The annual HRM conference took place on Wednesday 24 March with this year’s speakers focusing on the theme of Talent Management. 

A 4.30 am start for the students from the Sorbonne presenting at 10 am did not show. Their audience of 40 students and staff appreciated a lively overview of differences in employee development between French and UK practices.

The conference opened with Professor Fiona Patterson of the Work Psychology Group and Cambridge University: both author and consultant for public and private sector organisations presenting on Everyday Innovation: How to develop talent for innovative working in organisations which offered a theory to practice overview of implementing Talent Management.

This was succeeded by a practical approach to Targeting Talent Online from Jean Paul Smalls of Vonq with direct tips on succeeding in attracting talent online.

Raymond Robertson drew these elements together to illustrate with his consultancy experience ranging from Premier Inns to Claridges and Starbucks to Costa; Raymond’s An Engaging Workplace – Where Talented People Want to Work was voted overall most informative and the presentation students felt they had learnt most from.

Lunch offered the 150 attendees an opportunity to catch up with each other and to speak to the presenters in person. Perry Timms opened the second session with Creating a Buzz about Talent Management, suffering none of the traditional ill effects of the post lunch scheduling: he was voted most entertaining speaker for his insights into how the Big Lottery Fund developed its Talent Management programme from a standing start.

Nick Creswell of Thomson Reuters continued the merger story delivered by Richard Cleverley and Elly Tomlins last year to guide us through Our Strategic Talent Story which spanned five  continents and 55,000 employees.

Each speaker was adroitly summarised by the skilful Michael Moran, CEO of Fairplace and elected chair of the CIPD’s Central London Branch. Michael chaired the day’s proceedings adding in the CIPD elements and reminding students of relevant research and findings to follow up on. Key points seemed to be Take Risks when Hiring and Invest for Success as common threads through all presentations.

Our thanks to all the who gave of their time and effort so willingly for us on Wednesday and particularly to Teo Cruz and Ivan Ortega who were responsible for the live streaming, podcasts and technical backup. Thanks also due to Simon Piears and Adrian Smith for putting the brochure together with last minute changes and to Thalia Argyropoulos for the photo of Fiona Patterson you see here.

We look forward to hosting another conference next year and hope you will all join us again then.

Speaker podcasts

Jean-Paul Smalls (Vonq) - Targeting Talent Online

Nicholas Cresswell (Thomson Reuters) - Our Strategic Talent Story 

Perry Tims (BIG HR) - Creating a Buzz about Talent Management

Professor Fiona Patterson (Work Psychology Group and Cambridge University) - Everyday Innovation: How to develop talent for innovative working in organisations

Raymond Robertson (Strategic Reward) - An Engaging Workplace - where talented people want to work

Maria Moro, Fabiola Olivares, Kerry Amies, Benoit Perreau, Jeremy Gouez, Charlotte Lienhart and Jessica Seegoolam (Sorbonne University)- Convergence and Divergence: HRM in Britain and France

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