Notes from HRIZON 2012

I just got back from the first day of HRIZON, the 14th World Human Resource Congress held in Melbourne. The theme for this year was “New World Thinking”. This theme was reflected in the speakers. David Ulrich encouraged HR on the need to be more flexible in their approach, and to be focused on culture, leadership and talent. Maree Edding of SELMAR Institute of Education suggested HR need to change their approach and be people and human behaviour experts as well as career management specialists. Maree reflected how over the years, HR has gone through significant change from the personnel department to human resource function to people consultants. The challenges over this time have not changed significantly, yet the urgency and demands on HR are increasing. With this in mind, I was looking forward to visiting 130+ vendors in the exhibition hall.

Considering the theme of “New World Thinking” it was interesting to note that the vendors seemed similar to those in previous years. I had expected that there might be more on social media or mobile accessibility, yet this did not dominate. I wonder if these concepts are no longer considered new and are now an expected part of any offering, or if there have not been enough interest by clients in these types of solutions. Probably a bit of both!

One of the changes I did notice in the Exhibition Hall was the effective way vendors engaged with attendees. I experienced a number of vendors having engaging conversations on what is happening in the market place. There seemed fewer vendors hiding behind the desks in their stands and more interacting effectively with the attendees.

HRIZON has another day to go. It is a sold out event, however it is definitely worth visiting the Exhibition Hall which is free to enter.