By @SimonCocking, we spoke with Donna Fitzpatrick to find out more about the National Talent Summit.

When is it on?

As part of National Employment Week, The National Talent Summit will take place on Wednesday 1 March 2016 in the Conference Centre Dublin.

How many years has it been going?

National Employment Week first took place in 2011. It is a non-commercial initiative to set the agenda on major employment and social topics in Ireland through a series of seminars, focus groups and forums. In the last seven years National Employment Week has held annual events nationwide in the last week of February featuring speakers from Hubspot, PayPal, Quirky, eBay, Microsoft, Qualtrics, Salesforce, Yelp, GILT and many more.

The highlight of the week has been the Talent Summit. Founded by Sigmar Recruitment, the Talent Summit is the marque event of National Employment Week and has grown to become one of the largest HR & Leadership conferences in Europe, showcasing the latest thinking on talent topics from around the world. Its mission is to share thought leadership on talent to build better workplaces and working lives in an increasingly complex world of work.

What was the inspiration to start it?

National Employment Week Chair Robert Mac Giolla Phádraig was inspired to get involved in setting and driving the national employment agenda. He comments: ”When we started, the national unemployment rate stood at 15.1 percent. That has now more than halved to 7.1 per cent. While the onus of truning our employment scape around fell ultimately on the Government, we felt that industry had a huge role to play and a lot to contribute.” An Taoiseach Enda Kenny agrees. He says: “The Talent Summit has helped drive the national employment agenda and has been important to the labour market recovery in recent years. It has become one of the largest talent and leadership conferences in Europe, showcasing international thought leadership and Ireland as a global centre of talent.”

What exciting things can people look forward to for the 2017 version?

Commenting on this year’s theme Mac Giolla Phádraig states “The core objective of this years Summit is driving competitive advantage through people. Themes which we will explore are how to re-imagine leadership, discover better ways of acquiring talent, craft desired culture, accelerate diversity, aligning motivation, performance and reward.

“With an international focus on best practice, this year we have a line up of over 40 contributors with 12 international speakers from the US, Canada, UK and across Europe. We look forward to sharing global Irish innovation and international thought leadership on the above themes and to shine a light on some lesser represented cohorts of talent.”

Key topics covered on the day will include: Diversity; Talent Attraction; Performance Improvement; Leadership and Culture. The Summit is a full day event with lunch and snacks provided. Keynotes from over 40 international expert speakers will be given on talent attraction and retention strategies. There will be real life case studies from successful global and local brands, as well as panel discussion and audience Q&A.

What opportunities are on offer for people / startups / investors and companies attending?

As well as offering an excellent networking opportunity, this years National Talent Summit sees Daniel Pink speak as the keynote speaker. Named in 2015 by Thinkers50 as one of the top 10 business minds in the world, international business guru, New York Times #1 bestselling author and speaker Daniel Pink is considered a global talent guru.

Indeed, Pink’s TED Talk on the science of motivation is one of the 10 most-watched TED Talks of all time, with more than 19 million views. His RSA Animate video about the ideas in his book, Drive, has amassed more than 14 million views.

Pink is the author of five books, including three long-running New York Times bestsellers, A Whole New Mind, Drive, and To Sell is Human. His books have been translated into 35 languages and have sold more than 2 million copies worldwide.

Who is the Summit Aimed At?

This summit is aimed at business owners, executives, HR directors, managers, recruiters and anyone with a professional interest in human resources.

How can people book tickets / when does it usually sell out?

Tickets for the National Employment Week are now available. Please see

If you would like to have your company featured in the Irish Tech News Business Showcase, get in contact with us at [email protected] or on Twitter: @SimonCocking

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