Stand Up or Sit Down
As we hit the home stretch of the year, we are inclined to reflect on what we’ve done, what we missed, and what we could improve on. As I look back on 2013, I can’t help but be proud of the work we’ve done in several areas, not limited to that of an HR case management vendor, an HR shared services consultant, or our work evangelizing about HR technology. I also think about the work we’ve done with the HR community and beyond.
We presented several hours of content for our HR practitioner friends, including live presentations at six different state SHRM conferences, HR Tech Europe, IQPC, LERHN and others. We also either hosted, led or appeared on webinars all year, not to mention appearances on Drive Thru HR and TalentNet Live, both as guest and host. Being a certified provider of HRCI credits, we take our role in knowledge sharing very seriously, and are proud to have provided a wealth of opportunities for those looking to maintain their certification.
We’re also proud to have been part of the wonderful philanthropic nature of the HR community, including taking a leading role in the SHRM Kickball event in June, raising over $11,000 for No Kid Hungry. The story is still featured on their website, by the way, which tells us we must have done something right!
Other than just recapping our year, what’s the point of this stroll through the calendar? It’s a simple idea. One that we feel pretty strongly about.
You should expect your vendor partners to stand up and be part of the HR community.
Too many companies in our space do not. They see the HR community as a sales market, and little else. They may sponsor a coffee break at a conference on occasion, but never doubt those moves are mainly to get a list of attendees they can mass email after the show. They rarely contribute in meaningful ways when there is no return coming to them. They talk about dedication to HR while not having a single practitioner on their team. They talk about partnerships, but in the end, that partnership doesn’t extend far past the invoice.
This is not to say there are not vendors out there who contribute. There are, and they do great work. You could easily meet every vendor need of your organization with vendor partners that contribute to the community and care about to profession. All it takes is asking a few questions early in the relationship. It’s not hard to separate those that care about the community and those that just sell to it.
And if your vendors fall into the latter category? It might be time to tell them to sit down and move to the end of the bench. You can do better.