How to Make Education a Strategic Talent Investment



How to Make Education a Strategic Talent Investment

How do you turn your education program into a competitive advantage? What do you need to power-up and re-energize your education strategies to meet changing needs?

Join this collaborative session to brainstorm with fellow senior HR professionals and learn how others have improved and evolved their education programs.

We’ll discuss:

  • Finding the developmental touchpoints for your business
  • Bringing programs like tuition assistance into the 21st century
  • Consumer branding versus talent branding and skill achievement versus degree attainment
  • Building a lifetime learning culture and defining job descriptions with skills needed
  • Measuring the costs of L&D versus the full costs of hiring, training, onboarding, and retention (investment versus costs)
  • Who, what, and why investment questions

For investments like tuition assistance for example, considered by some to be outdated, where are the opportunities to turn them into a strategic investment for your business? How do we drill down into the ROI? Should organizations track the source of talent, their academic training, and their skills against performance and how?

Register below to find out:


Session Moderator & Speaker

Stephen Velleca

Director of Learning & Development, Bloomingdales

A champion of employee engagement and empowerment, Stephen serves as an instrumental component of the culture of accountability and focus that embodies Bloomingdales' commitment to its customers and colleagues. Over his 20 + year career at Bloomingdale's, Stephen has promoted employee leadership, training and development initiatives - all efforts that have led to performance improvements and a commitment to a storied brand.

He established a “best place to work” philosophy and culture of engagement on behalf of Bloomingdale’s corporate central and stores organization human resources. Owing to his contributions, Stephen was promoted multiple times from entry-level to senior-level roles and selected to lead a multitude of projects.

Recognized for his commitment and ability to pursue new and challenging initiatives, he partners with employees, as well as Bloomingdale's leadership and universities to create a pipeline of talent to achieve a diverse, high performing organization.

Richard Burbank

Executive Director, Strategic Partnerships, Kaplan

Leveraging his twelve years of experience in adult and working learner education, Rick works closely with corporate partners to build the human capital solutions they need to achieve their strategic business and talent goals in an ever-changing, highly competitive marketplace.

Fostered by extensive industry experience in consumer products, oil & gas, and franchising, Rick is inspired by his role assisting corporations as they unlock their employees’ full potential and provide opportunities to learn and develop, attain career success, and have a positive impact on the organization and community.A committed lifetime learner, Rick earned his Master’s in Business Administration from Southern Methodist University, and a Bachelor of Arts, with double major in Business and History from Vanderbilt University.

Additionally, he has completed Certified SAFe® 4 Agilist, Innovators’ Accelerator, Spin Selling, Covey, Solution Selling, DISCstyles, Emergenetics, Customer-Focused Selling (Predictive Index, "Adapter"), Karrass Negotiating, Gallup StrengthsFinder (Connectedness, Strategic, Responsibility, Learner, Input) and Customer-Focused Selling (MindWare).

What to expect

HRD Connect roundtables are unique invitation-only events that are attended by senior industry leaders.

Hosted by some of the industry's leading experts, these events offer the chance to interact and discuss key topics with your peers.

The event is hosted on Zoom and will be moderated.

We ask that if you do register that you do everything you can to attend as places are limited.

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We provide invaluable insights and exclusive interviews examining the most innovative practices that help HR leaders meet the challenges they face – from corporate governance and talent management to their own career development.
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