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2012 Program - Susan Austin and Scott Ashley


Susan Austin and Scott Ashley

The Five Things a Workplace Must Do to Thrive in the Modern Economy


Learning Objectives:
  1. Attract Top Talent;
  2. Engage Employees Beyond Their Job Descriptions;
  3. Support a Mobile Workforce.
Session Description:

For the first time in modern history, there are now four generations in the workplace, with 20-somethings working alongside 60-somethings. At the same time, the 76 million-strong baby boomer generation is now starting to retire and there are far fewerknowledgeworkers in Generations X and Y coming up to replace them, making the need for knowledge transfer more critical than ever.

This session, co-led by a senior HR executive and a workplace strategy consultant with a combined 35 years of experience, will show how HR professionals can use well-designed workspaces as a strategic tool to engage employees beyond their job descriptions, accommodate the disparate work styles of different generations, help attract and retain top talent, and encourage innovation.And regardless of whether a redesign is in their plans or budget, attendees will leave this session with practical ideas they can implement immediately to improve the functioning of their workplaces.

Specifically, Susan and Scott will share the five things that today’s workplaces must do to optimize their organizational performance:

  1. Enable employees to develop social networks
  2. Contribute to learning and development
  3. Promote collaboration
  4. Support a mobile workforce
  5. Attract and retain top talent
Speaker Biography:

Susan Austin is the Chief Human Resources Officer for Vocon, an architectural and interior design firm with offices in Cleveland and New York. Susan collaborates with Vocon’s architects and designers to help bring their clients’ organizational goals and culture to life through architectural and interior designs.

Before joining Vocon, Susan spent more than 20 years at IMG, the global sports, fashion and media company. During her tenure, Susan was the Senior Vice President and Co-Head of Global HR responsible for the Americas and Asia Pacific, as well as the strategic business partner to the President of IMG Sports, IMG Licensing, IMG Consulting, IMG College, IMG Academies and Sales & Marketing. She also oversaw benefits, payroll, recruiting, performance management, and HR/IT System Implementation.

A graduate of University of Arizona, Susan is also a member of SHRM, NOHRPS, and obtained her PHR certification in 2000.

Scott Ashley is the leader of Workplace Strategy for Vocon, an architectural and design firm with offices in Cleveland and New York. An innovative workplace strategist who has worked with leading corporations, retailers and office furniture manufacturers, Scott uses his 15 years of experience to help Vocon’s clients create workplace environments that embody their organizations’ cultures, promote collaboration and teamwork, and meet the varying needs of their multi-generational employees.

Through skillful brand management, consideration of employee experience, and implementation of varying workplace initiatives, Scott helps clients create workspaces that communicate organizational culture and brand and make the best use of the available workspace.

Before joining Vocon, Scott worked for office furniture manufacturers Steelcase and Herman Miller in the New York City marketplace. Scott has also worked with Apple, Goodyear and New York’s Museum of Art + Design.