Live and Learn: Why Contingent Workforce Managers Should Be Attending VMSA Live

The VMSA Live conference will be kicking off in Phoenix, Arizona, on April 4 — and I am definitely here beating the drum as a big supporter. This will be my third year attending, and this time I will be a lead contributor in two sessions. Over those three years, I’ve seen number of attendees grow rapidly to an expected 400 this year, and I have seen the unique character of the event shape and solidify.

In fact, I’d hesitate to call the event a conference — it’s more like a tribal gathering with many powwows where contingent workforce managers, technology and service providers and workforce suppliers can exchange practical knowledge and experience and learn from one another. VMSA Live has consistently put a priority on interaction and communication among industry peers, rather than stand-up slide presentations that typically leave a few minutes, if any, at the end for audience questions (of which there are usually few).

As the VMSA organizers have said, “No fluff. No stale keynotes. No ‘rah-rah.’ Just relevant, actionable sessions facilitated by real practitioners who actually do this stuff.”

VMSA Live consists of many topic-specific sessions that are run almost like town halls. This year's sessions will be facilitated by a group of partners and senior managers from Ernst & Young’s People Advisory Services practice. The lead contributors and subject matter experts are all contingent workforce practitioners or other industry services and technology leaders. Examples of Lead Contributors include:

  • Brett Coin, Intuit
  • Dan Khublall, Thomson Reuters
  • Tony Marino, BMC Software
  • Keith Wulffraat, Caterpillar
  • Michelle Cox, US Cellular
  • Mel LoVetri, Autodesk
  • Gijo George, Americold Logistics
  • Mike Schiappa, MetLife
  • Lincoln Markham, BP
  • Jim Holcomb, formerly with Wipro
  • Bob Hicks, Lodgent LLC (formerly with Shell)
  • Jennifer Davies, Pacific Life

Compared with last year, contingent workforce management practitioner attendance for this year’s event has doubled. Moreover, the event kicks off with a segment organized for practitioners. Enterprise Unplugged is only practitioners; Executive Gateway brings together practitioners and a limited number of industry leaders from other parts of the contingent workforce ecosystem (especially service and technology provider executives).

Contingent workforce managers can benefit from a broad range of open, interactive, facilitated sessions ranging from the operational to the emergent and possibly disruptive. Here’s a sample:

  • Operational Effectiveness of Talent Management Programs across Industry Segments
  • Getting Stakeholder Buy-In & Accelerating ROI with Alternative Talent Streams
  • Program Maturation & the Journey Toward Global Expansion
  • Going In-house with your MSP
  • IC/Compliance from the Internal Counsel's Perspective
  • What are Buyers demanding of tomorrow's SOW Solution?
  • What are Buyers demanding of tomorrow's IC/Compliance Solutions?
  • VMS + Your company: Which Transforms Which?
  • Talent Supply Disruptors
  • Machine Intelligence in Talent Acquisition
  • Alternate Talent Streams: Direct Source & Your Brand
  • How to deploy talent clouds into your ecosystem of VMS, MSP, traditional staffing agencies?
  • Gig Economy: Here to stay or Fleeting Fad?
  • Total Talent Management and Benefits

I’ll have the pleasure of being a lead contributor during two sessions: Alternative Talent Streams and Total Talent Management. I’ll also be around the evening of the Tuesday, April 4, and all day Wednesday. If you’d like to connect at VMSA Live, please contact me!

If you are a contingent workforce manager, hopefully I’ve persuaded you that VMSA Live presents a unique opportunity to closely network and learn from peers and other industry leaders for other parts of the whole contingent workforce ecosystem. In other words, to live and learn.

I hope to see you in Phoenix in early April. To register, go to the event page.

Spend Matters is pleased to partner with VMSA Live. For more of our contingent workforce and services procurement coverage, visit

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