Is there really a need for another HR tech conference? It’s a valid question. We have watched $15 billion in VC and PE money flood into HR technology investment since 2014 and companies such as LinkedIn, Ultimate Software, and Qualtrics have commanded premium prices in acquisitions over the past few years. It’s not surprising that event promoters have followed the money.
There is, of course, the granddaddy of them all, the HR Technology® Conference & Exposition. For any company fielding innovative technology or services for the workplace, it has been the center of the universe for two decades. The best conferences are able to stand the test of time — SHRM, World at Work, and HCI to name a few. They may have up years and down years, but they manage to continue and improve over time.
Does that mean there’s no room for new conferences? Of course not. However, marketers in our industry have far more options than available budget. They are rightfully skeptical of new entrants because they want to know that what they are investing in will deliver quality interactions and new business. Increasingly, the marketers we know and work with are turning to smaller, more intimately scaled events that prioritize quality of interaction over quantity.
One of our favorite smaller conferences of the past few years is the North American Employee Engagement Awards. The conference founder and CEO, Matt Manners, hosts regional versions of the event here, and in the UK and Australia. The Starr Conspiracy is sponsoring the Vendor of the Year Award for a third consecutive time when the conference lands in New York City on June 20. We hope you will buy a conference pass and attend. If you would like a hefty discount, use the code TSC and save 66%.
We encourage employee engagement technology vendors to apply by April 26 for the Vendor of the Year Award. We don’t judge the awards, so there’s no need to send us cases of Pol Roger champagne or envelopes bursting with cash. There’s a blue ribbon panel of experts and practitioners who will do the honors. Fuel50 were the winners last year in a field that also included Waggl, SocialChorus, Achievers, Limeade, Ultimate Software, YouEarnedIt, Cerkl, and others.
Here’s five reasons that we think you should attend:
- Great case study examples from practitioners doing it right. Over the past few years, I’ve been blown away with the stories from companies out there getting it right. For example, it’s well known that employee retention and engagement in service industry jobs like restaurants are a daunting challenge. The case studies of the work that Chili’s has done on its engagement and employment brand efforts were beyond impressive, it was inspiring. Ditto on the work that Tata Consulting has done in employee engagement and employment brand. There’s great case study content aplenty.
- Recognizing that true engagement is a confluence of many initiatives. Employee engagement isn’t a single program – it’s an integrated strategy that touches on many program areas, including performance management, feedback, training and development, well-being, recognition, measurement, purpose and values, diversity and inclusion, employer brand, and corporate social responsibility among other things. Matt and his team have done a great job of taking on this complexity and trying to offer compelling, real-world examples and conversations about all of these areas.
- Addressing the role of employee communication in employee engagement. For too long, internal employee communications have been addressed as a thing apart from the employee engagement technology stack, rather than a vital part. We are starting to see that changing with solutions such as Slack, Microsoft Teams, Reward Gateway, GuideSpark, SocialChorus, Dynamic Signal, Poppulo, and Sitrion. Matt and his team have brought these solutions into the content in a very thoughtful way.
- Taking well-being seriously as an engagement driver. Companies spend a lot of money every year on wellness initiatives to help their employees quit smoking, lose weight, and manage chronic conditions. However, companies like Virgin Pulse and Limeade have demonstrated that integrating well-being into an engagement strategy can have an impact beyond healthcare costs and absenteeism. Matt and his team have been committed to telling that story.
- Attracting great vendors and hot startups to tell stories and swap notes. This event has built a cool little community around it. I always know that I will have a chance to connect with old friends, meet new people, push my thinking, and learn something new.
We’ve been evangelizing the power of employee engagement technology solutions for over a decade now at The Starr Conspiracy. Matt and his team has been doing the same thing — he’s a true believer that new ideas and great technology can change the workplace for the better. We believe that these solutions have the power to change the workplace positively -- creating a more humane environment, a better employee experience, and better business results.
We are proud to support The Employee Engagement Awards Conference and their work. We hope to see you in Tribeca on June 20. Register now with the code TSC and save big! And don’t forget to submit an award application by April 26 if you are a vendor.