HR Tech Expo Hall Day 1 (chillin’ at the M/X lounge)

Good companies. Good HR folk. Good times. That's what it's about when we bring the HRmarketer crew to the HR Technology Conference & Expo. And even with the current crappy global economies with slip-sliding scales, this year's show is no exception (so far).

Although attendance at these shows is always projected high, there was some concern as to this year's attendance since other shows have taken a hit of late. I don't have any numbers at this point other than the statement from Knowledge Infusion that the turnout is a record – 33% above the 2006 record.

If that's the case then that's an excellent sign for the HR space! Most of the HR execs I spoke with at the show yesterday are seriously shopping for some solid HR product. I especially enjoyed talking shop with Stacey on the shuttle bus, General Manager of HR Services at Volkswagen Group of America. Her boss, Mike Beamish (EVP HR), is speaking today with Ed Newman of The Newman Group about how to aggressively grow talent.

We sponsored the exhibitor lounge again this year, filling it full of fun HRmarketer paraphernalia. But the big hit this year is our "Asteroid Happen – Be Prepared" theme (get it?). More on the t-rex later…

The expo hall at McCormick Place had a steady stream of traffic in between sessions. Our roving team of talented marketing/PR specialists – Jonathan Goodman and Jocelyn Cook – heard mostly good things from suppliers about the HR traffic stopping by their booths. One of our senior PR folks (they're all senior at the HRmarketer Services Group), Adriana Saldaña, hung out with me to man the fort and talk with suppliers and attendees alike.

The attendees we spoke were really excited to check out our HR Community for all the free content and supplier information. In fact, there were also those who've already been to the site. How's that for organic growth during the past few months!

After the expo closed, we co-sponsored a groovy party with ATS supplier nowHIRE at the M/X lounge in the Hyatt. Prospects, partners and even some competitors ate, drank and merrily networked away.

It was great to speak with the likes of myStaffingPro®, ERC Dataplus, JobApp Network, PeopleClues, Sonar6, BountyJobs, HRDrive, JobTarget, Gerry Crispin, eScreen, Edge Information Management, Halogen Software, and my favorite cool recruitment technology play – InterviewStudio. Always a pleasure to talk with Colleen! I'm sure there are so many more I'm leaving out, but thank you all for coming.

And finally and few us stayed up way past our bedtime with nowHIRE and went to Ditka's to eat beef. I bought a Ditka baseball cap after watching the Phillies knock off the Dodgers. ("You're my Ditka, my Ditka, my Ditka…")

(By the way, nowHIRE's got a great new white paper available now titled Going Paperless, Going Green: Recruiting Practices to Sustain the Environment and Your Competitive Advantage. Check it out. These hip cats know applicant tracking systems.)

So it's time to head back to the expo floor in an hour. Good luck to all the suppliers out there. One more day and I can get back to my lovely wife and new baby girl Beatrice!

Post by Kevin Grossman

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