By Stephanie Hammerwold
It is the time of year where HR professionals can gather together and nerd out on all kinds of HR topics at the annual California HR Conference in Long Beach. If you are not lucky enough to be attending, never fear! The HR Hammer will be blogging about the conference here and over at Workology and posting regular updates on Twitter.
This year's conference takes place from August 26 to August 29 and is packed with all kinds of exciting HR content and speakers, including a closing keynote by Captain Scott Kelly, an astronaut who is famous for spending a year in space.
There are quite a few sessions that look interesting, but high on my list is a session on California's new fair chance hiring law (a.k.a. Ban the Box). This is a topic that is important to me because of my work with the nonprofit I founded, Pacific Reentry Career Services. Through my nonprofit, I volunteer my time to mentor formerly incarcerated job seekers and advocate for fair chance hiring policies. We had a big victory with California's new law, but there is still a lot of work to do to ensure that people with criminal records are given a fair chance at employment, so they can work toward building healthy and productive lives following release. When a formerly incarcerated person is able to turn their life around, we all benefit.
There are also sessions on harassment, pay equity, negotiating approaches for female HR professionals, creating more empathetic leave policies, mental health and other topics I have covered on this blog. Now that I work in HR at a tech startup that is focused on some advanced machine learning technology, I am looking forward to a session on reimagining HR jobs in the artificial intelligence economy. I am also interested in a session on working with transgender and non-binary employees because it is important that HR strives to create a workplace that is welcoming to all people.
If that was not enough to convince you that this conference is going to be awesome, the Tuesday night entertainment will be Colin Mochrie and Brad Sherwood from Whose Line is it Anyway? Contrary to popular belief, those of us in HR do have a sense of humor, so I am looking forward to this.
Be sure to visit the conference blog for more information on all the exciting things awaiting this year's conference attendees.
You can find out more about the conference on the official website, which includes links to all the social media channels. Best of all, you can still register to attend the conference.