsite mobile app at HR Tech Europe helps you carefully connect with the right people based on your immediate and future interests. Take your time – to build a schedule of keynotes, sessions, meetings, demo’s and hospitality. If you are not already booked, consider the rewards in place for you and perhaps more especially your team – achieve more in 2 days than your whole year of events and vendor meetings, make a real difference in your organisation in helping to create a better place to work and understanding what strategies, tactics, tools and technologies will help your HR function to optimise, enable and unleash your people!

See you in Amsterdam next month! Marc.