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Emily Takes on Dallas . . . HR Style

I recently had the opportunity to attend the HR Southwest Conference in Fort Worth October 14th through the 17th. Having been a regular attendee of the national SHRM Conference for multiple years, I can honestly say that this was the best HR conference I have had the privilege of attending.

The Dallas SHRM group was the facilitator and organizer of the event, designed to draw in an audience from the Southwestern region of the United States. It was extremely well-organized, and the session speakers were all best-in-class. I currently hold the PHR and SHRM-CP designations and have earned 16.75 of my 60-hour (3-year) requirement to maintain my credentials. This was an amazing value for so many hours.

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The topics presented this year were fresh and on-point with current hot topics in human resources. The legislative front has been relatively quiet in terms of enacting new employment laws, both nationally and on a state level. However, that does not mean that there is nothing new. Remember the FLSA salary requirement we took a sigh of relief from last summer? It’s being reintroduced this spring, as well as some paid leave requirements on a federal level. With all the city and state paid sick leave requirements to keep up with, most HR professionals would welcome a national standard. Though we are still free of a city requirement here in Houston, all eyes are on Austin and San Antonio as they have some pending requirements. Pay equity and #metoo remain in the spotlight as they get heightened media attention, the women’s U.S. soccer team being a prime example.

As I attended focused sessions on these topics, I noticed different themes woven into each other. Have you taken a look at your pay practices lately? How do your company policies fall in line with these developments? The aging workforce and exit strategies for retirees were examined in terms of compassion, as well as in terms of legal requirements. In addition to everything I’ve mentioned already, this conference also allowed me to preview employee engagement and recognition technologies to help organizations of all sizes keep their workforce engaged.

It was exciting to see that even from 250 miles away, the BCI brand was well-known by most companies in the exhibit area! The expo hall was full of exhibitors that were all well-represented, including some of our friendly competitors, new technology products, and other HR services, to name a few. Of course, the puppy-petting station presented by Patriot Paws was my favorite! Overall, I enjoyed a great several days connecting with other HR professionals, sharing ideas, and networking.

Please remember that I am here as a resource to keep you informed and discuss your HR questions through HR Link (http://mybciteam.com/hr-link).

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