HR Tech Rundown: The Fiesty Award, and Get The $#*% off of My Cloud…

Kris Dunn HR Tech

I'm at HR Tech, one of the best HR/HR Tech shows that you've never heard of.  If you haven't heard of it, consider coming in 2010.  One of the reasons I love it is because most of the conversations revolve around talent/HR, viewed in the framework of how technology can make those who manage the talent smarter and more efficient.  That makes it cool – and not boring…

Today's Tech Analyst panel was moderated by show chair Bill Kutik, and included industry insiders Josh Bersin, Naomi Lee Bloom, Jim Holincheck and Lisa Rowan.  It was the usual panel stuff, but you always pick up nuggets of wisdom.

Today's FOT nugget from HR Tech - you always find a speaker at a good conference who is a breath of fresh air.  With that in mind, the Feisty award for HR Tech goes to industry analyst Naomi Lee Bloom.

I hadn't been around before to hear Naomi speak, and she's great.  She's like the mom who tells you exactly where you stand – without much by the way of apology.  At least if she's being blunt with you, you know you're OK.  She's by far the most direct, unapologetic speaker at the conference with the exception of the godfather, conference co-chair, Bill Kutik.  But you knew that about the Godfather (who deserves his own post), so I'll focus on Naomi.

By my count, Naomi rattled some sabers at least 4 or 5 times, including the blunt observations that most HR pros can't tell her what makes their company profitable.  Ouch.

Even if she was going after those of my ilk, it was good to see Naomi in action and ranting a bit against the buzzwords, and generally not going out of her way to make people feel comfortable.

Case in point: the term cloud computing…

Cloud computing has gotten tons of buzz over the last year.  All your apps are going to cloud, dude!  You may never need another laptop!

While the laptop thing could be true at some point, Naomi correctly pointed out that while the software as a service market is red hot and there's a real need for quality on-demand solutions, all the hype on cloud computing is just that – hype.  There's still infrastructure behind the scenes, people, it's just being hosted in huge production data centers that look like they came out of the Matrix instead of in the server room in your building.  Cloud?  Child, please…

Naomi referenced this video of Larry Ellison of Oracle, which I had not seen, but which is… simply…awesome.  Watch the rant as Larry breaks it down.  Keep in mind he hates Salesforce, but what he's saying is still true…

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