HIMSS bills its annual conference as focusing on three things above all else: education; exhibition; and networking.

The educational piece is obvious. The conference includes several hundred educational sessions. So is the exhibition element. Just walk into the exhibit hall and try to not get overwhelmed.

Granted, I’m biased, but the networking is nearest and dearest to my heart. I think of this as two sides of the same coin--career development and recruiting.

With so many people and organizations in one place, HIMSS11 provides an abundance of career development and recruiting opportunities. Many HIT professionals bring high job seeking hopes to the conference, while hiring organizations use it as a logical venue for candidate interviews. I myself spend much of the show meeting with vendor execs looking to fill strategic voids in their teams.

HIMSS should be commended this year for stepping up its commitment to career development and recruiting. Prior conferences included a Career Planning Workshop, but this year HIMSS is going all out, offering to employers and job seekers its Career Services Pavilion.

According to HIMSS’s JoAnn Klinedinst, Vice President, Professional Development, the Career Services Pavilion is “all things career services.” It will have three main areas of focus. There will be 10 educational sessions spotlighting various aspects of career development in this brave new HIT world. Representatives from JobMine, the HIMSS job board, will also be present, as will several companies that are actively recruiting for open positions.

Ms. Klinedinst recalls how she felt five years ago when it was time for a transition from her hospital career. She perceived a lack of helpful resources and felt that she had to make her own way. She hopes the Career Services Pavilion will help today’s HIT professionals feel more empowered and in control of their next career moves.

The pavilion, Booth 8191, will be co-located with University Row in Hall E and will be open from 1-5 p.m. on Monday and 9 a.m.-5 p.m. on Tuesday and Wednesday. More information may be found at http://www.himssconference.org/career/careerpavilion.aspx.


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