The Happiest Place on Earth? I’m sure you have your own idea of where that is – Hawaii, Australia, or even – dare I say it – the Browns or the Bengals in the Super Bowl. Well, the “trademarked” answer is Walt Disney World.
I was lucky enough to travel to Orlando in early June to visit THE Happiest Place on Earth for IHRIM’s 2013 HRMS Strategies Conference and Technology Expo. As an IHRIM Member, second-time attendee and volunteer, it was great to see so many familiar faces and catch up with HR colleagues.
This year’s conference offered an abundance of HRMS educational courses, hands on software demos and fun networking events. One class I attended was Mobile Apps and Social Technology – Myths, Facts and Fantasy which was an open forum in which we discussed the promises originally made about mobile apps and social networks along with how they are using the technology options at their organizations. Another interesting class was How to Avoid Crappy HR Software in which we learned how to negotiate HR software contracts while mitigating risk. Additional information on these classes can be located on the www.ihrim.org website.
I also was able to visit the Expo Hall and receive first-hand information about many of the HRIS systems that our clients are using today. Some of the chief exhibitors that were represented at the IHRIM conference included but not limited to, PeopleSoft, HR Cloud, Paychex, Oracle, Silkroad, Ceridian, Workday and Ultimate.
The conference wasn’t entirely just classes and demos. There were plenty of opportunities to connect and learn more about others’ system dilemmas and successes. In particular, the first evening of the conference, I attended the Get Connected Reception: Splish Splash, It’s a Beach Bash. The event consisted of live music, delicious food and a couple of very special guests, Mickey and Minnie (yes, I did get my picture taken with them). Besides the Beach Bash there were several additional meet and greet opportunities. Whether it was coffee or lunch on-the-go or the finale Tuesday Evening Reception: You’ve Got a Friend in IHRIM, I was able to meet, speak and make friends with numerous other conference attendees. Most of all, I was able to deepen my knowledge of the HR industry through in-depth conversations with other professionals.
After meeting hundreds of friendly HRIS professionals, watching the fireworks over the Magic Kingdom’s Castle from my balcony, meeting Mickey and Minnie, Sully and Mike (Monsters’ Inc.), Woody, Bullseye and Jessie (Toy Story) and Mr. Incredible and Frozone (The Incredibles), I am a believer that Walt Disney World is THE Happiest Place on Earth… and that I am and will always be a kid at heart.