Day One: Sunday, September 13, 2020

10:15 am - 10:45 am Registration

10:45 am - 10:50 am Welcome Orientation

10:50 am - 11:00 am ThoughtExchange App Introduction

11:00 am - 11:05 am Chairperson's Opening Remarks

In 2018, a handpicked group of the world’s most promising young plant scientists arrived for a unique interview experience at the Boyce Thompson Institute (BTI), a prestigious independent research institute headquartered and located on the Cornell campus. Over the next 48 hours, BTI put these faculty candidates through an elaborately orchestrated and potentially groundbreaking experiment in hiring. Join David Stern as he discusses the values and challenges of this process, and how it helped them align a team of scientists, reducing the time to competency, encouraging risk-taking, and shrinking the time to innovation.


David Stern

President and Chief Executive Officer of the Boyce Thompson Institute and a Professor of Plant Biology
Cornell University

11:35 am - 12:05 pm Recruiting Women in Non-Traditional Roles to Build a Diverse and Thriving Workforce

Shannon Taylor - Director of Talent Acquisition, Republic Services

Republic Services is working to create and support an inclusive and diverse workplace with a focused strategy, and in recent years their efforts to create a work environment that attracts and retains the best talent have received notable recognition. Most recently, they were named to Forbes’ 2019 Best Employers for Women, and have made a targeted initiative to increase the number of female drivers, by supporting women in a range of areas, including career development and pay equity. In this session we will discuss the steps that Republic took to grow diversity, including:

  • Writing job descriptions that remove implicit bias
  • Utilizing social media to convey company culture and benefits
  • Creating on-boarding campaigns that ensure employee success


Shannon Taylor

Director of Talent Acquisition
Republic Services

12:05 pm - 12:15 pm Hacker Rank

12:15 pm - 12:45 pm Building a More Inclusive Workforce with Early Talent

Every employer is under pressure to demonstrate momentum and results with diversity and inclusion, not only in their workforce but also in their hiring and attraction practices. And, we know why: Harvard Business Review shows that racially diverse teams outperform non diverse teams by 35%. Many employers are finding success by bringing more equity into their workforce through early talent. It’s proven to power a more representative, diverse workforce. Join Luke Baxter, Handshake’s VP of Employer Product and Insights, to learn how early talent can: 

  • Create larger, farther reaching talent pools
  • Develop a pipeline for growth and leadership internally
  • Bring talent into an org that already possess many of the digital skills that are needed to succeed today 

12:50 pm - 1:50 pm Networking Lunch

1:50 pm - 2:20 pm Reducing Vacancy by Re-imagining the Candidate and Employee Experience

Marna Killian - Senior Vice President of People, Checker’s and Rally’s Restaurants

Low unemployment rates have created a fierce competition to fill entry-level QSR, retail and warehouse positions. To counter that, Checkers and Rally's Restaurants began overhauling their recruitment program, focusing on establishing their brand in online job portals, creating a text recruit program, and offering a flexible pay program. The end result was fewer vacancies and a 30% reduction in absenteeism. In this session we will discuss:

  • Best practices for managing your online employer reputation
  • Streamlining the application process for mobile platforms
  • Effective candidate marketing, including point-of-sale and job fair events 
  • Creating effective referral programs utilizing employee networks 


Marna Killian

Senior Vice President of People
Checker’s and Rally’s Restaurants

2:20 pm - 2:50 pm Gender Parity: Data and Actions in Recruiting

The U.S. ranks #53 in gender parity among all countries, according to the World Economic Forum. As with all social justice movements, the change needed will come about through policy and collective action over time. That may sound abstract and impersonal.


But if you implement actions known to move the needle and have the data to interpret and track progress, you can be the talent leader who makes a difference.


In this session, we will review current data on gender equity and discuss how to drive change in your organization. Our focus will be on the immediate and the actionable.

2:55 pm - 3:25 pm Business Meetings

3:25 pm - 3:55 pm Business Meetings

3:55 pm - 4:25 pm Business Meetings

4:25 pm - 4:40 pm Networking Break


4:40 pm - 5:20 pm Predict Performance to Reduce Turnover

What if you could avoid bad hires, maximize talent potential, and seamlessly match candidate values with your company culture? Learn what tools you can use to spot top talent and avoid hires who present better than they perform. Learn how personality assessments decode the intricacies of candidates’ behaviors to streamline your talent acquisition process with unbiased data, and the importance of identifying and measuring the specific characteristics your prospective talent needs for success based on job criteria


4:40 pm - 5:20 pm Video Job Postings Help Your Company Find More Purple Squirrels, In Less Time

A Purple Squirrel is a candidate with precisely the right education or set of experience to fit a career. Digital recruitment technology is the key to spreading your job openings and getting your company out in front of a greater talent pool, and finding your purple squirrel. New age digital technology, like video, can strategically help HR and recruitment professionals leverage SEO and enhance their candidate experience through social media recruiting. Digital job videos are mobile enabled with social share functionality and can track candidates through the entire hiring process. Metrics and trackable data gives you the opportunity to know exactly where to focus your recruitment efforts. Digital recruitment technology allows you to spend less time searching for top talent, recruit at a viral speed and drastically reduce your cost per hire. In this session we will discuss:

  • Mobile enabled with social share functionality
  • Track candidates through the entire hiring process
  • Recruit at a viral speed and drastically reduce your cost per hire
  • Improve candidate self-selection, and stand out from the competition with recruitment video solutions


5:25 pm - 6:10 pm Redefining Your Candidate Experience to Stand-Out in a Competitive Job Market

With unemployment rate well below the 70 year average, and job openings at a 17-year high, a constructive candidate experience is the first step to building an engaged workforce with high retention rates. It is paramount for talent acquisition leaders to build a positive candidate experience that effectively transitions into a positive employee experience. Each step of the hiring process, from the wording on the job description, application process, extending through the interview and job offer, should be seamless and transparent. In this session we will speak with Talent Officers who have revolutionized their candidate experience, and discuss common challenges including: 

The application process in 5 clicks or less – reducing application abandonment 

Improving communication using technology to keep candidates engaged throughout the recruiting process 

Building an on-boarding program that encourages employee retention

6:10 pm - 6:20 pm The Future of Recruiting is Programmatic

6:20 pm - 7:35 pm Champagne Roundtables

Join the other attendees as we break into groups, enjoy a glass of bubbly, and take a deep dive into the challenge faced by Talent Acquisition executives. Topics include:

  • Modernizing How Companies Develop Talent, 
  • Social Strategy and Execution, moderated 
  • Monitoring the Candidate Experience Online
  • Communicating Company Culture

7:35 pm - 7:40 pm Chairperson's Closing Remarks

7:40 pm - 8:40 pm Networking Dinner