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HR Business Partner Conference & Workshop Johannesburg

Become an agile, solutions-driven, and innovative HR Business Partner


Pre-conference workshop: 05 June 2018
Two-day conference: 06 and 07 June 2018
The Radisson Blu Gautrain Hotel, Sandton | Johannesburg

HR business partners are the vital connection between the HR department and other functions in the business. No longer seen as a transactional role, the new HR Business Partner must be strategic. Moving your HR function into a more transformational role and educating management on the importance of a strategic partnership with HR, is what every organisation should strive for. A role that will continue to advance and change, the HRBP is a member of the senior leadership team who has the role as a trusted advisor to multiple stakeholders, helping them to accomplish business goals. Successful HRBP’s are business-focused, have a strategic mind-set, skilled in building and managing relationships, confident in driving change, credible and solutions-focused.

It is vital that HRBP’s keep enhancing their skills and keep up with developments in the market in terms of what competitors are doing and focus on providing real-time solutions to the business. In an era of digital disruption being the norm, your role as an HR Business Partner (HRBP) will however need to adapt. To be an effective business partner in 2018 and the future, human resource professionals need to understand the implications of digital disruption on their company and the lives of the employees in it. Do you?

Discover how HR can step up, reinvent where necessary or continue the journey to become the strong partner business that leaders need to drive business results. This is a crucial event for all HR Business Partner in 2018! As the needs of organisations, people, and society evolve, the HRBPs’ role should constantly transform. Being forward looking is about creating a unique culture, a competitive work environment, and a strong strategic talent management strategy against the backdrop of complex and fast-changing business models. As an HRBP do you understand the evolution of HRBP and where it is going? Are you developing the necessary skills and capabilities to become and effective HRBP? The KR HR Business Partners Conference will provide expert advice on how to build your own partnering capabilities, whether you are currently in an HRBP role or are looking to take the next step. Many organisations have already progressed along this route. Here is a conference where you will be able to share your experiences, successes and lessons learned. This event will help you develop your business savviness and agility, provide the tools to develop relationships across the organisation, as well as the knowledge and confidence to prove your value to the business in a constantly changing world. Increase your impact and influence as an HRBP.


By attending you will gain skills in the areas most relevant and crucial to the HRBP role:
  • Strategic insight: develop and drive people management strategies (Translate business strategies into people-focused initiatives)
  • Collaboration: practical ways to collaborate with stakeholders and business partners in ensuring the implementation of best practices.
  • Analytical skills: learn how to leverage workforce analytics, identify talent gaps, and assess organisational performance to propose possible solutions
  • Support: enhance your coaching and consulting skills
  • Business acumen: boost your personal credibility and ability to influence leadership and management and to add value to the business’s bottom line.
  • Leadership: transition from a business partner to a business leader

Register today and gain practical insight to advance you in your role as an adaptive, proactive and strategic enabler! Here is what past attendees had to say:

  • Very informative, inspiring, educational, motivational - BancAbc
  • Empowering listening to various speakers take us through how HR is a real business partner – Anglo American Platinum
  • Brilliant speakers, well versed in the subjects they presented – NTP Sol Limited
  • Wide range of speakers who are highly knowledgeable in their respective area of expertise – FNB Home Loans
  • It was relevant and up-to-date and I got lots of useful information, templates, examples to use – Derivco
  • Good Content – Transnet

Why you should attend this event:

  • HR Business Partners
  • Human Resources Managers
  • HR Executives managing and developing HR Business Partners
  • HR Directors
  • Talent Managers
  • HR Consultants
  • Academics
  • Line Managers (who would like to collaborate better with HR)


Expose your brand across the country – this event will be hosted in Cape Town, Johannesburg and Durban! Find out about the various sponsorship and exhibition opportunities for this event – email: or call 021 556 7663


DAY ONE • 06 JUNE 2018

07:30–08:20 Registration | Meet and greet conference attendees, presenters and Knowledge Resources Registration Staff

Welcome & introduction by chairperson

Dirusha Ganpathy,
Managing Director, Beyond Transform (HR Leader of the Year / Awarded 100 Most Influential Global HR Professionals - HR/Youth Dev/Coaching/Women's Empowerment)


The impact that AI will have on people and work: Practical way to leverage in HR

Hans Zachar, Managing Director: Technology Strategy, Accenture


Disruptive HR and how it enables employee experience?

Pumeza Bam, Group Executive People & Transformation, Liberty

10:00–10:30 Morning Break | Enjoy coffee/tea and snacks and connect with leaders from across the industry


Connecting the dots: aligning and engaging talent to achieve business results

Ashnie Muthusamy, Group Manager: Transformation, Talent and Change, Sun International


HRBP spearheading organisational agility - Do you have ability or agility?

Sonja Blignaut, Founder, More Beyond


The heartbeat of engagement: ethics at work

Penny Milner-Smyth, Director, Ethicalways

12:45–13:30 Lunch | Engage in meaningful, learning conversations while enjoying a delicious meal


Translating and implementing business strategy into actionable HR plans

Jerry Molefe, Executive: Human Capital,  Medshield

14:15–14:30 Quick Leg Stretch and grab a coffee


A culture of health & wellbeing at Unilever: why putting people first is critical to business

Ellen Bvekerwa, HR Director: Supply Chain, Unilever

15:15 Wrap up of Day-1


DAY TWO • 07 JUNE 2018

07:30–08:20 Registration | Meet and greet conference attendees, presenters and Knowledge Resources Registration Staff

Welcome & introduction by chairperson


The business-savvy HRBP: moving from a generalist to trusted advisor role

Njabulo Mashigo, HR Director, Heineken


The change leader: HR Business Partners as change activists

Taryn Marcus, Executive Head: Organisational Effectiveness, Imperial Holdings

10:00–10:30 Morning Break | Enjoy coffee/tea and snacks and connect with leaders from across the industry


Minding the analytics gapusing data to drive results and make better decisions

Martin Sutherland, Global Director, People Tree Group


5 Ways HRBP’s can create a growth mindset for the organisation

Dr Rose Mathafena
, Research Fellow, Unisa Graduate School of Business Leadership (SBL)


Where is digitalisation relevant for HR? Working with line management to transition from “doing digital” to “being digital”

Joanne Doyle-Went, Senior Manager: Human Capital Technology,  Deloitte Digital

12:45–13:30 Lunch | Engage in meaningful, learning conversations while enjoying a delicious meal


Building diversity and inclusion programmes to facilitate change

Nene Molefi, Managing Director Mandate Molefi (Author of A Journey to Diversity and Inclusion in SA)


What the strategic HRBP can do differently to make a difference

Liezel Blignaut, Founding Director, Human Capital Business Solutions

15:30 End of Conference | refreshments and networking


Pumeza Bam, Group Executive: People and Transformation, Liberty Holdings Limited
Pumeza Bam, is currently the Group Executive People and Transformation at Liberty Holdings Limited. Prior to that she served as Executive Director Human Resources at EOH Holdings Limited. Pumeza has over 20years’ experience in Human Resources in the Public Sector, Education, Financial Services and Information Technology sectors. She is currently the Chairman of Aligned-SA, an education professional services agency and serves on the board of SA-Learns a social enterprise whose vision is to build a learning nation. Pumeza is also a trustee of the EOH Youth Job Creation Initiative Trust and serves as a Non-executive of EOH Holdings. Educated at Woodridge College and Preparatory School and she obtained her BSc (Biochemistry) from the University of KwaZulu- Natal and PMD & Board Leadership Certificates from GIBS. She is a certified member of the Institute of Directors and a registered Chartered HR Professional with South African Board of People Practices (SABPP).
Nene Molefi, Managing Director, Mandate Molefi
Over the past two decades, Nene has gained a reputation both locally and internationally as a thought-leader in diversity and inclusion, values-driven leadership and transformation. She has authored numerous publications, including contributing to the book Leadership Perspectives from the Front Line and authored A Journey of Diversity and Inclusion in SA. She is a member of the Diversity Collegium, a think tank of globally- recognised diversity experts. She is an associate lecturer at GIBS on Global Diversity and Unconscious Bias, as well as an associate lecturer on Transformation Strategy for the Stellenbosch Business School. She is a sought-after speaker for conferences around the world.
Penny Milner-Smyth, Director, Ethicalways
Penny weaves the three seemingly distinct strands of her career - an academic background in neuropsychology, over 25 years as a senior in-house HR leader, and a specialisation in the creation of ethical workplace environments - into evidence-based insights that give HR business partners great confidence in their advisory services and intervention design. In addition to holding an MA (Research Psychology), Penny is registered as a Master HR Practitioner with the SABPP and is a long-standing member of The Ethics Institute and Business Ethics Network (BEN) Africa.
Hans Zachar, Managing Director: Technology Strategy, Accenture
Hans’s focus is on bridging the gap between business and technology and more recently on assisting organisations chart a course to embrace new technologies in pursuit of transforming into digital businesses. Hans has experience across numerous industries in the development of technology strategies and architectures and has personally led the delivery of a number of highly complex technology transformation programmes. Through these experiences, Hans has gained rich insights into the ways that organisations can better identify and execute on technology enabled innovations. It is this insight that helps him work with numerous companies in crafting strategies that combine the latest technology developments, with a clear and pragmatic approach to their implementation, in the pursuit of business value realisation. Hans has been awarded both a Bachelors and Master’s degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of the Witwatersrand
Dirusha Ganapathy Juta, Managing Director, Beyond Transform
In 2017, Dirusha was awarded “100 Most Influential Global HR Professionals” by the World HRD Congress and in the same year also beat 12 other contestants from multinational giants to win the title of “HR Leader of the Year” at the Future of HR Awards. She was interviewed by ABP News and the Economic Times in India and was the only female participant selected to form part of an interview panel at the World HRD Congress focused on Global Leadership. During her corporate career, Dirusha was recognised by IBM for her contribution to the Global HR transformation project and was also awarded “Group HR Services Excellence” Award by African Bank in 2009. In her quest to transform and improve quality of lives, Dirusha’s 15 year HR career across a global platform and particularly across the African continent currently places Dirusha in a position to support socio-economic development through her organisation, "Beyond Transform" which focuses on HR Consulting, Youth Development, Coaching and Women’s Empowerment. She is a member of COMENSA (Coaches and Mentors of SA), Institute of People Management (IPM) and the South African Career Development Association (SACDA). Prior to leaving corporate to start her own consultancy, Dirusha held senior level positions at Standard Bank, IBM and African Bank to name a few. She holds an Honours degree in Psychology from the University of South Africa.
Taryn Marcus, Executive Head: Organisational Effectiveness, Imperial Holdings
Taryn is the group organisation effectiveness executive, responsible for the collaborative setting of the group’s human capital mandate. From 2006 until she joined Imperial, Taryn occupied various positions of increasing responsibility in human capital management at Liberty, starting as a Human Resource Consultant and finishing as the Liberty Group Head of Talent and Succession Management and People Development. She is the past Chairman of the Society for Industrial Psychology SA (SIOPSA) Johannesburg chapter. Taryn has a Master’s degree in Industrial Psychology and is a registered Industrial Psychologist
Joanne Doyle-Went, Senior Manager: Human Capital Technology, Deloitte Digital
Joanne is a Senior Manager at Deloitte Digital leading the Digital Workforce Engagement solution at Deloitte. This solution solves business challenges by using innovative technologies and existing communications structures to engage, deliver insights and build a culture of performance, productivity and collaboration within the organisation. Prior to joining Deloitte, Joanne was the head of marketing and sales East and Central Africa for Motorola from 2004-2009. She then moved over to Ogilvy Public Relations as their Executive Director in February 2010. She made her to move BrandsEye a year later as sales and marketing director.
Ashnie Muthusamy, Group Manager: Transformation, Talent and Change, Sun International
Ashnie Muthusamy has an educational background in Psychology, HR, and a Master’s degree in Leadership. She has headed various HR specialist roles in large organisations such as Absa and Nedbank. Ashnie is passionate about Employee Branding, Employee Engagement and Talent Management and is presently the Group Talent Manager for Sun International where she has been working for the past 7 years. She is the author of Succession Management, to be released March 2018 (Published by KR).
Ellen Bvekerwa, HR Director: Supply Chain, Unilever
Ellen is the HR Director: Supply Chain for Unilever. She has more than have 19 years of work experience in a global FMCG company, 17 of these in various Human Resources roles across Africa and South East Asia. This has provided her with a wide knowledge of business and people issues across geographies. She has worked in Africa (South Africa, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Malawi, Mozambique, Kenya) and South East Asia (based in Singapore) where she was the Leadership and Organisational Development Director. Having studied and qualified as an electrical engineer, she has a strong analytics approach to problem solving.
Martin Sutherland, Global Director, People Tree Group
Martin Sutherland Global Director, People Tree Group Martin is the Global Director of PeopleTree Talent Analytics International, a software and consulting firm focused on talent analytics. He is a founder member of the company, launched in 1998, and has been responsible for its global expansion. Clients are spread across 47 countries in Africa, Europe, the Middle East, the US, Central and South America and India. Martin has always had a fascination with people and technology, and has used technology and research to understand what makes people successful when they tackle new situations and business challenges. The result is a robust talent process, driven by powerful talent analytics, which helps companies to effectively direct time, money and effort to grow and develop all their talent. Prior to the formation of PeopleTree, Martin was a director of the largest public relations and communications company in South Africa. He regularly speaks at international conferences and publishes articles on the topic of talent management. He has 23 years of professional consulting experience in the ICT, Energy and Power, Financial Services & Banking, Transport, Retail and Manufacturing sectors.
Jerry Molefe, Executive: Human Capital, Medshield
Jerry currently holds the position of Executive: Human Capital at Medshield Medical Scheme.He joined Medshield in May 2016. He is a well-known and seasoned professional in the human capital field and has been involved in different roles at the SABPP and IPM. He is registered as a Charted HR Practitioner with the SABPP and is also a member of the Institute of Directors of South Africa. Jerry has held senior and executive roles in industries such as retail, transport, manufacturing and professional services of local and multinational organizations. He has extensive expert knowledge in all areas of human capital and his passion is on human capital strategy, leadership development, employee engagement and organizational development. Jerry holds a BCom Honours Degree (Organizational and Industrial Psychology) from the University of Johannesburg, a B-Tech Degree in Human Resources Management from UNISA, a Diploma in Human Resources Management, as well as a Leadership Development Programme from Wits Business School. Jerry has mentored and developed a number of human resources professionals and published articles in some of the leading human resources and leadership publications.
Dr Rose Mathafena, Research Fellow, Unisa Graduate School of Business Leadership (SBL)
Rose has recently left the corporate world and gone into academia where she is a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at the Unisa Graduate School of Business Leadership. Prior to the move, she held the position of Executive Manager: Human Capital . Rose has extensive knowledge and more than 15 years’ experience within the HR & LD Field . Pr ior to Sasria, Rose was the HR Manager at Aveng Manufacturing. She has a Doctorate degree in Industrial Psychology from the University of Free State, with research interests in Leadership Development and Talent
Njabulo Mashigo, HR Director, Heineken
Njabulo has extensive experience in the human resources management value chain. Her career began at an early age of 19, after completing my studies at Rhodes University. She became one of the youngest graduates that Unilever had ever employed at the time. Since then, she has worked for a number of blue-chip organisations such as Unilever, the South African Breweries (SAB), and more recently before joining Heineken; she was HR Director at the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) at the age of 30. She holds an MBA Degree from GIBS.
Liezel Pheiffer Blignaut, Founding Director, Human Capital Business Solutions
During her 10 years corporate and 17 years consulting career (including 7 years in Qatar), Liezel worked across industries, companies and HR functions, and worked closely with executives and leaders and all non-HR functions. She has extensive, hands-on experience in revamping or starting new functions and programmes, and in the custom-design and implementation of a variety of interventions. Driven to provide solutions that matter, Liezel focuses on developing better leaders, teams, workplaces and HR functions. The HRvalue ReportTM that she developed was fully endorsed by the SABPP and recognised as one of the top 3 HR products in 2015/6. Liezel holds a Masters’ degree in Commerce (specialising in HR and Industrial Psychology) and is a registered Master HR Practitioner and Mentor with the SABPP, an NLP Practitioner, member of the Institute of Directors of Southern Africa, HR Think Tank Advisory Board member, and serves on the Advisory Board of the Department of HR Management at the University of Pretoria.


Pre-conference workshop

05 June 2018 | The Radisson Blu Gautrain Hotel, Sandton | Johannesburg

Enabling thriving future-fit organisations – A framework to drive lasting results

Facilitated by Sonja Blignaut, More Beyond

The so-called VUCA world, with extreme volatility and uncertainty largely driven by exponential technological advances and increased interconnectedness is demanding very different skills and mindsets from leaders and people practitioners alike. Change is no longer episodic but continuous. We need to find ways to enable change resilience throughout our organisations; in effect, creating enabling and responsive environments that can naturally evolve when needed. In order to prepare our workforce for a world where automation and AI are already impacting on routine and even expert roles, HR practitioners need to become strategic partners able to co-create (with their leaders) enabling environments where people can bring their humanity and creativity to work. How do you maintain momentum, coherence and direction in uncharted territory where goal-setting etc. doesn’t work?

This workshop will introduce practitioners to the skills and thinking that is required to design and enable future-fit workplaces. This will be done utilising three generative metaphors to challenge participant's thinking and two practical frameworks to help them apply these ideas in their own organisations.

Key outcomes include:

  • Understand the three key mindsets that are required to enable future-fit workplaces
  • Understand different contexts based on the Cynefin sense-making framework
  • The ability to apply the Waysfinder framework to enable them to adapt to uncertainty
  • Be able to critically reflect on your current ways of work and transform these in contextually relevant ways
  • You will learn how to design processes and systems that enable the emergence of creativity, innovation and agility

Who should attend

Besides the HRBP professional, there are other communities that will find value in this workshop for example; L&D, OD, Leadership, Strategy & Marketing/Customer Insights

About Sonja Blignaut

Sonja is the founder of More Beyond. She has been working in the fields of narrative and complexity since 2002. Before founding More Beyond, she worked as a consultant for PWC and IBM. She left the formal consulting world in 2004 to focus on doing more of what she loved. Since then, she has consulted locally and internationally with clients that include the Sasol Group, Sasol Inzalo Foundation, Barclays, MMI, Anglo American, Harmony Gold, Nedbank, Standard Bank, Liberty, FNB, Gautrain Management Agency, PWC, IBM North America, DSTV, Eskom, SANParks, the Water Research Commission and many others. Sonja trains locally and internationally in complexity and related topics at various academic institutions including the University of Pretoria and GIBS Business School. She is a sought-after speaker in a wide variety of industries and conferences including Agile Summits, OD conferences and TedX Pretoria. Sonja has been the sole South African partner for Prof Dave Snowden’s company Cognitive Edge, the creator of Sensemaker® since 2007. In addition, she is a certified Scrum Master (Agile project manager) and is also qualified in various individual and team coaching modalities including Narrative coaching, Strengths Coaching and Organisation Systems Relationship Coaching.

Program Outline:
07:30-08:30 | Registration
08:30 | Workshop begins
10:30 | Morning break
13:00 | Lunch
14:30 | Afternoon break
15:30/16:30 | wrap up


  Price (excl. VAT)
Two-day conference and Pre-conference workshop:
05-07 June 2018 
R9 500 .00 excl. VAT
Two-day conference: 06- 07 June 
R7 900 .00 excl. VAT
Pre-conference workshop: 05 June  
R3 600 .00 excl. VAT

Please note:

  • Payment must be received prior to attendance
  • Registration fees include refreshments, lunch, parking and conference material
SETA grants and accreditation requirements
Many of our delegates enquire about the accreditation of our events. There is a misconception that organisations qualify for SETA grants only for accredited programmes. This is not correct. The payment of SETA grants is regulated by the Government Gazette, no. 9867, Vol. 570, 3 December 2012, no. 35940. These Regulations clearly state that the SETAs “must allocate a mandatory grant to a levy paying employer” that has submitted a WSP and ATR by the regulated date, has provided all the information required in the regulated template, and is up to date with skills levy payments. Furthermore, the template in the Regulations (Section C: Skills Development) allows employers to include ALL planned training in the report; not only accredited programmes.
Knowledge Resources is a Level 3 Contributor BBBEE company


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Two-day Conference
Day One of Conference
Day Two of Conference
Pre-conference Workshop 1
Pre-conference Workshop 2
Pre-conference Workshop 3
Post-Conference Workshop

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  • Register 3 delegates and the 4th delegate attends free of charge!
  • Special discount for registered NPO’s, small businesses (30 or less employees) & full-time lecturers at universities – contact us for more information!


For more information please contact
Debbie Atwell on +27 83 651 1664   or


To book your seat contact Magdeline Matlatse on +2711 706 6009

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