Getting Engaged at HR West 2017 with Social Media, Networking, and More!

By Lorianne Lee

I don’t know about you, but after attending a conference, it takes me awhile before my brain has the bandwidth to adequately process the experience. This year, NCHRA expanded its annual HR West Conference event and session schedule to three full days, so there was even more to process!

Now that you’ve had time to decompress and catch up on work, have you taken a moment to reflect on #HRWest17? Whether this was your first or thirty-first time attending, did you get the most out of the experience? Listening to the keynote speakers, attending concurrent sessions, and playing vendor BINGO are all good things, but if that was the extent of your participation, you missed out.

HR West 2017 Social Media TeamThis year, social media played a bigger role than ever before at the conference. Before, during, and after HR West 2017, people used social media to promote, connect, and engage with other HR professionals to maximize their ROI. Did you do as much as you could to network at the conference? I don’t mean just tossing your business card in for those awesome vendor drawings. If you utilized social media, you increased your actual engagement.

Speaking of engaging on social media, did you participate in the social media contest? Anyone related to the HR industry was eligible to participate, including conference attendees, vendors, and speakers. For a month and a half before the conference, HR professionals showed their love and excitement for HR West by using the hashtags #HRWest17 and #HRInnovators on Facebook, Twitter, and new for this year, Instagram.

NCHRA made it easy for us to engage on social media by providing multiple channels and access points to dive in. Even if you only followed NCHRA (@NCHRAConnect) and HR West (@hrwestconf) on Twitter and Facebook, your social media feeds had a steady stream of posts letting you know about various speakers, topics, and sponsors long before the conference began on March 6, 2017.

HR West 2017 Social Media Interns

The social media committee enlisted support from student volunteers from CSUEB’s Student Society for HR Management (@csuebsshrm) to help build some social media buzz. It was fun checking the real-time Twitter Feed Wall to see all of the #HRWest17 Tweets throughout the conference.

HR West 2017 Twitter Fall

#HRWest17 Trending on Twitter March 6, 2017One of the most exciting things for me was seeing #HRWest17 trending on Twitter. Did you catch that? Trending. On. Twitter. That’s huge!  On Monday, March 6th 2017 at 3:17 p.m., #HRWest17 was the fourth most talked about topic in the world (or at least in the Twitterverse)!

HR West 2017 Social Media Contest Winners

Social Media Contest Winners!

Prizes, including valet parking at the conference, a $250 Visa gift card, and a 2-free night stay at the Oakland Marriott City Center, were awarded to the people who had the most engagement on social media. This year’s winners were Janice Litvin (@jlitvin), Jocelyn Thompson (@JocelynErin), and ahem, I’m in the middle, Lorianne Lee (@loriannelee67).

Ann Tardy, Emcee HR West 2017

Ann Tardy, CSP, JD, CPA

Emcee Ann Tardy (@LifeMoxie) and keynotes Jacob Morgan (@jacobm), Leila Janah (@leila_c), and Poornima Vijayashanker (@poornima) liked, shared, responded to, and retweeted Tweets throughout the conference. If you care about topics they are passionate about, social media gives you the opportunity to engage and connect. Combined, they have over 90k followers! Perhaps mentoring, employee engagement, global poverty, and entrepreneurship aren’t topics you’re passionate about. Fair enough.

What about the breakout topics? Granted, looking up over 80 concurrent speakers on social media may seem daunting, but you could easily narrow that number down to nine, right? You chose the nine topics that seemed the most relevant and helpful to you. Finding nine people on Twitter is easy, especially when most of their online bios include their social media handles. Speakers want to be seen too. If you mention them, they’re likely to engage with you as well. Remember, being social is a reciprocal interaction.

HR West Conference AppDid you utilize the HR West app by Crowd Compass? HR West launched this new version of the app in 2016. It has since become a great tool to help conference attendees get the most out of their experience at HR West. In addition to being able access the concurrent session handouts and evaluations, you could easily set up your personalized itinerary with times and room numbers. No more wandering around wasting time trying to find speakers, vendor information, and connect with other attendees.One of the fun features of the app is the Click Game, where you take pictures and engage with people in a scavenger-hunt type of challenge.

HR West 2017 Voice of the Workplace Survey

During the conference, 202 people engaged in HR West Voice of the Workplace Waggl Pulse on Diversity. They shared their thoughts, voted on the biggest advantages of building a diverse workforce, and did so in real-time. Waggl put together an infographic sharing the results at HR West 2017. Read all about it here.

There are various schools of thought about whether LinkedIn is a form of social media or not. Without getting into a debate, I’d say LinkedIn definitely has the capability for social interaction if you join a group and participate in message boards. Did you know there is a LinkedIn Group called HR West? It’s filled with people from NCHRA and others who are passionate about Human Resources. Can you say networking? Members can post and comment on various threads, and you can even post jobs for other members to see.

HR West 2017 and NCHRA HR Connect
NCHRA recently launched a private networking community called NCHRA Connect. The format is similar to LinkedIn, but NCHRA Connect is exclusively for HR professionals, so you’re only  connecting with people who have similar interests, expertise, and deal with the same issues you do. With your annual membership to NCHRA, you already have a free, all-access pass to NCHRA Connect, which has over 9,000 members. You can connect, share ideas, and participate in groups that focus on topics you are interested in, including the HR West conference.

Don’t worry! Even if you didn’t take advantage of social media at this year’s conference, there’s always next year. You can get started by following NCHRA and #HRWest18 here:

Twitter: @HRWestConf
Twitter: @NCHRAConnect
Facebook: @NCHRA
Linkedin Group: HR West
NCHRA Linkedin Page
Instagram: @HRWestConf (new)
NCHRA Connect (newest)

You’ve got 10 months to up your social media game! Ready? Go!


About the Author
Lorianne Lee is an HR project manager and recruiter for Cityteam, a non-profit serving those who struggle with poverty, homelessness and addiction. Cityteam touches the lives of over half million people in San Jose, Oakland, San Francisco, Philadelphia, Portland and 47 international countries. After devoting nineteen-years as a classroom teacher and professional educator, Lorianne is currently applying her enthusiasm and energy to the non-profit world with a focus on HR and recruiting. Her passion for organization and attention to details enables her to bring efficiency and increase productivity to every project she manages. A seasoned professional, Lorianne offers a strong judgment and professional etiquette, working with people from different cultures, levels of education, experience, and authority.

HR West blog editor’s note: Over the last several years, HR West has been fortunate to have Lorianne support, and truly lead, our NCHRA member social media engagement initiative! HR West launched first social media contest in 2015, Lorianne took first place in 2016 and 2017.

HR West® 2017 will continue to provide a focus on innovation and the future of HR

Press Contact: Laurie Pehar Borsh
800.915.2151 x706

Futurists, innovators, cutting edge academics, software industry, popular culture and more will all be represented at the largest gathering of HR professionals on the West Coast this March 6-8th.  

The popular annual human resources industry conference, HRHR West 2017 - HR in the most innovative place on earth West® – “HR in the Most Innovative Place on Earth” –promises to educate and inspire attendees, once again.

San Francisco, California (February 28, 2017) — The San Francisco Bay Area is home to the world’s largest technology companies. HR professionals practicing within these companies are required to have skills beyond the ordinary, and a level of sophistication not found in other parts of the world. Featuring three days of unparalleled learning along with exceptional networking opportunities, HR West® 2017 will convene, once again, at the Oakland Convention Center in Oakland California, March 6-8, 2017.  NCHRA has hosted the largest West Coast gathering of the HR community for over 30 years, and 2016 promises to be one of its most engaging events to date. HR West® is not the typical type of human resources conference. It is a collaborative event that focuses on the participant. HR West keynote speakers and emcees also continue to represent some of the greatest thought leaders in the human capital management arena.

HR West 2017 Emcee Ann Tardy is a former Silicon Valley corporate attorney turned mentoring expert and middle leader advocate. Tardy specializes in mobilizing leadership, evolving workforces, and mentoring as a best-in-class, strategic advantage. She has sparked mentoring and revitalized leadership in companies such as Pacific Gas & Electric, Kaiser Permanente, and Scotts Miracle Gro. The esteemed author, including books like Moxie for Managers: The Secret to Evolving from Manager to Leader, will kick off HR West 2017 at 9a.m. Monday, March 6th. > Read more.

HR West 2017 Keynotes include:

Futurist, Best-Selling Author, Co-Founder of “The Future of Work Community” Jacob Morgan, will present the first conference keynote on Monday, March 6th at 9:20a.m. He is one of the world’s leading authorities on the future of work, employee experience, and how the workplace is changing. He is a best-selling author, keynote speaker, and futurist who advises business leaders and organizations around the world. Morgan’s latest book, The Employee Experience Advantage: How to Win the War for Talent by Giving Employees the Workspaces They Want, the Tools They Need, and a Culture They Can Celebrate (Wiley, March 2017) analyzes over 250 global organizations to determine how to create an organization where people genuinely want, not need to show up to work. > Read more.

Poornima Vijayashanker is the founder of Femgineer and is an avid public speaker who gives talks around the world on topics ranging from engineering to entrepreneurship. She also hosts a monthly web show called FemgineerTV sponsored by Pivotal Tracker, and has written self-published two books. Vijayashanker has been an entrepreneur-in-residence at 500 Startups, a mentor-in-residence at Techstars in NYC, a lecturer at Duke University’s Pratt School of Engineering, and the founding engineer at, where she helped build, launch, and scale the product until its acquisition in 2009. She will give her HR West 2017 keynote on Tuesday, March 7th at 9a.m. > Read more.

Leila Janah is the Founder and CEO of Sama and LXMI, two companies that share a common social mission to end global poverty by giving work to people in need. She is also the co-author of America’s Moment: Creating Opportunity in the Connected Age, a book by Rework America: A Markle Initiative. Prior, Janah was a Visiting Scholar with the Stanford Program on Global Justice and Australian National University’s Center for Applied Philosophy and Public Ethics, as well as founding Director of Incentives for Global Health, and a management consultant at Katzenbach Partners (now Booz & Co.). > Read more.

Alongside a cast of unique, innovative and inspirational speakers, HR West 2017 offers the ultimate convenience of hotel, parking and conference under one roof. With more than 80 concurrent sessions (for recertification credit) and separate tracks for early, mid, and advanced career levels, and evergreen topics like employment law, benefits and talent management, human resources professionals will find everything they need to get over the hurdles they will continue to face in the new year.

“In 2017 we are continuing to attract the largest HR audience in the West! I believe that practicing HR here, in the most innovative place on earth, requires skills not easily found elsewhere,” says Greg Morton, NCHRA CEO. “I’m so proud of our lineup of speakers and sessions. Our conference demonstrates that, as an organization, we are focused on the right thing, the intersection of technology and human resources. With more Boomers, soon to be exiting the workforce and millennials increasingly taking their role in leadership, that’s where all of this amazing work will happen.”

For more information about HR West 2016 including how to register, visit: Interested parties are encouraged to pre-register at HR West representatives may also be contacted at: (415) 291-1992.

Follow #HRWest17 and #HRInnovators (to participate in our social media contest!) on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram.

Press and media may contact, Laurie Pehar Borsh,, (800) 915-2151 x706 or on Twitter @LauriePR.

About NCHRA – The Northern California HR Association (NCHRA) has been advancing organizations through human resources since 1960. We are dedicated to connecting human resources professionals with practice resources, leading California-specific training, legal and legislative developments, quality service providers, and each other– forming career-long networks and partnerships.