February 2017: My review of the Annual Master’s HRM Conference

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Masters students on the MSc HRM and Industrial Relations course along with students on the MSc International HRM and Comparative Industrial Relations course attend a two-day conference comprising of various activities.

For Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) students, participation is obligatory. However the conference is recommended for all as it is an experience that combines education, advice, fun and…food! For those of you who have no idea what CIPD is, you are reading the right blog on the right university page!

Alliance MBS is one of the very few universities that offer the opportunity of receiving the CIPD qualification while doing your master’s course. CIPD is a ‘professional body for HR and people development experts on the world of work and career partner to over 140,000 members around the world’. This practically means that even before having your first contact with the working place as a Human Resources Manager, you belong to this community that gives you access to their ‘expertise and research through which they can provide to you a valuable viewpoint on the rapidly changing world of work, the standards for the HR, L&D profession and the knowledge to achieve organizational success’.

The Conference was organized by Dr Stephen Mustchin, who is also our lecturer in the second semester and Dr Susan Speakman, who is currently teaching the CIPD course. It is a privilege to have her on the Alliance MBS team because of her chartered fellow membership at the CIPD, which is the highest grade of membership.

Divided into two days, the conference allows students to meet professionals and alumni that are currently in the work place. They help students with information from their working environment, whilst inspiring them and resolving any questions regarding their future plans and career. Finally, activities throughout the conference work to develop students’ teamwork, communication and organisation skills.

On the first day we had the chance to listen to professionals from companies, such as Accenture and Shell, talk about their current roles, challenges they face and ways they resolve them. This was insightful as it allowed a connection between the theory and the case studies we are encountering on our masters with real life challenges. Afterwards, we were divided into 10 teams. These teams formed 5 pairs, each of which was represented by two teams that were competing on a case study. Having such limited time to organise ourselves, prepare our arguments for the presentation and make further investigation on the topic was challenging, but in the end all the teams managed to give the best possible result.

The following day we had the chance to host alumni that are currently employed at large institutions such as ACAS, Colt Technology Services, Capgemini etc. After that, it was time for the presentation of the cases. Our performance was assessed by academics from The University of Manchester and an officer from ACAS. Each team had 12 minutes to present and 5 minutes for the judges to ask questions.

Our team won the prize for our case. The award? A large box of chocolates (personally couldn’t ask for a better prize)! Furthermore, there was an overall award for the best team out of all the teams that were competing. The winning team received 50 pounds per member which they can spend on books in addition to an entire box chocolates… the best for the best!

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Team presentation

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Q&A session with the judges

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Our winning team with our box of chocolates!

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Professor Miguel Martinez Lucio, Dr Stephen Mustchin and Team A5 that won the overall prize

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Pelagia Avloniti

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