The CIPD, the professional body for HR and people development, has announced the programme for its 71st Annual Conference and Exhibition, taking place at Manchester Central on 7- 8 November 2018.

The CIPD Annual Conference and Exhibition is the major HR event of the year, attracting thousands of UK based and international attendees. This year’s theme is ‘leading the people profession’, with the conference designed to enable people professionals to develop the skills and capabilities needed to evolve in a rapidly changing world of work and become a strategic force within their organisations. Thought-leaders, academics and practitioners will share practical knowledge through keynotes, case studies and sprint sessions on how people professionals can lead the way in driving good work and good business.

The conference sessions will cover five key streams:

  • Strategic HR & Ethical Decision Making – How can people professionals create an impact within organisations? Learn how to evolve and develop the skills needed to create a higher strategic impact at work.
  • Organisational Development & Business Effectiveness – Discover how people professionals can help organisations progress and develop, how to help shift organisational cultures, and manage the expectations of multiple generations at work.
  • Technology & The Future of Work – What is the impact of technology and AI on the wider world of work? And what does it mean for people professionals? Delegates will learn how to enable evidence-based HR, as well as their own digital and analytics skill set.
  • Talent, Skills & Capabilities – Explore the most effective methods to recruit and retain the best talent for your organisation and discover how to develop effective leaders, line managers and embed a culture of continuous learning.
  • Employee Experience, Well-being & People Management – How can people professionals promote a positive employee experience while embedding effective people management practices? Discover new ways of approaching employee engagement, well-being and inclusion strategies.

Rachel Botsman, best-selling author of ‘Who can you trust?’ and lecturer at the University of Oxford will deliver the opening keynote on ‘the new era of trust’ and why it is key to success. Focusing on the importance of embedding trust into the culture of organisations, she will explore how the new concept of trust has reshaped success, the importance of being trustworthy to drive innovation, and how to attract and retain great talent.

Sir Lenny Henry CBE, comedian and actor, will deliver the closing keynote on the importance of diversity and true inclusion. Drawing on his own personal and professional experiences, he will talk about why the people profession, employers and society as a whole needs to start demanding more action on diversity and inclusion.

Other speakers include Baroness Shami Chakrabarti CBE, Shadow Attorney General for England and Wales, who will talk on the reputational risks of data security, Elaine Bergin, Head of HR Operations & Technology at Sainsbury’s, who will discuss the ways in which technology can transform HR and the organisation, and Rebekah Ayres, Director of People and Organisation Development at HMRC, who will debate how transparent HR should be within organisations.

Running alongside the Conference is the CIPD Exhibition, in which more than 200 leading HR and L&D suppliers will be showcasing their latest products and ideas. The exhibition features a free programme of learning sessions and information from exhibitors which are synchronised with the conference’s key themes. CIPD experts and conference speakers will be sharing their own knowledge and insights on how to understand and approach the challenges presented by the current and future world of work.

Peter Cheese, CIPD Chief Executive, comments: “This year, so far, has proven to be a crucial year for the people profession. Changing policy demands such as gender pay gap reporting and GDPR have seen organisations increasingly turning to the HR function to provide clarity and guidance. As the voice of our profession grows stronger, it’s crucial that we build on this momentum by expanding and developing our own skills. With the world of work constantly evolving, our ability to innovate, make decisions, and champion working lives more broadly becomes even more essential.

“This year’s Annual Conference and Exhibition will explore how the people profession can lead change within their own organisations against a backdrop of wider change and evolution in the world of work. We’re excited to be bringing you a programme designed to develop future-fit core skills, understand the impact of technologies on the future of work, and become an effective, strategic force within your business context. With a range of workshops, case studies, panel discussions and ethical debates happening over the two days and a line-up of brilliant minds bringing us the very latest thinking and practice, you’ll discover how best to lead change and champion better work and working lives within your own organisation.”

Early bird discounts are available until 6 September 2018. Book your place at the CIPD 2018 Annual Conference and Exhibition here.

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About the CIPD

At the CIPD, we champion better work and working lives. We help organisations to thrive by focusing on their people, supporting economies and society for the future. We lead debate as the voice for everyone wanting a better world of work.