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by Charlotte Drury
Lisa Ventura is an award-winning cyber security awareness consultant, writer, and speaker. She is the Founder of Cyber Security Unity, a global...
Lisa Ventura is an award-winning cyber security awareness consultant, writer, and speaker. She is the Founder of Cyber Security Unity, a global community organisation that is dedicated to bringing individuals and companies together who actively work in cyber security to help combat the growing cyber threat. Lisa is also a mindset and mental health coach and offers help and support to those affected by stress, burnout, and mental health issues in cyber security and Infosec.
She is passionate about raising awareness of the growing cyber threat to prevent cyber-attacks and cyber fraud, and actively supports women and those who are neurodiverse into careers in cyber security. Her books “The Rise of the Cyber Women: Volume 1 and Volume 2” were released in 2020 and 2021 to great acclaim.
Lisa sits on the Advisory Group of the West Midlands Cyber Resilience Centre, sits on the board of Think Digital Partners as their Cyber Security Advisor and is a member of the Advisory Council for the International Security Expo event. In 2021 she was named as one of IT Security Guru’s “Most Inspiring Women in Cyber Security” and won the “Positive Role Model for Gender” award in ITV News’s National Diversity Awards in 2020. She has also won numerous other awards for her work including SC Magazine’s “Outstanding Contribution to Cyber Security” award.
Please can you introduce yourself, and tell us about your career/ what does job role entail and what led you to pursue a career in cybersecurity?
My name is Lisa Ventura and I’m the Founder of Cyber Security Unity, a global community organisation that exists to help unite the cyber security industry to help combat the growing cyber threat. The industry is stronger together to beat cyber crime. I’m also a writer/blogger, keynote speaker and a cyber security awareness consultant.
Can you tell us about a moment in your career that made you proud?
I think the proudest moment was when I found out I’d won ITV News’s National Diversity Award for my work in cyber security in the “Positive Role Model” category in 2020. I couldn’t believe I had won, there were far more worthy candidates and my imposter syndrome went through the roof that day! My trophy sits proudly in my office and it is a reminder of how far I’ve gone in my career despite some significant challenges.
What do you think are the biggest obstacles that a woman working in the technology sector faces? And with respect to your professional career, what have been yours?
While there has been some positive progress with encouraging more women into careers in cyber security, such as programs aimed at getting girls and women into the field, there is still much to be done to encourage them to join.
Retention is a key problem. Many often leave the industry due to burnout, lack of career progression and the toxic culture often found in the industry. Many efforts to address more inclusion and diversity in cyber security don’t go much further than a few PR pitches and lack anything substantial. Sadly, women are still paid less, promoted less and deal with discrimination and harassment, which leads to the pursuit of other career paths away from cyber security. Equally, with such technical terminology often being used this can be very off putting to women looking to enter the industry.
In terms of challenges I’ve faced in my career, I have been a victim of the gender pay gap where I discovered that male counterparts doing exactly the same role as me were paid far more, and I now campaign heavily to stop this outdated practice. I’ve also been subjected to bullying and abuse throughout my career.
You’re a business mentor for Women in Business, Women in Cyber Security, Women in Tech and more. How does your own personal journey into tech help you when mentoring?
I think my lived experiences help when it comes to mentoring others in cyber security as I can provide real world examples of what I have been through to hopefully help others understand that they are not alone. This is especially true for things like dealing with imposter syndrome, bullying and abuse, the gender pay gap and mental health in the workplace.
We’re witnessing more women in tech and cybersecurity than ever before however there still is a lack of women in the tech sector. Do you think enough is being done by businesses to address the gender imbalance in cybersecurity and the technology industry as a whole and how would you encourage more women to join the ever-evolving industry?
The media and popular culture often portrays cyber security as being done by a socially inept young guy in a hoodie, this began in the 1980s and is still prevalent today. This is not the right image to attract a more diverse workforce into the industry, and even for companies and academic programs that have tried to overcome this image, the perception that it exists and that cyber security is hostile towards women deters many girls and women from entering it. Combatting this misconception is a must to attracting more women into the industry.
I also think we need much greater representation of under-represented groups in cyber security across all aspects of society and media. There are many strong female role models in cyber security who deserve to have their voices amplified. News outlets need to stop citing male cyber security experts, industry conferences should include more female speakers and demonstrate their commitment to having inclusive codes of conduct. If women and girls don’t see it, they won’t want to be it. Women must e visible and seen as experts in cyber security but ufortunately when women are contacted for their insights it is often to talk about gender issues and not about their technical skills and capabilities. Therefore, when girls see female role models in cyber security, they often only hear awful statistics and not the great work that women are doing in the industry.
What are you doing to support other women, and/or to increase diversity, in the tech/cyber industry?
Part of my work with Cyber Security Unity is to provide safe spaces for women, those who are neurodiverse and those from minority groups to be able to share their challenges and meet and network with others who may be going through similar challenges. Cyber Security Unity is all about greater collaboration to not only combat the growing cyber threat but also support each other in cyber so we feel listened to and included.
How has the tech industry changed for women since you started in tech and what do you think the future hold for women in cyber?
When I started out in cyber security in 2009 it was extremely male dominated, there were very few women. I think this is partly because women often don’t apply for promotions and other high-level jobs as they feel they don’t stand a chance of being considered, but promoting men ahead of women is holding us all back. Diversity delivers better financial results, a better culture and better business decision making. There are fewer women in executive positions compared to men across the board and not just in cyber security; recent research has shown that while women comprise 73% of the workforce in entry and junior level roles, female representation drops to 42% at the level of senior management. When it comes to director-level posts, just 32% of these are held by women across the board.
Women aren’t the only underrepresented group in tech – what can be done to encourage more neurodiverse and autistic individuals to enter the cybersecurity industry?
While many neurodiverse people may find some parts of work and socializing more difficult, conditions that fall into the category can also give them particular strengths. There are many skills associated with Autism, such as pattern-spotting, attention to detail and problem-solving. Autistic people may approach problems differently and can provide extremely creative solutions. Many of these characteristics can be particularly useful in technical disciplines, and security roles in particular. The Infosec Institute lists IT and networking skills, analytical skills and auditing skills among the top five that are most important for Cyber Security professionals.
Sadly while neurodiverse candidates bring many benefits to the workforce, many interview processes do not give them the best chance of success. Davies warns that some assessment tools in particular can be challenging for neurodiverse individuals, such as group interviews. Improving the interview process is not enough though, organisations must also ensure that neurodiverse colleagues are given the right platform to perform once they begin work.
You are a strong advocate for all things related to neurodiversity, and are vocal about being autistic and neurodiverse, how did you navigate your journey in the cybersecurity industry and how has this inspired you to help others who are on the spectrum?
I wasn’t diagnosed as autistic until 2018 so quite late in life, but it explained so much about why I am the way I am, and why I struggled in the workplace so much. It enabled me to make some positive changes such as working from home in my own space and being able to control things like lighting, sound and noise, even things like having my desk and workspace set up a certain way, as this all helped to reduce the amount of sensory overload I experienced in the office. I also build in “down” time in between video calls which also helps.
What advice would you pass on to anyone from a minority background to help them progress in this industry?
Not wanting to sound too much like the Nike ad slogan, just do it! The industry is very welcoming and there is a strong community in cyber security and tech who are willing to help you every step of the way in your career.
A huge thank you to Lisa Ventura for dedicating her time for this interview.
More information about Lisa can be found on www.lisaventura.co.uk.
Lisa’s twitter - @cybergeekgirl and @cybersecunity
Lisa’s LinkedIn - https://www.linkedin.com/in/lisasventura/
by Beth Marron
Despite substantial progress toward LGBTQ+ workplace inclusion over the years, the community’s self-reported experiences show that complete...
Despite substantial progress toward LGBTQ+ workplace inclusion over the years, the community’s self-reported experiences show that complete employment equality is still a distant dream.
It’s arguable that employees today feel more comfortable sharing their identities and pronouns at work. But it’s still quite dangerous for many. Some individuals still worry about being ostracised or marginalised. Employees might not want to be treated indifferently for things like, career development or promotional opportunities. Because of this, employees may refuse to disclose their labels to maintain their comfort level at work.
Today's leading corporations have invested in processes and initiatives to promote inclusive cultures for workers of all identities. Most businesses understand the value of recruiting a diverse staff. However, despite the efforts of these businesses, many employees continue to feel that they are unable to be fully present at work. As a company, you must actively support staff who come out and openly identify and encourage an equal, inclusive, and diverse workplace for all.
According to a 2018 survey from the HRC Foundation, nearly half of LGBTQ+ workers remain closeted at work, and 1 in 5 reports that they’ve received negative comments about how they should appear more feminine or masculine. A 2019 survey from Glassdoor found similar results – 43% of LGBTQ+ respondents reported not being fully out at work, and 47% of all LGBTQ+ respondents believe that being out at work could cause harm to their careers, including job loss or missing out on a promotion or project.
That same Glassdoor survey found that 70% of LGBTQ+ employees surveyed would not apply to work at a company that does not support its LGBTQ+ employees, and 46% of all respondents (including non-LGBTQ+) said the same. That means that crafting a hiring process through the lens of LGBTQ+ inclusivity is not only the right thing to do, but it’s essential for talent acquisition strategies.
When it comes to your recruitment process, it should host the ultimate sanctum of equality and fairness. And this goes for all protected characteristics, like gender, race, and sexual orientation.
Recognise that LGBTQ+ involves a wide range of backgrounds and populations
First, ensure that your company understands that the LGBTQ+ community is a diverse group. This group of people is diverse in terms of gender identity and sexual orientation across the board.
Utilizing the label "gay" or even "queer" exclusively could exclude individuals who are transgender, asexual, or intersex. Because your LGBTQ+ candidates will come from a variety of racial, ethnic, gender, and socioeconomic backgrounds, it's crucial to keep this in mind while developing your strategy and to draw inspiration from other elements of your D&I plan to strengthen the work you are doing with LGBTQ+ candidates.
Remove gendered language and coding from your career page and job descriptions in your application process
Making a false assumption when you first meet someone is one of the worst things you can do, and interviews are one of the worst places to do this! So, throughout your hiring process, be careful to utilise terminology that is gender-neutral.
When speaking with candidates face-to-face during your interview meetings, you should utilise gender-neutral terminology. It ought to be extended to textual materials including job postings, application forms, and other hiring requirements.
When creating your job descriptions and recruitment marketing materials, avoid utilising gendered language or images, either directly or implicitly. Enforcing conventional gender norms in the office, whether through a clothing code, employee photographs, or wording, may reflect a company that is inflexible and intolerant of all forms of gender expression. It is simple to use gender-neutral language like "team members" rather than "men and women at our organisation," but you can also use free tools like this one to examine your job descriptions for implicitly gender-coded language.
Provide training of LGBTQIA+ awareness
All businesses need to have standard knowledge, understanding, and acceptance for LGBTQIA+. One of the simplest ways to do this is to provide awareness training. It's crucial that employees' differences are valued and that they aren't solely characterised by their identities.
During interviews, avoid asking people about what their ‘labels’ are and why they identify in said ways. But on the same note, employees should also not be asked to hide their identities, either.
Through awareness training, these types of situations should be sufficiently manageable. Ensure that the training is offered to other staff and that all managers participate in it (through online or in-person sessions). Everyone will be aware of the proper language, limits, and behaviour in this way.
Create appropriate LGBTQIA+ policies
You will have rules and procedures in place as an employer that safeguard your employees' welfare, health, and safety. To do this, proper LGBTQIA+ policies must be developed.
You may choose to group your regulations under equality or anti-discrimination laws. Highlight how crucial it is to outlaw discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. In addition to being reiterated in handbooks and contracts, this should be made explicit during interviews.
You could also elect to include these guidelines in your LGBTQIA+ policy. Keep in mind to be inclusive and refrain from excluding certain groups. Use the abbreviation; that is why it was created.
Take part in LGBTQIA+ charity events and causes
While it's great to see postings about inclusivity, it's critical to remember the past.
People underwent traumatic, challenging experiences that made it possible for us to celebrate openly today. It is crucial to give back by supporting LGBTQIA+ charitable initiatives and events.
You can accomplish this by taking part in fundraising campaigns, local celebrations, or (if you're feeling very courageous) by planning your own event. Participating is a fantastic way to increase your brand's recognition in the LGBTQIA+ community. Therefore, it fosters respect and reduces turnover when candidates perceive your company’s principles in this way.
Make the workplace safe for LGBTQ+ employees
Promoting diversity, equality, and coherence for LGBTQIA+ employees in the workplace is crucial. Everyone can then stand as recognised and valued employees in a workplace. It is crucial to take into account candidates who identify as LGBTQ+ and their safety at work. Studies show that 20% of LGBTQ+ workers have encountered hostility at work. Additionally, we have the ability as corporations to influence societal changes and attitudes. Therefore, it is crucial to take decisive action to stop discrimination in the workplace.
Highlight your organization's LGBTQ+-inclusive policies and benefits, demonstrate how you work with groups that are concerned with LGTBQ+ problems, describe your employee resource groups, and encourage team members who identify as LGBTQ+ to share their personal experiences with others.
Individual team members can show their commitment to diversity on a smaller scale by simply using pronouns in email signatures.
It takes more than just putting a rainbow image on your company's LinkedIn page to make your recruitment and hiring process more welcoming of LGBTQ people. Making strides toward greater diversity and inclusion at work is the first step in taking concrete action, which will unavoidably improve your capacity to engage with other communities and recruit more candidates from diverse backgrounds.
Need some extra help appealing to more diverse candidates and understanding how to ensure your hiring procedure doesn't exclude LGBTQ+ applicants by making it LGBTQIA+-friendly: and employer branding? We’ve got you covered! Get in touch with us today by clicking here or alternatively look at our Inclusivity Infrastructure to see what we are doing within our own company to encourage diversity and inclusivity in the IT Infrastructure and recruitment industry by clicking here.
by Curtis Phillips
Imagine if Siri could write you a long essay or any other system was able to spit out a movie review in the style of poems. The options are endless....
Imagine if Siri could write you a long essay or any other system was able to spit out a movie review in the style of poems. The options are endless. OpenAI gave the public access to ChatGPT which does exactly this. The system has the ability to interact with users in an almost real-life manner through language processing tasks such as text generation and language translation.
The tool quickly went viral with it’s many natural language processing tasks and people quickly started using it across all industries. Users became transfixed by its abilities, and it quickly spread across multiple industries. But the language processing model also brought up a lot of fears. The outrage was triggered by concerns of redundancy on the part of people whose employment requires the ability to write workmanlike content. As the machine is able to mimic human-like conversation and text, one can only imagine how it could take over industries with ease.
But before analysing these concerns and the possibility of industry takeovers, it is important to understand the Nature of ChatGPT, what technology it offers and how it is applied.
ChatGPT can be used for a wide range of natural language processing tasks. Some of which are:
Language translation : If provided with a text prompt in one language and through specifying the target language, the model can generate accurate and fluent translations of the text.
Text Generation : Generates human-like text responses to prompts. This can be useful for costumer service or generating responses to online forums or even creating social media posts for marketing purposes. The options are limitless.
Text summarization : When given, the processing system is able to summarize long texts or documents.
Sentiment analysis : ChatGPT is even able to analyse a text and determine the overall tone and emotion of the piece of writing.
Overall, ChatGPT can be used for many language processing tasks. The specific applications of the model will depend on the needs and goals of the user.
ChatGPT is based on the GPT-3 architecture, which is a model that uses self-attention mechanisms to process and generate text. As of earl 2021, GPT-3 is the largest neural network ever produced. As a result, GPT-3 is better than any prior model for producing text that is convincing enough to seem human. However, there are limits to the system. Even though it is powerful, its biggest issue is that it is not consistently learning. It is pre-trained and doesn’t have an ongoing long-term memory that learns from each interaction made. There is also a lack of the systems' ability to explaining and interpreting why certain inputs result in specific outputs.
There are further concerns about GPT-3 revolving around machine learning bias. Since the model is trained to observe internet text, it similarly exhibits many human biases that are shown in online text. This can lead to texts and discourses being predominantly linked to theorists or even white supremacists. This indicates that the system can be abused and used to create hate speech, or fake-news articles which can take the media by storm and cause distress.
ChatGPT disrupting industries
New AI systems such as ChatGPT consistently create disruption in several industries. The key to adjusting is figuring out how to redesign our economic systems to fully engage these systems and the working population. We may soon have machines that can take over the work of writing out ideas fully. This will enable millions of people to now write well and upskill themselves. But in retrospect, it also calls for change and industries have no choice but to adjust to these rapid changes.
These recent advances in AI will surely usher in a period of hardship and economic pain for some whose jobs are directly impacted and who find it hard to adapt — what economists euphemistically call “adjustment costs.” However, the forward march of technology will continue, and we must harness the new capabilities to benefit society. To do so, we must ask what new systems can be built with these new tools and how can we implement it.
Being specialised IT consultants, we surround ourselves daily with the changing industry and new opportunities being created according to technological advances. If you want to stay on top of your game and stay ahead of the job market, then don’t hesitate to contact one of our many recruiters. Discuss the current job market and industry trajectory, or discuss new opportunities to further your career.
by Gareth Streefland
We have experienced remarkably high volatility over the past three years, including supply chain disruptions, historically high inflation,...
We have experienced remarkably high volatility over the past three years, including supply chain disruptions, historically high inflation, geopolitical unrest, and of course an unprecedented worldwide pandemic and the ensuing lockdowns.
It has never been more difficult for many business leaders and entrepreneurs to navigate this environment. Fortunately, new technological solutions are being developed in concert with these issues to support forward-thinking executives in positioning their firms to succeed in the tumultuous years to come.
Knowing the top tech trends expected for 2023 is probably the most important step you can take to make sure your company is prepared for near-term success. After all, if you don't start preparing your business for the newest technological advancements as soon as the year starts, you'll already be behind!
In light of this, let's examine some of the major technological trends for 2023 as identified by Gartner Research, and consider how you may use them to prepare your company for a better, more prosperous future.
1. Digital Immune System
The past few years have seen an unparalleled focus on risk, both in the physical and digital world. Cybersecurity concerns are increasingly acute, as data breaches and other cybersecurity concerns are becoming increasingly sophisticated.
Fortunately, methods for protecting against online criminals, spammers and other unwanted online pests are improving in sophistication as well. Through observation, automation and the latest developments in design, a robust digital immune system can significantly mitigate operational and security risks.
As the utility of these tools becomes more established, expect to hear many more questions about the health of your organization’s digital immune system in the year to come, and what you’re doing to strengthen and protect it.
2. Applied Observability
The 2010s saw an abundance of tools and methods of capturing more data than anyone knew what to do with. Thus, with seemingly endless quantities of client data now available, it’s likely that the next step will be toward creating new uses for data that’s been collected.
Applied Observability uses Artificial Intelligence to analyze and make recommendations for greater efficiency and accuracy based on an organization’s compiled data. It optimizes data implementation by placing more value on use of the right data at the right time for rapid response based on confirmed stakeholder actions, rather than intentions. This can lead to real-time operational improvement, and a tangible competitive advantage for your business.
3. AI Trust, Risk and Security Management (AI TRiSM)
We’ve all heard a lot about AI over the past several years, but believe it or not, many industries are still in the early stages of AI implementation.
With the focus on risk throughout every industry post-pandemic, it’s no surprise that AI Trust, Risk and Security Management (AI TRiSM) will be a major focal point in the tech space next year. AI TRiSM combines methods for explaining AI results, new models for active management of AI security, and controls for privacy and ethics issues, all in support of an organization’s governance, reliability, security, and overall health.
4. Industry Cloud Platforms
Cloud adoption has been a major component of digital transformation for over a decade, and 2023 will almost certainly prove to be another year for more sophisticated, industry and organization-specific cloud adoption strategies. By combining SaaS, PaaS and IaaS with customized functionality, Industry Cloud Platforms may prove to be the most consequential step toward cloud adoption to date.
5. Platform Engineering
As adoption grows and digital platforms mature, expect to see an increased emphasis on customization. That’s what platform engineering offers: a set of tools and capabilities that are developed and packed for ease-of-use. For development teams and end-users alike, this could mean increased productivity and simplified processes.
6. Wireless-Value Realization
We’re still only beginning to scratch the surface of the value gained by the integration of wireless technology through a broad, interconnected ecosystem.
In the coming years, we’ll see wireless endpoints that are able to sense, e-charge, locate and track people and things far behind traditional endpoint communication capabilities. Another step towards optimization of collected data, wireless-value realization networks provide real-time analytics and insights, as well as allowing systems to directly harvest network energy.
Combining the features of an app, a platform and a digital ecosystem within a single application, superapps offer a platform from which third parties can develop and publish their own miniapps. An end user can activate micro or minapps within the superapp, allowing for a more personalized app experience.
8. Adaptive AI
Using real-time feedback to new data and goals, adaptive AI allows for quick adaptation to the constantly evolving needs of the real-world business landscape. The value provided by adaptive AI is apparent, but implementing these systems requires automated decision-making systems to be fully reengineered, which will have a dramatic impact on process architecture for many companies.
As noted above, you’re likely familiar with the term “metaverse” by now thanks to Mark Zuckerberg. However, if the lackluster performance of Meta’s stock is any indication, you’re one of the many who has yet to be sold on the benefits of the metaverse.
Regardless, metaverse technologies that allow for digital replication or enhancement of activities traditionally done in the physical world should certainly not be dismissed. There is far too much at stake, and the possibilities are far too intriguing for too many people to write off metaverse technologies quite yet, even if the pilot versions fail to impress.
10. Sustainable Technology
Until recently, the tech world has been single-mindedly fixated on boosting the power of new technologies. But as tech becomes increasingly integrated into every facet of our lives, we’re seeing new investments in energy efficient tech and tech that promotes sustainable practices.
Emissions management software and AI, traceability and analytics for energy efficiency are all allowing both developers to build sustainability-focused tech, and allowing business leaders to explore new markets and opportunities for sustainable growth.
by David Annable
Franklin Fitch is proud to announce that we have achieved the Good Business Charter Accreditation for our ethical and business practices, an...
Franklin Fitch is proud to announce that we have achieved the Good Business Charter Accreditation for our ethical and business practices, an initiative that promotes the importance of responsible business practices.
The charter encourages responsible capitalism in the UK, by publicly accrediting organisations that prioritise responsible business and good business practice. The initiative measured Franklin Fitch over ten components including a real living wage, fairer hours and contracts, employee well-being and environmental responsibility. By recognising businesses that meet their high standards, the Good Business Charter aims to inspire other organisations to follow suit.
The Good Business Charter is a simple accreditation that organisations in the UK can sign up for in recognition of responsible business practices.
The charter measures behaviour over 10 key components: real living wage, fairer hours and contracts, employee well-being, employee representation, diversity and inclusion, environmental responsibility, paying fair tax, commitment to customers, ethical sourcing, and prompt payment of debts.
A qualifying organisation must meet all ten commitments to receive GBC accreditation. Open to the private sector, public sector and charities of all sizes including a simplified version for organisations with 50 employees or less.
The GBC consists of 10 components and more details for each of these components can be found on their website: www.goodbusinesscharter.com
- We are a Living Wage Employer who pays directly employed staff and regularly contracted staff the regular living wage.
- We commit to a fair approach to zero or minimal hours contract including giving at least two weeks’ notice for scheduling shifts and still paying for shifts cancelled at less than two weeks’ notice. We commit to considering providing contracts with guaranteed hours. Both of the above are necessary unless requested otherwise by the employee of their own free will.
- We will have clear, fair and transparent policies that support and encourage employee well-being and ban unreasonable penalties for legitimate sickness.
- We will engage with worker representatives and ensure there is a voice that represents employees around the boardroom table.
- We will commit time and money to create an inclusive workplace. We will monitor the diversity of our workforce, committed to closing the gender, disability and ethnicity pay gaps and narrowing the CEO/worker pay gap.
- We care about the environment and have an environmental policy which demonstrates the ways in which we are committed to reducing our environmental impact and continually improving our environmental performance.
- We commit to pay our taxes, not engage in tax avoidance and be transparent in our relationship with HMRC.
- We recognise our commitment to our customers. We publish this commitment on our website and gather and monitor customer feedback, reporting to the board and addressing concerns.
- We commit to the standards set out in the Ethical Trading Initiative Base Code where relevant to our organisation.
- We are signatories of the government’s Prompt Payment Code.
This recognition serves to endorse Franklin Fitch’s strong ethical culture across all areas of its business as well as its commitment to customers. It will also provide an additional platform to ensure that Franklin Fitch continues to develop and promote good business practices, now and in the future.
by Alice Lelli
Taking breaks and vacations from work is extremely important, both for our health and our well-being. The reduction of burnout and stress through...
Taking breaks and vacations from work is extremely important, both for our health and our well-being. The reduction of burnout and stress through time off can be very meaningful for a person’s overall metal and physical state. But getting back into the rhythm of working and getting organised may not always be so easy…
Especially after the Christmas season and the festivities that it brings, it may seem like a struggle for most to get back behind their desk. Luckily, a little pre-vacation strategic plan can help you prepare yourself more for your first few days back and help you accomplish a smooth exit and re-entry! Here are some tips to help guide you into a relaxed holiday and then right back into the work life.
Make a running list of your projects before you leave
Being away from your work causes you to forget and get out of the daily details of tasks and projects. We therefore recommend making 2 lists which you can use upon your return. First, make a list of all the projects you are currently working and their corresponding status level. Second, a list noting down all projects and tasks you want to start at your return. Your priorities might change, but starting a list will give you a good starting point once you return.
Delegate the things that can't wait until you return
One project which you are working on, may need to be completed or worked on during your leave. Be sure you are clear on who is covering your urgent tasks and give your co-workers an overview of the deadline and all the information they need to succeed.
Set up an out of the office email
Don’t wait until the last second to set up your out-of-office email – Email services allow you to pre-schedule your vacation notice days in advance. Set the expectation whether you will be checking your email while you are away and leave an alternate contact if anything urgent has to be discussed.
Clean up before you leave
Organise any files or documents you have lying around your desk and create some order in your workspace! This includes cleaning up your Hard drive on your computer as sorting out your email. This step does not guarantee to come back to perfection, but you will have a better starting point.
Give yourself a buffer day
Giving yourself a buffer day between the day you return from vacation and going back to work, you allow yourself to be able to relax and be able to complete all the little tasks without being under pressure. Taking care of small tasks at home and settling in properly can make your re-entry into work much smoother.
Block time on your calendar for emails
Blocking time out on your first day back to go through your email allows you to identify what has been going since you have been gone. Alongside this, it allows you to prioritise again and determine what projects are important and which ones can be waited on.
Make a to-do list
Create a clear to-do list when returning from a longer vacation. This helps you get back into the rhythm of prioritising and checking off tasks which could range from small to large. Small tasks are good to complete on your first day as it makes you feel accomplished and will give you motivation for the days ahead.
Schedule catch-up meetings
Scheduling meetings or catch-ups allows you to not only follow up on the people who covered your work while you were gone, but also allows you to book some time out of your calendar. Talking with your colleagues and team members as well allows you to get back into the rhythm of working and setting your priorities with projects and tasks.
Resume your usual routine
To get back into your work routine, it is also essential to get back into your usual routine after work as well. This includes waking up at the same time you usually would, go through your typical morning routine and end your day the way you usually would. Getting back into your typical routine allows you to feel more balanced in your transition.
Get lots of sleep
After being on vacation, you might feel a bit of a vacation hangover! In response to this, sleeping and getting a lot of rest can help ease the tress of starting to work again. Don’t work crazy hours to make up for the time you lost while on vacation and keep your sleeping pattern the same as usual.
Now that you have settled into the working rhythm again, it’s time to plan your next holiday! It’s always nice knowing when you will have another trip or some time off. That anticipation will you keep you driven for weeks, and helps you stay on track at work.
Taking time off to recuperate and enjoy other aspects of life than work such as travel or other activities can have a great impact on your well-being. If you are looking for a new exciting position which allows you to create such a life/work balance, then don’t hesitate to reach out to one of our many specialised consultants for a confidential conversation!
by Heather Wilkins
Even though the split between women and men in the tech industry has become a lot more diverse, there is still an obvious divide. The main cause of...
Even though the split between women and men in the tech industry has become a lot more diverse, there is still an obvious divide. The main cause of this is a lack of diversity, awareness, and unconscious biases. The awareness of the IT profession among students and unconscious biases are just the start of a deep-rooted issue. This issue must be overcome before women's representation in software development teams can improve.
Discussions about diversity in the IT industry, include the challenges to greater gender diversity, and how having role models, and support systems, and building both competence and confidence is vital for women to succeed in the tech industry.
The lack of role models is a key challenge that has to be focused on to increase the number of women in Tech. There are many successful and respected male software developers and men in IT. Seeing the lack of women makes one think, are there even actual career paths for women that will last 20 or 30 years? Especially when you look at company hierarchy, and how the amount of women in positions decreases drastically when moving higher up the cooperate ladder, it is shocking how few women you find. Archana Manjunatha, executive director and head of platform transformation and DBS Bank, explains that it gets lonelier at the top because there are even fewer women as you climb the corporate ladder. Having more role models means that other females won't feel so lonely and don’t feel that they can’t do it. To some extent, it is hard to become what you cannot see. Because that is how people choose careers and paths – when they see somebody, then it's easier for them to say “I want to become like this person”.
At the moment, when you think of an engineer or a similar role, most of the time you will think of a male in such positions. This mindset needs to be replaced with more female images so that women entering the industry are not deterred at all. However, even though this backward mindset is still very much present, there are a lot more movements and initiatives today to highlight female role models and encourage women to enter the IT industry.
Another challenge is an unconscious bias that sets in early, where even primary school children view math and science-related fields as being more suited for men. Through changing education by families and schools, this mindset could be changed. A lot of people also identify the path to a tech career as exciting and sudden. This is because most people don’t think of this field from an early age. If it is implemented properly, it can become an extremely rewarding field for several women.
Have support systems
Another challenge for women is to thrive in their careers through the different life stages, where they have to juggle bringing up children and work, or even taking some time off for family before re-entering the workforce. Support systems in these instances will help women through these difficult stages. Most of the time, people are also very open to giving you the help and support that you need. Just have the courage to ask for it and you’d be surprised how much help you will be given. This will help you be able to not drop off entirely, but give you the opportunity to make a comeback at a certain point in time.
Key elements to succeed
Regardless of gender, it all comes down to competence and confidence. Building competence is extremely important, and with that competence comes confidence. When someone is an expert in a subject matter, the agenda is almost invisible at the table because people are listening to you for your expert opinions, and your knowledge in the area. In return, respect will be gained. This means that women still are encouraged to upskill themselves. Technology is constantly evolving. What may have gotten you into technology, will not be there the next day. So one always has to keep themselves up to date. The growth mindset and the ability to want to keep learning are very important in the IT industry.
To show skills and benchmarks, certification can be completed which will help not only secure a position but also required to show your acquired skills.
Through the further integration of women into the tech industry, it is noted that there will not only be a more balanced gender representation in tech teams, but there will also be better delivery of code, products, and technology. We are definitely living in much better times, but there is still a long way to go. If there are only 20% of women are trying to solve the problem, it won't be solved or will take longer. The remaining 80% must become part of the solution. Otherwise, it's just women talking about needing equality and not taking any action.
While challenges exist, many opportunities exist for women in the tech industry. It is understandable that a lot of women feel unsure about getting into the industry due to self-doubt. But instead of asking if you are smart enough, put in the hours, be willing to learn, really try, and give it a go!
by Lauren Greene
When you, as an IT leader, are able to foster innovation, it not only benefits IT itself, but the business it serves and you personally. It...
When you, as an IT leader, are able to foster innovation, it not only benefits IT itself, but the business it serves and you personally. It shows that you are an internal agent of change and a valuable asset. Companies that recognize this build their culture and processes in a way that encourages innovation. You have realized that waiting for prompting is not the right way to move forward.
Put simply, innovation is what your business needs to bridge the gap between where it is now and the future you envision in which it will thrive. So how can you encourage this innovation and drive it forward in the workplace? Below we give you some tips on how to do just that and increase the success of your teams and your company in the innovation process.
1. Define your definition of IT innovation and recognize the opportunities
First, you need to determine if there is a culture of innovation in your company. Whether your employees can come to you with new ideas or whether suggestions are perceived as annoying. When employees have the opportunity to innovate and contribute to your organization's mission and goals, their engagement increases. They feel part of a whole and see how their work advances the company. That's a great motivator.
But you can't just go to your employees with a vague idea to innovate. That's too broad a spectrum to give to anyone. You will not feel motivated or encouraged. Asking a team to innovate is like asking an athlete to play better. So if you want your employees to innovate and encourage that culture, you first need to define what IT innovation means for your business. It can be anything: the successful development, implementation, extension, or improvement of a technical process, a business process, or a software or hardware product. It can even revolve around cultural factors that reduce costs, increase productivity, increase the company's competitiveness or bring any other business benefit. As you may be able to tell, the range of IT innovations is very wide. So we encourage you to expand your goal and pitch this idea to your IT teams.
2. Know the difference between project management and research and development
IT projects are inherently very project management oriented. This means they are clearly defined by deadlines, specific cost estimates, deliverables, and calculated/expected returns on investment. However, with research and development, you cannot plan into your plan that the big discovery and breakthrough will happen on a specific day. Instead, the big breakthrough will come when it does, or possibly not at all. Therefore, it is difficult to calculate the return on investment for this type of project. As an IT executive, you must decide whether the project is worth investing in or whether you want to use project management techniques instead.
3. Building an innovative/productive pipeline
Building an innovative culture is not only people-oriented but also process-oriented. You need to develop a formalized process that identifies, collects, evaluates, and implements innovative ideas. Without this process, great ideas and potential innovations die in the bud. It must also be recognized and understood that innovative ideas can come from many directions, e.g. B. from your employees, internal business partners, customers, suppliers, competitors, or through accidental discoveries. The reason it is important to define the most likely sources of innovative ideas is that you can develop idea-collection processes for each source.
4. Accept the unfair expectations of others of IT
Any software or service you develop will be compared to purchased software and services. It's not fair, but people do it anyway. Consequently, the evaluation of new processes and software must be done in this unfair sense and expectations must be set accordingly. Incorrect or excessive expectations can damage the IT team's overall reputation and make it difficult for the business to agree to fund the team's innovative ideas.
5. Note form and content
This doctrine states that all outcomes, no matter how large or small, must have both form and content. The shape means how it looks. The content is what it says or how it works. This applies to documents, systems, processes, and everything else that is shared with others. A form with no content is a new system that looks perfect but doesn't do what people want it to do. Content without form shows that the person or group delivering it offers too little and doesn't take pride in their work to make it look good. From the point of view of promoting innovation, all implemented ideas must follow this doctrine, otherwise, the new innovations will not be well received by your department and thus jeopardize your entire innovation goal.
6. Create a safe environment when innovation fails
When you are presented with an innovative idea, good or bad, commend the person's effort, interest, and initiative. When good ideas are presented, they are included in the aforementioned innovation pipeline. Less attractive ideas can become lessons in which you explain to the employee why they won't work and give them hints about which ideas are more likely to win. And should you approve an idea and allow the employee to spend time implementing it, and it fails, praise the effort and don't blame the employee, or they may never propose an innovative idea again.
But how do you get your employees to be creative, innovative, and risk-taking? And what exactly does it mean to be creative or innovative? These terms are thrown around so often that it can be difficult to keep track. As a result, many leaders don't know how best to encourage their employees to look at problems and processes differently. Here are some tricks to motivate your employees throughout the innovation process.
- Be clear about what you want
- Show employees that it's worth taking the risk
- Celebrate successes and learn from failures
- Provide mentoring and training
- Create a culture where people care about each other.
If you have experience in the IT industry or are new to this field and want to explore possible ideas, you can get in touch with us and have a confidential interview with one of our recruiters! If you are looking for new vacancies, follow the link to the current vacancies page.
by Ryan Evans
Professionals today have a wide range of employment possibilities, so businesses must step up their hiring practises. The competition gets tougher...
Professionals today have a wide range of employment possibilities, so businesses must step up their hiring practises. The competition gets tougher every day. Even while we are unable to forecast what will occur in five years, we do know that this tendency won't be abating anytime soon.
Leaving candidates with a positive impression of you is the ultimate goal. How? Through candidate experience, that is. To convince candidates to trust you with their job possibilities, you must provide a positive candidate experience. Before getting into the details of how to improve the candidate experience. First, let's discuss what candidate experience is and how significant it is.
What Is Candidate Experience?
The entire hiring process that a candidate goes through is referred to as the candidate experience. It simply refers to how candidates are made to feel during their interactions with you. As more and more businesses realise how important it is to establish a healthy relationship with potential employees, it has gained a lot of ground recently.
Why Is Candidate Experience Important?
Candidate expectations are rising and will continue to do so in the upcoming years, thus candidate experience is crucial. Within 60 seconds of discovering a company online, candidates have already made up their minds about it. This implies that you have less than a minute to make an impression on candidates searching for your business, and first impressions matter.
Candidate Feedback Spreads Quickly and Far
Nowadays, everyone shares everything online. 60 percent of respondents surveyed, according to a Forbes article, had unfavourable candidate experiences at some point, and 72 percent of them shared those experiences online or with friends, family, and coworkers. Because of this, it's more crucial than ever to make investments to ensure that candidates have a pleasant experience from beginning to end.
The Job Market Is Oversaturated
Finding excellent applicants is now more straightforward than ever thanks to the growth of online recruiting and remote employment. That's excellent news for businesses that need to fill positions. Today's candidates are motivated and eager to work, so you have more opportunities than before. Contrarily, this signifies that the competition is fierce!
Businesses are known for their hiring procedures and organisational climate almost as much as for the calibre of their services and goods. As a result, in a crowded job market, your ability to draw candidates and deliver a great candidate experience will have a significant impact on your competitive edge.
First Impressions Have a Ripple Effect
The first impression a candidate has of your business will stick with them throughout the entire hiring process, so make the most of it! Candidates typically conduct their due diligence prior to your initial contact. However, the first email or meeting a candidate has with you will set the tone for all subsequent communications.
A favourable candidate experience may also contribute to a favourable perception of your goods and services. Additionally, it affects the reputation of your brand. Focusing on the candidate experience will benefit your business and brand in addition to making applicants feel welcome and respected.
Candidates Will Give as Much as They Get
The good news is that applicants are now more concerned with what they learn from an event. Forbes claims that young professionals are not afraid to change professions if the career development options offered by their current employers do not fulfil their expectations. This is particularly relevant to millennials.
Work-life balance, organisational branding, and candidate experience are no longer just trendy buzzwords. They are necessities for business. How would you like to be treated if you were the candidate and went through your hiring procedure from beginning to end? By responding to this, you'll be able to connect with your candidates and beat out the competition.
Ultimately, when you focus on the experience you provide, the returns will be in the form of committed, loyal, and passionate employees.
The Key Is Transparency
You may discover a good amount of statistics and methods for enhancing the candidate experience online. But ultimately, from the perspective of the candidates, it all comes down to your openness and authenticity.
Be as honest and transparent as you can when communicating. Never ignore emails for weeks or months at a time. Be truthful and proactive. No matter what news you have to provide, your candidate will be happy to hear from you rather than being left in the dark.
Finally, a strong organisation brand will be created for you by combining an effective hiring process with a strong emphasis on the candidate experience. You will receive all the assistance you require in order to scale your business and recruit and keep top performers.
by Lewis Andrews
Over the years, as hybrid and remote work has increased, so has the proliferation of data. This is referred to as "data sprawl" where...
Over the years, as hybrid and remote work has increased, so has the proliferation of data. This is referred to as "data sprawl" where sensitive data and information is stored in different locations through the scattered and unmanaged use of cloud apps. It is said that one in five employees uses personal apps to create, share, store or upload sensitive data from work. That is far too much personal and sensitive data in different places, which is usually even forgotten by the user.
As apps, services, and tools that enable hybrid or remote working penetrate corporate networks, attackers are increasingly exploiting the numerous blind spots. However, there are some actions security teams can take to better understand this trend and mitigate the impact of data proliferation.
Understand the use of apps in the workplace
To properly understand and protect the flow of data, security teams need to know where the data resides and who can access it. When sensitive files are spread across different cloud platforms, visibility is not very possible. However, when the data is distributed across multiple external applications to share and store it, problems arise. It is therefore advantageous to store sensitive files centrally using special applications.
The average company uploads, shares and creates over 138 external apps in total as part of its daily work. Many of them have similar functions, which poses a great opportunity for cyber criminals and a major problem for security teams.
Capitalize on growing app usage
As the use of apps in the workplace increases, cybercriminals gain access to applications that are not as secure as others. They can easily disguise themselves as such applications and infiltrate systems, making it more difficult for security teams to catch them individually.
This happens more often than one might think. Microsoft recently endured an extensive security investigation after employees uploaded sensitive credentials to GitHub that gave attackers access to the company's internal systems. The information was linked to an official Microsoft tenant ID and could be used to access other points in Microsoft's internal system.
Even though incidents like these actively encourage companies to focus more on their security, which includes transparency and monitoring of data. But once a person has penetrated the systems, it may already be too late.
Industry control over data dissemination
When it comes to limiting the spread of data in the workplace, organizations can consider several variables to mitigate this issue. For example, the corporate finance sector is much more stringent in terms of security controls and regulations. This restricts the use of other external applications in the workplace.
In other sectors, it is more difficult to limit data proliferation due to remote companies and less stringent industry regulations. Retail workers, for example, regularly use a variety of cloud applications in the workplace. In fact, 40% of retail users upload data to personal apps. Not only in this sector, but in all industries, it is important for IT security teams take proactive measures to minimize the risk of data proliferation.
Data Spread Limitation Practices
With the right security strategies and policies in place, security teams can confidently leverage cloud services and hybrid workspaces without worrying about data proliferation. This will look different for each company depending on factors such as size, security maturity, and goals. However, some basic security best practices remain constant, including:
1. Use single sign-on (SSO) for internal applications.
This enables central user management and ensures that if employees leave the company, you have a central place to remove their access to any cloud resources containing sensitive company data.
2. Configure controls to restrict the movement of sensitive data
Implement app and instance-specific security controls to prevent users from storing sensitive data in unauthorized locations. For example, security controls should be able to distinguish between a user's personal Google Account and corporate Google Workspaces account and prevent users from uploading sensitive data to the former. Policies can be configured based on a user's device, location, or risk.
3. Monitoring risky user behavior
User behavior analysis can complement the security controls described above by identifying risky user behavior, e.g. B. A sudden increase in downloads from managed apps and app instances or uploads to unmanaged apps and app instances. This behavior can be used to identify areas where tighter controls are needed or users who need more training.
4. Train employees
With the right policies and controls in place, the next step is to effectively communicate those policies to employees. Work closely with Human Resources to make safety training a regular part of onboarding and annual training. Make sure your policies include threats from departing employees to ensure they don't upload company information to personal apps before they leave the company. This practice can pose a major threat to businesses, especially at a time when layoffs are on the rise.
With the shift to hybrid working, it is becoming increasingly difficult to protect data, especially when it comes to the increasing use of cloud applications. Enterprises' journey to the cloud must be accompanied by strict security policies and an appropriate security infrastructure to deal with the uncontrolled use of apps and the resulting massive data proliferation. Hybrid working will only succeed if organizations, and particularly their security teams, take a proactive approach to limit data proliferation.
If you're looking to hire your team to help you protect your security to limit data exposure for a growing company, we're trusted experts in the I.T Infrastructure industry so contact us to gain help hiring the best specialists in the field. Check out how to contact us today by clicking here
by Dominik Bart
The year is slowly drawing to a close. While many are likely to be getting to overindulge and celebrate, there are a select few motivated job...
The year is slowly drawing to a close. While many are likely to be getting to overindulge and celebrate, there are a select few motivated job seekers out there, taking advantage of this time of year by getting those valuable applications ahead of the masses.
Many people suspend their job hunt over the holiday season thinking that this time of year is slow for hiring. In reality, it’s anything but.
There are boundless articles online that suggest you avoid the end of the year period for applying for jobs, with most reasons attributed to company personnel on leave over the popular holiday period, or general activity in most workplaces declining. These opinions often overlook the fact that now can be an excellent time to update your CV and start your job hunt.
This article will help to shed some light on the myths around end-of-year recruitment and explain why you should begin job hunting right now, rather than waiting until January.
Nevertheless, entering before the holiday rush might be very beneficial:
1. Businesses still have hiring budgets to spend
Many articles suggest that hiring budgets will be drained by the end of the year and you should wait for the new year to begin job hunting.
The truth is, heads of departments within any company will project what their hiring plans will be for Q1 - Q4 well in advance so that the yearly budget for hires can be approved by the Finance Director. Any hard-won hiring budget will need to be utilised at year-end to ensure a similar hiring budget can be secured for the following year.
Companies often have wish lists when it comes to positions they'd like to fill, but often those positions aren't listed during the course of the year because it's not clear whether there will be enough wiggle room in the budget to bring on another salary.
As the year draws to a close, however, the dollars left over from the original budget become clearer. This allows companies to consider opening up those positions that would be highly beneficial to them, but which they previously were unsure they'd be able to afford. Keep an eye out for these types of positions that open up as the end of the year looms.
2. You can be ready to start work in January
If you’re planning on leaving your job hunting until January, you may want to reevaluate that decision. January is often a very busy time of year for many companies and so managers may struggle to fit in interviews and training of new staff members.
The end of the year, especially just before the holiday period, can often be calmer in terms of workload, making it easier for teams to consider their recruitment for the year ahead. This makes it an ideal time for you to get in touch with companies and start applying for jobs.
Many employers would like to hire new starters using a carefully planned hiring process that would ensure the right candidate is sourced the first time. Training can be conducted following a well-structured induction plan that will allow for new starters to be brought up to speed quickly and effectively.
If recruitment takes place at the end of the year, you can then be fully trained and inducted, so you’re ready to hit the ground running in January, just like the rest of the workforce.
The benefit to you of applying now, rather than waiting until the new year, is that the hiring process can be much speedier. You can expect a lower applicant rate and clearer calendars make it easier for interviews to be scheduled with the hiring manager.
3. You can beat the competition
If you wait till January to start job hunting, along with everyone else, your CV will be joining the hoard of other job hunters’ CVs on a hiring manager’s desk.
Use the myth that job hiring stops during the festive holiday period to your favor. While everyone else waits to start their job search in January, start your job hunt in earnest now. Fewer applicants mean more chances of your CV being noticed and a quicker hiring process. So, make sure you craft the perfect CV, cover letter and get job hunting now.
4. Businesses don’t stop just because it’s Christmas
Christmas is a huge national holiday, and it is easy to believe that most employers will be winding down and not interested in conducting interviews during the festive season.
While this may have been the case in the past, in the digital 21st Century, businesses don’t come to an abrupt stop just because it’s Christmas. Resist your own temptation to stop completely over Christmas and New Year and start job hunting now.
Get job hunting now
Ignore the myth that hiring managers are not looking for candidates at the end of the year.
Businesses are still recruiting and are looking to get talent in place now for 2023. Put yourself ahead of everyone by updating your CV. You may even be able to secure a new job before the end of the year and start your new role in January – a new job for a new year. Get in ahead of the rush and apply for your next role now and contact us today. There's still time to brush up on those interview skills too, to really impress your future manager - see our tips on how to prepare for an interview here.
by Jamie Fitzgerald
IT service management often referred to as ITSM, is simply how teams manage the end-to-end delivery of IT services to customers. This includes all...
IT service management often referred to as ITSM, is simply how teams manage the end-to-end delivery of IT services to customers. This includes all the processes and activities to design, create, deliver and support IT services.
Information technologies now encompass and incorporate tasks and responsibilities from across the entire organisation. Managing these services is an ongoing challenge and customer expectations are high. ITSM is, therefore, necessary to coordinate countless tasks and processes, while ensuring that they are providing real value to the customer.
IT Departments and users often debate over the best framework, technology solution, implementation strategy, and other details. However, improvements in ITSM often require business executives and IT to take a step back and observe the opportunities for improvement and the associated challenges from a strategic perspective as they aim for their digital transformation goals. So how do we achieve these goals?
Define IT strategy
The first step is to sort out your vision and strategy. By developing a comprehensive roadmap for your ITSM initiatives, you are allowing provisions for potential improvements down the line. Find the success factors and define the KPIs, metrics, guiding framework, and desired state at every stage of implementation. This type of roadmap should cover all three domains of IT in service management, business operations as well as the enterprise-wide strategic vision:
Front-end IT: includes all software or hardware that is part of a user interface. Human or digital users interact directly with various aspects of the front-end program, including user-entered data, buttons, programs, websites and other features
Middle IT: The processes and operational workflows defined by frameworks and automation capabilities
Back-end IT: refers to parts of a computer application or a program’s code that allow it to operate and that cannot be accessed by a user. Most data and operating syntax are stored and accessed in the back end of a computer system.
Develop business-focused IT services
Service management allows business organisations to transform their operations by taking advantage of advanced technology solutions. Digital transformation requires technologies to be not only more efficient but also support the business-focused needs of the organisation. Understanding how It services are therefore delivered and how your users interact with the technology can help organisations map and correlate their ITSM strategies to business outcomes.
Hyper automation is defined as a business-driven, disciplined approach that organisations use to rapidly identify, vet, and automate as many business and IT processes as possible. Sophisticated technology solutions help create a digital twin of the ITSM organisation that is responsible for key ITSM tasks such as:
Hyper automation is all about continuous intelligence. In the domain of ITSM, it is focused on deriving insights from the IT environment, service delivery, and user behavior. The insights are then delivered in real-time and can be used across all subset domains of the ITSM organisation.
Consider customizations vs. off-the-shelf
Many organisations invest in new technologies and like to use them the way they come ‘out of the box’ or off-the-shelf. It departments generally prefer to use products in this way, since any customisation is likely to introduce integration concerns, complexity, and bugs – an operational and maintenance nightmare for IT.
However, if the technology is used ‘out of the box it doesn’t always materialize into tangible business value. Even the most well-defined technologies can and must be configured and often customized to suit the specifications and requirements of the business, its technology or the service they are providing.
Business leaders, IT executives, and other agents should therefore support efforts that ensure all ITSM technology investments have a positive impact on the business, despite the higher implementation of costs and resources incurred.
Prioritize and align governance
Organisations that are running on a tight budget, often forget or dismiss the importance of investing in governance areas. Inadequate governance gives rise to discrepancies between the planned ITSM framework and policy implementations – and what actually happens. As an example, users might find ways to bypass organisational protocols for using a new tool or product, due to convenience or to access technology capabilities lacking in the companies existing solution portfolio.
When this happens, it results in shadow IT and misalignment of IT service management resources to the business objectives.
Companies are able to avoid issues as such happening if they:
Adopt the right policies and framework guidelines in their work routine
Take advantage of the flexibilities of the framework implementation and alternate technology solutions through systematic approval from the IT
Overall, these methods will have to be tested out by organisations separately, to analyse what works for them. There are numerous best practices that might or might not work best for your organisation. If you are interested in seeing how we can help you find the best talent to set up your organisation's ITSM infrastructure, visit our client's page, or get in contact with us!
by Matthew Bell
In our world where there is a lot of travel, migration, union, and communication going on, there is no doubt that we are continuing to witness and...
In our world where there is a lot of travel, migration, union, and communication going on, there is no doubt that we are continuing to witness and experience cultural diversity. It is such an enriching experience, but there is no denying that such diversity can also be also challenging.
Many employers say that their biggest asset is their staff, and what often makes a great team is diversity. Everyone brings something unique and valuable to the table in different ways. Cultural diversity should be embraced, because with it comes a myriad of benefits.
What is cultural diversity?
Culture is considered to be the underlying values that direct how people behave. Cultural diversity in the workplace is a result of the practices, values, traditions, or beliefs of employees based on race, age, ethnicity, religion, or gender.
Economic globalization is one of the driving forces of cultural diversity in the workplace. The modern workforce is made up of people of different genders, ages, ethnicity, religions, and nationalities. Employers have realized that workforce diversity provides both material and intangible benefits. In order for employers to reap the benefits of cultural diversity in the workplace, they must communicate their commitment to addressing the challenges of a diverse workforce. Employers must be seen to be celebrating their employees’ diversity to avoid workplace issues, as awkwardness and hostility.
Why is cultural diversity important?
We’ve touched on the idea of the benefits cultural diversity offers, but equality and diversity are something that hasn’t just received lip service within the media. There’s been extensive research into its positive effects and the importance of business inclusivity.
Studies looking at why cultural diversity is important to give us solid stats to work from when thinking about its benefits. For instance, economically, research shows that the 43 most diverse public corporations were 24% more profitable than the S&P 500. Other studies show that almost 95% of directors agree that diversity brings unique perspectives.
Ultimately, workplace diversity and inclusion allow businesses to build teams that bring different viewpoints and talents to the mix, increasing innovation and driving higher revenues.
Six benefits of cultural diversity in the workplace
1. Cultural diversity helps develop and maximise skillsets
A culturally diverse workplace empowers people to develop their talents and skills. A range of ideas and expertise enables those to learn from a more diverse collection of colleagues.
It can also boost problem-solving capabilities and increase happiness and productivity. In an environment where all voices are heard, this spirit of innovation and encouragement to contribute can drive business success.
2. Cultural diversity improves the recruitment process
Surveys show that two-thirds of candidates cite diversity as an important consideration during a job hunt. By developing a strategy for cultural diversity, you can broaden your appeal to prospective employees, and reach out to more high-level candidates across the globe. Research shows that 67% of job seekers advised that a company’s diverse workforce is a key factor when evaluating job offers. These findings demonstrate that diversity is a key aspect when recruiting the best talent. Job seekers are aware of the importance of a diverse workforce and want to be part of a company that will value and appreciates their difference.
3. Cultural diversity can help you to retain talent
Aside from attracting a broader talent pool in the first place, cultural diversity is the key to building the ideologies of respect between company and employee, and cooperation. In turn, this makes you a more attractive proposition to valuable candidates making you stand out in the marketplace.
4. Cultural diversity improves your team’s creativity
When everyone in a company is from the same background, they’re likely to have similar ideas. In order to remain competitive, companies need new ideas and concepts. A diverse workforce brings unique perspectives on how to solve problems and innovate to gain a competitive edge. A more diverse workforce allows you to bring new ways of thinking into the business that can be applied in many different ways. By listening to each employee's voice and way of thinking, a company will no longer be pigeonholed in one direction.
A company that actively encourages diversity in the workplace will see more perspectives being discussed and more solutions being thought of than ever before. This can inspire employees to perform to the highest of their abilities.
5. Cultural diversity can help increase employee engagement
The best way to learn about other cultures and ethnicities is by talking to someone with that background. Research can only get you so far and has a far less personal touch. By communicating with someone with a different culture or background you not only gain first-hand knowledge, but also connect with someone directly.
Employees who engage with others about their background during lunches or out-of-hours drinks will feel better connected to a company, feel truly listened to, and in turn engage further with their colleagues and the business.
Employee engagement helps build trust, starting from the very top and moving all the way down throughout the company. Engagement is always positive for the company, it can lead to greater motivation, collaboration, and loyalty.
6. Cultural diversity will improve your company’s reputation
A company that employs people from all different types of cultures and backgrounds will be considered a good employer. This reputation amongst employees will elevate a company’s standing and attract more people to come and work there. A commitment to diversity demonstrates that a company values fairness and equality. These characteristics have a positive effect on its reputation with suppliers and consumers. A company that openly recruits the best candidates for a job, irrespective of which group they are in, will gain customer loyalty and a good reputation.
The importance of cultural diversity in the workplace can’t be understated. Having diverse employees increases the bottom line and also assists in staying on the right side of the law. Companies that have a clear diversity and inclusion policy (and are seen to enforce this policy) benefit from happier and more productive employees and a great reputation.
by Ben Makepeace
It might be challenging to find the perfect candidate for the job, and many various aspects must be taken into account. Here, we examine the effects...
It might be challenging to find the perfect candidate for the job, and many various aspects must be taken into account. Here, we examine the effects that experience, cultural fit, and certification may have on hiring decisions for the technology sector.
Professional credentials vary in terms of purpose, educational requirements, rigor and industry, and those who earn certification typically cite multiple benefits. At the top of the list are relevance and staying current, personal accomplishment, career advancement and marketability, and increased earnings.
Today, a wide range of independent organisations and IT vendors, such as Amazon, Cisco, CompTIA, and Microsoft, provide hundreds of IT certifications.
Certifications can cost up to several hundred pounds. Taking the CompTIA A+ certification exams (two are required), for example, costs a total of £233 as of June 2022. The Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) costs £588.
Although an exact relationship between certification and job performance is difficult to measure, surveys show that earning a credential increases certificants’ confidence in critical thinking and professional abilities. According to the Global Knowledge and Tech Republic 2021 IT Skills and Salary Report, employees do view certification as a worthwhile career investment. Two-thirds of respondents who were certified within the previous five years reported they felt efforts to obtain a certification were worth the additional commitment. The report also noted that more than half of the respondents said employers support and recognise the value certifications provide.
Numerous research has been done to support the idea that selecting people with professional certificates will be advantageous for hiring managers. A 2021 CompTIA research study aimed at gaining insight into how IT hiring managers evaluate job candidates and the role of certifications in the hiring process, found credentials, such as IT certifications, are factors in decision-making.
This preference for certification is largely based on improved effectiveness, as noted in the Global Knowledge 2021 IT Skills and Salary Report, which states that more than half of IT managers surveyed reported their staff was “more effective” or “significantly more effective” on the job after attaining certification.
Despite the points made above, there are still a number of reasons why IT certifications are not a reliable measure of an employee's performance.
The first of these is that the technology sector develops so quickly that, as a result of the market's shifting dynamics, a certification obtained the year before can become all but outdated the following year. Furthermore, since anybody may start a certification firm and issue certificates, the legitimacy of certifications has frequently been questioned.
The professional certification sector has been working hard in recent years to address concerns like test score validation, cheating, and other challenges that raise the question of whether a certification is, in fact, a reflection of the candidate's abilities at all.
Let's now think about the topic of experience. Without a doubt, while qualifications are helpful, nothing beats actual work experience.
According to a Foote Partners poll, experience far surpasses credentials because non-certified IT employees receive bigger bonuses than their less experienced, more certified peers. A hiring manager might judge a candidate's ability to use skills they have learned in the workplace based on experience.
Highlighting instances from the actual world shows that people can put their technical knowledge to use.
Contrary to what was previously stated, emphasizing experience also has disadvantages. Work experience can help someone get ready to perform certain tasks, but it does not mean they have learned anything.
An IT professional who has merely picked up skills on the job cannot determine whether the procedures learned at a company are "best practice"; they can only perform the task. As a result, people who have learned on the job may not be as valuable as those who have expertise and credentials since they may not be able to see the potential for development, which would lead to greater organizational efficiency.
For example, when programming an application, the code can be written in many different ways. An IT professional who is strictly learning on the job, can’t tell whether the processes learned at one organization is the ‘best practice’ for another. At the end of the day, their work may create a functioning application, but their approach to coding may be difficult to transfer to other companies.
The last aspect to take into account is cultural fit. After all, the hiring manager is going to spend a lot of time with the employee, therefore it's vital how they interact and come across throughout the interview process. Indeed, others contend that the most crucial element is cultural fit because, unlike talents, personalities cannot be changed.
LinkedIn claims that after three months, most employees are comfortable in their new roles. Personal attributes, on the other hand, are far more deeply embedded and cannot be altered; if they could, it would take more than three months to do so.
Sometimes, a candidate's work ethic, honesty, and openness to learning are valued more highly than any technical expertise they may have. For instance, if a solutions provider needed to add someone to their pre-sales team, would they rather hire a person with a great personality who is outgoing and positive to win business or a pre-sales guru with 15 years of experience who is so bored with the field that he struggles to muster a smile when speaking to potential new clients?
Furthermore, because few tasks are completed entirely in isolation, the formation of teams within organisations can have a huge impact. Teamwork is therefore seen as essential for delivering high levels of customer satisfaction.
Despite this, many argue that using a person's personality to evaluate their suitability for a profession is seriously wrong. Hiring managers typically need a few minutes to form a solid impression of a candidate's personality. Hiring based on selecting candidates who are "like-minded" can have a lot of negative effects. "Good fit" in an organisation might become "the same as," which causes recruiting managers to put people on IT teams more for their interpersonal skills than for any technical advantages they might have to offer.
The research seems to indicate that employing people only based on their credentials, backgrounds, or personalities has both advantages and disadvantages. In light of the research done for this post, I think it would be foolish to claim that there is only one "best-fit" hiring strategy.
Depending on a number of variables, a hiring manager may give each of the three dimensions more weight.
1) Keeping the hire's seniority in mind: When evaluating candidates for a junior support position, a hiring manager will give the applicant's personality a lot of weight. They will be looking for someone who is eager to learn, receptive to new ideas, and passionate about technological advancement.
2) The duration of the position: In contrast, the same recruiting manager will give personality much less weight when selecting a temporary senior engineer to implement a certain technology. This time, they will give more weight to the experience the applicant has gained thus far in his or her career.
The fact that many hiring managers in contemporary markets will not even consider candidates for a position if they do not hold specific certifications further complicates the situation. Accordingly, they contend that the two factors mentioned above are completely irrelevant if the candidate does not possess the necessary certification.
At Franklin Fitch all of our consultants are equipped to assist you through the hiring process and assess which role would be best suited for you, check out our opportunities available here, or alternatively speak to one of the consultants here.
by Dominique Lianos
Workplace inclusion helps employees of all ethnicities, backgrounds, religions, and sexual orientations thrive and feel safe in the modern workplace,...
Workplace inclusion helps employees of all ethnicities, backgrounds, religions, and sexual orientations thrive and feel safe in the modern workplace, but not only that. The best talent is attracted to and retained by diverse teams because they deliver greater results.
Developing diversity and inclusion initiatives at work is essential if a company wants to succeed in today's business climate. In order to thrive in the corporate world, you must have both because lacking one can create uproar. Diversity and inclusion may help a business in many ways, including attracting and keeping more top talent, fostering creativity, and increasing employee engagement.
Fostering diversity and inclusion strategies can sometimes be easier said than done in certain businesses, especially those that already are suffering from a lack of talent and a diverse workforce. Although having a diverse workforce can enable your business to become more creative and perform better, they can struggle to implement effective strategies that will help them do so.
Below, we look at 10 strategies on how to improve DEI in your workplace.
1. Using inclusive language
If you want to recruit more women into your organisation, you must use inclusive language in your job descriptions. Avoiding gendered language, such as using specific pronouns or masculine terms like dominant and challenging, can deter women and LGBT individuals from applying for your job openings. Not just in job descriptions, but also in other written communications, inclusive language should be used. In emails and letters, for instance, you should make sure to use inclusive language because people in the workplace will want to be addressed in the way they see fit.
2. Challenging unconscious biases
Being mindful of unconscious biases is a great idea since it will help you realise that even after implementing specific techniques inside your organisation, you will continue to view the world in a particular way. By challenging them and implementing successful tactics inside your organisation, you may help to eliminate any unconscious bias that the company may be experiencing. Unconscious bias in the hiring process is reduced by hiring managers receiving training, gender-neutral job descriptions, anonymized CVs, and a systematic interviewing procedure.
3. Educating leadership
Educating leadership and management and requiring them to attend diversity and inclusion programmes are both advantageous for a number of reasons. An organization's leadership must give a DEI plan room to grow and be held accountable for its success. The tech business is undoubtedly dominated by white men, and this is considered as one of the least diverse parts of a corporation. Second, leaders have a significant influence on the creation of corporate values and the selection of organisational strategy. Therefore, it is likely that company-wide implementation will be possible if diversity and inclusion goals are established via a top-down strategy.
One of the best diversity and inclusion methods to use is to talk about chances for mentorship that can assist your organisation attract and retain varied talent. Most women and members of underrepresented groups don't feel like they have the chance to advance, and as a result, they quit their jobs in the middle of their careers because they don't feel appreciated or challenged. Therefore, implementing a mentoring programme for people who wish to advance can aid employees in achieving personal growth and delivering success to the company. Having a mentor can aid someone in overcoming obstacles and advancing toward leadership or senior positions.
5. Cultural events
Retaining varied talent can be facilitated by designating a day to honour each of the ethnic groups that make up your organization's current diversity culture. Additionally, it guarantees that you are fostering inclusivity within your organisation because everyone will cherish and respect one another's nationality. Events like International Women's Day, Gay Pride, and the International Day of Persons with Disabilities should all be observed. By doing this, you may attract more talent by demonstrating to potential employees that your company values and promotes diversity and inclusion.
6. Diversity training
Giving your staff diversity training will increase their understanding of what makes a diverse and inclusive workplace. It is the ideal technique to show how each person can contribute to the success and growth of the company. Additionally, it teaches your staff that everyone is equal and that they should respect one another regardless of their age, gender, or race. This will not only assist your company in fostering more inclusive and varied tactics, but it may also inspire others to come up with fresh ideas for boosting workplace diversity.
7. Core company values
As long as your company values represent an inclusive workplace, communicating your fundamental principles can aid in attracting diverse talent to the tech industry. Before determining whether to apply for a job or not, candidates will always want to access and view your company's values. Today's workforce is seeking a great place to work with prospects for advancement and a healthy work-life balance. Therefore, displaying your inclusivity and diversity or showing how you are using diversity and inclusion techniques to advance will help you succeed when applying.
8. Create an environment that is suited to everyone
The leadership team and communication are primarily responsible for fostering a climate that is suitable for everyone. Leadership must be devoted to making sure that everyone in your organisation, at all levels, can operate in an inclusive environment. The working environment will be accommodating for everyone if new diversity and inclusion rules are communicated both internally and internationally and training is offered. Since workplace diversity is inevitable, it's crucial to be inclusive when establishing a welcoming workplace culture.
9. Listen to employees
One of the most important things a leader in an organisation needs to do is listen to the people. Although leadership roles will need to debate implementing diversity and inclusion policies, it is the employees who will gain or lose from such choices. A fantastic method to collect the opinions of employees on what they would want to see in their company is to create anonymous surveys for them to complete.
10. Involve employees in the hiring process
One strategy to improve diversity and inclusion within your organisation is to involve some employees in the recruiting process. Employees can provide you a more comprehensive perspective on what new hires might contribute, and they might identify skill sets that you would not. Employees will feel more appreciated and that their opinions matter when making critical decisions for the company if they are included in the hiring process.
Fostering workplace diversity and inclusion doesn’t just happen. You need to have a specific plan and devote the right resources to implementing changes that impact hiring and day-to-day team interactions. Employers can start by surveying existing employees to get a sense of their feelings and what can be done to improve DEI. Putting more effort into cultural programs will not only make the workplace a better environment; it will also improve productivity and add to the bottom line of the company in a positive way.
If you want to check our Inclusivity Infrastructure at Franklin Fitch then please click here to find out more about what we are doing.
by Oliver Boulton
Application tracking systems (ATS) are nowadays being frequently used by companies and recruiters to streamline their hiring process. There are...
Application tracking systems (ATS) are nowadays being frequently used by companies and recruiters to streamline their hiring process. There are multiple controversies as well as multiple praises to be found online about the system and its success rate. This system does allow recruiters to keep track of candidates throughout the recruiting and hiring process while having the system function on automated administrative tasks.
This means that the scanning and viewing of resumes are taken over by a system rather than the recruiter themselves. One can imagine that this stirs some controversy, as your skills and CVs are being reviewed and judged by technology (which has room for errors), rather than by humans.
Before identifying the positives and negatives of ATS, and determining whether they are more beneficial or harmful to companies hiring processes, we want to understand how they work.
4 basic steps to understanding how an ATS works:
1. A job requisition enters into the ATS. This requisition (CV) includes information about the candidate’s position, desired skills, past experience, etc.
2. The ATS uses this information to create a profile for the candidate
3. As applicants submit their CVs, the ATS sorts and rank them based on how well they match the company profile.
4. Hiring managers then quickly identify the most qualified candidates and move them forward in the hiring process.
Some key features which ATS operates:
- Resume parsing: The process of extracting data from resumes (contact information, work history, etc.).
- Advanced search: enables you to filter applicants by specific keywords.
- Candidate sourcing: Allows you to actively search for, identify and reach out to potential candidates.
- Advanced analytics and reporting: This allows you to generate detailed reports on job seekers, hiring trends, and other data.
- Ability to schedule interviews: By automating interviews, you won't have to waste time rescheduling, sending out reminders, or coordinating multiple calendars.
- Automation based on certain events and conditions: the ATS will only be triggered to do something if a specific scenario occurs.
All in all, an ATS seems too good to be true for recruiters. However, A study by Harvard business review revealed that 88 percent of recruiters felt that qualified candidates were ignored by an ATS because they did not match the exact criteria established by the job description. This leads us to question the effectiveness of ATS and whether it is more efficient, or if traditional methods of recruiting show more promising end results. To analyse this we will list the benefits and disadvantages of ATS and create a judgment upon the following statements.
1. Streamlines the hiring process
ATS software allows you to automate various tasks of the hiring process can save you a lot of time and free up your recruiting personnel for other high-value tasks. Posting to multiple job boards, tracking candidate applications, notifying candidates individually, and scheduling interview feedback can all be automated. Not only will it speed up the time it takes to do all of those tasks, but it will also increase the overall quality through standardization.
2. Resume and CV scanning
With recruiters who have to scan up to hundreds of resumes per role, even just scanning can take a lot of time. ATS software can be used to review applications and filter out candidates according to keywords and key searches based on the available position. Therefore, the number of resumes a recruiter has to review is a lot less, which opens up more time redirected to higher value items of the business.
3. Speeds up the recruitment cycle
Having candidates’ information centralized on a single platform gives recruiters access to organized information allowing them to review and compare candidates more easily and quickly, which leads to a lower cost-per-hire. All communications, including notes, interviewer ratings, cases, and more can be stored and viewed in one location, which simplifies and speeds up the evaluation process.
4. Reduce unconscious bias
As ATS is automated and runs on information and data rather than human conception, there is definitely a reduction in unconscious bias when starting the hiring process. This makes way for individuals to not be judged on appearances or any other external factors, and have more focus put on their skills and assets.
5. Enhance reporting and compliance
Keep management up-to-date on the candidate pipelines for each job and the effectiveness of different job boards. Easily capture track, and report voluntary EEO data, while remaining in compliance with the guidelines set forth by the EEO/OFCCP.
1. Job-Seekers do not like them
Studies have been conducted, identifying that 75% of clients use ATS, and 94% say that it improves the hiring process. However, this is a stark difference from what candidates are saying. They describe this type of hiring process as frustrating and full of bugs and glitches. On top of this, there is the argument that they aren’t sure their application will ever get reviewed by a human. Alongside this, most ATS also require the candidate to create a new account with the system, upload their resume and cover letter, and then also fill out exhaustive questionnaires that ask for the very same information in the resume. All in all, the user experience proves to be lacking and only aids the client.
2. Additional cost
The annual price tag of setting up an ATS isn’t presented as transparent as it can be. Some other costs that most ATS providers include which they don’t tell you about are:
-Implementation time and cost
-Integration with other systems which already exist in your company is time-consuming and resource-intensive
-Recruiters and upper management need to change their workflow to adapt to the new systems. Several times this is not embraced easily and proves to bring in a lot of challenges.
3. Possibility of filtering out optimal candidates
Applicant tracking systems use optical character recognition (OCR) to “read” documents like resumes and cover letters. These systems often fail, without you being notified. And when they do work, they look for cookie-cutter resumes that most closely match the wording of your job description. Therefore, recent college graduates, borderline candidates, career-switchers, and even people that just didn’t practice good resume SEO will be at a disadvantage. It will leave extremely qualified people behind and the loss of those candidates may very well offset the positive impact of this function of an ATS.
4. Prone to manipulation
It is a known fact that an ATS, just like any other tool, is open to manipulation. Candidates who are well-versed with the filtering technology of the Applicant Tracking Systems can misuse the same and take advantage of the recruitment procedure. Irrespective of whether the candidate is qualified or not, he/she can simply stuff a resume with the right set of keywords to get selected. Such manipulation of the ATS can be extremely detrimental to businesses and deserving candidates.
5. Use of keywords
Applicants can be dismissed simply because they don’t have the proper wording on their resume/application or they did not include the preferred industry keyword in their experience description.
ATSs can make the often-tedious practice of hiring more manageable and efficient. While potential hires may occasionally feel uneasy about the automated process, Applicant Tracking Systems can make it easier for those clients who have learned how to handle the automated system. Of course, as with many technologically based systems, removing some of the human judgment and leaving complex decisions to be made mechanically can result in an error.
The decision on whether or not to adopt an ATS rests on the specific needs, desires, and demands of the company. For instance, If the company has hundreds of applicants on a regular basis, then implementing an ATS might make sense. But if a company is hiring in a skills shortage, or wants to pay attention to detail when hiring the best talent, then an ATS would not be recommended. Furthermore, attention to detail is vital, which is what ATS is programmed to do, but including human emotional input and judgment when hiring is still an important aspect to have when interacting with candidates and clients.
If you are currently looking for a new position and do not want to be filtered out by an ATS, get in contact with us and talk directly to one of our recruiters. You can also visit our blog page for more topics on recruitment, IT, inclusive infrastructure, and more.
by Gareth Streefland
Today, cyberattacks are attempted every 40 seconds, and the number of ransomware attacks is increasing by 400% annually. That's why it's...
Today, cyberattacks are attempted every 40 seconds, and the number of ransomware attacks is increasing by 400% annually. That's why it's imperative that companies and businesses take cybersecurity very seriously. But have you checked off all the boxes on the checklist to make sure you are truly secure? Do you know which data assets/systems are most vulnerable, and do you know the potential financial cost of a security breach? These are questions that need to be asked in a business of any size. That's why every company should conduct an IT risk assessment.
What is an IT risk assessment?
A risk assessment is about identifying the threats to which your information systems, networks and data are exposed. By assessing the potential consequences a company could face, it is able to prepare in advance in the event of a security breach. These assessments should be conducted on a regular basis, such as annually or when the company experiences a major change.
Cyber or IT risk can be defined as any risk of financial loss, disruption, or damage to an organization's reputation due to a failure of its information technology systems. Examples include theft of confidential information, hardware damage and resulting data loss, malware and viruses, compromised credentials, corporate website failure, and natural disasters that can damage servers.
Why do you need to conduct an IT risk assessment?
Smaller businesses in particular may think that conducting an IT risk assessment would be too big a task. But in reality, it is something that should not be missed. In order to ensure the well-being of a business, it is always good to take extra measures and make sure that it is protected. Some reasons to conduct a risk assessment are:
- It gives you a detailed list of vulnerabilities that need more attention and resources.
- It increases productivity because your security team can respond directly to problems, rather than just reacting to random issues that arise. Risk assessments also show you which areas your team should focus more on and which can be completed at a later date.
- It improves communication across the organization because the security team has to interact more with other employees in different areas. Not only does this foster collaboration, but it also creates an understanding among other employees of the importance of cybersecurity and how they can contribute to security and compliance goals.
How to conduct an IT risk assessment: a comprehensive overview
To start, you can conduct either a quantitative or qualitative risk assessment. However, it is most effective if you use both to achieve the best results.
1. Identify and prioritise assets
First, create a comprehensive list of all the company's information assets. This includes servers, customer data, sensitive documents, trade secrets, etc. As a technician, you must communicate effectively with upper management to determine which assets are important and which are not. After creating a list, gather all the necessary information about software, hardware, data and other relevant information for each asset. This will create a detailed list of all the items to focus on.
2. Identify threats and vulnerabilities
A threat is something that can cause harm to your organization. There are 3 types of threats:
- Natural disasters.
Some natural disasters can destroy data, servers and devices. Pay attention to whether any of these risks apply to your assets and whether they need to be changed to ensure security.
- Hardware failure
No matter how large or small your business is, hardware failure should be considered. Make sure all assets are up to date and not at risk of crashing.
- Malicious behavior
Disruption, interception and impersonation can target your data and servers. Determine which areas are most at risk from outside malicious behavior.
3. Analysis of technical and non-technical controls and determination of the probability of an incident.
Technical controls include encryption, intrusion detection mechanisms, and identification/authentication solutions. Security policies, administrative measures, and physical/environmental mechanisms must also be analyzed and fall under non-technical controls. These controls must be used to assess the possibility that a vulnerability can be exploited. This can be assessed using simple categories that rank the potential occurrence from high, medium, and low.
Assessing the impact the threat could have also helps prioritize your security risks across teams. You are now able to delegate which issues require immediate action and which can wait until they are resolved.
4. Design controls
Once you have prioritized and detailed all of the potential risks, you can begin to create a plan to mitigate the most pressing risks. Senior management and IT should be heavily involved in this part of the assessment to ensure that the controls address the risks and align with the overall plan and goals of the organization. You may also need to engage professional services to develop a new set of controls. Don't be afraid to enlist the help of IT and security experts!
5. Document the results
Risk assessment reports can be very detailed and complex, or they can be a simple overview of risks and recommended controls. Ultimately, your report will reflect both your audience and your organization's information security posture. Documenting all findings and their analysis is intended for senior management to communicate the issues and methods to address them in a clear and concise manner.
It should also be noted that a risk assessment as such should not be a one-time exercise, but an ongoing process. As your system environment changes, so do the chances for potential security breaches, data loss, etc.
by Leonie Schaefer
A personal brand has been a buzzword for some time now. So does that make it an actual ‘thing’?
In reality, it’s just a snazzy...
A personal brand has been a buzzword for some time now. So does that make it an actual ‘thing’?
In reality, it’s just a snazzy word for your reputation. Everyone has a reputation whether online or offline – some people are known for being experts in a particular field, others are known for having a humorous approach to how they communicate and in other cases, it’s a combination of several things. It really is who you are.
Having a solid and respected personal brand is beneficial at the best of times, but in this almost exclusively digital world, it could be the difference between nabbing your dream job and not. Being able to showcase your personality and allowing people to “get to know” before they meet you can be a huge advantage.
Your personal brand could be your biggest tool for ensuring you stand out. If you are an expert in something (and everyone is an expert in their chosen career, right?) or feel passionate about a topic, trend or issue you can use your personal brand to showcase yourself.
On that note, we’re here to give you five tips on how to build a successful personal brand.
Why and what you do are both explained through your own brand. Developing a personal brand helps others feel more at ease and like they know you. It builds trust with your target audience, staff, future customers, or anybody else you interact with. Additionally, having a personal brand makes it apparent what your true intentions are, which is crucial when establishing trust.
A person's connection with you can be facilitated by personal branding. You can also narrow your focus to those who work in your field. Personal branding has no boundaries. It is not limited to the online world.
As your reputation grows, you will be exposed to more people, which will have a good influence and generate excellent referrals. You are, after all, the finest at what you do. Create a network of people you value and care about, and establish connections with them. They will begin to care about you if they see that you are concerned about them.
When recruiters/hiring managers are looking over job applications, LinkedIn is likely to be one of the first places they’re going to look to verify your level of expertise. Do you claim to be an expert in cloud migration? If you’ve recently written, shared, or engaged with an article about it, that’s a pretty good indication that you know what you’re talking about.
Doing the above is a great way to virtually network. Given that we can’t network in person yet, engaging with others online and adding value to their conversations is a great way to get your name out there and maximise your connections. You don’t always need to be the conversation starter but you should try and be involved in them. You never know who might have the next job opportunity for you!
Personal branding allows you to establish your name as a thought leader or expert in your field. It helps in gaining recognition in your area of specialty and is able to build a lasting impression on those you come into contact with both online and offline. Admiration, respect, and trust will go a long way with a person's name.
This might go without saying, but LinkedIn is the perfect space to be able to show your level of expertise and knowledge. Write articles, make videos, record podcasts, host a virtual workshop, engage with content from others, have an opinion – you get the idea.
If you’re an IT infrastructure professional, make sure your content is focused on this space alone. You don’t want to be known as someone who has an opinion on everything, but you do want to be known as someone who has an opinion on all things IT infrastructure – you want to be that guy. But don’t be robotic, be you, and make sure your personality shines through.
As you build your personal brand, you'll become more confident. The strengths and positive traits you share in public will give you confidence. However, it's critical to keep in mind that everyone is a human.
Your network might respond very well to your hardships and difficulties. A strong personal brand will highlight your personal qualities and point you in the direction of how and where to apply them.
This is the big one. A personal brand comes from passion, skills, goals, and values. It will help you grow from something you believe to something you live out day to day. This isn't a chance for you to create something you're not. Nobody wants to meet your fake persona. It's so easy to do when we compare ourselves to others, but people want to meet YOU.
Do you think you’ve got an awesome personal brand? We’d love to see it! If you need help building your own personal brand, or have any other ideas on ways to do this, feel free to get in touch and speak to one of our consultants here.
by Martin Rennison
Ransomware is one of the biggest cybersecurity issues on the Internet and one of the biggest forms of cybercrime facing businesses today. It involves...
Ransomware is one of the biggest cybersecurity issues on the Internet and one of the biggest forms of cybercrime facing businesses today. It involves the creation of malicious software that encrypts files and documents on a PC up to an entire network and its servers. Those affected are left with few options: They can either pay a ransom to get their encrypted files back, restore the data from their backups, or hope that they can decrypt them themselves.
Ransomware attacks start very quickly, sometimes even with someone in an organization clicking on a seemingly innocuous attachment and then encrypting the system's files. Much larger ransomware campaigns, however, use software exploits and vulnerabilities in software to access files. The attackers secretly scan the network until they can control as much as possible before encrypting all the data they can. Some attackers also publicly announce that they are holding corporate data hostage. They even publish the data on the Internet until the company pays the ransom to get it back. Because of the simplicity and multitude of these incidents, ransomware is now considered the most immediate cybersecurity threat to businesses and a problem that needs to be taken more seriously.
How did ransomware evolve?
Early ransomware was a relatively simple construct, using a simple code that mainly changed the names of files, making it easy to defeat. However, this evolved into a new form of cybercrime that slowly developed into advanced code that targeted corporate networks and ordinary Internet users. One of the most successful types of ransomware at the time was police ransomware, which attempted to extort victims by claiming that the PC had been encrypted by law enforcement. This way, victims were supposed to be tricked into paying the ransom, thinking that it was the police who demanded the ransom. Meanwhile, they were actually criminals who took advantage of innocent people. However, at that time, their systems were not that good, and users could simply restart their computers, after which the message disappeared. However, criminals have learned from this approach, and most ransomware programs now use advanced cryptography to truly lock down a PC or network and the files on it.
How much will a ransomware attack cost you?
The immediate costs associated with ransomware depend on the hackers themselves. But after those initial costs, which can run into the millions, money is also lost if the company can't do business. Every day, perhaps even every hour, revenue can be lost if the network is unavailable. If the company decides not to pay a ransom, hiring a security company would also incur additional costs. In some cases, these costs may be even higher than the ransom demand, but companies would rather give their money to security companies than to criminals. There is also a risk that customers will lose trust in the company due to poor cybersecurity and look elsewhere.
Why are small businesses targeted by ransomware?
Smaller businesses are more likely to be targeted because they tend to have poorer cybersecurity practices than larger organizations. Many people believe that because they are so small, they are less likely to be targeted. However, for cybercriminals, any money they can capture is good money.
What do Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies have to do with the rise of ransomware?
The rise of cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin has increased the activity of cybercriminals, as they can use this type of malware to receive payments secretly. This way, there is no risk of authorities identifying the perpetrators. Many cybercriminal ransomware groups even offer "customer services" to teach victims how to use cryptocurrencies. This is because many victims do not know how to transfer the ransom to the perpetrator. Some companies even hoard some cryptocurrencies in case they get infected and need to pay quickly in Bitcoin to get their files back.
How can you prevent a ransomware attack?
Most hackers start by exploiting insecure Internet ports and remote desktop protocols. Therefore, one of the most important measures an organization can take to prevent this is to ensure that ports are not opened to the Internet if they are not necessary. However, if they are necessary, the company should ensure that they are protected with complex credentials. Applying multifactor authentication to these accounts can also serve as a barrier against attacks. Ensuring that the network is updated with the latest security updates should also be done, as hackers will attack commonly known vulnerabilities. Employees should also be trained on how to recognize attacks via email, as many attacks target employees who don't know any better. Antivirus software can also be downloaded to the PC to avoid potentially malicious files.
Ransomware and the Internet of Things
As much as the Internet of things improves connectivity, they have a bad reputation when it comes to security. As more and more of this type of technology comes to market, it also creates more attack opportunities for cybercriminals. This can lead to hackers taking your connected home or even your connected car hostage. The shocking thing is that even medical devices can be hacked, putting human lives at direct risk. There are also constant warnings that the growth of smart cities could be tempting for cyber attackers.
Because ransomware is constantly evolving, it's vital that your employees understand the threat it poses and that organizations do everything they can to avoid infection. This is because ransomware can be crippling and decryption is not always possible.
In the ever-changing world of InfoSec, Franklin Fitch ensure that we have the main areas of focus covered in terms of our technical expertise and experience, please click here to find out more information about the current vacancies available.
by Beth Marron
Ashleigh Ainsley is the co-founder of Colorintech, the UK's leading non-profit focused on Diversity and Inclusion in technology backed by...
Ashleigh Ainsley is the co-founder of Colorintech, the UK's leading non-profit focused on Diversity and Inclusion in technology backed by Google, Microsoft, Facebook, Atomico, and eBay. Throughout his career, Ashley has held many senior roles within the tech industry and has been continuously recognised for his industry influence.
More recently, Ashley has successfully been named on the UK’s top 100 BAME technology leaders list by the Financial Times, has been featured in Forbes 30 under 30, and voted as one of BBC 1Xtra's future figures for the history in honour of Black History Month 2022.
We spoke with him in an interview to learn more about the value of racial diversity in technology and to find out why he created his organisation after observing a lack of diversity in the tech firms he had previously worked for. We also discuss how he is promoting diversity in the UK tech sector, how you can help reduce the digital skills gap, and what businesses can do to foster an inclusive workplace culture and hire and retain a more varied pool of talent from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups.
Could start with you telling me about who you are and your background.
My name's Ashleigh Ainsley, I'm the Co-Founder of Colorintech, which is a not-for-profit based here in London. I set it up about five years ago, with my co-founder called Deon Mackenzie, with the objective to try and get more people from underrepresented backgrounds into tech. We do that by running programs, bringing out lots of content and several different types of events to bring our community of over 20,000 people together, to achieve that objective. I've previously worked for Google, and KPMG alongside some advisory work. I studied Geography at Oxford University and grew up in London.
You've held many senior roles within the tech industry. Was there a point which inspired you to enter the tech industry and was there a break that allowed you to enter?
To be honest, I've only ever really worked in the tech industry. If I go back to my background, I grew up in a diverse part of London and I didn't really see the world because I wasn't financially able to, when I was younger, I effectively just assumed the rest of the world was as diverse as where I lived. When I went to Oxford University and discovered it wasn't diverse, I was like, whoa, okay, this is, the microcosm of an element of society, but surely like the real world wasn't really like that. Then I went to Google, having got a role because I went to Oxford, frankly. I love the company, it's a great organization, but you know, it’s the same across the whole industry, I could have gone to Microsoft, I could have gone to Facebook, and it will have all been the same. It wasn't as diverse as the broad number of employees that they have. Whether that’s gender, whether that's ethnicity, whether it's a disability. That's in all companies, they needed to do a lot more than what was being done at the time. I then went to a startup after that and everywhere I've been, it's been the same, frankly. So, there wasn't one moment, I'd argue that there's never not been the moment if that makes sense.
You are the co-founder of ColourinTech, which is an organisation orientated around increasing access, awareness, and opportunities in underrepresented groups in the technology industry, tell us about how this came about and why it was important for you to do?
Fundamentally, if we don't improve the diversity of the tech industry, we're probably going to build products, services, and tools and use them in a way that excludes people, for moral and social reasons, and probably isn't the best thing, but also, has real-world ramifications for productivity, equity and frankly just the function of the economy. If we build tech that can't be used or understood by a wide variety of people, then they're probably not able to take advantage of the benefits of that and that's just got an economic consequence to it, let alone a moral one. Essentially, if we build bad products, bad services, bad tools, that's not really a good thing to be doing. You know, I, I don't think any business would go be happy with this, however, this ultimately is what will happen if we don’t have representation of the entire community.
From that perspective, it is obvious that more work needs to be done, as evidenced, for instance, by the fact that, according to technical data, the percentage of racial and ethnic minorities in the UK workforce is just 20% overall and only 15% in the technology sector. Although it's not as bad as it once was, there is still work to be done.
There is a lot going on and a lot of companies are trying to move forward and are taking diversity and inclusion a lot more seriously. But do you think that the tech industry is moving in the right direction in terms of making it more accessible?
To be fair I think that the tech industry is in a way, probably one of the more pioneering companies in this fundamentally. It reports quite widely and has been doing that for some years in the USA, however, we don't see that necessarily in Europe in the same vigor. They spent a lot of time and energy hiring people and trying to create more inclusive and welcoming work environments because ultimately that's what talent wants and if they don’t do it then they don't get the best people. From that perspective yes, I do think it is progressive in making it more accessible and making better changes than some industries that we see.
That being said, there's clearly there's more to be done; there's a heterogeneous picture across the tech industry. As I mentioned, I used to work at Google or work with them, so I know that they do a lot of work and spend a lot of time and energy on this, whereas there are a lot of companies that do far less and that's not right. Give people credit where it's due, but for instance, I read the UN report which states that the gender gap has gone backward across society and female representation in terms of the pay gap and in positions in business it’s going to take another 132 years for the gender gap to totally close. Realistically my children and probably their children won't see that, and I think; how are we in this situation? And the broader point is therefore if we people just continue to do what they're doing now, it won't make enough of a difference.
Within the tech sector what are the primary reasons for companies stopping them from attracting diverse talent and what can they actually do to start attracting more ethnic minorities?
In some instances, companies have never actually made an effort to do anything in this space. Look at it just as a business challenge. You've got a consumer segment and if your potential market and customers aren't buying your product, what would you do to them? You'd probably make sure your product works for them and is marketed to them. It’s very similar for talent, and there's a range of companies out there that have never done anything to that extent. Why would they expect anything different, they’ve not created an environment where people evangelize about them in the workplace. They say it's a great place to work and they have representation of individuals who are diverse in their companies however, we generally see retention rate, especially for black colleagues is particularly low.
This is probably because they don't like where they are, not because they are less qualified to execute the positions. There are still issues, and I believe that there have been instances of sexism, homophobia, racism, and discrimination in the workplace. I believe generally that the workplace represents society as well, and our society has these problems. Again, I believe that businesses that wish to portray themselves as existing in a bubble or safe haven free from the influences of these problems must confront and resolve these problems to ensure that they have processes in place, that they communicate effectively, that they have values, and that you are aware of what tolerance is.
Organisations haven't done that. Organisations haven't spent a lot of time, energy, or effort really engaging with the communities or people outside of their own networks. It’s been years of benefiting people who refer people like the.
Take a simple reward scheme, you refer somebody into a role, that by itself, could be a good or a bad thing, but does the same effort or reward come into encouraging or incentivizing employees to interact or meet new people that they don't already know? If they find somebody or find an organization that might enable them to, reach new people, whether that's talent or consumers is that reward? In a lot of organisations, it's not, so then you think, why would we do it if no incentives are there? Do leaders have diversity targets linked to their promotion, their pay, and their rewards? In the most progressive organisations you do see that, in those who aren't, you don't. So, you know, it's always nice to have, never essential, if it is good for business, then it should be treated, that way.
We talk a lot in the industry about the attraction of ethnic minorities into the tech industry and companies, However, when we look at the statistics, they are significantly lower based on retention and progression of this talent. Do you think that sometimes it can be seen as a diversity tick box exercise for companies, for example, if you hit hiring four diverse people into your team, you will then get a promotion?
I think there are a couple of things to that. The system needs to be cohesive. For context on that, you can't just reward and incentivize hiring without thinking about how that relates to retention and enabling people within the organization to thrive.
You can't just have a tap, turn it on and not put the plug in the sink. From that perspective, you need to think about it a bit more cohesively. You also need to not incentivise the tick box. We've seen instances in the USA where, you know, loads of people had targets to present a diverse shortlist or something similar so therefore you incentivise those recruiters to frankly, waste people's time by ringing them up for roles that they were never able to get or seriously considered for. Just so that they tick the box and say we've spoken to 50% women, or we've spoken to 20% ethnic minorities just so they can say they've done it when what’s the result of the decision.
While that's helpful, because at least these people are getting the opportunity to potentially get the information or even to be involved in the conversations, if that's just optical and just a tick-box, and is that real genuine progress? I don't want someone to waste my time interviewing me for a role that I've got no prospect of getting and saying that that's an opportunity for me when it's not. We need to make sure we're rewarding and incentivising the right types of behaviour. Not just behaviour.
So, in terms of addressing the issue digital skills gap, if we look to the beginning of the pipeline in terms of creating pathways into tech. Are there enough people from minorities coming through from choosing STEM subjects at school, and choosing technology-focused degrees at university?
There are three stages, in my opinion. What are we doing with the talent we already have? Accordingly, 40% of my friends and those who are like me are unemployed today, just as I was around 10 years ago when I was a young black man in London. That has now spanned the entire spectrum. You are therefore still more likely to be unemployed even after taking into account economic outcomes, degree class, and other factors. Making ensuring part of the available working capital in terms of human capital is used efficiently could be a simple equitable solution—I say simple, but it's not as simple as me saying it. Some people were able to get employment, work their occupations, and do them very effectively. Before we even think about how do we address the pipeline? We need to know if we can stop the pipeline from leaking.
Some of the people who are still seeking employment or who are working in positions they are not necessarily qualified for may need more training or skill development. I'm not arguing that everyone is the finished product, but when you're paying someone less than the average income, it might be simpler, more affordable, and more effective to invest in that for an additional three or six months. Ten years later, you hire highly expensive recruiters since your board is concerned as to why you can't locate enough diverse people. There is long-term thinking regarding that.
The second point, in my opinion, is that while there are more opportunities than there are people who are fully qualified to fill them, we are aware that there is a talent shortage. We are not preparing our youth, particularly those attending universities. I have a good understanding of the industry because I serve on several advisory boards, and I can see that many new graduates lack the necessary training, instruction, assistance, coaching, mentoring, and support to help them secure the roles or some of the hard skills that may need to, to, to be fit.
And I believe that a more extensive discussion about who and what our educational system is for, as well as how to best make it effective for the goals we have for it, is necessary. Great if the goal is to prepare people for academic careers. But if students don't wind up in academics, should we be promoting and allowing them to pursue those kinds of careers? I think they then have an issue about how you improve the quality of the pipeline.
The third thing I'd suggest is probably to go back to the beginning and ask: What are we teaching the pipeline? Less than a quarter of computer science graduates are women, as you may be aware. From where does that begin? There is probably not much of a gender disparity when you ask people in primary school whether they like math in English or physics or chemistry, but by the time you reach the end of GCSEs, the figures are pitiful in comparison to the men.
Therefore, I believe that as a society, we must address this issue while also improving the educational value of our curriculum. Teachers' abilities need to be improved. We need to encourage young people to recognise that, well, whatever it is, there are enormous chances open for entrepreneurs should they perhaps study any of these things. We need to improve the subjects taught and the applicants for such courses. And it begins very early on. But again, we don't really have any of those discussions about that.
What advice would you give to anyone who wants to get involved in the tech industry?
Before learning anything about them, they should ask themselves, "Where do they feel they can add value?" Tech offers a wide range of opportunities. You might say, "I want to study law, but I'm interested in intellectual property. If you work in technology, for example, you can be a software developer who wants to really improve user interfaces for people. You could be a designer or a recent graduate in sales, for example. I think the first thing is don't rule tech out as an industry just because it sounds like tech, you don't have to be, like Mark Zuckerberg or Bill Gates to be part of the industry and if you are one of them and you like them, that's fine as well.
The next step, in my opinion, is to consider what you can be doing and how you fit into that structure to contribute value. You have the chance to demonstrate that from there. If you're an engineer and you want to be building things, why don't you build some stuff in your spare time, put it on GitHub, get some feedback, and then use what you've learned in your portfolio to talk about what you're doing in your application? The number of students and young people I see who don’t really surprise me because the ones that do are almost always successful. It's important to identify areas where you can provide value and then consider ways to show others that you can do so. If you can do this, others will be more likely to give you a chance since they will see your enthusiasm, initiative, and aptitude. In the end, it all comes down to demonstrating your eagerness to learn. You won't know everything when you first start, but most employers are prepared to take a chance on someone who is eager to learn.
You are also the organizer of Black Tech Fest which is a chance to bring together a variety of leaders, creators, and change-makers to create access to black talent which takes place during Black History Month. Tell me about the inspiration behind the organization of this and why you chose to do it during this period?
In reality, black tech began as a reflection of corporate gaslighting. When we were starting this, we were doing it before its fashionable Diversity and inclusion are topics that people now want to debate, but five years ago, attitudes toward the topic were different.
People were criticising them instead of investigating why there weren't any places in companies for underrepresented groups like minorities, women, disabled people, or, you know, sexuality. The attitude was we are inclusive, and we are welcoming. If these individuals don't exist, it's more likely that they haven't applied, chose to leave, or weren't the proper "fit" for the organization.
We said, "Hold on." We obviously needed to expand that discussion. Part of this was due to people claiming that there aren't many black people working in the field; however, this isn't supported by any data. We were surprised by these assertions because perhaps there aren't that many black people in tech that we could employ.
You probably already know this based on anecdotes, but according to research, 15% of the industry is made up of people from racial or ethnic minorities. If you select a hundred persons, 15 of them will come from an ethnic minority background, proving that it is not at all unusual.
We wondered how we could assemble all these individuals to demonstrate our existence. How do we fundamentally and truly celebrate what is happening? How can we support what they're doing, rather than discussing being a woman or a person of colour in the tech industry, let's just talk about what we all get paid to do and how excellent we are at it and a chance to celebrate it as well.
We want to be able to celebrate being an amazing leader or let's just celebrate being an incredible engineer and normalize. It's the fact that this shouldn't be particularly different to, in the same way, that any other conference would have great exceptional people getting together to celebrate.
It’s taking place during Black History Month. Did you, why did you choose to do it because of the celebration of black history month and wanting to obviously showcase that?
Yes, that's true. It was unquestionably planned because, as we said, at that moment, people's attention is focused mostly on what is happening in the black community. Yeah. We wanted to take advantage of the chance to celebrate, to display, and, well, it just seemed right. Time of year to, really promote, really promote that; who knows; in the future, uh; you know; we might do it at that moment.
A huge thank you to Ashleigh Ainsley for dedicating his time to speak to us for this interview. If you were interested in getting involved with Colorintech or Black Tech Fest be sure to check out their website. If you would like to check out Franklin Fitch's Inclusive Infrastructure click here.
by Ben White
The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Jeremy Hunt, has chosen to scrap the plans to repeal the Off-payroll IR35 Reforms, which Kwasi Kwarteng previously...
The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Jeremy Hunt, has chosen to scrap the plans to repeal the Off-payroll IR35 Reforms, which Kwasi Kwarteng previously announced in his mini-budget on 23 September 2022.
The Growth Plan had set out steps to take the complexity out of the tax system and identified the necessity of repealing the 2017 and 2021 off-payroll working rules (IR35 Reforms).
The Conservatives Growth plan indicated that repeal would "free up time and money for businesses that engage contractors, that could be put towards other priorities." And that it "also minimises the risk that genuinely self-employed workers are impacted by the underlying off-payroll rules."
The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Jeremy Hunt, has chosen to scrap the plans to repeal the Off-payroll IR35 Reforms, which Kwasi Kwarteng previously announced in his mini-budget on 23 September 2022.
The Growth Plan had set out steps to take the complexity out of the tax system and identified the necessity of repealing the 2017 and 2021 off-payroll working rules (IR35 Reforms).
The Conservatives Growth plan indicated that repeal would "free up time and money for businesses that engage contractors, that could be put towards other priorities." And that it "also minimises the risk that genuinely self-employed workers are impacted by the underlying off-payroll rules."
Hunt, who took up the role of chancellor on Friday, said this morning that the IR35 reforms would be going ahead. “The government has today decided to make further changes to the mini-Budget,” the Chancellor said. “We will reverse almost all the tax measures announced in the growth plan three weeks ago that have not started the Parliamentary process.
“We will no longer be proceeding with the reversal of off-payroll working reforms [IR35] introduced in 2017 and 2021.”
In moves announced via a pre-recorded video instead of parliament in a bid to calm markets, the newly installed chancellor announced that most of its financial plans had been dropped. This includes the planned lowering of the basic rate of income tax from 20 to 19 per cent, set for introduction in April. Hunt said this will now not be introduced until “economic conditions allow”.
It had already been announced that planned increases to the rate of corporation tax and abolishing the highest rate of income tax would be dropped.
Hunt said today that a Treasury-led review will be carried out into the government’s support package for household and business energy bills beyond April next year.
Reforms to IR35, introduced in April 2021, require operatives routinely working with the same contractors to be counted as PAYE staff, or face action from HMRC.
The changes were introduced as a crackdown on tax avoidance, but critics claimed they would force many out of self-employment and reduce incomes.
They were also linked to a Whitehall drive to increase the number of direct employees in the construction sector, driven by the government and the Construction Leadership Council.
However, they were criticised for hitting the income of the self-employed and adding to the burden on employers.
Reversing the reform was one of the leadership campaign promises made by prime minister Liz Truss. The 2021 reforms will now remain in place.
Hunt said the government changed its tax plans “to ensure the UK's economic stability and to provide confidence in the government's commitment to fiscal discipline”.
He added: “Instability affects the prices of things in shops, the cost of mortgages and the values of pensions. There will be more difficult decisions, I’m afraid, on both tax and spending as we deliver our commitment to get debt falling as a share of the economy over the medium term.”
Departmental spending will be cut, he added, in order to “protect the most vulnerable” and help the government deliver “our mission to go for growth”.
Andy Chamberlain, director of Policy at the Association of Independent Professionals and the Self-Employed (IPSE), slammed the “spineless decision”.
“Today’s announcement will be a huge blow to thousands of self-employed contractors and the businesses they work with,” he said. “The reforms to IR35 have created a nightmare for businesses seeking to engage talent on a flexible basis, while simultaneously forcing individuals out of business altogether.”
He added: “Businesses that were looking forward to an era of less complexity and less cost will have had those hopes dashed today. Our fear is this decision will lead to yet more work being offshored to other territories and more people being forced to work through unregulated umbrella companies. The supposedly pro-business Conservative government has sent out a clear message today – it does not support people who work for themselves.”
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by Dane Keenan
Franklin Fitch is announced as the winner of the Best Recruitment Company to Work For (£5m to £20m) at the Recruiter Awards!
Franklin Fitch is announced as the winner of the Best Recruitment Company to Work For (£5m to £20m) at the Recruiter Awards!
After being shortlisted for three awards, it was a huge honour to walk away with the award for Best Recruitment Company to Work For, especially given that we pride ourselves on being people- focused.
We were pleased to be recognised for our work to address diversity within our industry. We’re proud to run our Inclusive Infrastructure campaign, where we actively promote diversity and inclusion in our interaction with candidates and clients, as well as the way we run our business. We are providing a platform for those working within or interested in IT Infrastructure to share their experiences with us and to come up with possible solutions together.
‘Absolutely delighted to be announced as the winner of the Best Recruitment Company to work for 2022 Recruiter Awards, genuinely surprised and humbled by this accolade’, says David Annable, our Founder and CEO. ‘I'm very proud of our awesome people, it's their dedication that makes this possible. Supporting our community and seeing our values enacted daily, it is a true pleasure to lead Franklin Fitch.’
We have ambitious growth plans for our offices across Europe and the US. If you’re interested in joining the Best Recruitment Company to Work For then check out our opportunities here!
by Charlotte Drury
“Mental health” refers to your overall psychological well-being. It includes the way you feel about yourself, the quality of your...
“Mental health” refers to your overall psychological well-being. It includes the way you feel about yourself, the quality of your relationships, and your ability to manage your feelings and deal with difficulties. Anyone can experience mental or emotional health problems — and over a lifetime, many of us will.
You may have noticed that we're making huge strides in destigmatising mental illness, and that's great. The importance of treating your mental health as you would your physical health is a pretty well-accepted principle. It's becoming less taboo to talk openly about therapy and mental illness
This year, on World Mental Health Day, we've pulled together some of the most impactful and least intimidating ways to take care of your mental health so that it becomes something we do—not just something we talk about.
There is no health without mental health. To help with day-to-day stress and challenges, we’re offering 7 tips to boost yours.
1. Talk to someone you trust
Talking to someone you trust – whether a friend, a family member or a colleague – can help. You may feel better if you are able to openly share what you are going through with someone who cares about you. If you live in an area where face-to-face interactions are limited, you can still stay connected with your loved ones through a video call, phone call, or messaging app.
2. Look after your physical health
Taking care of your physical health helps improve your mental health and well-being. Be active for at least 30 minutes daily, whether that’s running, walking, yoga, dancing, cycling, or even gardening. Eat a balanced and healthy diet. Make sure to get enough sleep.
3. Do activities that you enjoy
Try to continue doing the activities that you find meaningful and enjoyable, such as cooking for yourself or your loved ones, playing with your pet, walking in the park, reading a book, or watching a film or TV series. Having a regular routine with activities that make you feel happy will help you maintain good mental health.
4. Steer away from harmful substances
Don’t use harmful substances such as drugs, alcohol, or tobacco to cope with what you’re feeling. Though these may seem to help you feel better in the short term, they can make you feel worse in the long run. These substances are also dangerous and can put you and those around you at risk of diseases or injuries.
5. Take two minutes to focus on the world around you
Help free yourself of constantly swirling thoughts by reconnecting yourself with where you are at this moment in time. Follow along with the video below or simply take three slow deep breaths, feel your feet grounded on the floor and ask yourself:
6. Eat a brain-healthy diet to support strong mental health
Foods that can support your mood include fatty fish rich in omega-3s, nuts (walnuts, almonds, cashews and peanuts), avocados, beans, leafy greens (spinach, kale, and Brussels sprouts), and fresh fruit such as blueberries.
7. Seek professional help
If you feel like you cannot cope with the stress that you are facing, seek professional help by calling your local mental health helpline or getting in touch with your counselor or doctor. Remember you are not alone, and there are things you can do to support your emotional wellbeing
by Jake Rickman
The Eisenhower Matrix, also known as the Urgent-Important Matrix, is a tool that can be used to help you prioritize tasks. The framework was designed...
The Eisenhower Matrix, also known as the Urgent-Important Matrix, is a tool that can be used to help you prioritize tasks. The framework was designed to help prioritize tasks by first categorizing those items in relation to their urgency and importance.
It matrix was invented by Dwight Eisenhower, the 34th president of America. He was required to make several tough decisions and achieved a lot in a small space across two terms in the office. This is down to his ability to differentiate urgent from non-urgent and important from unimportant, giving birth to the Eisenhower Matrix which urges the user to separate tasks based on these factors.
The model can be beneficial in multiple job roles, across multiple industries, but implementing this into my daily routine has been a great addition to my recruitment journey. The following four cubes of the Eisenhower Matrix have been a great tool in my transition into recruiting in the USA.
The DO quadrant falls within the urgent and important section of the Eisenhower Matrix. These are time-specific tasks that, when aren’t completed, bear huge consequences and implications. Working across two time zones is more important than ever, only having short windows to speak with candidates. Tasks that I view in this way are confirming interviews, providing interview links, and closing candidates on job offers. A task that you can hold candidates responsible for can include such as deadlining candidates sharing their updated resumes prior to submission.
The SCHEDULE quadrant falls within the important but not urgent. Tasks that fall within this section hold no set deadlines but can be significant in helping achieve long-term goals. Within the world of recruitment tasks that hold similar attributes would be team meetings, social media posts, email outreach, and business development. Business development has an interesting place within this quadrant, as there are no time limits on this outreach, but the longer it takes for an initial interaction to take place, you may miss a key window of opportunity.
The DELEGATE quadrant falls within the not important but urgent section, which creates a perplexing paradox. This would include tasks that are needing to be completed but don’t need your specific skills to be completed. Once again within the world of recruitment, this can include such things as asking an account manager to chase feedback, asking a team member to organise a team meeting, or similarly requesting a training session around a particular area of development.
The DELETE quadrant falls within the not important and not urgent section and can often be viewed as tasks that can have a negative impact on your day. This would include tasks around certain areas such as replying to spam emails, arranging plans outside of hours, or wasting time on tasks that have expired or have no impact on that day’s success.
In conclusion, why use and implement the Eisenhower Matrix?
A 2018 study examined how individuals went about deciding what task is best to pursue when given multiple choices and decisions. A total of five experiments showed that when faced with such options, people are likely to gravitate towards unimportant yet urgent tasks, that don’t hold long-term payoff over tasks that can be seen as important but less urgent, which hold a potentially greater payoff.
This was deemed by researchers to be the “merge-urgency effect” where individuals choose to indulge in tasks that look urgent, over more long-term beneficial tasks that have greater value in terms of time, value, and energy.
The infamous matrix was popularized by Stephen Covey in his best-selling book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, which brought to light the effective tool. He stated that quadrant 2 is the “Quadrant of Quality”, where time spent completing these tasks increases your overall effectiveness. This is where personal and professional growth meets planning, prevention, and action.
In today’s world of technology, there are several applications out there to help you effectively manage your tasks, several of which adopt this well-known approach. When you’re faced with a set of tasks, how do you decide which to tackle first? Do you select the task that’s going to bring you closer to your long-term goals? Or do you give your attention to the most urgent item on your list?
Use the Eisenhower Matrix to avoid the mere-urgency trap and do more of what's important to you.
by Jamie Fitzgerald
Cybersecurity Awareness Month, every October, is a collaboration between the government and private industry to raise awareness about digital...
Cybersecurity Awareness Month, every October, is a collaboration between the government and private industry to raise awareness about digital security and empower everyone to protect their personal data from digital forms of crime.
The month is dedicated to creating resources and communications for organizations to talk to their employees and customers about staying safe online. While most of cybersecurity news articles are about massive data breaches and hackers, it can seem overwhelming and feel like you’re powerless against it. But Cybersecurity Awareness Month reminds everyone that there are all kinds of ways to keep your data protected. It can make a huge difference even by practicing the basics of cybersecurity.
93% of company networks are now breachable by hackers, one source notes, and nearly 1 in 3 organizations say they don’t have the funding for proper cyber protection. With that in mind, any month might be a good month to be more cyber aware.
So here are tips and best practices that everyone can use to feel a little safer online. Here are some simple things you can do to make sure you’re protected:
Choose strong passwords and make use of a password manager rather than re-using passwords on multiple sites.
With so many essential services available through the internet today, passwords may be the only thing standing between your accounts –and the sensitive financial and personal information they contain – and cyber criminals. Because so many passwords have been exposed in data breaches, it’s vital that you don’t employ the same one for multiple accounts. Should someone intercept one account’s password, you don’t want them gaining access to others. A strong password should contain a minimum of twelve characters (though more is better) and should not be easily guessable. Because they’re even longer, passphrases offer additional security.
Consider a password manager such as the free open-source password vault KeePass. With these services, you need to remember only one strong password, which will then give you access to all your others. Keeps stores your account passwords in a strongly encrypted database.
Use two-factor or multi-factor authentication (MFA) on all of your accounts.
Implementing two- or multi-factor authentication adds a layer of protection beyond the passwords that safeguard your accounts. Once it’s set up, users need to present an additional form of identity verification before they’re granted access to accounts or online resources. This additional factor could be evidence that they have a smartphone (proof of receipt of a text message), access to an email account, a unique code or token, a fingerprint or even a retina scan. With MFA in place, even if you do fall victim to a phishing attack, there’s an extra barrier standing in the way of cyber criminals seeking to make use of compromised credentials.
Educate yourself, your co-workers, and your employees about the latest cybersecurity threats.
When it comes to cybersecurity, knowledge is power. Because attackers are always on the lookout for new ways to hoodwink potential victims, it’s critical to remain aware of the dangers associated with internet use. The better you understand the tactics criminals are currently employing to gain access to user accounts or personal and financial information, the less likely you are to be tricked.
Take phishing as an example. It used to be that these fraudulent email or text messages were rife with grammatical errors and spelling mistakes, but that’s no longer the case. Today’s most sophisticated phishing messages feature pirated logos and another branding that’s nearly impossible to distinguish from the real thing. For this reason, you should never click on a link in an email to visit a banking website. Instead, bookmark a link to what you’re certain is the authentic and trustworthy site. Many banks offer automatic alerting whenever transactions are initiated – an extra layer of protection that it’s worth enabling. In addition, it’s always a good idea to call your financial institution if you notice questionable activity in your account. Be sure to use a known phone number to reach them when you call, not one that arrived by email.
Keep software up to date.
Software vendors frequently update their products and as soon as vulnerabilities are discovered, they issue patches that fix problems that have been discovered. Some of these vulnerabilities are severe, in some cases even enabling malicious third parties to completely control someone’s computer without their knowledge. Cybercriminals are constantly scanning the internet for machines that are running older versions of software that contain vulnerabilities that can be exploited. Enabling automatic software updates is an easy way to protect yourself from these sorts of attacks. It ensures that all new patches will automatically be applied to your computer as soon as they’re released.
Use antivirus software and install a firewall
Antivirus programs and firewalls are designed to prevent malicious code from infecting your computer. This includes malware that’s arrived via infected email attachments, malicious links in email messages, and so-called “drive-by downloads” – automatic downloads initiated by compromised websites. Because antivirus and firewall technologies usually work by blocking known threats, it’s important to ensure that your software will receive automatic updates. This provides protection based on the most recent information and guards against the latest threats.
by Sonja Giesemann
Finally Cyberwomen could take place in person again! The event, founded in 2019 to create a platform for women in cybersecurity, took place again on...
Finally Cyberwomen could take place in person again! The event, founded in 2019 to create a platform for women in cybersecurity, took place again on September 22 this year. We are very proud to have been there again as one of the sponsors. We are even happier for our recruitment specialists Adriana Timme and Anne-Sophie Hufer, who had the opportunity to visit the conference last Thursday and exchange ideas in interesting and progressive discussions.
About 24% of cybersecurity professionals are women. While this is an improvement from 11% in 2017, there are still barriers for women looking to enter or advance in the global cybersecurity industry. In addition to the large gender gaps in cybersecurity, women are on average paid less than men in this field. In 2021, 29% of men reported making between $50,000 and $99,999, while just 17% of women reported the same amount.
Amidst all of this, the rise in cybercrime - particularly ransomware - is the number one threat for 2021. Of the ten countries with the highest ransomware cases, the US had as many attacks as the other nine countries combined. Despite the global attention cybersecurity has received in recent years, there is still a significant skills shortage.
Our consultant Anne-Sophie Hufer, who attended the conference last Thursday, explains her perspective on this topic and her experiences with Cyberwomen 2022 in general:
“It was a great event! I had a lot of fun and it was also very interesting! There were very competent cybersecurity experts like Jana Ringwald or Laura Kludas, who took part in the sales panel. In general the conference was well organized and all the speakers contributed a lot to the overall conference. I particularly liked the lectures on cyber agencies and innovation management, and the CxO panel on ransomware and its consequences. We also had the opportunity to make new friends and meet old ones. There were just so many interesting women that altogether make such a strong and inspiring group of people. From this, I learned that the presence of women in the cybersecurity industry will definitely increase in the future. Especially in Germany, where the topic of cybersecurity and women in IT is not discussed that much. But all in all, it was a great experience and I hope to be able to do it again next year!”
- Anne-Sophie Hufer, Information Security Consultant at Franklin Fitch
We are pleased that more and more women are interested in and participating in cybersecurity. This year, 240 people attended the conference, plus several people who were able to stream the conference from their homes. It is amazing to see how the event was made so inclusive and accessible to women who are able to attend and those who were unable to attend in person. Our Cyber & Information Security recruiter Adriana Timme tells us more about her experiences with all the different women and participants and what cyber women mean to her:
“This is now my second time at Cyberwomen. Last year I attended the conference but because of COVID-19, everything was online. So I was very happy to be able to attend in person! The organization of the event was just great! The balance between panels, conferences, and time to exchange and meet new women in IT as well as the speakers were really good! I really liked the HR panel, in which exciting solutions to the shortage of skilled workers in the cyber area were discussed, because the shortage of skilled workers concerns me almost every day as a personnel consultant for cyber and information security. The speakers (Lydia L., Rebecca Z., Christine R., Anja Z., Dr. Nina G., and Anna K.) had a fascinating concept of how women work in and alongside intensive environments such as cybersecurity to have a balanced personal life. This concept of "job sharing" not only means new opportunities for recruiting but is also an exciting option for my personal development! I also liked other speakers like Katharina Maier and Jana Ringwald because they are both very talented speakers. They gave some fascinating insights into the areas of usable, information and IT security as well as law enforcement in cyberspace. But the most important thing I took away from the whole experience is that women are going to take a more prominent role in cybersecurity. It will be a long road to success, but it will come! This is also why I think Cyberwomen 2022 is such an achievement and a great opportunity to promote women in the cybersecurity industry.”
- Adriana Timme, Cyber & Information Security Business Lead at Franklin Fitch
One thing is clear: Cybersecurity needs more women. To build a strong culture of cyber resilience around the world, employers should prioritize recruiting and developing talented female cybersecurity professionals. Women working in or aspiring to a position in cybersecurity represent untapped potential when it comes to filling the growing gap in the cybersecurity workforce. This is exactly why we need conferences like Cyberwomen. Here we discuss various topics, network, and learn more about cybersecurity and why it is important to bring women into the industry!
And we've already noticed a big difference over the years! We are already excited about the increasing participation of women and the growing interest in cybersecurity. As personnel consultants in the IT sector, we see unequal distribution every day. Because of this, we are determined to balance the industry in any way we can.
by Emily Jones
Inclusive hiring practices are in the spotlight as they have become increasingly vital to every organization’s success. Inclusive hiring...
Inclusive hiring practices are in the spotlight as they have become increasingly vital to every organization’s success. Inclusive hiring translates to improved employee retention and productivity and a host of other organizational benefits.
Nowadays, there is so much emphasis on diversity and inclusion in the workplace that recruiters want to make sure that their hiring practices are conducive to meeting their diversity and inclusion goals, which means they need to think about inclusive hiring and determine how that can be incorporated into their daily recruiting practices.
In order to create an environment that celebrates diversity, it's essential for recruiters to adopt inclusive hiring practices that will make it easier to hire talent from underrepresented backgrounds. The following are some strategies that facilitate the process.
What is inclusive hiring?
The inclusive hiring process actively accepts a wide range of traits and viewpoints that candidates offer to the firm. It's not just about filling quotas by hiring persons from underrepresented groups or those with disabilities. Instead, inclusive hiring practices seek to level the playing field for all applicants in order to combat bias in hiring and discrimination in general.
In an inclusive recruiting environment, multiple perspectives, beliefs, and values are considered in order to reach a common goal. Your employees will be forced to think outside their comfort zones and challenge new notions or ideas by having a diverse workforce.
It's difficult to avoid unconscious bias when examining a candidate's job application, even with the greatest of intentions. Organizations that want to improve their team's diversity and attract the greatest talent can't afford to have recruitment practices that unintentionally exclude specific groups of people. Bias can occur at any point of the hiring process, but the talent attraction stage, application review, and face-to-face interview are the most important to investigate.
Through job ad placements, bad language choices in job descriptions, and bias in the interview stages, your organisation may be unwittingly decreasing the number of quality applicants from the very beginning of the recruitment process.
Requirements for the Job
Taking a second look at what you're asking of them is one of the simplest methods to attract more diverse prospects. When you're interviewing candidates for an open position, you'll probably have a list of requirements in mind. While having certain standards can be beneficial, adhering to them too rigidly can actually hinder your chances of finding a quality hire.
Your ideal applicant may have five years of industry-specific expertise, but if you focus solely on this criteria, you'll overlook a multitude of other candidates with diverse backgrounds. While this assures that you select someone with the degree of expertise you require, it also eliminates individuals who may be exactly what you need with only three or four years of experience.
Language Used for Audience
Job descriptions can either entice or repel candidates depending on the language used. A good job description speaks to a wide range of candidates while being explicit about the skillsets required. Leading with sensitive, thoughtful, and inclusive language demonstrates to prospects that you are a diverse workplace that evaluates all applicants regardless of gender, race, disability, or status.
Make sure you get it correctly by removing any terminology that could be interpreted as catering to a specific demographic. When it comes to hiring, use inclusive language, which means avoiding gender-specific vocabulary and words, as well as industry jargon. Begin with a job title that is devoid of any references to gender or industry. Keep things simple and concentrated on the task at hand. Work on removing masculine and feminine words as well from job postings.
Advertising the Role
Consider where you're advertising if you want to create a truly inclusive process and attract applicants from various backgrounds. Elite universities may produce outstanding individuals, but they struggle with diversity, as do many other institutions. Your search may be too restricted if you notice that your candidate pool is made up of people with similar educations, histories, and experience levels. After all, similar individuals prefer to apply for employment through the same routes.
While knowing how to connect with the people you want to apply for your open positions is beneficial, you shouldn't limit your prospect pool too much. Get imaginative about where you post your openings to reopen it and attract more different applications.
Many candidates may be looking for jobs via print ads, contacting and visiting job fairs and boot camps, conducting searches on social media, or using their mobile devices to access job adverts. With this in mind, try looking for new employees in a variety of venues; this increases your chances of recruiting from a more diversified demographic.
Screening and Interviewing
Preventing Exclusion in the CV Review
It's even more important to have an effective screening process in place if you've drawn a larger pool of applications in order to objectively evaluate your candidate pool. This is when bias, whether conscious or unconscious, may creep into decision-making and undermine all of your hard work in attracting diverse candidates.
This problem has two solutions: removing identifying information from CVs or abandoning CVs entirely in favour of another way of candidate screening.
The blind hiring method delays rather than removes bias if your recruitment process includes a face-to-face or video job interview. The key advantage is that you can rest assured that the shortlist of candidates for interviews was generated without bias and that no promising candidate was screened out for incorrect reasons.
Minimizing Bias in the Job Interview
If you have conducted a blind hiring process up to this stage, the job interview should be the first moment you see the candidate’s ethnicity, age, gender, and appearance. Unconscious bias is therefore unavoidable, but it can be minimized in the following ways:
Conduct panel interviews to reduce interview bias and provide a variety of perspectives during the interview process. You can gather feedback, viewpoints, and ideas from people with a variety of requirements and expectations if you have a lot of people following along in the hiring process. That outside of your recruiting and hiring staff should be involved in the hiring process. By reaching out to other departments, team members, and company executives, you can eliminate bias by considering different points of view and using their diverse experiences to build an inclusive workplace for newcomers.
Onboarding New Hires
The first step is to have an inclusive hiring process. Employees who don't fit a homogeneous mold will be unhappy in their new jobs if you simply focus on developing an inclusive hiring procedure and overlook your company culture.
You need to build an inclusive work atmosphere to persuade them to stay––and actually enjoy their time at your company. Each employee has a unique voice in an inclusive workplace culture, which encourages them to be themselves. Not only are their particular needs met, but they are also encouraged to devote time to personal duties that they consider vital.
There should be a purpose and meaning behind establishing an inclusive workplace and recruitment process, not just another box to check.
There are numerous reasons why having a diverse workforce is advantageous, but it won't happen immediately. As a result, for modern firms, putting in place the proper processes and mechanisms to build an inclusive recruitment team is a step in the right way.
The efforts you take to increase inclusive hiring should be tracked and reviewed on a regular basis, with training being a top emphasis. If you want inclusive hiring to work, you need buy-in and passion for what you're attempting to do.
by Jack Brameld
In May, Microsoft announced large-scale changes to what has been a staple among service providers reselling Microsoft services. Specifically,...
In May, Microsoft announced large-scale changes to what has been a staple among service providers reselling Microsoft services. Specifically, we’ll see the end of “Silver” and “Gold” status, to be replaced by the new Microsoft Cloud Partner Program (MCCP), which comes into place on October 3rd 2022.
This drastic change will impact nearly half a million service providers, the company said, “This deep relationship between Microsoft and our partners spans more than 30 years and, in that time frame, our partners have provided unique solutions across numerous industries, helping countless customers succeed in an ever-changing world. They especially have played a pivotal role in helping businesses adapt amidst the pandemic. As things continue to change and evolve, we are committed to investing in and delivering what partners need to innovate, grow their businesses, and deliver on the promise of digital transformation for customers across organizations and industries.”
The Microsoft Partner Network (MPN), was formed in 2009 and was replaced by the Microsoft Partner Program (MPP), although it has always been changing and upgrading the transition to MCCP is a huge step for all partners, most notably MSPs who have already been reselling Azure and other cloud services.
One of the fastest growing cloud marketplace companies in the world stated how so many companies have begun to rely on Microsoft for this service. Microsoft has since issued this as a response; “we have been preparing for this re-alignment throughout 2022 with a focus on ensuring our partners, who rely on our consolidated billing, automated provisioning, and PSA integrations, can take full advantage of Microsoft’s new approach, with no disruption to operations, and opportunities to attract more customers who are increasingly relying on cloud services.”
Meyer, an ex-senior executive at Microsoft explained that this is about much more than a name change:
“MCCP is a reflection of Microsoft’s vision and investment in cloud services, and their recognition of the overall modernization of IT across the entire digital supply chain,” Meyer said. “Way beyond the end-of-life for MPN Gold and Silver status, the MCPP is truly about driving new proficiencies in a cloud-first world as more discovery, procurement, delivery and management of technology is happening online, through marketplaces like ours.”
The new Microsoft Cloud Partner Program will aim to drive and promote partners' development in six technology areas:
This will further impact partners’ license in how they internally use and distribute Microsoft’s products from a ‘’Solutions Partner level’’ to ‘’specialisations and expert programs’’.
This is Microsoft’s response to accommodate for the rapidly expanding market, do you think it was the right decision?
by Jasmine Ellis
Recruiters provide vital links between employers and prospective workers. Some job candidates seek out their services directly. Others discover after...
Recruiters provide vital links between employers and prospective workers. Some job candidates seek out their services directly. Others discover after submitting an application that the hunt is being conducted by a recruiter on behalf of a company.
Don’t be surprised if you even encounter a recruiter when you’re not looking for a job—some make “cold calls” to people they’ve identified as a good possible fit for an open position. Remember: an interview is a two-way street.
Depending on your questions, a recruiter's answers can provide plenty of key information about the employer and the vacancy itself.
Asking questions before an interview is a win-win: even if you don't like the answers, you will have saved yourself time and stress by not proceeding with the application process.
There are several reasons why asking questions ahead of an interview is a good idea:
· The recruiter will know the employer. The employer is your recruiter’s client – it's likely that they will have a good relationship with them and will have matched candidates with them previously. Therefore, remember that they are a fantastic source of insider information to tap into.
· To take control of your job search. A recruiter might be putting forward multiple applicants for every vacancy, so don’t expect them to automatically provide detailed information to you about every match. Make sure you ask though; this will demonstrate initiative and interest.
· To check you have been matched correctly. A recruitment consultant is usually paid by the employer once they have filled a vacancy. They will make the job opportunity sound tempting to draw you into the process but, ultimately, it is up to you to assess whether the job is a good fit.
· To make sure you are fully informed. Preparation is everything when it comes to recruitment, and smart candidates know that thoroughly researching the position will give them a strong advantage. It is almost a certainty that you will be competing against many other candidates for the same position – and they may well be better qualified and more experienced than you.
Here are examples of questions you can ask a recruiter to gather helpful information:
1. Can you tell me more about the job?
The interviewer has more detail about a job than what is posted online. Asking questions will help you learn more about the job. You do not have to settle for the pieces of information you see on the internet. That is what every other job seeker sees. You might want to know what working in the role entails, the hours you are expected to commit to the work, and if the position allows you to work, learn and advance your career.
2. What are the top skills needed?
To be on the safer side, you can ask the recruiter for the skills required for the role. The recruiter will be happy to provide you with this information. Whatever the needed skills are, it will help you restructure your resume to highlight the skills you have in your previous career path that match the job’s requirements.
Skills and experiences are the essential things a recruiter is looking for in a prospect. So knowing what they want and comparing it with what you have can give you an edge in the recruitment process.
Though a recruiter may not know the details of the team's day-to-day operations, this question can reveal important information on the organization’s culture, work hours, and work-life balance. They may also have some information on specific programs or projects you’ll be working on and enlighten you on who you’ll be working with.
3. What is the company culture?
Different companies have different cultures. What is obtainable where you used to work might be different from what your new job wants. A job description might list requirements or desired qualifications, but this question can open up the answer to revealing more about the role’s priorities. The team might be looking for somebody who will execute tasks or a self-starter who will bring fresh ideas to the table. The recruiter can provide you with the company’s culture and ideology. Asking the recruiter about the company culture and policies will help you assess yourself and see if you can thrive in the company.
4. What is the salary range for this role?
Before going further into the job interview, comparing the salary the job offers with the compensation you expect is reasonable. Some jobs require a lot from you but end up paying little. Knowing what the job entails and your take-home salary helps you make an informed decision about whether to take the job or not.
Do some research ahead of time to see the typical salary range for a person in this role. Factor in your own experience, location, and expectations and come up with a range that is fair for somebody in your position. If a recruiter asks what your desired salary is, you can provide this range. You might also use your previous salary as a reference point and lay out expectations for an increase.
If a recruiter doesn’t bring up compensation in the interview, ask about it. Though discussing salary might feel awkward, establishing expectations ensures you won’t feel undersold or that you wasted your time if you receive a low offer. The recruiter can also make sure your expectations are within their budget.
Also, asking for the salary range for the role should not be the first question. Instead, the question should come after you must have understood your role and have detailed information about the job.
5. Can you tell me about the interview process and timeline?
This question clarifies expectations around when you can expect to hear back about the next steps and what you should anticipate in interviews to come. The recruiter may share the names or LinkedIn profiles of the people you will be interviewing with and lay out how many interviews the process typically includes.
This can also help determine if the process will fit into your timeline. If you’re looking for a job to start immediately, but the position requires you to go through security clearance which will take several months, this will be crucial information to have.
6. How long has the job been open?
Asking why an organization is hiring for a role can give you useful information about career progression opportunities, the organization’s direction, and what situation you’ll be walking into should you accept a job offer.
The previous person in the role may have moved on to a different job, been fired, or been promoted to a new position. In any case, you’ll have a better idea of the dynamics and opportunities in that role. If the position is entirely new, ask why the position was created. You’ll have better insight into whether you’ll be filling a role with clear definitions or one where flexibility will be an asset. If a job post has been up for too long, it might indicate that the working condition is not so favorable, so other jobseekers pass. Or the recruiter has not found a suitable candidate.
A similar question you can ask is, “Can you tell me about the interview process and timeline?”
When you want to apply for a job, it would be great to be aware of the recruitment timeline. The answer to these questions helps you know if the job’s timeline can fit into your schedule.
7. Is there anything in my resume or background that could be a concern?
Perceived gaps in your work history or skill set can be a significant concern to the recruiter. Asking the recruiter if there is anything in your resume or background that could be of concern will give you the opportunity to explain the perceived gaps. However, if there is no gap in your work history, asking these questions will help you streamline your resume to suit what is acceptable in the organization.
8. Would you recommend any changes to my resume or cover letter?
When you have the opportunity to speak with a recruiter, you are free to ask if your CV is good. If it does not look too good, the recruiter can advise on making your resume stand out and meet the recruitment expectations of the hiring manager.
Your recruiter should not be perceived as unapproachable. Rather they should be seen as an ally. This way, you would be confident while asking questions that favor your job search. Asking these eight insightful questions correctly will provide more necessary information about a job and help you determine if the job is good for you or not.
by Curtis Phillips
People change careers for many reasons, not happy in their workplace, want more money, have no progression, don’t like the culture of business,...
People change careers for many reasons, not happy in their workplace, want more money, have no progression, don’t like the culture of business, or just want a change in life.
For my own story, since I was 16, I have worked in different industries going from catering, retail, and warehouse roles to sales roles. It was hard growing up because I was always an active person and couldn’t really learn from just someone talking to me and telling me what to do, I had to be physically doing it so I could understand it. There was always one point where I knew from my first job at the café that I wanted to become a manager one day which was a career goal of mine.
5 years down the line I joined Sky as a sales advisor and found a job where I felt like I could excel, the excitement of speaking to different people days, finding out more about that, and relating back to the customer as I was a massive football fan and sky being the leading broadcast for it, I could talk for days about. Being a top advisor for 2 years for customer service and sales – my monitor as a team leader down the line believed in me that I could one day make a great team leader.
By my third year I made it as Team leader – being able to teach and develop people and help them grow was a goal but I wanted more, I missed the excitement of getting a sale across the line, speaking to people on the phone, dealing with complex issues… I knew I wanted more. So, I made the decision by 26 years I wanted to take a step back in my career and try a new challenge which was working for a recruitment company. I always knew it was going to be a tough job, the long hours, the graft but life should be this – the more hours you put in the more rewards you should get, and I couldn’t get that as a team leader.
So, I made the decision to move away from it all and make my final career change, which I couldn’t be happier about. Being in a place where I’m in control of my own business, how I will make money, and the clients I want to work with while promoting my own brand.
My advice to anyone who thinks its to late to make a change, it isn’t – age 26 was the time I knew if I wanted the life I wanted, I would have to take a small step down to fulfill a change – now 6 months I couldn’t be happier how it’s going.
The moral of my story is its never too late to make a change even at any age, chase your dreams, and if that means going two steps backward to ensure you go 3 steps forward then make the change now otherwise you might not fulfill your career and personal goals if you feel you can’t do it in your current role.
by Dafydd Kevis
Professionals in the field of cyber security are continually defending computer systems from numerous cyber threats. Every day cyberattacks target...
Professionals in the field of cyber security are continually defending computer systems from numerous cyber threats. Every day cyberattacks target businesses and private systems, and the diversity of attacks has expanded quickly.
Numerous factors can lead to a cyberattack. The first one is financial. An online hacker can deactivate a system and demand money to reactivate it. More advanced than ever, ransomware is a sort of software that demands payment in exchange for the return of services.
Individuals are also targets of cyber-attacks, owing to the fact that they store sensitive information on their mobile phones and use insecure public networks.
In order to strengthen cyber security, it is essential to keep track of how cyberattacks are evolving and growing. Earning an online cyber security master's degree can be very advantageous for cyber security professionals who want to increase their understanding of threats and cyber security information.
What Is the Definition of a Cybersecurity Threat?
A cyber security threat is any potentially hostile attack that aims to destroy data, obstruct online transactions, or access data unauthorizedly. Potential cyber risks include corporate spies, hacktivists, terrorist groups, hostile nation-states, criminal gangs, lone hackers, and dissatisfied workers.
Sensitive data was exposed by several high-profile cyberattacks in recent years.
Cyber attackers can use sensitive data from an individual or a business to steal information or gain access to financial accounts, among other potentially harmful acts, which is why cyber security professionals are essential for protecting private data.
Here are the top five most common cyber threats:
1. Malware and viruses
Computer programs are known as viruses attack and replicate on host systems. Infections, viruses, worms, trojans, rootkits, and other similar words are also used to refer to malware. Any application that does not belong to the user is considered malicious software. A virus is often a harmful piece of code that can harm your system if it is not removed. Your security measures ought to lessen malware attacks.
2. Theft of Identity
When someone gains unauthorised access to sensitive information, such as financial data, intellectual property, medical records, trade secrets, customer lists, or employee information, they are said to have committed data theft. Data thieves utilise social engineering techniques to con people into exposing passwords, private keys, login information, credit card numbers, and other sensitive data. The prevention of data theft mainly depends on user knowledge and education.
3. Website Hacking
Web hacking is the term for the unauthorised use of equipment and methods to attack networks or websites. Websites, software, and network infrastructure all have vulnerabilities that hackers are continuously searching for. These assaults can range from straightforward website vandalism to full server takeovers.
4. Social Engineering
Social engineering is the practise of persuading others to take actions they otherwise would not. Social engineering methods are often used by cybercriminals, ranging from simple phishing scams to more intricate plans involving malware. When engaging with unknown parties online, users should use caution, and they should never click on links without first checking their validity.
5. Cryptocurrency Mining
The process of employing computers to carry out repeated calculations (known as hashes) to validate transactions on the blockchain, which records cryptocurrency balances and transfers, is known as cryptocurrency mining. In return for processing transactions and defending the network, miners receive fresh money. In addition to maintaining the security of the network, miners also give cryptocurrency exchanges liquidity.
by Lauren Greene
It might be difficult to get rejected for a job, especially if you're trying to break into a competitive marketplace. You may feel discouraged...
It might be difficult to get rejected for a job, especially if you're trying to break into a competitive marketplace. You may feel discouraged and frustrated as a result, lose your motivation, and stop interviewing for new job opportunities. We are aware of that and have also felt similar disappointment in the course of our careers.
It's crucial not to let a job rejection discourage you from looking for other positions. So, this week, we've compiled some of our top tips on how to handle job rejection while still using it to better yourself and your prospects for the future.
Don't take it personally
It’s not about you and it’s not the end of the world. It’s about the qualifications and criteria that did not land you the job. Accept that there are wins and losses in every situation, just like in good sportsmanship, and that you were not the winner this time. It’s normal. It’s part of the process. However, remember that nothing is wrong with you or your ability. Do not hold the company or the interviewer responsible. They struggled with choosing which applicant to hire as well. Keep your relationships intact because you never know when you might find another position with this firm or run into them again.
Keep a positive attitude
Despite obstacles, keep a positive attitude. Even so, you ought to show appreciation to the interviewer for the chance and be respectful. Avoid thinking negatively about the business or yourself, and try to control your frustration. You still have to be confident and demonstrate maturity as a person. Smiling, consider it an opportunity to grow from the rejection. Genuinely being positive can make a favorable impression on people. In contrast, if you have a negative attitude, you are merely providing the employer another excuse for not hiring you.
Focus on your strengths
You’ve come this far in your application. It means there is something about you that caught the hiring manager’s attention. It’s just not enough to land you the job. So reflect on your application journey and find out what went wrong. Focusing on your abilities is one way to maintain confidence and self-esteem. Develop your strengths and improve on your weaknesses if there are any. In this way, you can level up and be ready for your next job application.
Ask for detailed feedback
After receiving a rejection, it's important to reflect on what happened and what you can take away from it. The most beneficial action you can do in the event of a job rejection is to ask for and pay attention to feedback. Self-reflection alone won't reveal all of the reasons why you weren't the proper fit for the position. Therefore, your first step should be to get as much input as you can from the recruiter and through them, the employer. Ask for a more thorough evaluation if the response seems a bit general or shallow. After all, you invested a lot of time and effort into the process, therefore you have a right to some useful information.
Don't be afraid to try again
When applying for your next job, remember not to let rejections get you down. Don't let one company's "no" deter you from trying again. There are plenty of additional businesses that are hiring. You just need to keep applying and never give up. If you've already experienced a number of rejections, don't give up. Never forget that if you give up now, you might miss an opportunity tomorrow.
Refine your search
Even while it's frustrating to be rejected, the interview and/or feedback process might occasionally let you realize that the role wasn't quite the right fit for you either.
Look again over the job criteria and ask yourself if you could actually imagine yourself in that role on a day-to-day basis. The interviewer might have been able to tell if there were elements of the role that didn't thrill you.
To improve your future job searches, use your experience as a guide. Perhaps the phrases you're looking at don't exactly align with your goals and desires. Did the job title's accompanying role fall short of your expectations? Did the interview make you realize that this is not quite the right sort of job for you? And if not, then what is?
Come back stronger
It's difficult to apply for employment, especially if you've recently been rejected for a position. You will return stronger and more inspired to get going if you have taken the time to process your emotions, work on your weaknesses, and learn to highlight your strengths.
Consider each setback as an opportunity to improve your self-awareness and your capacity to overcome disappointment. Your chances of getting the ideal job will increase if you can overcome difficulties on your career path. Make it a point to remain positive and do everything you can to learn from the situation so that you will be better prepared for the next opportunity. Since everyone occasionally receives a job rejection letter, the most crucial thing is what you learn from the experience.
by Gareth Streefland
The onset of the pandemic accelerated global firms’ plans to redefine how their businesses operated, in particular how they managed their wide...
The onset of the pandemic accelerated global firms’ plans to redefine how their businesses operated, in particular how they managed their wide area networks (WANs), with software-defined WANs flourishing and secure access service edge (SASE) emerging.
Software-defined WANs deliver clear benefits and have reached a maturity level that warrants consideration for customers with branch offices. However, enterprises must also weigh the challenges and have an accurate anticipation of SD-WAN advantages and disadvantages before they decide to adopt this technology.
Advantages of SD-WAN
Users always enjoy long term cost savings when using SD-WAN. Compared to a MPLS deployment, SD-WAN allows cost savings of almost 50%. Except for critical data, all the low priority tasks can be assigned to expensive links. And for the important tasks, expensive connectivity links can be used.
Whatever application that is used in SD-WAN, it is able to improve its performance. Each of the network traffic works differently. All the traffic those are critical and real time can be automatically routed to links with higher bandwidth. This ensures that there is less latency issues and packet loss which eventually leads to improved application performance.
Most of the networks are subjected to additional layers through the process of digital transformation. This often leads to poor network performance. SD-WAN is able to reduce this concept by simplifying the infrastructure. Moreover, it is necessary to consider looking for the right SD-WAN service provider with less capacity.
SD-WAN comes with various transport mediums all which can provide alternate paths. For an example, if the SD-WAN is two or more mediums. Imagine Fiber, DSL and LTE. In case of a failure, SD-WAN is able to use other two mediums.
One of the reasons why many companies prefer adopting to SD-WAN is its cloud access. Even if a branch is located remote, the employees can still access cloud applications. This too with improved application performance. When there is business critical applications, the traffic can be directed through the data center.
Disadvantages of SD-WAN
SD-WAN lacks when it comes to on-site security features. Although SD-WANs are equipped with some standards and methods for security, still it is not adequate enough. Therefore, a data breach in one single machine could affect the entire organization.
Businesses have a problem adapting to SD-WAN solutions. The existing staffs may find it difficult to understand this technology which rises the need to have skilled staffs. Now this can be expensive for companies with low budget. This is one of the reasons why business are still depending on old connections.
Not all the SD-WAN solutions are able to support WAN routers. If a SD-WAN configuration is used in a WAN router, its ethernet connection will probably interfere with WAN architecture. For preventing this, it is advisable to use methods like time-division multiplexing.
All the units and connections are centralized in SD-WAN. As a result, having a SD-WAN always creates new errors. In some instances, small errors resulting from incorrect configuration can cause major errors. Besides that, SD-WANs also experience jitters and packet loss.
On default, routers are equipped with the functionality to work without updates. But for routers those with SD-WAN configuration requires regular firmware updates.
If the updates are not provided, the routers may eventually experience failures or even stop working. These updates make sure that the routers are bug free and their functions are fastened.
by Robyn Trubey
The lack of women in technology is a controversial subject that is difficult to solve. There are many reports of bias, unequal pay, and restricted...
The lack of women in technology is a controversial subject that is difficult to solve. There are many reports of bias, unequal pay, and restricted opportunity. The tech sector is still having trouble locating, hiring, and retaining women despite data that shows a strong link between having more women in leadership positions and higher returns on invested capital and sales. With only 19% of the tech sector in the UK being female, women continue to be underrepresented. Only 26% of positions in the US's tech sector are held by women, and only 16% of those are at senior ranks.
As well as attracting more women into tech roles, companies also need to work harder at retaining female tech talent. Women leave the tech industry at a rate that is 45% greater than that of men, claims Forbes. According to a study done by Indeed, a lack of professional advancement is the main cause of this, closely followed by inadequate management and slow salary increases. Only 50% of the women polled in the analysis believed they had the same possibilities to hold senior leadership positions as their male colleagues, according to the report.
If the UK's industry is to continue to develop and stay ahead of competitors, gender parity in the tech sector must be achieved. According to the McKinsey Delivering through Diversity report, businesses were 21% more likely to achieve above-average profitability when comparing those in the top quartile for gender diversity on their executive teams to those in the bottom quartile.
What can businesses do, then, to recruit and keep women in the tech industry?
There are some practical steps you can take if you wish to increase diversity and benefit from the creative input of the other half of the human race. Here are some recommendations for tech companies looking to attract and retain outstanding female talent.
1. Actively Seek out and Employ Women
The first step to adding more women to your team is as easy as it sounds: actively seeking out additional female applicants. You should let people know that you wish to hire women for tech roles from both inside and outside of your networks.
2. Give women a voice
Creating mentorship programs and employee resource groups exclusively for women is one of the best methods to support and retain emerging female IT talent and enhance long-term engagement in a career. Although hiring more women for tech jobs is imperative, the only way to truly support and inspire women is to give them platforms. Examples of such platforms include inviting women to panel discussions, allowing them to share their experiences with various outlets, and simply giving credit where it is due internally. Their perspectives contribute to both the ongoing and upcoming conversations within our industry.
3. Competitive and fair salary
At the beginning of their careers and throughout, women in technology prioritise their salaries. Since the implementation of the gender pay gap reports, businesses must disclose their gender pay gap. Equal compensation for equal work is obviously of utmost importance. Therefore, implementing transparent pay practices ensure that women enter into companies on fair pay and do not undersell themselves at the interview stage.
A key strategy for attracting and retaining female IT talent is representation. It is possible to improve a company's reputation and set a good example by openly advocating and championing equality. Recruitment and retention are strongly related; for instance, if a female candidate observes women working for the company in high roles, it may inspire her to pursue a similar position. In the computer sector, 39% of women and only 8% of men see gender bias as a barrier to advancement. Giving women equal opportunities for advancement and highlighting their achievements is crucial for attracting and retaining women in tech roles.
5. Gender-neutral recruitment process
Tech organisations must develop a flexible recruiting strategy that considers the unique needs and goals of women in order to strive toward achieving a gender-balanced workforce. The hiring process can be improved by making little modifications, such utilising gender-neutral wording in job descriptions. According to research, job descriptions that deliberately discourage women from applying for positions—particularly in the computer industry—are skewed toward men. According to a study by LinkedIn, women believe they must satisfy all requirements before applying for a job, whereas men often do so after satisfying approximately 60% of them.
Blind hiring practices are another strategy to recruit female employees. These can include pre-employment tests, gender-neutral CVs, blind candidate screening, and even requirements that shortlists have an equal number of men and women.
6. Inclusive work culture
It goes without saying that if a company or place of employment develops a reputation for having a hostile atmosphere for women, it will deter female candidates and make it more difficult to keep women in the workforce. Companies must regularly review their workplace policies to support new diversity and inclusion initiatives.
Sending surveys to the workforce is one approach to accomplish this, allowing the workers to offer a candid opinion on concerns pertaining to culture and solutions. Introducing minimum standards can also contribute to a more inclusive workplace. For instance, businesses could mandate the presence of at least one female worker on internal committees that make decisions about dress codes, partnerships, and diversity initiatives.
by Matthew Bell
As a recruitment consultancy, it’s obviously our role to advise you how to secure your next opportunity. We’re here to help you along the...
by Isabelle Melton
One of the biggest issues facing the tech sector is still finding qualified and appropriately skilled workers. Nearly half of tech recruiters say...
One of the biggest issues facing the tech sector is still finding qualified and appropriately skilled workers. Nearly half of tech recruiters say they are having trouble finding qualified applicants, according to research released by CodinGame and CoderPad. To attract the top personnel in a candidate-driven market, IT recruiters will prioritise candidate experience during the hiring process in 2022, according to the same survey. Expanding the talent pool and considering how neurodiverse people could succeed in tech professions are two ways to address the present hiring problems in the industry.
Though many modern digital companies are getting better at ensuring that their workforces are diverse, it's important to note that a company is six times more likely to exhibit enhanced innovation and agility if it has an inclusive culture. How neurodiversity is managed at work is one sign of an inclusive culture. Fortunately, our understanding of how the human brain functions are improving. People are therefore better able to receive a diagnosis, therapy, medication, etc.
Implementing systemic support, however, is equally essential. Many business executives are unaware that neurodiverse people frequently do better in computer occupations. This is a strong argument in favor of embracing neurodiversity in the workplace, particularly in IT roles.
Neurodiverse Workers: An Untapped Talent Pool
While technology is transforming the way we work at an ever-increasing pace, there’s one seemingly intractable problem holding it back: the tech talent crisis.
• Recent studies indicate that the lack of tech talent is at its worst point since 2008.
• According to 65% of companies, hiring difficulties are affecting the tech sector.
• Data analytics, cyber security, artificial intelligence, and transformational skills are particularly hard to come by; if nothing is done, a 3 million-person worldwide tech job shortfall is predicted by 2030.
On the other extreme, neurodivergent people are more likely to be unemployed or underemployed, underpaid, and poorly supported. What’s more, many autistic workers are feeling unable to disclose that in their workplaces.
• More than 15% of the world's population, or one in seven people, has a neurodivergent condition, which is a catch-all phrase for those with autism, ADHD, dyspraxia, and other neurodevelopmental disorders.
• Around 85% of people who are neurodivergent are jobless or working lowly jobs that are much below their ability and testing level.
• Only 16% of autistic adults in the UK have a full-time paid job, while only 32% of autistic adults work for pay.
• Of autistic adults without jobs, 77% said they wanted a job.
Although the digital talent gap is a growing issue, there is a sizable population with the necessary abilities that has been completely ignored by the industry up to this point: people who are neurodiverse, particularly those who have autism.
Why Neurodiverse Workforces Matter
What are some of the most popular soft talents when looking for strong candidates for IT roles? Most frequently, job postings call for applicants who actively strategize novel approaches, think creatively, and so on. People with neurodiversity frequently excel at these talents. Of course, it's important to consider the benefits of having a neurodiverse workforce.
Benefits of a Neurodiverse Workforce
Gaining a Competitive Advantage in the Market
While neurodivergent people frequently struggle with social interaction, communication, and some cognitive functions, they are also more likely to show intense focus and subject knowledge because of their particular interests. In addition to possessing specialised knowledge or technical proficiency, neurodiverse people thrive in repeated jobs. In other words, they have the expertise that is currently particularly needed in the IT industry, where the digital revolution is compelling businesses to embrace more cutting-edge technology in order to satisfy client needs more quickly.
Tackling Skills Gap and Labour Shortages
Across the board, there is a severe talent shortage in technology. The sector's fastest-growing skill cluster, data analysis, is predicted to rise by 33% over the next five years, according to the most recent reports. Meanwhile, the biggest skills gaps in the UK's tech sector are in big data, data analysis, and architecture, as well as cybersecurity.
The population's neurodiversity may be able to address the main problem facing the sector: closing the IT skills gap. This underrepresented group of applicants has a wealth of talent and skill to offer. Despite this, among all handicap categories, those with autism have the startlingly highest unemployment rates.
Bringing Innovation into the Game
The term "neurodiversity" describes the various ways in which people's brains function and process information. Employees who are neurodivergent give fresh insights that can foster innovation, from coming up with answers to difficult problems to creating creative strategies and products.
Industry leaders are fast realising the great benefit neurodiverse teams can provide to organisations that strive for excellence and innovation.
Fostering a Culture of Inclusion
Employing neurodivergent individuals fosters an inclusive culture that benefits the entire workforce. Remarkable changes can be made to a workplace's culture by neurodiversity in teams, or the collaborative impact of working with individuals who have different cognitive ideologies. For example, communication becomes more effective and clearer, teamwork picks up steam, and employees feel appreciated for their distinctive individuality. Promoting both innovation and empathy within the organisation, is a fantastic thing to accommodate individual requirements from which everyone may gain.
How to Promote Neurodiversity in Tech Jobs
Supporting neurodiversity in the workplace frequently begins with the hiring process. A thorough hiring procedure is required for many tech positions to make sure that candidates possess the hard, soft, and social skills needed to succeed at work.
It's time to widen the hiring pool, though. Start by thinking about your recruitment strategy.
Many neurodiverse job candidates are looking for positions that will help them and offer the infrastructure they need to thrive and perform well. Everyone struggles in situations that seem to be working against them, and nobody wants to hide who they are at work.
Start by re-examining the terminology you employ during the hiring process. Do you actually provide accommodations for individuals with neurodiversity? Are open conversations between neurodiverse people permitted at work? Do you allow neurodiverse people to make adjustments and changes that suit them, which is even more crucial?
Educating hiring managers
Educating your hiring managers, recruitment teams, or business partners is also crucial. Numerous neurodivergent people find it difficult to maintain eye contact or reluctant to shake hands. There is no justification for discriminating against individuals based on these "atypical" behaviours during job interviews.
Refresh, renew, and customise the candidate recruiting process. The interview process is increasingly being co-created by some businesses and employees. Some people prefer to meet you in person, while others prefer to communicate with you via video call.
Embracing Neurodiversity in the Workplace
Your business will be able to develop the most innovative concepts, novel tactics, and successful plans by actively seeking out varied individuals.
Everyone benefits from building support mechanisms for a neurodiverse workforce. While gaining tangible business advantages like higher productivity, revenue, etc., you are promoting the humanity of your employees.
by Isabelle Melton
Asking for a salary increase is something that everyone is likely to do at some point in their career. However, having to have ‘that...
Asking for a salary increase is something that everyone is likely to do at some point in their career. However, having to have ‘that conversation’ can feel unnatural and the experience can be intimidating and awkward, even if you have a good relationship with your manager.
If you’re struggling to pluck up the courage to broach the topic of a pay rise, try following our tips below:
Have a Realistic Figure in Mind
When you’re working out how to get a higher salary, it’s important to know your worth so that you have a realistic figure in mind when you begin negotiations.
Do your research to find out if your salary is in line with the market average, establishing what the range of pay is for both newly trained and experienced staff in the role.
Do this by:
If you’re offered a smaller pay rise than you hoped for, try compromising by asking about a bonus scheme (if you don’t already have one in place) to increase your earnings based on performance or professional training courses to increase your knowledge and skills.
Build your Case
Gather evidence and prepare examples of your achievements that you can confidently summarise, for example:
The more evidence you can gather to back-up your proposed pay rise, the better. Discuss market factors that justify your pay rise, such as a skills shortage in your sector and high demand for your skills or qualifications.
Ensure you Ask in the Right Way
When asking for a pay rise, keep it professional at all times. Don’t be demanding and don’t speak negatively of anyone else within the business. Start by talking about why you enjoy working for the company and summarise your recent progress. For instance, you should avoid saying things like:
“I work harder than XX and I know that he’s on more money than me.”
This comes across as bitter and you don’t want to be seen as gossiping about your colleagues’ salaries. Speak calmly, reasonably and present your case clearly.
“Thanks for meeting with me today. I’ve really enjoyed being part of the [XX] team. I’ve been working here for [X] years and I’m proud of the contribution I’ve made. As you know, my targets were to [XXX]. I’m excited to share my results with you and discuss my salary.”
Conclude by getting to the point. “Given my dedication to the company’s success over the past 12 months, and my achievements, I’d like a review of my salary. Based on my research of salaries in my sector, my experience and skills, a X% increase is appropriate.”
Timing is Everything
Think carefully about when to ask for a pay rise. Don’t broach the subject publicly as it will put your manager on the spot (and will appear unprofessional); an appraisal, review or other formal meeting is the ideal setting for this conversation. Find out if you are allowed to discuss a rise outside any performance review; if not, you will have to wait.
If possible, don’t choose a time when your boss is under pressure, or the company is in financial difficulty. More positively, and where you can, plan your meeting for the end of a big project, say, or after you have received an award, passed exams, or achieved another milestone. Request your meeting at least a week in advance and be clear about your objective so they have time to plan too.
Be Prepared to Negotiate
This is a negotiation, so be ready to answer questions, provide further evidence or to receive a counteroffer from your boss. This is where your research and preparation are worth their weight in gold. If you are told that the figure you have requested isn’t possible, summarise why it is reasonable and in line with the market, and ask for an explanation.
Be ready to compromise. Threatening to quit if you don’t get what you want is a risky strategy.
Instead, find out if there is a package of benefits that the company could offer you to accompany a lower pay rise.
Using humour in the workplace makes employees happier, less stressed, more productive and efficient, says Vandad Pourbahrami, a humour and business...
Using humour in the workplace makes employees happier, less stressed, more productive and efficient, says Vandad Pourbahrami, a humour and business consultant. In addition, Vandad, from New York-based firm Humor that Works, believes that a dose of humour can refresh, recharge and ignite creativity in your team, helping to remove the feeling of being on an endless cycle like a hamster wheel.
Laughter is the best medicine
“Humour is not just a nice-to-have, it’s a necessity in today’s overworked, overstimulated world,” says Vandad. “Using humour in your leadership and communication style has been proven to reduce stress and prevent burnout long-term.” He also says that leaders who use humour get paid bigger bonuses and find that their new ideas are more easily accepted.
It has long been said that laughter is the best medicine, and given everything going on in the world today, there is no doubt that everyone could use a bit of additional frivolity. As well as lightening the mood, laughter is believed to strengthen your immune system, diminish pain and protect you from the damaging effects of stress. It has also been said that it lightens your burdens, inspires hope and connects people, keeping you grounded, focused and alert.
Humour has a raft of health benefits
“Engaging in humour is effectively a way of sharing your point of view,” says Andrew Tarvin, founder of Humor that Works. “Everyone has their own perspective and sharing it is a way to connect.” Furthermore, humour is often related to things that have happened in the past, and reflection on the past leads to more positive actions in the future.
For those who believe laughing at work is a distraction, Andrew is quick to point out that the average person spends 90,000 hours of their life working and so enjoying some of that time – especially when there are proven health and productivity benefits, is essential. “Humour doesn’t replace the work, it is like the salt of the meal,” says Andrew. “It makes people more engaged and productive.”
Humour helps us see the positive
Laughter also unites people during difficult times. “Incorporating humour and laughter into our daily lives forces us to see the positive in challenging times,” says Vandad. “People who have a ‘how can I make this funny?’ perspective are generally happier, and their joy attracts and unites others.”
So, whether you’re an aspiring stand-up comedian, or simply someone who is good at retelling stories or acting out events, let’s remember that laughter not only lifts our moods, but also increases productivity. It’s a win-win for all
by Simon Nicholls
One of the biggest issues that organisations today must deal with is cyber risk. The Global Risks Report 2022 from the World Economic Forum...
One of the biggest issues that organisations today must deal with is cyber risk. The Global Risks Report 2022 from the World Economic Forum demonstrates how rising digital dependence and digital transformation have increased cyber threats. However, according to the survey, cybersecurity failure is still seen as a serious short-term risk, and high-value organizations frequently experience breaches that have a major negative impact on their performance.
According to a recent Acronis report, 80% of businesses experienced a cybersecurity breach in the past year, up from 68% the year before. The high levels of danger now exist are demonstrated by the fact that 9% of the businesses experienced at least one cyberattack every hour. This shows that businesses are becoming more open to cyber-attacks, yet most are not prepared to defend themselves in a way that keeps up with the more sophisticated attackers.
In the upcoming years, it is anticipated that the number of cyberthreats to businesses will continue to increase. Today, cybersecurity is an essential part of an organization's business plan to guarantee data privacy and prevent the expense of reacting to a cyber-attack.
Even though IT security is a vital part of a security strategy, employees are one of any organization's most vulnerable areas. Employees are on the front lines of the battle against cyber risks as a result of the focus of many cybercriminals on assaulting individuals through malware, phishing, and other scam activities.
Fostering a cybersecurity culture can outlast individual turnover and isolated occurrences and can provide a stronger front against cyber threats than any one policy or process. By integrating cybersecurity into organisational processes and practises and keeping an open conversation, you may develop a cybersecurity culture.
Analyze the culture and determine the current state of organisational security. Recognize the strategy for dealing with audit results, the top technology and security priorities, and any metrics in place for tracking development. Additionally, be aware of behaviours that could increase risk, like as BYOD rules, international travel, unencrypted communication (such instant messaging), data storage on personal devices, unconventional computer setups, and usage of unapproved software.
Outline the mission
Establish what constitutes security and technological achievement before settling on specifics. To make it easier to communicate, turn the mission into an "elevator pitch." When the company succeeds, it should be celebrated to reinforce the importance of security and to solidify the culture.
Win employee support
Headline-making breaches may not feel applicable to all departments. Earn employee support with department-level conversations about the impact of cyber threats to ensure staff realize the value of security and aren’t tempted to circumvent processes.
Define roles and expectations
Remove uncertainty with a thorough plan that outlines roles, objectives, and duties for departments in the event of a cyber-attack. By adding other departments, you can broaden the scope of who is responsible for promoting security outside the IT security team. Build trust that, in the event of a mistake, firm security professionals will come up with solutions, provide assistance, and avoid taking the responsibility.
Invest in training
Expect the IT department to regularly train personnel on attacks and the resulting areas to watch. Clearly express all cybersecurity policies and guidelines. A consistent onboarding programme for new hires should also be in place. These issues, ought to be on the agenda:
Lean on an outside party to handle training if internal resources aren’t available.
Create a conversation
Similar to any culture, story is frequently its basis. Discuss cybersecurity constantly, drawing lessons from news about the topic, and keep staff members up to date on best practises. Regular training sessions, forums, or newsletters can all offer regular forums for cybersecurity discussion. Encourage a question-friendly climate, and make sure staff members are aware of whom to ask. Equally crucial: check to see if the response contains a lot of jargon.
Employees with the skills and knowledge to take action will embrace personal responsibility for supporting security in an organisation with a strong cybersecurity culture. Employees may even actively defend the company as they become more aware of cybersecurity procedures thanks to this collective approach, which transforms them from risk factors to security advocates. A preventative approach will undoubtedly pay off for both individuals and corporations given the escalating costs of cybercrime.
by Lewis Andrews
You have successfully applied and are now just one step away from your dream job. The interview is a great opportunity to show what you can do....
You have successfully applied and are now just one step away from your dream job. The interview is a great opportunity to show what you can do. Unfortunately, there are also some traps lurking here that you can fall into. We have summarized 6 tips for your next job interview and tell you the most common mistakes so that you can fully concentrate on the interview.
If you prepare and do your research, you can score points in the interview. Be aware of the products and services offered, the company values and philosophy, and the turnover of the company. Also find out about the competitors and the target group. With your in-depth knowledge, you can show HR management that you are interested in the company and have prepared yourself well.
Plan your Journey
The journey is the first hurdle on the way to the interview and should therefore be planned carefully. Find out about the route, make sure you plan enough time and, if in doubt, leave yourself a buffer. This way you are relaxed and can fully concentrate on the conversation. The following applies to video interviews: test the technology, find a quiet place with an attractive background.
Choosing the Right Outfit
Choosing what to wear for an interview isn't easy: you don't want to be overdressed or overdressed. Basically, we can advise you to dress according to the industry, but you should not disguise yourself and slip into another role. You should feel comfortable in your own skin and radiate this to the outside world. Clean clothes should be a requirement no matter where you applied. In a large corporation or a bank you should appear serious, in a medium-sized company or a start-up a shirt, blouse and jeans are usually sufficient.
Appearance in the Company & Self-Confidence
Body language provides constant information about our emotional state and our behavior. These signals are picked up and evaluated by the people around us, especially in a professional context. Gestures, facial expressions, eye contact, posture and way of speaking are the important points. When we feel tense or nervous, it can have a negative impact on our body language - for example, when we don't make eye contact. A posture that is too tense can quickly be perceived as unsympathetic or aggressive.
A good method is to mirror the interlocutor. This creates trust and sympathy in the subconscious. However, you shouldn't delve into every move made by the recruiter. Spending more time observing the movements instead of paying attention to the questions is suboptimal. But if you know the basic principle, you can apply it in a targeted manner and build sympathy.
Be Authentic and Honest
Authenticity pays off - always! Your potential employer wants to get to know you and nobody else. So, let your personality shine and be honest. Little lies might seem like a good idea at first, but they aren't. The truth is always the best choice, avoiding unpleasant surprises or even losing your job.
Answer the Questions Specifically
You should express yourself clearly and precisely when answering questions in the interview and not beat too many words around the bush. Please take a moment before you answer. Do it discreetly by taking a sip of water and then responding to the question. Filter out the core of the question and formulate the appropriate answer. Make sure to create a casual atmosphere by smiling or even giving some humorous answers. Also keep in mind that talking bad about the job or even the department head is by no means well received. So think about good answers to unpleasant topics and try to create positive parallels to your current professional situation.
The interview is a great opportunity to show what you can do. Unfortunately, there are some pitfalls lurking here that you should definitely avoid. With these 6 tips you are guaranteed to make a great impression and get the job! We keep our fingers crossed for your next job interview! As recruiting experts, we have a direct line to employers from a wide variety of industries and are happy to support you in getting a little closer to your dream job.
by Dafydd Kevis
To say that cloud adoption has been accelerating might be an understatement. Enterprises want the speed, agility, simplicity, and lower...
To say that cloud adoption has been accelerating might be an understatement. Enterprises want the speed, agility, simplicity, and lower costs that the cloud offers. The days of running a costly data center are long gone.
Despite the fact that IT managers appreciate the benefits of the cloud, surveys reveal that a genuine concern for many businesses is vendor lock-in—being forced to stay with a vendor who no longer meets their needs. And with each passing year, this anxiety increases, which can prevent you from moving with the agility and quickness you need to succeed.
What is the greatest method to alleviate these concerns? Implementing a multi-cloud approach.
Businesses used a variety of database providers even before the cloud was established. This approach is nothing new; we are simply transferring it to the cloud.
There's a good chance that your company already employs cloud computing for IT infrastructure updates, automation, cybersecurity, and other functions. However, you are not required to choose a certain cloud server or provider. In fact, you can use multi-cloud solutions for your business and benefit from them for years to come.
Nevertheless, implementing and optimising many clouds can be challenging, especially if you don't have a strategy in place beforehand. Let's examine a straightforward yet efficient three-step process for moving to several clouds today to avoid severe issues.
Step One: Map Your Cloud Zoning Policy
Create a map of your cloud zoning strategy and plan as your first significant step. In a word, the cloud zoning decisions you make can affect your obligations, expenses, and even how well the multi-cloud configuration will ultimately work.
The processes and apps that will operate on each specific cloud server or provider are mapped out as part of your cloud architecture. In essence, you choose what must run on numerous clouds at once, what data must be transferred between clouds, and what applications are locked into one cloud.
Want an example? A cloud zoning policy may specify whether you should maintain your data analytics and web browsing on the same cloud servers or with different cloud providers.
Regardless of whether you put everything up yourself or use a service, you should outline your cloud zoning rules. In the latter situation, providing a read-to-go zoning map will facilitate the service's work and reduce the likelihood of errors and/or hiccups.
How to Determine Optimal Cloud Zoning
It can be challenging to determine how to best utilise cloud zoning. Identifying your specific areas of focus is the most effective approach to do this. Instead, think about how your multi-cloud approach will actually benefit your company.
Say you want to ensure that your service is always available for your customers or visitors, even in the event of a service interruption or a data breach. In this situation, you can configure your cloud zoning strategy to distribute the data load evenly among several clouds at once.
Or, say you want to guarantee that your users are accessible worldwide, 365 days a year. In that situation, you can configure your cloud zoning regulations to ensure that users can access your information or websites whenever they want from any location in the world.
In essence, decide what is most important to your business and what you want from multi-cloud optimization, then zone your cloud apps and rules in accordance.
Step Two: Architect the Multi-Cloud Environment
The multi-cloud environment's architecture is the next crucial step. This entails taking a close look at the environment's high-level design and building a solid base for multi-cloud servers.
At this point, you should at least have a rough understanding of how your company will expand and how the multi-cloud architecture will help it meet its resource requirements. You must be aware of:
• The locations where your apps for data science and machine learning should be
• The market that your product application targets
• The location of your data warehousing
• Location of the cloud security server
• How each of those processes develops in conjunction with the others
Cloud-agnostic projects and apps don't need to be portable; instead, they can rely on managed services or proprietary IT infrastructure from your company. You need to identify these projects and apps during the architecture phase of a multi-cloud setup.
How to Set Up an Ideal Multi-Cloud Environment
You should adopt a flexible and containerized approach to get the most out of a multi-cloud environment. This not only saves money but also enables you to configure your multi-cloud system as adaptable as possible.
You may collaborate with almost any infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) provider if you construct or plan your multi-cloud architecture so that it is flexible and containerized. As a result, you are free to choose between different cloud hosts or service providers as needed, depending on your budget or other considerations.
Make sure you conduct extensive forecasting to achieve this. You need to determine how much data storage you'll need for computing, how many databases use your business will need, how many computer nodes you'll probably need, and so on.
Additionally, containerization in a multi-cloud setup makes it less likely for other servers or processes to fail as a result of a ripple effect if one goes down.
Step Three: Prep for Contracts and Forecast Costs
Taking care of the financial side of the multi-cloud transition for your company is the final phase. Along with projecting expenditures, you need to get ready for contracts and commitments. Forecasting is essential during this stage because you'll be choosing different cloud services and getting ready for contracts.
As a result, you need to be aware of how flexible your budget is in comparison to your infrastructure needs. You must specifically match the costs to each multi-cloud forecast and create a budget for your total resource and financial consumption. Basically, you should be aware of:
If your response to the third question is "no," you might need to choose a more reasonably priced option or change the design and zoning rules of your multi-cloud system. You won't encounter a crisis scenario where you already have your multi-caught environment up and operating but can't pay for it, requiring you to scurry as a result, if you project costs in advance.
Minimize Commitment Risk
Fortunately, there are strategies to reduce commitment risk and prevent financial catastrophes. You can, for instance, use variable commitment alternatives like those offered by AWS or commitment buy-back guarantees. These include computer savings schemes, which have relatively low savings rates and use cloud resources globally.
Of course, you can and should also exercise very rigorous budgeting and accounting. You'll have a better idea of how much money and other resources you really need once you make sure that your commitment costs and savings are attributed to the correct services, server resources, applications, etc. This will help you avoid overcommitting to a provider who is too expensive and giving them an unreasonable amount of money.
When you carefully arrange your application migrations between various providers, you can further reduce the risk of commitment. Budgetary expenditures may rise sharply if moving programs and data between providers takes longer than expected or encounters unforeseen difficulties. As a result, you must ensure that your migrations are simple and rapid, or that a cloud service provider gives assistance during this time (possibly as part of a deal to get you to sign with them in the first place).
As you can see, switching your business to many clouds just takes a few months. Even if you flawlessly execute the aforementioned processes, keep in mind that your commitments, performance, and prices won't be optimised to their fullest extent. However, with the correct planning and preparation, you can position your business for long-term success and the advantages of using several clouds.
You will receive more help and support throughout this process from the correct cloud services provider, and you will be able to utilise the extra resources swiftly and simply from a multi-cloud configuration.
by Dominik Bart
According to a report published by Dell Technologies and authored by the Institute For The Future (IFTF) and a panel of 20 tech, business...
According to a report published by Dell Technologies and authored by the Institute For The Future (IFTF) and a panel of 20 tech, business and academic experts from around the world, states that 85 per cent of the jobs that will exist in 2030 haven't even been invented yet.
"The pace of change will be so rapid that people will learn 'in the moment' using new technologies such as augmented reality and virtual reality. The ability to gain new knowledge will be more valuable than the knowledge itself," Dell Technologies said in the report Given the rapid pace of change in the workplace, particularly when we consider all of the things that have changed over the last ten years, such as social media, artificial intelligence, and automation, it, it doesn’t seem an unlikely statistic.
The work human beings do will continue to shift as some jobs become obsolete and new jobs emerge as technological advancement will replace outdated positions and produce new ones that combine human and machine collaboration. Moreover, the expertise and skill set we'll require in the future varies greatly from those we currently require. Soft skills will grow in importance as the demand for the thing’s machines can’t do continues to increase. However, the ability to understand and work confidently with technology will still be critical.
With that in mind, here are four digital skills you need to cultivate to thrive in the new world of work:
Digital Literally refers to the abilities required to learn, function, and get around in an increasingly digital world. We are able to interact with technology effortlessly and confidently when we possess digital literacy skills. This entails abilities like:
● Keeping on top of emerging new technologies
● Understanding what tech is available and how it can be used
● Using digital devices, software, and applications – at work, in educational settings, and in our everyday lives
● Communicating, collaborating, and sharing information with other people using digital tools
● Staying safe and secure in a digital environment
The fourth industrial revolution, which is presently underway, is characterised by numerous waves of new technologies that merge the digital and physical worlds. Consider the abundance of "smart" everyday items like watches and internet-connected thermostats that are available on the market.
Data literacy is one of the crucial talents we'll need in the future because all of that new technology is based on data.
A fundamental understanding of the significance of data and how to transform it into insights and value is known as data literacy. You'll need to be able to access the right data, work with it, interpret the results, share your findings with others, and, if required, challenge the data in a business setting.
Today, "technical talents" encompasses a wide range of abilities; future employers won't just require IT and engineering expertise. A wide range of technical abilities remain of utmost value even as the nature of work changes and processes become more automated.
Technical skills are essentially the practical or physical abilities required to do a task successfully. Although it is true that coding, AI, data science, and IT skills are in high demand, there is a far wider market for these skills. Being a plumber requires technical expertise. The same is true for truck drivers, nurses, carpenters, and project managers.
As new technologies emerge, we will require increasingly specialised technical skills in every business. As a result, you should be ready to constantly learn and concentrate on your professional development through a combination of formal education, training, and on-the-job training.
Digital Threat Awareness
The world is becoming increasingly digital, and cybercriminals are becoming more sophisticated and smarter This implies brand-new dangers that could significantly affect both our personal and professional lives.
Digital threat awareness refers to being aware of the risks associated with utilising digital devices and the internet, as well as having the tools necessary to protect your company and yourself.
Our digital fingerprints are bigger than ever since so many of our activities—from scheduling doctor visits to placing takeaway orders on Friday nights—take place online.
Digital threat awareness means understanding the biggest threats in our everyday lives, including:
● Digital addiction
● Online privacy and protecting your data
● Password protection
● Digital impersonation
● Data breaches
● Malware, ransomware, and IoT attacks
In order to reduce the dangers posed by these cybersecurity threats, we should all strive to have healthy relationships with technology and educate people on how to get the most of technology without letting it take over our lives.
by Dominique Lianos
While diversity, equity, and inclusion have come a long way, there is still a long way to go before women's professional achievements are valued...
While diversity, equity, and inclusion have come a long way, there is still a long way to go before women's professional achievements are valued equally with those of males. How can we enable women to achieve workplace gender equality?
According to the World Economic Forum, it will take 132 years to close the gender gap at the current rate. The pay difference between men and women over the world is about 57%. In some circumstances, this is because men and women perform the same jobs but are paid differently.
It's not always that easy, though. According to a survey from the World Economic Forum, women are more likely than males to work in professions that pay less. In highly compensated industries like finance and technology, men still predominate. Only 22% of managerial roles are now held by women globally. This occurs frequently because the current system penalises women who leave their careers to have children.
Women are given more career control when they are empowered in the workplace. You may secure their professional growth, which is crucial for developing long-term employees, by investing in training, mentoring, equality programmes, educational grants, and promotion into senior-level jobs.
Why empower women in the workplace?
Why is female empowerment so important? Why do we even need to bother? The quick response is that female empowerment gives women the resources they need to be in charge of their own life. As a result, women can realise their full potential, which benefits the entire planet. This implies that people can support economies, offer their skills to the workforce, and assist establish more stable job markets. Not to mention that having women on boards gives organisations access to a wider range of perspectives and ideas.
Amplify Women’s Voices
One of the most important methods to empower women is to guarantee that their views are heard in meetings and that they are given credit for their ideas. Start by giving women a seat at the table and a voice. If a woman has an excellent idea, support her and see to it that she receives credit rather than allowing another person to do so. This occurs most frequently in industries like technology where males have the majority of the authority and women are underrepresented.
Other workers need to make sure that women have a legitimate platform and devoted airtime in order to prevent these scenarios. There are strategies everyone can apply to avoid stealing ideas from women in group discussions. For instance, give credit to the author of the concept whenever you discuss it (even if it inspired a new idea of your own). Ensuring that everyone’s voice is amplified is a team effort and requires always having each other’s backs even if you don’t agree with everything that is said.
Remind Women that they are Valued
Women frequently feel scared to express their thoughts in environments where men predominate, for fear of coming out as overly frank. The inverse is also true, when they might attempt to pass for "one of the guys" in order to have their opinions heard.
Reminding women that they are valued for who they are and that you recruited them because of their special viewpoint, talents, commitment, and hard work ethic is crucial. Even while it might seem apparent to you, until you are in someone else's position, you cannot truly understand how they are feeling. You don't know how a coworker inwardly responds to situations or what they have personally experienced, even if you are also a female employee. So, do your best to be compassionate and honest with how you feel about every woman’s performance.
There are numerous ways that your company can put these values into practise. Training in bias awareness is the initial stage because until you address your actions, you won't know what you're doing incorrectly. The next step is to encourage a secure environment where everyone feels free to express their issues and challenges and knows where to find support. Promote specific training or activities for women, such as focus/support groups, public speaking competitions, and negotiations. All minorities should ideally be given access to these chances so that everyone can feel free to succeed at work as an expression of who they are.
Create Equal Pay
Even after the Equal Pay Act was passed in 1970, equal pay remains one of the largest problems with gender disparity. According to this law, all employees are entitled to equal pay for equally valuable work. However, the UN estimated that as of 2020, women continue to earn about 84 percent of what males do. The gender wage gap is still a problem because this figure is considerably lower for women of colour, women who are immigrants, and women who are mothers.
Equal pay for equal work is not only the law, but it also has advantages for your company. Women who receive equal pay are more likely to believe that their work is appreciated equally with that of their male coworkers.. This may also inspire female workers, boosting production and efficiency for your company.
Employers must make sure that men and women performing the same positions are putting in the same amount of labour in order to guarantee true pay equality. Because women are frequently held to greater standards than males, wages may not actually be equal. This is due to the fact that women may prove themselves by completing twice as much labour for the same pay. Pay equity audits are one easy method businesses can fix this. Keep an eye out for differences in pay rates. Then, regardless of an employee's gender or ethnicity, make sure that all employees with comparable experience in a similar function are paid equally to their counterparts.
Anyone who wants to build enduring relationships and move up the corporate ladder must be extremely adept at networking. However, for many women, networking can be crucial for surviving and moving up the corporate ladder. A vital, encouraging environment can be created by establishing a network where women can communicate with one another. This can make women feel comfortable talking about problems like equality and gender difficulties at work.
Women can share ideas and advise on how to advance in their careers through professional networks. Additionally, it can assist women in locating qualified mentors in their areas who can aid them in developing their skills. Male allies have the chance to propose qualified female coworkers or friends for positions by networking. As a result, when you post job openings, more women might apply, giving you a bigger pool of prospects to pick from.
Utilise Mentorship Schemes
Similar to networking, mentorship programmes help women develop the skills necessary for career advancement. Through a female mentor, women can be assisted in developing their knowledge and experience, which can boost both the mentor and mentee's confidence. Women may relate to female mentors more readily than they would a male mentor. Due to the likelihood that their experiences will be similar, female mentors can serve as more effective role models for women.
Mentorship programmes can not only provide role models but also assist women in realising their value. Speaking with other women about their goals might help dispel stereotypes that many women have been subjected to since they were young, such as the notion that being strong and outspoken at work makes one angry and unpleasant.
Many businesses all over the world provide mentorship programmes and other initiatives to aid in the advancement of women in the creative industries. Examples include Chicks in Advertising, Animated Women UK, SheSays, and Code First Girls. You may give your female employees a sense of empowerment and skill development by involving them in programmes like this.
Stand up Against Discrimination
The most crucial step toward empowering women in the workplace is undoubtedly speaking out against discrimination. Women shouldn't have to worry about discrimination at work, but it's also crucial for them to know that if it does occur, it will be reported. What would you do if you overheard a blatantly sexist remark or noticed that a woman was required to put in more effort than a man in the same position? Always speak up against this discrimination should be the response to this question.
Standing up for women who face discrimination at work will make them feel appreciated and valued. Although it won't solve the problem, how prejudice is handled in the workplace says a lot. When you do speak out against discrimination, make sure to do so in a respectful and safe manner. Make sure you have management's backing if you need it.
Every employee needs to know how to deal with offensive language and prejudice. This entails following the appropriate processes as well as discussing things out (and knowing when to do which).
by Lewis Andrews
According to Gartner, Inc., enterprise IT spending on public cloud computing will surpass investment on traditional IT in various market segments in...
According to Gartner, Inc., enterprise IT spending on public cloud computing will surpass investment on traditional IT in various market segments in 2025.
Only those enterprise IT categories within the markets for application software, infrastructure software, business process services, and system infrastructure are included in Gartner's "cloud shift" research. By 2025, traditional solutions will account for only 41% of IT investment in these four areas, while 51% will have moved to the public cloud. In 2025, cloud technologies will account for over two-thirds (65.9%) of application software investment, up from 57.7% in 2022.
As organisations adjusted to a new business and social dynamic during the past two years, the transition to the cloud has further intensified as a result of COVID-19. The risk of technology and service providers becoming obsolete or, at best, being relegated to low-growth areas is increasing, according to Michael Warrilow, Research Vice President at Gartner.
Traditional products will make up 58.7% of the addressable revenue in 2022, but their growth rate will be substantially slower than that of cloud. Long-term digital transformation and modernization activities will be accelerated until 2022, which will further accelerate the migration to the cloud due to demand for integration capabilities, agile work processes, and composable architecture. Technology product managers should use the cloud shift as measure of market opportunity.
According to Gartner, the migration to the cloud will affect enterprise IT investment of more than US$ 1.3 trillion in 2022 and approximately US$ 1.8 trillion in 2025. The development of new technologies, such as distributed cloud, will amplify the ongoing disruption of the IT industry by cloud. The distinction between traditional and cloud products will increasingly become hazy.
Enterprise adoption of distributed cloud has the potential to hasten the cloud transition since it expands the addressable market by bringing public cloud services into traditionally non-cloud domains. Due to its capacity to satisfy location-specific needs including data sovereignty, low-latency, and network bandwidth, organisations are examining it.
Gartner advises technology and service providers to actively target market segments where the move to the cloud is occurring in addition to looking for new, high-growth cloud possibilities in order to benefit from it. Infrastructure-related categories, for instance, are likely to grow more quickly than enterprise applications, a segment that has a high level of cloud penetration. With their go-to-market strategies, providers should also focus on certain personas, adoption profiles, and use cases.
by Anthony Ham
Searching for candidates with the ideal mix of qualities, including a solid education, relevant work experience, and the appropriate technical skill...
Searching for candidates with the ideal mix of qualities, including a solid education, relevant work experience, and the appropriate technical skill sets and expertise, is a crucial component of an efficient hiring strategy. Another factor to consider is culture fit, which is equally vital, if not more so.
Hiring for culture fit is about bringing employees into the mix whose beliefs, behaviours, and values align with those of your organization. This is not the same as hiring people who merely share similar backgrounds and experiences. It’s essential to include diversity while hiring for culture fit because different perspectives and experiences will help your company improve and scale.
Finding someone who shares the same outlook and attitude as his or her possible co-workers is a key component of determining whether a candidate is a good cultural match while conducting an interview.
Why Does Company Culture Matter?
Establishing a solid culture that you can promote to candidates right away provides potential employees an idea of what it's like to work for your company. Before wasting any more of either party's time, they can search elsewhere if they don't think they would perform well in that environment.
A applicant who isn't a good fit might end up going through the full process and being hired if your hiring procedure doesn't take your culture into consideration, simply because neither party was aware of the mismatch. A strong business culture that can be effectively articulated to candidates should be an essential component of your hiring strategy given the high cost of staff turnover.
Your company culture not only aids in bringing in new talent but also aids in keeping the talent you already have happy and working for you rather than leaving for the competition. One of the primary causes of job satisfaction and employee engagement is a happy, healthy workplace, which is why your hiring strategy should include a focus on cultural fit.
The best talent may be attracted by fantastic salary and benefits, but it takes much more to keep them for the long run. Your staff members will be more devoted and enthusiastic about supporting the accomplishment of your corporate objectives when they perceive that they matter to you and are genuinely invested in your company.
Why Culture Fit Should Be Included in Your Hiring Strategy
Here are some of the most important reasons your company can benefit from emphasising culture fit in your hiring approach.
Increased Employee Satisfaction
Employee happiness increases productivity, engagement, and drive for achievement.. That's a critical combination in any industry, where employees are entrusted with your company's health. In an ideal world, who wouldn't want to enjoy going to work every day?
Workers are eager to take on new challenges and responsibilities when they feel like they belong. Their willingness to go above and above helps the entire team. The result? High-level performance from your employees.
Employee turnover is expensive. People remain in positions they enjoy. Happy workers are 12 percent more productive at work and have a stronger sense of ownership over the long-term success of the business. They want to remain and continue to fulfil their roles.
Lower Stress Levels
Lack of a cultural fit for a job is a major contributor to workplace stress, which can be reduced by aligning the values of the organisation with the employees. Stress can damage relationships between coworkers and prevents employees from performing their jobs effectively. Be aware of how new recruits will affect (and be affected by) existing dynamics because cohesive teams produce more.
Everyday participation at work shouldn't make employees dread it. Employees identify with the company's success and contribute to the broader purpose and goals of the firm if they perceive themselves as valuable team members. If they feel accountable to both their company and their coworkers, they are less likely to leave. Excellent hires infuse their teams with fresh energy, inspiring creativity and innovation and igniting motivation.
The Wrong Cultural Fit in the Workplace is Bad for Business
Customer care suffers when you hire someone who doesn't fit your culture; this effect extends beyond management and other employees. An entire office's morale can be negatively impacted by one employee, which increases the risk of poor performance.
Maintaining the good name of your business depends on hiring for cultural fit. Dissatisfied cultural fits frequently become disengaged at work. You can save money in the long run by weeding out candidates who don't fit your culture throughout the recruitment process.
The culture and objectives of your organisation cannot be taught to someone. However, you may ensure the success of your company and the pillar of your fundamental values by hiring the best applicant.
It is obvious that finding the correct cultural fit for your company can have a good influence in a variety of ways.
How To Hire For Culture Fit
After learning how crucial company culture is and how a poor match can damage your entire organisation, you may be asking yourself, "How can I prevent these issues? How am I meant to determine whether a candidate will fit into my culture before they have even started working for me?
There are a few things you may do to gain some understanding before making a further investment, even if there is no perfect way to ascertain a candidate's genuine attitude and personality before you contact with them on a daily basis. Although it's not impossible, it does require a little more time and money up front, but in the long term, it will be well worth it. Pay attention to these pointers while hiring for culture fit:
Clearly Define your Company Culture and Values
Clearly defining your vision and values is the first step in making sure a prospective hiring is compatible with your company culture. Obtain buy-in from the entire organisation and document your corporate culture in your employee handbook so that it is constantly accessible.
Reference your Company Culture and Values in Job Description
Make sure your job postings mention your culture and utilise language consistent with company values right from the start. Candidates should know after reading your job description whether they would fit in with your workplace and should apply or not.
During the interview process, talk about these principles and what it really means to be a member of your company's culture.
Be open and honest about the environment that exists at work every day. Inform potential hires about any cultural efforts your team members can take part in and how they help to create a positive, healthy work environment. Examples include a business wellness programme or regular social outings.
Ask Culture Fit interview Questions
To find out if their responses are consistent with your values, ask candidates "How would you manage yourself if presented with XYZ ethical challenge" or "How would you treat a fellow employee in XYZ situation" during interviews in order to identify if their mindset would align with the businesses.
Get to know Potential Candidates on a more Personal Level
In a formal interview situation, it might be challenging to evaluate someone's personality and moral character. Before spending money on hiring a top prospect, take them out for lunch, coffee, or to a company-wide social function to evaluate how they get along with other team members.
Focus on Company Culture During Onboarding
While onboarding should go over processes and daily job duties, it is also the perfect opportunity to discuss your corporate culture. Don't assume that your new hires are aware of your company's principles or how you expect them to conduct themselves and treat others; instead, be sure to clarify everything to them before they begin working in their new position.
Check-in with New Hires
To make sure your new hires feel like they are integrating into your culture and are at ease in your workplace environment, check in with them at the end of their first day, week, and month. If there is an issue, it may ideally be dealt with immediately this way rather than escalating or spreading.
An important factor in determining a company's success is its culture. It is essential for enhancing productivity, performance, and employee engagement. Employees that feel more a part of their workplace are happier, have higher levels of job satisfaction, are more devoted, work more, and are more likely to stick with their organisation. Cultural compatibility is crucial for this reason.
by Matthew Bell
Artificial Intelligence (AI) has become an important aspect of the future. These days, it seems to be a topic that everyone is thinking about....
Artificial Intelligence (AI) has become an important aspect of the future. These days, it seems to be a topic that everyone is thinking about. Although this significant trend in technological advancement has been known to us for some time, we have recently noted that AI is becoming one of the most sought-after specialties among job seekers.
A decade ago, AI technology appeared like something out of science fiction; today, we unknowingly employ it in everyday activities like automation, facial and speech recognition, and intelligence research. According to data, during the past four years, the use of AI in several commercial areas has increased by 270 %.
The demand for artificial intelligence is being driven by the expansion of automation, 5G, databases, cloud computing, and a number of other factors. It is projected that AI's inclusion into cybersecurity services would be driven by its capacity to detect cyber risks.
But what will AI mean for the future of work? As computers and technology have evolved, this has been one of the most pressing questions.
Before we delve into the specific ways that AI will affect the future of employment, it's critical to define AI simply. Artificial intelligence is simply "the ability of a digital computer or computer-controlled robot to accomplish tasks often associated with intelligent beings," according to a simple definition. The word "AI" has evolved to refer to any developments in computing, systems, and technology that enable computer programmes to carry out activities or address issues that call for the kind of reasoning we associate with human intelligence, even picking up from prior experiences.
The Impact of AI in Information Technology
Many fundamental problems in the IT business are now being solved and optimised by new developments brought about by the digital transformation and the adoption of AI technology by many industries. Almost all technological applications, including information technology, are centred on artificial intelligence (AI). The load on developers has been lessened by the integration of AI systems by increasing productivity, increasing efficiency, and guaranteeing quality. Previously nearly impossible, the development and deployment of IT systems on a broad scale is now feasible thanks to AI's creation of sophisticated algorithmic functions.
More Secure Systems
When it comes to protecting confidential data of any kind, including financial and personal information, data security is crucial. Large volumes of consumer and strategic data are kept in storage by both public and commercial enterprises, and they must always be kept secure. Artificial intelligence can offer the necessary level of security to build a high-security layer inside all of these systems by utilising cutting-edge algorithms and machine learning. AI will assist in identifying potential risks and data breaches while also offering the necessary precautions and solutions to prevent any system flaws.
Enhanced Coding Productivity
In addition, artificial intelligence employs a number of algorithms that can directly assist programmers in finding and fixing software issues as well as in the authoring of code. In order to help engineers write clean, bug-free code, several forms of artificial intelligence have been developed to make suggestions. This has increased efficiency and productivity. The AI system will be able to make helpful suggestions by analysing the structure of the code, which will increase productivity overall and reduce downtime during production.
The fact that much of the "legwork" can be completed with little to no human involvement is one of the main advantages of automation. IT organisations can greatly reduce the number of human hours spent on backend procedures by automating them with deep learning applications, which can provide significant cost benefits. The effectiveness of many AI-enabled techniques will also increase over time as their algorithms learn from their blunders.
Fraud detection has become considerably simpler for businesses thanks to modern technology. However, it has also increased the number of methods that fraudsters are committing fraud at the same time. For the majority of firms, identifying fraud will require a multi-layered strategy that often includes statistical data analysis and AI. Several Artificial intelligence tools are employed in the detection of fraud. One of these is machine learning, which is significantly more efficient than people at processing massive volumes of data.
Additionally, it may be made to improve over time in terms of speed and precision. By examining past data that featured comparable conditions, machine learning techniques will be able to spot patterns of fraudulent behaviour. The IT department will then use the synthesized data to take the appropriate action against these cyber criminals as well as build more effective preventive measures for the future.
Improved Quality Assurance
Using the appropriate tools during the development cycle is a key component of quality assurance. To put it another way, AI techniques can assist software engineers in using the appropriate tools to resolve various application defects and difficulties and automatically modify them throughout the development cycle.
Better Server Optimization
The hosting server is frequently inundated with millions of requests every day. When this occurs, the server must load any requested web pages from users. Some servers may become unresponsive and eventually slow down due to the constant barrage of requests. AI can assist with host service optimization to raise overall operations and customer satisfaction. AI will be employed more and more as IT needs grow, helping to meet workforce needs and facilitating a smoother transition between present business and technical operations.
Should Companies Implement AI?
Organizations can incorporate artificial intelligence into their processes in a variety of ways. To optimise the business's procedures is one of the most popular justifications. Let's take the example of using AI to automatically remind teams, clients, and departments. In addition to handling a wide range of tedious and repetitive duties that would otherwise take up a lot of people's time, it may also be used to monitor network traffic. They will then have more time and energy to devote to the more important facets of the company as a result of this.
The tailored customer experience that AI has to offer is another bonus for businesses looking to utilise it. This will cover everything from making recommendations to responding to inquiries, guiding customers toward items, and more. Businesses can also utilise AI to combine massive amounts of data, which can result in the discovery of strategic insights and business intelligence that might not have been made otherwise.
Will AI Replace IT?
One of the main reasons some businesses are hesitant to use artificial intelligence technology is that they worry that it will render a lot of employment outdated and irrelevant. These expressed worries that "robots" will replace people are not entirely unwarranted because some tasks are better performed by cutting-edge AI, especially when they call for the processing of large amounts of data.
However, when it comes to some particular tasks that require human intelligence and emotion, AI will not perform better than humans, contrary to what some people may believe. The backing of artificial intelligence by information technology is crucial for this reason. AI benefits the IT department in a variety of ways, not by replacing it.
In many areas of information technology, human input is necessary and cannot be substituted by artificial intelligence. Instead, businesses should concentrate on how IT specialists can use AI to increase their organization's overall effectiveness.
by Lauren Greene
You’re in the interview and they ask you, “why are you applying for this position?”… or “why did you apply for this...
You’re in the interview and they ask you, “why are you applying for this position?”… or “why did you apply for this job?”…
Are you prepared with what you want to say?
It's one of the most straightforward interview questions, and how you respond could determine whether you get the job or not.
The employer will be able to see from your response how excited you are about the chance and what made you want the position. There are two main reasons why employers ask candidates such questions as "why did you apply for this job?" or "why are you interested in this position?" They'll check to see first if you've done your homework and are aware of what their job entails. Second, they want to know if you have considered your career and know what you want.
Focus on the position for which you are interviewing when responding to this question. Instead of expressing reservations about your current work or employer, try to focus your conversation on the prospects you see with the new employment. Confidence and professionalism will be communicated by positively structuring the dialogue.
There are a few general measures you may take while you get ready for the interview, though you should definitely develop an answer to this question that highlights your distinctive abilities and traits in relation to the position:
By preparing for this question prior to the interview, you'll be able to respond to the hiring manager's question quickly and professionally. You must first comprehend the position's responsibilities in order to formulate a response. It is a good idea to read the job description in its entirety before the interview. Will you be interacting with customers? Are you going to be in charge of accounting-related duties? This information is crucial for understanding which of your qualifications are most pertinent to the position and for effectively expressing your reasons for applying for it.
Be careful you read the job description and research the firm before the interview. You might express a specific interest in the position to the interviewer by demonstrating that you did your research on the organisation and its business strategy.
Condense and organise your response after researching the company and the job description in relation to your background. Even while writing down your response can help, you get better at it, you should be ready to speak out even if you don't have the information in front of you. Instead of memorising it, keep in mind a few important points you wish to make.
Consider including the following three pieces of information in your response while preparing your response:
How would this job help you improve professionally?
How does the job fit in with your long-term objectives?
What makes this job unique?
What about you makes you a particularly good fit for this organisation or job?
Your response should demonstrate that you read the job description in its entirety and thoughtfully considered if the employment was actually a suitable fit for you both now and in the future. Finally, it shows that you are more interested in that particular position than other comparable roles.
Ending your response with a pertinent question for the interviewer is a great strategy to differentiate yourself from other job candidates. The interview becomes more conversational when you conclude your statement with a question. Additionally, it demonstrates that you're not afraid to seek clarification when necessary.
by Jasmine Ellis
Virtualization is a process of creating a virtual environment. It enables users to run different operating systems on a same computer. It creates a...
Virtualization is a process of creating a virtual environment. It enables users to run different operating systems on a same computer. It creates a virtual (rather than physical) version of an operating system, a server, or network resources. Virtualization can be considered as part of a broader trend in IT environments that will govern themselves based on perceived activity and utility computing in many organisations. The most crucial goal of virtualization is to reduce administrative tasks while improving scalability and workloads. However, virtualization can also be used to improve security.
In today's work context, virtualization offers numerous advantages. Running many workloads allows physical server resources to reach their full potential. Operating system instances are able to be divorced from the underlying hardware and move freely between several hosts in a cluster setup without causing any negative consequences.
High-availability mechanisms that were never before possible, such as the ability to restart virtual machines on a separate server if the primary host dies, are now possible. By abstracting the network from the underlying physical network switches, wiring, and other devices, virtualized networking provides many of the same benefits to network traffic.
In this article, we will see how virtualization technology is improving security by means of innovative ways security problems and challenges are being met with virtualized solutions.
Security is of Primary Concern
Organizations today are quickly recognising how critical security objectives are, regardless of the project or business activities involved. However, security is being scrutinised more than ever before, particularly with regard to technology infrastructure. Large-scale, high-profile data breaches that make significant news headlines are not the type of attention that companies want. Ransomware attacks that disrupt business-critical systems are equally alarming. Today's businesses must have a razor-sharp focus on security concerns and how to effectively address them.
With any plans to integrate new technologies or go forward with new infrastructure, security cannot be an afterthought. It must be built into the project as a required component to ensure that essential aspects of the security thought process are not overlooked. The virtualization era has altered the way businesses think about security and privacy. Many of the security boundaries that existed in the strictly physical world have been broken down because to virtualized technology.
After installing new technology, many companies consider the security concerns. Virtualization has numerous advantages, making it simple to sell in IT architectures. Virtualization can help you save money, improve business efficiency, reduce maintenance downtime without disrupting operations, and get more work done with less equipment.
The following are the few ways to minimize risk and improve security through virtualization:
Sandboxing is a security strategy that isolates running applications from untrusted third parties, vendors, and websites. It's commonly used to run untested code or programmes. Sandboxing's major purpose is to increase virtualization security by isolating an application to protect it from external malware, destructive viruses, and stopped-running apps, among other things. Put any experimental or unstable apps in a virtual machine. The remainder of the system is unaffected.
Since your application can be attacked maliciously while running in a browser, it's always a good idea to run your apps in a virtual machine. Virtualization and sandbox technology are closely related. Virtual computing provides some of the advantages of sandboxes without the high cost of a new device. The virtual machine is connected to the Internet rather than the corporate LAN, which protects the operating system and apps from viruses and other malicious threats.
Server virtualization is the process of dividing a physical server into smaller virtual servers in order to maximise resources. The physical server is divided into many virtual environments by the administrator. Hackers nowadays frequently steal official server logs. Small virtual servers can run their own operating systems and restart independently thanks to server virtualization. Stable and compromised programmes are identified and isolated using virtualized servers.
This sort of virtualization is most commonly found on web servers that offer low-cost web hosting. Server utilisation manages the complex aspects of server resources while enhancing utilisation and capacity. Furthermore, a virtualized server makes it simple to detect dangerous viruses or other harmful items while simultaneously safeguarding the server, virtual machines, and the entire network.
Network virtualization combines network hardware and software resources, as well as network functionality, into a single virtual network. Virtual networks, which use network virtualization, reduce the impact of malware on the system. Furthermore, network virtualization produces logical virtual networks from the underlying network hardware, allowing virtual environments to better integrate.
Isolation is an important feature of network virtualization. It allows end-to-end custom services to be implemented on the fly by dynamically combining various virtual networks that coexist in isolation. They share and utilise network resources received from infrastructure providers to operate those virtual networks for users.
Segmentation is another important element of network virtualization. The network is divided into subnets, which improves performance by reducing local web traffic and enhancing security by making the network's internal network structure invisible from the outside. By generating single instances of software programmes that serve many customers, network virtualization is also utilised to develop a virtualized infrastructure to fulfil complicated requirements.
This lets users to generate, change, and delete photos while also separating the desktop environment from the computer that is used to access it. Administrators may simply manage employee computers with desktop virtualization. This protects people from attacking computers with viruses or gaining illegal access.
Additionally, the user gains additional security from the guest OS image for the desktop environment. Such environment allows the users to save or copy data to the server rather than the disk, thus making desktop virtualization more secure option for networking.
On the security front, virtualization is possibly one of the most effective strategies that businesses can use to combat harm and criminal intent. These principles demonstrate how virtualization can help your firm reduce risk and increase security.
Regular upgrades and vulnerability scans are required for all technology-based systems (virtualization included) to reduce the chance of weakness, and the adoption of hardened virtual machine images is strongly recommended.
by Charlotte Drury
As Pride Month comes to an end, we wanted to pull together all of the spotlighted communities and organisations of whom are working towards making...
As Pride Month comes to an end, we wanted to pull together all of the spotlighted communities and organisations of whom are working towards making the tech sector a more inclusive space for its LGBTQ+ members.
While the tech industry has made strides in recent years to promote greater workplace diversity, LGBTQ+ employees still have a long way to go. Despite the industry's lack of equality, a number of groups are working to change that by building communities and providing support for underrepresented trans, queer, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and gender nonconforming IT employees.
The 6 groups below are working towards closing the gap through networking, advocacy and championing more inclusive workspaces and within each profile we have included the website of each group if you wanted to find out any more information about it.
Out in Tech
Out in Tech is the world's largest non-profit community of LGBTQ+ tech leaders. Consisting of a global network of over 40,000 members, Out in Tech bring communities together through local and digital events, provide scholarships and support their members in networking and career development. They have active chapters in New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco, London, Portland, Chicago, DC, Boston, Austin, Indianapolis, Philadelphia, Stockholm, and Bengaluru.
"We envision a tech industry where LGBTQ+ people are empowered, well represented, and have full agency, from intern to CEO."
Unicorns in Tech
Unicorns in Tech is a Berlin-founded LGBTIQ+ community which brings together tech talents, companies, and organisations working towards a diverse and inclusive corporate culture.
Since its inception in 2014 in Berlin, their 4000+ member network continues to rapidly expand via a myriad of events all year long and our online platform. They host monthly get-togethers to network within the industry and as a legacy of the Berlin LGBT+ Tech Week, they now organise the Unicorns In Tech Summit
""It's crucial for us to push for diversity in the IT field. The tech world is not as open as one would imagine and bringing together LGBTIQ+ people and other marginalised communities in this sphere is a concrete step in the right direction."
Lesbians Who Tech & Allies
Lesbians Who Tech & Allies is a welcoming community dedicated to increasing the visibility and inclusion of women, LGBT people, and other underrepresented groups in technology.
With over 100,000 members, including LGBTQ women, non-binary, trans, and gender nonconforming individuals. When it comes to colour, ethnicity, ability, age, and other factors, there are numerous intersecting identities of who are part of the community. Every year, 40.000 techies from over 100 countries attend their global Pride Summit.
- To be visible to each other by building a network of colleagues and friends in the industry.
- Be more visible to others and to highlight more queer, female, trans, GNC, and POC leaders as role models.
- To increase the number of women, people of colour, queer, and trans persons working in technology.
- To link our community with other organisations and businesses that are doing amazing things.
Tech London Advocates LGBTQ+
The Tech London Advocates LGBTQ+ working group is dedicated to helping "organisations to identify hidden bias and provide information on reducing bias and thus increase inclusivity." They aim to create more inclusive workspaces through a series of professional networking and mentoring events, panels and workshops.
They provide advice to tech companies on embedding inclusion and diversity into the DNA culture of their organisations and illustrate the benefits of visibility and authenticity of all facets of LGBTQ. They also partner with organisations around the UK to amplify visibility and support for LGBTQ entrepreneurs.
Their goal is to create a community of LGBTQ Tech Advocates of all and any level in order to support and empower one and other through strength and mutuality in order to cultivate and nurture tech leaders for the future.
Trans Tech Social
Trans Tech Social, founded in 2013 by tech entrepreneur Angelica Ross, provides training and job possibilities for transgender people, with the goal of reducing discrimination.
TransTech’s mission is to empower, educate, and employ those facing barriers in education and in the work-place, as well as to reduce instances of discrimination, with a concentration on trans and gender non-conforming individuals.
It focuses on economically empowering the transgender people in their community. It aims to facilitate learning and working together to develop skills and value within marginalized LGBTQ communities. TransTech members have access to online community and trainings as well.
Intertech LGBT+ Diversity Forum
Founded in 2012, Intertech LGBT+ Diversity Forum ("Intertech") is an NGO dedicated to promoting LGBT+ diversity in the UK tech sector. A forum for members of the LGBTQ+ community and their allies, they're working towards driving positive change for LGBT+ individuals. They do this through partnering with organisations in London's tech scene from the Google's and Facebook's of the world all the way down to the smallest start-ups, we provide a platform through physical events and online presence to bring the community together.
What InterTech do:
- Create networking opportunities for members to build professional relationships.
- Host educational events which focus on LGBT+ issues in their workplaces and broader professional development related to technology.
- Deliver mentorship programs which link LGBT+ members early in their careers with other more established members.
- Facilitate connections between leaders of LGBT+ networks and creating forums to share best practices.
- Encourage the pooling of resources in development and rollout of diversity & inclusion.
The above organisations and communities are great example of an initiatives and organisations of whom are incredibly passionate and committed to encouraging LGBT+ diversity and inclusion in the technology sector for the benefit of the individual, the organisations they represent and the industry overall.
by Lewis Andrews
When it comes to efficiently recruiting prospects, you need some hard data. You can spend all the time you want writing an excellent job description....
When it comes to efficiently recruiting prospects, you need some hard data. You can spend all the time you want writing an excellent job description. A candidate's decision to apply for a job may or may not depend on some of this information. Is the position in a place they are willing to relocate to or work at? Does it have any particular experience needs that most people don't meet?
The location and type of role are both necessary information, but some of this data may be more optional than others. We are specifically discussing the salary range.
The underlying question is: Should salaries be mentioned in job descriptions in order to attract top people with high potential? The inclusion of a wage can attract interest in your position in the current, fiercely competitive employment market where businesses are vying for skilled candidates.
When looking for a new career, money may not be everything, but it is undoubtedly significant. When looking at job listings, candidates prioritise the job's details above salary information, although 61 percent of candidates still expect to see compensation information among the top three things. Many businesses still choose not to disclose compensation information in job postings, frequently out of concern that doing so would put them at a competitive disadvantage or fuel employee animosity.
However, there is a rising global movement to turn salary transparency into the law, not just a new standard. The reason for this is that a growing body of research demonstrates that employers who are open about their pay scales may draw better, more diverse talent, making compensation transparency a realistic means of promoting an equitable workplace.
A salary range in your job descriptions can be beneficial, but it can also be harmful. It has been said that having a salary lessens the other's advantage in the market and bargaining position. On the other hand, some businesses feel that disclosing their salaries to applicants enables them to be open and honest (building trust). Knowing the advantages and disadvantages of both sides can help you decide whether or not you want to list it.
It’s a hot-button topic right now and you’re looking for answers so read below to find out.
Reasons against including a Salary in Job Descriptions
Concerns over how Existing Employees will React
Existing employees will pay attention to companies that post new job listings. The ability for other employees to see a new hire's wage is another drawback of putting it in job postings; when this happens, morale and workplace cohesion may suffer. They might check the ad to see the qualifications that their employer is seeking. They may feel underpaid and slighted if they learn that the starting salary is higher than their own. Employees may then start looking for other positions or requesting raises as a result. This may raise personnel turnover and wage costs in the short run.
Businesses that operate in competitive industries compete for the best talent to fill open positions. The claim is that if a company mentions a salary in a job advertisement, a rival may notice it and offer more money (and/or benefits) to entice that person, diminishing competitive advantage.
Higher Paid Positions Assume Salary Negotiations
The compensation negotiation procedure is expected of applicants for senior, management, and director level positions. Candidates at this level typically assign a value to their own knowledge, experience, network, etc. As a result, they are more inclined to disclose to the employer their desired compensation in their application (through a CV, cover letter, or other means) and to discuss it once the position has been extended to them.
Provides More Negotiating Power
If a job is advertised without pay, the employer has the negotiating position. Some companies believe that giving candidates the upper hand when negotiating a compensation package is to include a salary rate in their job descriptions. This allows businesses to raise salaries for preferred candidates who may have turned down the salary listed, and, on the other hand, to cut salaries for those candidates who aren't as desirable.
Salary Shouldn't be the Deciding Factor
Employers are seeking experts and skilled individuals that will not only be qualified but also fit into their business. Candidates are more inclined to focus on income when it is included in job ads and either ignore other benefits of working for the company (if it is too low) or become ignorant of the fact that the company culture is not a good fit for them. According to this reasoning, it discourages applicants who are "money-focused" and draws in those who think they are qualified for the position and the company. Reasons for including a salary in job descriptions
Reasons for Including a Salary in Job Descriptions
Candidates seeking a new position want to work for a company that values its employees and is open and honest with them. For the majority of these applicants, it all begins with the job advert. Even though their corporate culture and ethics mention it, organizations risk giving the impression they are not open and honest with their employees by omitting the compensation.
Company and Candidate Time Saved
The role, location, and compensation are the first three main considerations for candidates while looking for a potential new job or career opportunity. The candidate can concentrate more on the business and the job description if the compensation is disclosed. As a result, businesses may devote more time to reviewing applications and less time to attracting candidates. You can use a salary rate as a screening method to filter out applicants you wouldn't be able to afford or who might not have the qualifications for the position.
The Focus is more on the Candidate and the Role
A candidate who has responded to a job advert with a salary has accepted the salary on offer. Therefore, this gives companies more time to explore the candidate’s experience, abilities, qualifications, etc; thus, making more informed hiring decision.
To bring attention to these positive and optimistic acts, we’re sharing a monthly roundup of our favourite good-news stories. These highlight...
To bring attention to these positive and optimistic acts, we’re sharing a monthly roundup of our favourite good-news stories. These highlight any uplifting stories, useful resources, or promising scientific advancements, and help finish the month with a healthful dose of the positive.
EU ministers approved landmark climate measures
Fraught negotiations in Luxembourg on Wednesday brought the EU a step closer to implementing landmark climate legislation intended to reduce the bloc’s emissions by 55 per cent this decade.
Member states agreed to end the sale of combustion-engine cars in 2035, impose costs on polluting transport and buildings, boost natural carbon sinks, and create a €59bn (£50.6bn) fund to help ease the cost burden on low-income households.
“In the middle of Europe’s biggest energy crisis, we have launched one of the most comprehensive climate packages in EU history,” said German climate minister Robert Habeck. Some member states had pushed for more ambitious targets.
Ministers will negotiate the measures with the European parliament after the summer break. Parliament is expected to push for stronger targets.
It was a welcome sign of progress in a week that also saw the US supreme court limit the government’s power to regulate emissions from power plants.
TikTok users offered ‘safe spaces’ for US women
People living in US states where abortion rights are protected are offering their homes to women in states where bans are imminent.
It follows last week’s decision by the supreme court to overturn Roe v Wade. The 1973 ruling set a precedent for protecting women’s constitutional right to a termination. More than half of US states are now expected to outlaw abortion.
In response, people have taken to TikTok to offer their homes as safe spaces for women looking to travel across state lines for the procedure.
The United Nations Human Rights Council denounced the overturning of Roe v Wade as “a monumental setback for the rule of law and for gender equality”.
Tattoos were developed to monitor blood pressure
Tattoos that monitor blood pressure: it sounds like science fiction, but this week the technology was given a ‘grade A’ rating for accuracy in the US.
Blood pressure is one of the most important indicators of heart health, but it’s tough to frequently and reliably measure.
Enter researchers at the University of Texas Austin and Texas A&M University. They developed a temporary electronic tattoo that can be worn comfortably on the wrist for hours and deliver continuous blood pressure measurements.
Roozbeh Jafari, co-leader of the project, described cuff-less blood pressure monitoring as the “holy grail”. The results of the study were published in Nature Nanotechnology.
Malaysia moved to end the death penalty
Human rights campaigners have welcomed an announcement by the Malaysian government that it will abolish the country’s mandatory death penalty.
It is a rare sign of progress in a region where capital punishment is routinely imposed, even for crimes such as drug offences.
“The death penalty is incompatible with fundamental tenets of human rights and dignity,” said the United Nations in a statement. “We will continue to support Malaysia in its efforts towards full abolition.”
An alternative to plastic wrapping was developed
Is this the beginning of the end for plastic packaging? US scientists are optimistic after they developed a biodegradable, plant-based coating that can be sprayed on to foods.
The stringy material is spun from a heating device that resembles a hair dryer and shrink-wrapped over foods. The technology was developed by researchers from Rutgers University, New Jersey.
Philip Demokritou, director of the university’s Nanoscience and Advanced Materials Research Center, said: “We have come up with a scalable technology that enables us to turn biopolymers, which can be derived from food waste, into smart fibres that can wrap food directly.”
Tackling air pollution would boost the UK economy
The UK economy would get a £1.6bn-a-year boost if policies were introduced to bring air pollution levels in line with World Health Organisation (WHO) targets.
That’s according to a report published on Thursday. Compiled by UK100, a network of climate leaders, it claims the economic benefit would come chiefly from healthcare savings. The WHO estimates that 4.2 million people die each year from air pollution globally.
The report urged local authorities to introduce clean air targets and align them with net zero policies. Reducing car ownership and insulating homes were among the recommendations.
“Aligning clean air and climate policies will save lives and money while accelerating net zero progress,” said Polly Billington, chief executive of UK100. “We’re calling on the government to give local authorities the support they need to deliver cleaner air, warmer homes and a more secure future for their communities.”
The EU mandated single charging ports for phones
We’ve all been there. “Can I borrow your charger?” “Sure, it’s Samsung.” “Drat, I’m Apple.”
However, such exchanges will soon be history in the EU, after the bloc pushed ahead with plans to introduce a single charging port for phones, tablets and cameras.
The EU said it would reduce e-waste and save people money as they will no longer need to change chargers every time they switch phones. Apple, which will be forced to adopt the USB-C charging port, said the move would stifle innovation.
by Simon Nicholls
High-profile cyberattacks, data breaches, and ransomware attacks have dominated the headlines over the past year or so, causing organizations all...
High-profile cyberattacks, data breaches, and ransomware attacks have dominated the headlines over the past year or so, causing organizations all around the world to review their cybersecurity strategies. For organisations that do not regard cybersecurity as a business investment, the destructive effects of cyberattacks on a company's ability to operate will increase in the future.
The Gartner Security & Risk Management Summit, June 20-21 in Sydney, Australia, delivered sobering revelations about the future of cybersecurity — with the aim of helping security and risk management leaders succeed in the digital era.
Richard Addiscott, senior director analyst, and Rob McMillan, managing vice president, of Gartner, highlighted important patterns in their opening keynote talk. One of these trends was the emerging relationship between Executives performance evaluations and the capacity to handle cyber risk.
Gartner’s experts noted that almost one-third of all nations will regulate ransomware response within the next three years; and security platform consolidation will help organisations thrive in hostile environments.
“We can’t fall into old habits and try to treat everything the same as we did in the past,” Addiscott told attendees. “Most security and risk leaders now recognize that major disruption is only one crisis away. We can’t control it, but we can evolve our thinking, our philosophy, our program and our architecture.”
Gartner recommends that cybersecurity leaders build several strategic planning assumptions into their security strategies for the next two years:
1. Consumer privacy rights will be extended
Privacy regulation continues to expand and the tech analyst predicts it will be extended to cover five billion people, and more than 70% of global GDP. It said organizations should track subject rights request metrics, including cost per request and time to fulfill, to identify inefficiencies and justify accelerated automation.
2. By 2025, 80% of enterprises will adopt a strategy to unify web, cloud services and private application access
Garter said with the rise of hybrid work, vendors are offering integrated services across web and cloud-application security. The benefit here is tighter integration, fewer consoles to use, and fewer locations where data must be decrypted, inspected and re-encrypted.
3. Many organizations will embrace zero-trust, but fail to realize the benefits
The tech analyst predicts that by 2025, 60% of organizations will attempt to adopt zero-trust security, a concept that assumes there is no traditional 'perimeter' to the corporate network, so all devices and users have to be regularly re-authenticated. But it said more than half will fail to realize the benefits.
Replacing implicit trust with identity -- and context-based, risk-appropriate trust -- is extremely powerful, said Gartner, but requires a cultural shift and clear communication that ties it to business outcomes to achieve the benefits. And not all companies will be successful.
4. Cybersecurity will become key to choosing business partners
Gartner predicts that 60% of organizations will use cybersecurity risk as a "primary determinant" in conducting third-party transactions and business engagements by 2025. Only 23% of organisations monitor third parties in real time for cybersecurity exposure, according to Gartner. But as a result of pressure from customers and regulators, it believes organizations will start to insist on measuring cybersecurity risk, ranging from simple monitoring of a critical technology supplier to complex due diligence for mergers and acquisitions.
5. Ransomware payment legislation will rise
At the moment there is little legislation around when companies can -- and can't -- pay ransomware demands. That could be about to change; Gartner predicts one in three countries will introduce such laws soon. The decision to pay the ransom or not is a business-level decision, not a security one. Gartner recommends engaging a professional incident-response team as well as law enforcement and any regulatory body before negotiating.
6. Hackers will weaponize operational technology environments to cause human casualties
Attacks on OT -- hardware and software that monitors or controls equipment, assets and processes and is often the brains behind industrial systems in factories or power grids -- have become more common and more disruptive, Gartner said, warning that threat actors will have "weaponized" operational technology environments to cause human casualties by 2025. "In operational environments, security and risk management leaders should be more concerned about real-world hazards to humans and the environment, rather than information theft", according to the analyst firm.
7. Resilience will be about more than just cybersecurity
By 2025, 70% of CEOs will drive a culture of organizational resilience to deal with threats from cybercrime, but also from severe weather events, civil unrest and political instabilities, Gartner said: "With continued disruption likely, Gartner recommends that risk leaders recognize organizational resilience as a strategic imperative."
8. Cybersecurity will matter for the CEO's bonus
By 2026, 50% of C-level executives will have performance requirements related to risk built into their employment contracts, Gartner said. As boards now increasingly regard cybersecurity as a business risk rather than just a technical problem, accountability for cyber risk will shift from the security leader to senior business leaders, it said.
by Adriana Timme
Creating a company vision may be simple, but getting your employees to buy into it is tough. Even the best employees can struggle with this at times,...
Creating a company vision may be simple, but getting your employees to buy into it is tough. Even the best employees can struggle with this at times, and may require direction on how to best match their vision with the company's.
Employees must closely align with their company's values and goal in order to attain this vision. Only 40% of millennial employees polled felt closely linked to their company's vision, according to Gallup's 2016 research, How Millennials Want to Work and Live. This gap will almost certainly result in a lack of direction and disgruntled staff.
Here is how to get your valued employees to align with your company vision:
1. Set clear company goals
Every company needs a set of clearly stated objectives that employees may follow and match with their personal objectives. This allows them to prioritise their tasks and concentrate their efforts in the most effective way possible. The more specific the objectives, the better!
2. Hire the right culture fit
Hiring people that fit your company's culture minimises turnover, increases job happiness, and improves the quality of work you do. Employ people who have the necessary skills and personality attributes for your company's culture, not just those who meet the job description.
3. Play to employee strengths
According to Gallup's "State of the American Workplace" report from February 2017. They discovered that focusing on an employee's strengths rather than trying to improve their faults is far more effective. Know your employees' talents so you can align them with the company's goals.
4. Get top management to involved
Employees must hear the company's vision at all times in order to become aligned with it. During the hiring process, the vision should be communicated, incorporated into the onboarding process, and then continually reinforced during their employment. When this happens, employees are more likely to have a sense of belonging and are less inclined to leave. Top management must be actively involved and regularly communicate and remind staff of the company's objectives.
DevOps culture and procedure are critical for enterprises to keep up with the pace of cloud-native software development, especially when code...
DevOps culture and procedure are critical for enterprises to keep up with the pace of cloud-native software development, especially when code deployments happen multiple times per day. The capacity to construct, populate, and grow cloud apps and infrastructure in real time, frequently through code, offers for extraordinary agility and speed. Security, on the other hand, is frequently left in the dust when things move so swiftly.
The reality is that many businesses have yet to figure out how to effectively secure the cloud. A lack of cloud security knowledge, along with legacy security regulations that do not cover the cloud and a scarcity of cybersecurity expertise relevant to cloud systems, is a problem. And thieves are eager to exploit these flaws: according to a 2021 research, nearly half of the more than 2,500 publicly publicised cloud-related vulnerabilities were discovered in the recent 18 months.
Security must be integrated at every level of the DevOps life cycle, also known as DevSecOps, due to the flexible nature of cloud technology. Any firm that uses the cloud must adopt a DevSecOps approach, which necessitates new security guidelines, policies, procedures, and technologies.
There are two primary goals of DevSecOps-
1. Secure Code
2. Speedy Delivery
Advances in IT like cloud computing, shared resources, and dynamic provisioning requires application security in every stage, and DevSecOps entails the same.
The Cloud is a Vulnerable Platform
Data breaches are one of the most pressing risks for any company today. The methods employed by attackers to enter cloud settings differ from those utilised in on-premises environments. Malware attacks are rare; typically, attackers take use of misconfigurations and other flaws.
Another important worry is that most firms employ multi-cloud, which might result in a lack of visibility. It can lead to cloud workloads and traffic not being properly monitored, allowing attackers to exploit security flaws. DevOps teams also have a habit of giving people considerably more privileges and permissions than they require to do their jobs, which increases the risk of identity-based attacks. According to studies, identity-based assaults were used in roughly 80% of cyberattacks to compromise legitimate credentials.
Installing cryptominers onto a company's system is another option for attackers to profit from cloud vulnerabilities. Cryptocurrency mining necessitates a significant amount of computational power. Threat actors will employ hacked cloud accounts to carry out this operation and make as much money as possible while draining the company's resources.
Security Shifting to the Left
Protecting the cloud entails safeguarding an ever-increasing attack surface that includes everything from cloud workloads to virtual servers and other cloud-related technology. Attackers are continuously on the lookout for weak points in systems, especially susceptible cloud applications. With more organisations turning to the cloud than ever before to fulfil the needs of a remote workforce, the number of cloud apps available has grown.
Traditionally, security is applied to code as the final step before it is released. When vulnerabilities are discovered, the release is either postponed or the development team is forced to hustle to fix each security flaw while the security team scrambles to review the updates. Shifting security left for DevOps teams guarantees that vulnerable code is found as it is built rather than during the testing phase, lowering costs and resulting in secure cloud apps.
Shift left security is a critical component of the software development life cycle, and getting it correctly should be a top concern. Organizations can accomplish DevSecOps and greatly reduce security issues surrounding cloud-native software and application development by incorporating security into the early phases of the development process.
Cloud security that is effective can enable DevSecOps
DevSecOps technologies and techniques can help companies develop a strong and secure cloud foundation. Cloud security requires a unified view of multi-cloud environments and constant intelligent monitoring of all cloud services. That unified visibility must be able to detect misconfigurations, vulnerabilities, and security threats while also giving developers and DevOps teams with actionable insights and automated remedies.
Additionally, it's critical to have the correct security policies in place that enforce cloud security standards throughout the entire infrastructure to satisfy (or exceed) industry and government regulations. This encompasses everything from multi-factor authentication to general security best practises for all employees, as well as a robust incident response system that guarantees the organisation is ready for an attack.
Up-to-date threat intelligence, on the other hand, should always be at the heart of any good cloud security strategy. Adversaries are continuously devising new techniques to attack the cloud and looking for flaws to exploit. It's critical to have the most up-to-date information about threat actors and their techniques, and then apply it to breach detection. Threat intelligence allows security teams to anticipate attacks and properly prioritise protection, mitigation, and repair in order to avoid them. DevSecOps provides enterprises with the prevention, detection, visibility, and reaction tools they need to defeat attackers by delivering all of this functionality from and for the cloud.
by Isabelle Melton
Pride Month is all about celebrating LGBTQ+ communities across the globe and being proud of who you are no matter who you love.
Pride Month is all about celebrating LGBTQ+ communities across the globe and being proud of who you are no matter who you love.
The suggestion to call the movement 'Pride' came from L. Craig Schoonmaker who in 2015 said:
"A lot of people were very repressed, they were conflicted internally, and didn't know how to come out and be proud. That's how the movement was most useful, because they thought, maybe I should be proud."
Pride is celebrated in the month of June across the world in honor of the 1969 Stonewall Uprising in Manhattan; a pivotal point in the Gay Liberation Movement. On June 28th, 1969, NYC police raided the Stonewall Inn, a gay pub located in Greenwich Village.
The raid sparked riots when police roughly hauled employees and patrons out of the bar, which lead to 6 days of protests and violent clashes with law enforcement outside the bar on Christopher Street and in the neighbouring streets and parks. These riots served as a catalyst for the gay rights movement around the world.
Here is a round-up of some of the most influential and notable people in the tech industry who identify as LGBTQ+.
Name: Tim Cook
Role: CEO of Apple
Tim Cook isn't only one of the most powerful LGBTQ+ people in tech, but one of the most powerful people in tech EVER. Cook was Apple's CIO, prior to becoming the CEO in the summer of 2011.
Cook came out publicly as gay in 2014 in personal essay he wrote for Bloomberg Businessweek. He mentioned that whilst he wanted to keep his private life private, he felt it was his duty to come out in a way to help the gay community. In the essay, Cook said:
"It has been tough and uncomfortable at times, but it has given me the confidence to be myself, to follow my own path, and to rise above adversity and bigotry. It's also given me the skin of a rhinoceros, which comes in handy when you're the CEO of Apple."
Name: Arlan Hamilton
Role: Co-Founder & CEO of Backstage Capital
Hamilton is a managing partner at Backstage Capital, a VC firm she started in 2015 when she was homeless. Backstage invest in companies which are led by underrepresented founders, such as women, people of colour and LGBTQ+ individuals.
In a September 2018 cover story, Fast Company said Hamilton was "the only black, queer woman to have ever built a venture capital firm from scratch".
Name: Joel Simkhai
Role: Founder of Grindr
In 2009, Joel Simkhai founded Grindr, a dating app for men in the LGBTQ+ community. Simkhai told Business Insider that the app stemmed from his "selfish desire" to meet more gay men, which now has almost 4 million daily users.
Simkhai remained the CEO of Grindr until 2018, when the app was sold for more than $150 million to a Chinese gaming company.
Name: Leanne Pittsford
Role: Founder & CTO of Lesbians Who Tech
In her time, Leanne Pittsford has founded three tech-centric diversity initiatives:
- Lesbians Who Tech
- Tech Jobs Tour
Since 2012, Lesbians Who Tech has offered opportunities to give visibility and equality to LGBTQ+ women and non-binary individuals in the tech sector. Her other two initiatives are aimed at mentoring and recruiting underrepresented groups in the tech industry.
Pittsford got married in June 2017 to political consultant Pia Carusone.
Name: Megan Smith
Role: Former chief technology officer of the United States
Megan is an award-winning entrepreneur, engineer and tech evangelist. She was appointed in 2014 under President Obama as the first-ever female US CTO Prior to this, she aided with the launch of some fantastic initiatives such as Women Tech-makers and SolveForX during her time as VP at Google. To add, she was also the former CEO of PlanetOut – a leader of the online LGBT community back in the very first few years of the Internet.
After leaving the White House in 2017, Smith helped the Tech Jobs Tour to bring diverse talent into the tech sector. Smith is also the founder and CEO of shift7, a collective focused on bringing together figures in tech and public service.
Name: Leanne Pittsford
Role: Founder and CEO of Lesbians Who Tech
Pittsford has founded three tech-centric diversity initiatives: Lesbians Who Tech, include.io, and Tech Jobs Tour.
She defines herself as “an entrepreneur, investor and thought leader at the intersection of technology and economic opportunity for All Americans and believes that economic power is a driving force for cultural and societal change! Lesbians Who Tech is the largest LGBTQ community of technologists in the world – with over 40,000 members to boast and more than 5,000 attending the annual summit every year!
It offers programming and opportunities to give visibility and opportunity to LGBTQ+ women and non-binary individuals in the tech sector. The other two initiatives are aimed at mentoring and recruiting underrepresented groups in tech.
by Chris Burnett
Video interviews are an important part of the hiring process and are becoming more popular and they're definitely here to stay. Understanding the...
Video interviews are an important part of the hiring process and are becoming more popular and they're definitely here to stay. Understanding the requirements of a video interview will help you feel more at ease and succeed during the process. In this article, we'll go over what a video interview is, how to prepare for one, and how to handle any potential issues that may arise.
Choose a Suitable Location
It's important to choose a quiet and appropriate environment for your video interview. If you want an interviewer to focus on you, go somewhere with few interruptions. Select a wall with a neutral background and, ideally, no photographs or artwork behind you. Make sure you have adequate lighting, either from natural light or from a nearby light source. Set up your camera so the upper third of your body is clearly visible to the interviewer.
It is critical that you have a stable internet connection at your location. Whether you're concerned about your home's internet speed, ask if your local public library has a private room that you may reserve. Even if they have better internet, coffee shops and other communal locations should be avoided.
You want to make sure that you're dressed appropriately for you if video interviews, it doesn't have to be the traditional suit, but make sure you're wearing something smart and also make sure there's no distractions in the background. Research the company culture before your interview, so you have a good idea of what's appropriate. Position the camera so that you are looking up slightly and centred on the screen. While it's likely that the interviewer will only see your upper half, it's still a good idea to wear professional trousers or a skirt in case you need to stand up for any reason.
Arrive Early and Review your Setup
You want to give a really good first impression to your next potential employer and it’s a sign of professionalism for you to arrive on your video interviews approximately five minutes before they start. This gives you time to review and ensure all your technology is working before the interview, make sure you have a strong internet connect and to make sure that you've got the right link. Ensure you check the camera and audio on your computer or phone and if you're going to wear headphones throughout the interview, ensure sure they're compatible with the software.
Use Video Interviews to your Advantage
You've got a lot of great resources that you can have open while she sat at home. During your interviews, you can have the company website, you can have your resume open in front of you. You can have the interviewers LinkedIn profile, actually using all the things to your advantage should make a great first impression and make sure you got there in the smash video interviews.
It's imperative that you are able to check all the things that you can control within the interview; however, we do understand that some things do go wrong with doing video interviews. That is part of doing them remotely, but control of the controllable.
by Adam Cooper
What is workplace culture?
This is essentially the personality of a workplace and every organisation has one. It determines the attitude, energy...
What is workplace culture?
This is essentially the personality of a workplace and every organisation has one. It determines the attitude, energy and productivity of a working environment, and part of your job will be to fit in. Your employer will likely have judged you to be a good match for the organisation’s culture during the interview process. It’s worth asking where you can find information about the culture and values of the organisation and the principles that they apply.
What is appropriate workplace behaviour?
It’s possible, and is certainly encouraged, to become friends with your colleagues, but the workplace also tends to be a place of more formal behaviour and standards. This means that the way you dress, talk and behave needs to be professional.
1. Dress appropriately
Even if your workplace doesn’t require you to wear a suit or uniform, it’s important to show you’re ready to work. Gauge what your colleagues wear and make sure your clothes are clean and neat.
2. Pay attention
Communication is about listening as well as talking. By paying attention and trying your best to concentrate, especially when people are explaining new tasks or processes, you’ll know what people expect of you and you’ll pick things up quicker.
3. Ask questions
It’s okay to ask questions or take notes for reference. This will show you’re interested and engaged in your work.
4. Follow the rules
Workplace rules exist so that everyone stays happy and safe. Following them shows your honesty and integrity and lets your employer know they can trust you.
5. Be part of the team
Teamwork plays a huge role in the workplace. It’s important to get on with the people you work with as you’ll be spending a lot of time with them. Make an effort to interact with them and get to know them.
Figuring out the culture of a new workplace and finding your way in it takes time and nobody will expect you to nail it on day one. However, by thinking about your behaviour and being enthusiastic and open to new ideas and ways of working, you can make your first impression a positive one.
by Lewis Andrews
Jira and Microsoft Azure DevOps are two of the most popular project management platforms for DevOps professionals. We'll look at the similarities...
Jira and Microsoft Azure DevOps are two of the most popular project management platforms for DevOps professionals. We'll look at the similarities and differences between Azure DevOps and Jira to help you decide which software is suitable for you.
Azure DevOps :
Azure DevOps is a set of cloud services that includes collaboration tools that work on any platform, as well as a tool that helps businesses execute the DevOps lifecycle. It gives you a ready-to-use framework for converting your idea into software. It comes with Agile tools to help you manage your tests, version your code with Git, and deploy projects to cross-platform platforms. Visual Studio Team Service (VSTS) was the previous name for Azure, which provided a better software development lifecycle with current services.
Features of Azure DevOps :
Jira is a project management programme created by Atlassian, an Australian startup, in 2002. It's a robust application that helps with issue tracking, bug tracking, and numerous project management processes. Jira has evolved into more than an issue tracking platform for organisations, supporting Agile development or general task development, and the majority of apps are now built on top of it. It caters to a wide range of clients and offers Jira Core, Jira Software, and Jira Service Desk as well as other versions of the product.
Features of Jira:
Head-to-head comparison: Jira vs. Azure DevOps
There are cloud and server versions of Jira and Azure DevOps. Jira is hosted on Amazon Web Services (AWS), whereas Azure DevOps is hosted on Microsoft Azure. Server versions are only required for customers that have higher security requirements or who demand complete data control for special collaboration needs or other purposes.
Users can personalise the dashboards in both DevOps services to display the information that is most relevant to their projects. Different tools are referred to as gadgets in Jira. The Azure DevOps team offers a similar collection of tools called widgets. These modules are quite similar and may be readily added to highlight what information is most crucial when users first log in, as their names suggest. Custom filtering of each gadget or widget is also possible with both DevOps tools.
Product Road mapping
For a long time, Jira has had built-in roadmaps, and these tools are really well optimised and developed out. This capability was just added to Azure Devops, although it is not as integrated as it could be because it requires two distinct programmes, Feature Timeline and Epic Timeline, both of which are accessible as DevOps plugins on the Microsoft Marketplace.
If product roadmapping is a major priority for you, Jira easily outperforms Azure DevOps. Jira's DevOps functionality is more integrated and easy to use than Azure DevOps.
Jira vs. Azure DevOps: Which is the better DevOps tool?
Jira obviously outperforms the competition in terms of customisation and scalability. Jira is the more flexible of the two due to its ability to add services on the fly within projects, as well as other features. With these additional customising options and possibilities comes a more difficult learning curve. Azure DevOps is the preferable tool if you merely want to get something up and running quickly. Jira, on the other hand, will provide the tools required for those who know exactly what they require.
In terms of traceability, Azure DevOps takes the lead. The traceability capabilities in Azure DevOps reveal relationships between work items from the beginning to the finish of a deployment.
Both of these project management systems are nearly identical, with the only meaningful differences being built-in roadmapping, traceability, and extensive search capabilities. If one of the aforementioned functions is a key priority for you, then making a decision based on that need should be simple. Aside from those essential responsibilities, these two systems should suffice for the vast majority of project management teams.
by Adam Cooper
A job interview is an opportunity for the organization to find out what it wants to know about finalists for a position, but it is also an...
A job interview is an opportunity for the organization to find out what it wants to know about finalists for a position, but it is also an opportunity for each finalist to find out what he or she wants to know as well. Interviewing is a two-way street.
As much as the hiring manager wants to know more about the individual they hire, the individual wants to know about the hiring manager, future co-workers, and the organization. A finalist that neglects to prepare and ask questions during an interview misses opportunities to impress the hiring manager and to gather more information that will inform the decision to accept a job offer.
This is a scenario-based question that really should be answered on an individual basis. It depends on the specific information you want to get out of the interview or the interview, or if you just want to see if it's a good fit. However, there are a few things that you can stick to consistently.
To begin, make sure your queries are tailored to the individual you're interacting with. Going on a call with HR and asking them questions regarding technological environments can appear to be poor judgement at times.
Second, I believe you should make sure to ask thought-provoking questions. The questions should allow you to get the information you require and desire from the interview. It is today, more than ever, used as a two-way street. Future growth opportunities, firm expansion plans, strategy, technology plans, points, ambitions, and realistic roadmaps are all good things to ask.
The most important thing is that you're demonstrating an interest in the position and showing that you've done your research beforehand and gathering the information that you need to make an educated decision at the end of the interview on whether it's the right fit essentially.
There is no right or wrong answer to which questions to ask; just make sure you've thought about them ahead of time. Before going into an interview, I normally recommend preparing six to eight questions. The reason for this is that some of these issues are likely to be covered throughout the interview, and you don't want to be left speechless when it comes to the questions part at the end.
Finally, I usually prefer to end an interview with a question, such as 'do you have any reservations about anything I've done or said today?' This just allows you to manage any objections that are voiced and maybe offer them a cause to rethink their thoughts or opinions.
by Emily Jones
June is Pride Month, a month dedicated to honouring LGBTQ+ groups and celebrating the right to be oneself. It is a celebration of people coming...
June is Pride Month, a month dedicated to honouring LGBTQ+ groups and celebrating the right to be oneself. It is a celebration of people coming together in love and friendship to illustrate how far LGBTQ+ rights have progressed and how much work remains in some areas.
Acceptance, equality, honouring the achievements of LGBTQ+ persons, learning about LGBTQ+ history, and raising awareness of issues affecting the LGBTQ+ community are all part of Pride Month.
The initial organisers picked June to commemorate the Stonewall riots in New York City in June 1969, which sparked the contemporary gay rights movement. The majority of Pride festivities take place in June each year, while some areas celebrate at other times of the year.
But how did the last half-century of Pride become what it is today, and what are the best ways to celebrate? Let's take a look at Pride's history, its impact around the world, and what the future holds for the movement.
What is Pride Month?
Pride Month is an entire month dedicated to uplifting LGBTQ voices, celebrating LGBTQ culture, and advocating for LGBTQ rights, and it is founded in the long struggle of minority groups to overcome discrimination and be accepted for who they are. There have traditionally been parades, protests, drag performances, live theatre, and tributes and celebrations of life for members of the community who have died as a result of HIV/AIDS during the month of June around the country. It's a combination of political campaigning and a celebration of everything the LGBTQ community has accomplished over the years.
Where did it start?
Pride Month commemorates the June 1969 Stonewall Riots.
In the early hours of June 28, 1969, police raided the Stonewall Inn, a gay bar in New York's Greenwich Village, and began dragging customers outside. Tensions quickly escalated as patrons resisted arrest and a growing crowd of bystanders threw bottles and coins at the officers. The LGBT community in New York, fed up with years of harassment by authorities, erupted in three-day neighbourhood riots.
The Stonewall Riots gave the global 'Gay Liberation' movement a new push. Encouragement of talks regarding the lives and perspectives of LGBTQ+ people was a key component of this movement, as did fighting for fundamental change in how LGBTQ+ persons were viewed by society. In the UK, for example, the Pride movement witnessed the emergence and establishment of grassroots organisations that sought to stop the mistreatment of LGBTQ+ individuals. The Campaign for Homosexual Equality is a key example of this.
Brenda Howard, a bisexual activist, organised the first Pride event in New York City on June 28, 1970. The first march, dubbed the Christopher Street Liberation Day March (after the street on which the Stonewall Inn is located), was a mix of celebration and protest. The next year, in 1971, Howard organised another event, and Pride marches sprung up all around the world.
The Stonewall Inn was designated as a historic landmark by the city of New York in 2015, and President Barack Obama later declared it as a national monument in 2016.
What has the Pride Movement achieved?
Since the Stonewall Riots, LGBTQ+ people have fought globally for their rights and liberties. In most countries, more than 2,000 years of homophobic, biphobic, and transphobic persecution have been significantly scaled back in less than half a century, which is a remarkable achievement. All of this achievement is the product of national and worldwide LGBT+ groups' courageous, imaginative, and unwavering campaigning despite all odds.
Following the first Pride, the number of nations that have legalised homosexuality has increased, and same-sex marriage is now permitted in over 30 countries. LGBTQ+ people today have personal and political rights in countries around the world, including Colombia, New Zealand, Iceland, Ireland, and the United Kingdom (for example, equal partnership).
The Pride movement is still fighting for LGBTQ+ rights in the twenty-first century. Following a protracted campaign for state support and safety, Serbian LGBTQ+ activists held a successful Pride march in Belgrade in 2014. In 2014, Denmark became the first European country to enable transgender people to have official documents (such as passports) that reflect their gender identification, thanks to the work of LGBTQ+ activists.
Why is the History of the Pride movement important today?
It is important to learn about and remember those who fought for the right to celebrate Pride in order to truly appreciate it.
1. Remembering that Pride began as a protest reminds us of how Pride can continue the battle for LGBTQ+ rights around the world today.
2. Knowing who founded the Pride movement serves as a reminder that Pride Month events must be inclusive.
3. Reflect on how the Stonewall rioters were treated highlights the significance of Pride as a celebration.
Learning about the origins and history of Pride and the Pride movement not only informs us about why Pride month exists, but it also demonstrates how this past is essential to how people will celebrate Pride in the future. Pride is "a reminder of the strength of standing together in spite of those who wish to divide us," according to Stonewall. Because of the efforts of LGBTQ+ activists and individuals from all around the world, Pride is a unique event.
by Charlotte Drury
All-Black Climbing Team Makes History Reaching Top of Everest, Inspiring Diverse Adventurers
Seven members of an all-Black mountain climbing team summited Mount Everest this month, with the assistance of eight Sherpa guides.
Despite the fact that hundreds of people queue up every year to climb Everest, just ten Black people have ever done it, including only one Black woman and one Black American.
"I am genuinely proud to report that seven members of the Full Circle Everest team summited on May 12," said Philip Henderson, the team's leader and an instructor at Nepal's Khumbu Climbing Center (KCC), which trains some of the world's best climbers.
Among their team it was made up of indivduals from all around the United States, as well as one man from Kenya, range in age from 29 to 60, and include sociology professors, Microsoft data scientists, chemistry teachers, freelance photographers and filmmakers, an Iraq War II combat vet, and climbing experts.
Conrad Anker, founder of KCC and a colleague of Henderson's, told National Geographic about the achievement, "When children throughout the world see themselves represented in an all-Black expedition, they will experience and become part of the value set that is climbing."
He explained, "It would be lovely to just climb [Everest], but we are representing Black people." "As much as it will be a burden, I believe it will be beneficial."
Environmental activists were celebrated in global prize
Activists who helped defund coal, held big oil accountable, and file historic climate cases are among the recipients of this year's Goldman environmental medal, dubbed the "Green Nobel prize" for its international recognition of environmental activism.
Highlighting the power of individual action, the winners were: Alex Lucitante and Alexandra Narvaez, who led a movement to protect indigenous land from mining in Ecuador; Nalleli Cobo, who helped shut down a toxic US oil-drilling site; Julien Vincent, leader of a successful campaign to defund coal in Australia; Marjan Minnesma , who took the Dutch government to court over climate inaction (and won); Niwat Roykaew, whose actions halted an environmentally destructive shipping project in the Mekong; and Chima Williams, who helped hold Shell accountable for an oil spill in Nigeria.
“While the many challenges before us can feel daunting, and at times make us lose faith, these seven leaders give us a reason for hope and remind us of what can be accomplished in the face of adversity,” said Jennifer Goldman Wallis, vice-president of the Goldman Environmental Foundation.
Passenger with no flight experience safely lands plane
Darren Harrison had no prior aviation experience, but when the pilot of the single-engine plane in which he was travelling had a medical issue, he leaped out of his seat and assumed control of the plane. Harrison returned to Florida in a Cessna 208 last Tuesday after a fishing excursion to the Bahamas. The jet fell into a nosedive when the pilot reported he wasn't feeling well and slumped down.
Harrison moved the pilot out of the way and contacted air traffic control to explain the situation. The controllers guided Harrison into a gradual descent to Palm Beach International Airport. "I was pretty calm and collected the whole time because I knew it was a life or death situation," Harrison said. To the relief of everyone, Harrison safely landed the plane, and controllers instructed him on how to use the brakes. Grateful to be back on land, Harrison said he thanked everyone for helping him and then "said the biggest prayer I've ever said in my life."
MacKenzie Scott makes historic donation to Big Brothers Big Sisters
MacKenzie Scott has just given Big Brothers Big Sisters of America a huge boost.
The organisation announced that the wealthy donor has donated $122.6 million, the largest single donation in Big Brothers Big Sisters' 118-year history.
The significant gift will support an organisation that has been creating one-on-one relationships between children and adult mentors for more than a century across the country. The goal is to help youngsters reach their full potential by building long-term, constructive relationships with them.
The Australian election put the climate in the spotlight
What last weekend’s Australian election means for global emissions remains to be seen. But this was the climate election many had hoped for. A surge in support for politicians pledging climate action showed that global heating was at the forefront of people’s minds when they went to the polls.
In the end, Scott Morrison, a prime minister who has mocked the seriousness of the climate crisis (and once brandished a lump of coal in parliament, telling MPs not to be afraid of it) was rejected. Last week Australia was found to have the highest coal emissions per person of any developed country.
Election victor Anthony Albanese vowed to be a climate leader. David Ritter, CEO of Greenpeace Australia Pacific, said: “Australian voters have made the call for urgent climate action, and now it’s time for the new parliament to roll up its sleeves and get on with the job.”
Five nature recovery projects launched in England
England will acquire a new "mega wildlife reserve." This week, it was announced that the Somerset property would be one of England's five nature recovery efforts.
The targeted properties are similar in size to England's 219 existing national nature reserves and are located in the West Midlands, Peak District, Cambridge, Norfolk, and Somerset.
A total of £2.5 million has been set aside to restore landscapes and provide natural solutions to cut carbon emissions and manage flood risk.
by Dane Keenan
If there is one thing that makes me smile in the morning, it’s knowing that I get to spend the day working with a wicked group of people...
If there is one thing that makes me smile in the morning, it’s knowing that I get to spend the day working with a wicked group of people I’m lucky enough to call my colleagues. And hopefully soon, actually see them in the flesh in the office… madness!
Having people at work who you can call your friends has a lot of benefits. Whether it’s someone to eat lunch with, take a screen break with or even sit next to, work feels more fun with friends.
Research taken from the Personality and Social Psychology Review looked into the connection between forming meaningful relationships at work and our health. The data showed that those with strong relationships with their colleagues reported having better health and wellbeing. So if you and your co-workers feel like a community, the more likely you’ll feel physically and mentally healthy at work. Win-win!
This research isn’t alone. Experts agree that friendly colleagues foster a better work environment. “A department, or company, that works well together, has the most success together”, says corporate veteran and author Andy Teach. “When you enjoy working with your colleagues and look forward to interacting with them, everyone benefits.” High morale at work leads to better productivity.
We wanted to conduct our own research into this theory. We asked the question “what do you love most about your current role?” and the results were as follows:
41% - my team/colleagues
25% - the work itself
18% - the benefits/flexibility
16% - the salary
The majority of people surveyed said that their colleagues were their favourite thing about work. This only bolsters the importance of creating and fostering friendships with your colleagues – it’s more than likely that they’ll be your favourite part of going to work!
At Franklin Fitch, our company culture is something we’re proud of. We’re a tight-knit bunch who work collaboratively across our international offices, and that’s the way we like it.
Can you see yourself working with a team like us? If so, get in touch to find out about our hiring plans.
by David Annable
Franklin Fitch is proud to have been awarded a 2-star accreditation from Best Companies, representing "outstanding" levels of employee...
Franklin Fitch is proud to have been awarded a 2-star accreditation from Best Companies, representing "outstanding" levels of employee engagement.
For the 2nd year in a row, Franklin Fitch has been named an Outstanding Company to Work for!
We are beyond proud to share that Franklin Fitch is now...
- An Outstanding Company to Work For.
- #23 Best Company to Work for in the UK Recruitment Sector.
- #31 Best Mid-Sized Companies to Work for in the UK.
- #13 Best Companies to Work for in London.
We are ecstatic with our Best Companies rankings; achieving "outstanding" levels of employee engagement indicates our leadership team's vision, our company's ethics, and our people's dedication.
Our people are our most valuable asset, and we're grateful to know that they feel valued. Thank you very much to everyone who participated in the survey and for all of your hard work in driving Franklin Fitch forward.
We couldn't be prouder of this achievement. We consider our people to be our biggest asset, and knowing that they feel engaged at work is very important to us. Having an engaged workforce encourages people to feel connected to each other and our aims at Franklin Fitch, meaning we all want to work towards a shared goal.
Looking forward, we're already getting started on analysing and implementing the feedback from the Best Companies survey. This data will provide invaluable insights into what we can do to make Franklin Fitch the very best place to work - because that's the standard we're aiming for.
This feedback comes at a great time for us, as we've got ambitious growth plans moving forward. We want to reach 100 heads by November 2023, and are looking for talented people to join us on this journey. Do you think this might be you? Are you keen to hear more about what it's like to work at Franklin Fitch? Get in touch with us today!
by Dafydd Kevis
Following the European Council and Parliament's provisional agreement on networks and information systems, called NIS2, Europe has moved closer...
Following the European Council and Parliament's provisional agreement on networks and information systems, called NIS2, Europe has moved closer to new cybersecurity standards and reporting requirements. The new measures, first proposed by the European Commission at the end of 2020, look to boost the cyber resilience of entities across range of sectors deemed critical for the economy and society.
NIS2 will take the place of the present Directive on the Security of Networks and Information Systems, or NIS, which was adopted in 2016. The new directive establishes tighter criteria — as well as possible consequences, such as fines – for a broader range of industries that must adhere to computer security regulations.
It also aims to minimise "significant differences" in risk management and security reporting requirements among EU member states by adopting uniform criteria for assessing, reporting, and taking action to mitigate cyber risk.
The existing regulations on network and information system security (NIS Directive) were the first piece of EU-wide cybersecurity legislation, and they cleared the way for a dramatic shift in mindset, institutional, and legislative approaches to cybersecurity in many Member States. Despite their remarkable accomplishments and beneficial influence, they needed to be updated due to our society's expanding digitalisation and interconnection, as well as the increasing amount of cyber harmful operations on a global scale.
To address Europe's increased vulnerability to cyber threats, the NIS2 Directive now includes medium and large entities from a wider range of sectors that are critical to the economy and society, such as providers of public electronic communications services, digital services, wastewater and waste management, critical product manufacturing, postal and courier services, and public administration, both at the national and regional levels. Given the increased security threats that occurred during the COVID-19 pandemic, it also covers the healthcare sector more widely, for example by incorporating medical equipment manufacturers. The new standards' expanded reach will assist raise the level of cybersecurity in Europe in the medium and long term by effectively compelling more organisations and sectors to employ cybersecurity risk management procedures.
The NIS2 Directive also enhances the cybersecurity standards imposed on businesses, targets supply chain and supplier security, and holds top management accountable for non-compliance with cybersecurity duties. It intends to harmonise sanctions regimes across Member States by streamlining reporting responsibilities, introducing more tougher monitoring measures for national authorities, as well as stricter enforcement requirements. It will aid in the sharing of information and collaboration on cyber crisis management at the national and EU levels.
NIS2 also sets up a European cybercrisis liaison organization network, dubbed EU-CyCLONe, to help manage large-scale online attacks across Europe, and also to coordinate vulnerability disclosure and increase information sharing and cooperation between government and private sector organizations. Meanwhile, companies that don't comply with the new risk management and reporting rules face fines of up to €10 million or two percent of their global annual turnover, whichever is higher.
Once adopted by the Council and European Parliament, member states will have 21 months to incorporate NIS2 into their national laws.
European Commissioners, for their part, welcomed the agreement.
"In today's cybersecurity landscape, cooperation and rapid information sharing are of paramount importance," said Thierry Breton, commissioner for the internal market, in a statement. "With the agreement of NIS2, we modernize rules to secure more critical services for society and economy. This is therefore a major step forward."
by Dane Keenan
Interested in a career in recruitment but feeling overwhelmed with questions? Want to know more about graduate opportunities here at Franklin Fitch?...
Interested in a career in recruitment but feeling overwhelmed with questions? Want to know more about graduate opportunities here at Franklin Fitch?
We sit down with our Academy Manager, Charlotte, to answer some of the most common questions that she gets from graduates seeking a career in recruitment.
How can I get a job in recruitment?
Stick to the basics, so find a company that fits your ideals, apply and prepare really well for the interview.
What are the typical working hours like? Have you ever been asked to work weekends?
Our standard working hours are 8.30am - 6pm and Consultants do work either side of that, depending on workload. I've never been asked to work weekends, but in recruitment, the more you put in, the more you will get out - but it's completely up to you.
How important is your work environment for your success in recruitment?
It's really important, it's just great to collaborate and bounce ideas off different Consultants with different approaches, tends to make you better in the end. Recruitment is full of lots of highs and lows, so it's good to celebrate those or commiserate those with other Consultants.
How does the Academy work?
It's a team set up to equip Consultants that have no recruitment background with the tools they need to then move on to have a successful career in senior teams in recruitment.
Do I need to know all about IT before applying?
Absolutely not. There is technical training as part of your onboarding here and most of our highest performers had no technical understanding before they came into the business and now they're experts, so don't worry.
What does the first week in the Academy look like?
The first week is fairly easy really, it's geared towards you getting to know everyone in the business and it usually ends with a social event on the Friday.
What is the training like at Franklin Fitch?
The training is a long programme that follows you from trainee all the way through to director-level. It's a multiple-strand approach, so we do variations of classroom, theory, workshops, listening sessions and live coaching depending on your learning style and your individual needs at the time.
What are the incentives like?
The incentives are really varied and really fun! We've done everything from Las Vegas, skiing trips, Dublin, watersports, London nights out - so really varied and they tend to be lots of fun.
How quickly can I progress through the business?
Each stage at Franklin Fitch has a structured career path so it's standardised targets that you can hit. So the short answer would be, as soon as you want to but realistically you're looking at your first promotion within 6-8 months.
Can you actually earn the figures that we see on the adverts?
There are some massive figures going around on some of the adverts out there. The short answer is yes, you absolutely can earn those figures in recruitment. We are confident we'd get Consultants there, but we focus on those smaller steps at first, to get you there. The building blocks to get you to that success.
If there are any questions that haven't been answered, or you want to find out more about the graduate opportunities that we have at Franklin Fitch, drop Dane a message!
Elon Musk, Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg – there are many male leaders in tech. But what about the decades of further women...
Elon Musk, Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg – there are many male leaders in tech. But what about the decades of further women technologists? From COO of Facebook, Sheryl Sandberg, to CEO of YouTube, Susan Wojcicki, women have continued to make waves in the technology business.
Despite the fact that more women are dominating the headlines, they are still underrepresented in boardrooms around the world. According to theOffice of National Statistics (ONS), only 31% of UK tech jobs held by women, while women make up fewer than 20% of technology jobs in the US, according to Evia data.
In fact, according to INvolve's data, men named David and Steve are more likely to lead FTSE100 companies than women and ethnic minorities which is a shocking realisation that businesses need to push for an increase in gender balance.
March 8th marks International Women’s Day: a global day celebrating the social, economic, and political achievements of women. It’s also a day which calls for action to accelerate gender parity. The theme of this year’s event is #BreakTheBias highlighting that gender balance isn’t just a women’s issue, it’s a societal issue. Whether campaigning for equal wages or calling for a crackdown on harassment, now the race is on to create a board room which is diverse, a workforce which is inclusive and a society where difference is valued and celebrated.
Thankfully, times are changing, and more women are being encouraged to join the ranks of inventors and creators who are driving world-changing technical advancements. Diversity is a significant societal issue, but it is equally significant in the corporate sector.
Diversity in the workforce amounts to a wider range of perspectives and experiences, making it a valuable business asset and a win-win situation for all.
It all starts with education
Education is one of the barriers. Despite 74% of females demonstrating an interest in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) in middle school in the United States, just 0.4 percent choose degrees in this field, according to research from the non-profit organisation Girls Who Code.
Due to a lack of resources and information from a young age, as well as role models within the industry, just 3% of women choose a technology-based career as their first option, according to PwC's own study, Women in Tech: Time to Close the Gender Gap.
To encourage women to explore STEM subjects, we need to provide a welcoming learning atmosphere. Not only is the professional world dominated by men, but so is the educational world. As a result, it is critical to create an environment or community in which women feel at ease in STEM fields. Breaking down gender biases and supporting young women interested in STEM fields – regardless of their level of skill – should be a top priority for any modern company. Why? Diversity has been shown to boost workplace innovation, productivity, and, ultimately, profitability.
Making space for women in STEM
With the increasing demand for new technology, there is an urgent need for women to be better supported in pursuing STEM careers.
If barriers are to be broken, preconceptions challenged, and hurdles conquered in regard to women's participation in and contribution to innovation, educators, corporations, and individual mindsets must be broadened. More coding clubs in schools are needed. More female role models and mentors are needed. In the workplace, we must overcome gender bias. Companies must also provide more flexible working conditions for women, such as programmes to assist women who are returning to work or improved maternity leave policies.
In the future, the technology sector should contribute to a more gender-balanced world, honour women's accomplishments, and raise awareness about bias. It will aid the growth of the technological sector, stimulate new talent, and make a significant difference for women. While we've made significant progress in recent years, the technology sector still has a long way to go before it is genuinely diversified.
by Dane Keenan
With so many options to choose from, it isn’t always straightforward making crucial career decisions after graduation. This is particularly the...
With so many options to choose from, it isn’t always straightforward making crucial career decisions after graduation. This is particularly the case if your degree doesn’t guide you into a specific profession, such as law, accounting or medicine.
If you’ve got academic ability, interpersonal skills, and a competitive edge, there will be many employers looking to hire you. So whilst it can be a case of simply establishing where your main attributes lie, and what you’d like to do, this can be much easier said than done.
According to the latest FT survey, competition is fierce, opportunities are scarce and earning and growth potential can be low in the job market. However, starting a career within the recruitment industry can provide the perfect opportunity to learn and develop a fantastic array of skills and business attributes.
What is Recruitment?
Recruitment agencies work with companies to find appropriate people for their roles, and work with candidates to find their desired role. They are paid by the employer once they have successfully found a suitable candidate for their organisation.
As a recruitment consultant you’ll need to be able to build and maintain good working relationships, have excellent communication skills and be confident in a customer-facing role.
More companies are using recruiters due to the high demand for talented people in the industry. Recruitment consultants use their knowledge, expertise and judgment to match talented candidates to business’ job opportunities. Most companies have realised that their most valuable asset for success is their employees, giving recruiters the change to make a real impact on the economy and business growth.
Agencies are not only seeking the skilled candidates for their clients but looking for the top talent to join their own workforces. There is a significant demand for enthusiastic, ambitious professionals who are self-driven, hardworking and want to “be their own boss”. Recruitment companies are looking for those personalities that can build rapport, handle negotiations, influence and manage relationships.
Here are 8 reasons why recruitment is a good career move for you:
Diversity and Inclusion have been around for a while, but 2020 was the year that many businesses started to take the matter seriously. The global...
Diversity and Inclusion have been around for a while, but 2020 was the year that many businesses started to take the matter seriously. The global pandemic raised questions around remote working, coupled with the tragic murder of George Floyd and subsequent Black Lives Matter protests that swept the globe brought matters around diversity and inclusion to the forefront of conversations.
As a business, where is your place in this conversation? Hiring, retaining and nurturing a diverse workforce that is representative of the wider population is something that all organizations need to invest in.
Widening the diversity of your candidate pool will give you more chance of finding the best person for the job. Combined with studies from McKinsey and the Harvard Business Review which demonstrate that diverse teams have real benefits to business outputs, as well as it being “the right thing to do” – investing in a diverse and inclusive recruitment practice should be at the forefront of every business in 2021.
A diverse recruitment strategy alone isn’t enough – it has to be part of a bigger commitment to move away from the dreaded “cultural fit” to a more inclusive culture that fits around each individual, no matter what their background. Only by nurturing this diverse talent in a culture of inclusion, are you able to tap into the diverse perspectives and thoughts being offered by your workforce.
Hiring and retaining a diverse workforce can’t be done overnight – it’s a long-term commitment. Below, we outline some of the practices we use to hire diverse teams for our clients, as well as internally at Franklin Fitch.
Is your branding inclusive?
A recent study by PWC showed that 86% of female millennials and 74% of male millennials seek out employers with a strong record of diversity. One way to show these millennials of your commitment to diversity and inclusion is by visually showing a diverse workforce in your marketing materials. Are you able to use diverse imagery?
The Flexible Job Index says an estimated 87% of employees want to work flexibly – meaning if you want to have access to the best possible talent, you need to show that your organization is happy to support those who choose to work flexibly. Are you able to show your commitment to flexible working with real case studies? Include these case studies in your marketing materials.
Avoid sweeping statements such as ‘we value diversity and inclusion’ unless you follow them up with specific examples of what you’re actually doing to place value on D&I. What exactly is your organization doing to champion diversity and inclusion? Use real and specific examples in your branding and communications.
Are your job adverts attractive to all?
You can be sure that if an applicant is looking at nothing else – they’re looking at your job advert. Therefore it’s worth spending time ensuring your adverts will attract a variety of diverse individuals to your organization. There are a few easy ways to do this:
Use a debiasing tool to ensure that gender-neutral language is used. Language such as ‘competitiveness’ or ‘assertiveness’ can discourage women from applying.
Advertise the role with some degree of flexibility to ensure that parents can apply.
Focus on competencies, attitude and aptitude rather than formal education/qualifications.
Instead of including a general equal opportunities statement, be clear in saying that the organizations actively encourage applicants with diverse backgrounds and perspectives and explain why.
Describe the culture as inclusive and one that aims to fit around individuals – rather than wanting to hire people who fit into a specific culture that could be exclusive. Focus around looking for a ‘values fit’ rather than a ‘cultural fit’.
Make use of the variety of platforms and job boards that actively recruit people from underrepresented groups to advertise your vacancy. As well as listing your vacancy on your company website, utilize identity-based networks to advertise job listings.
Spend time cultivating networks of underrepresented groups by attending events and networking. Are you able to partner with one of these organizations?
How are you ensuring that bias doesn’t creep in when interviewing?
It’s an almost impossible task to prevent unconscious bias creeping in when interviewing someone. It’s not something to feel guilty about – it’s unconscious! But is it important to take steps to prevent it from occurring, and knowing when to recognize it.
Hiring managers are often reliant on ‘intuition or a ‘gut feeling’ when making hiring decisions. These feelings often occur when we like someone because we believe them to be similar to ourselves. Acting on these gut feelings results in a homogenous work culture where everyone comes from similar backgrounds/experiences – the very opposite of what we want to achieve.
The easiest way to avoid unconscious bias when interviewing is to ask competency-based questions. This prevents talented candidates from being filtered out of the interview process because of their diverse or individual differences.
When the final decision is being made, ensure it is made by a panel/group of people, rather than an individual. It’s much more difficult to act on feelings of unconscious bias when in a group.
Diversity and inclusion is a long game, and isn’t something that can be “solved” overnight. It requires continuous work from organizations large and small. Don’t be afraid of getting things wrong – it’s a learning curve.
If you’re keen to hear more about how we hire diverse teams both in our external recruitment practice and internally at Franklin Fitch, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.
Cloud computing has existed for nearly two decades. Cloud computing has grown in popularity among IT and business professionals over the years....
Cloud computing has existed for nearly two decades. Cloud computing has grown in popularity among IT and business professionals over the years. Businesses are more aware than ever before that cloud computing is the way of the future and want to incorporate it into their operations. Public cloud services from Amazon, Google, Microsoft, and others are seeing a major rise in usage as the pandemic validates the necessity for cloud. According to Gartner, this trend will continue, with public cloud services expected to rise by more than 18% in 2021 and continue to grow at a steady rate through 2024.
What is the Cloud?
The cloud, in simple terms, is a collection of servers that host databases and software and are accessible over the internet. These servers are spread across the globe in data centres. Businesses can reduce the need for duties like server maintenance and administration by using cloud computing. Cost effectiveness, security, ease of management, scalability, and reliability are all advantages of cloud platforms.
The epidemic of COVID-19 has accelerated cloud migration. Many businesses have already made the switch to cloud platforms and are seeing increased productivity and profitability, and others are starting to gradually shift.
What's the bottom line? Digital transformation and cloud migration are critical in today's complex business world.
What is a Private Cloud?
A private cloud is one in which the servers are owned by and dedicated to only one business (referred to as the user or tenant). A private cloud can be developed on-premises, using hardware that you control and operate, or hosted by a third party in a data centre. The fact that the servers are inaccessible to other users is the most important distinguishing feature.
The owner is in charge of server management and maintenance, as well as future capacity and performance planning to suit organisational needs. Long lead times are frequently required for provisioning extra hardware and services (power, broadband, cooling, and so on) to satisfy future demand. It's popular among businesses that manage sensitive data and value the adaptability and scalability it provides.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Private Cloud
A private cloud, like any other technology, has advantages and disadvantages. A private cloud can provide a better level of security and service to industries with highly specialised demands, such as government and defence. Companies outside of these areas may nevertheless benefit from a private cloud if they have data-intensive customers in highly secure fields.
Here are some other vital advantages that are offered by the private cloud:
Security- Since organisations can physically secure their servers and access data through private networks, private clouds provide a high level of security.
Control- Private clouds give businesses the freedom to control their data and customize their core architecture as they want. It also makes monitoring easy and effective.
Customization and Reliability- The private cloud allows organisations to customize the components of their infrastructure in order to improve performance. Private clouds can also be trusted and are incredibly reliable.
Performance- Public clouds suit companies with powerful computing needs since they offer space for upgrading the infrastructure.
Latency is Minimal- Because resources are closer to users, data stored in an on-premises private cloud may be served rapidly, avoiding latency (i.e. delays in data transfer).
Despite having a plethora of advantages, the private cloud has its own dark side. Here are some disadvantages of private clouds:
Cost- Private clouds are expensive compared to public clouds. Components such as software licenses, hardware, network infrastructure, and labour costs contribute to the increased costs.
Maintaining and Deploying- The business needs to hire a qualified team to maintain the infrastructure which increases the cost of operation. However, you can overcome this challenge by hiring a managed cloud service provider to do the heavy lifting.
Limited Remote Access- Due to its security-first approach, remotes access is limited, which tends to reduce performance in some cases
What is Public Cloud?
A public cloud is a cloud architecture provided by third-party cloud vendors via the public internet that shares resources among multiple unconnected tenants. This strategy allows businesses and developers to have affordable access to high-performance computers, storage, infrastructure, and software.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Public Cloud
Using a public cloud as well as private cloud storage has advantages and disadvantages. Understanding the advantages and disadvantages can help you decide if the public cloud is right for you.
Here are some other vital advantages that are offered by the public cloud:
Cost-Effective. In contrast to building a data centre, you do not need to invest money upfront to accommodate public cloud; you can use pay-per-use model.
Fast setup. Further, most public cloud services are designed to be easy to start, though there are exceptions.
Reliability. Public cloud platforms are reliable because backup data centres are always there in the event of failure.
Scalability and stability – Public cloud services allow you to scale up and down as needed, and they are simple to set up and manage.
Here are some of the disadvantages and challenges you may face when using the public cloud:
Security Limitations — This is the main concern for businesses that want to integrate cloud computing into their workflow. Defence contractors and banks, for example, may require a higher level of security protection. A private cloud makes it easier to meet these security standards.
Limited customization capabilities and poor technical support: The public cloud's multi-tenancy prevents users from personalising certain components. In addition, most public cloud providers provide inadequate or no technical support, which might limit performance.
Latency. Most businesses don't care about fractions of a second, but in other industries, even little delays in transferring or retrieving data to and from the cloud can cause performance issues.
You don't have to choose between a private or public cloud; you can also adopt a hybrid cloud strategy. The presence of various deployment types (public or private) with some form of integration or orchestration between them is referred to as hybrid cloud.
A hybrid cloud makes sense in a number of situations:
To improve disaster recovery time: A hybrid cloud is a solid solution for storing backups and using them in a disaster recovery situation for firms that value speed and dependability. In this case, the strategy is to have a "warm disaster recovery" service on standby in case of a calamity and then switch to it when needed.
To comply with legal obligations: Some laws compel you to keep data within a certain geographical footprint. One method to achieve these needs is to use a hybrid cloud.
For data-intensive tasks: Companies or departments that operate with significant amounts of large files, such as media and entertainment, can benefit from a hybrid cloud strategy. They can use on-premises technology to get fast access to huge media files and use a scalable, low-cost public cloud provider to store data that isn't accessed as frequently—archives and backups, for example.
Choose the Best Cloud Model for Your Needs
Both models have advantages and disadvantages and work differently in different contexts The most essential aspects in choosing a cloud for most businesses and organisations will be affordability, accessibility, reliability, and scalability. Your type of organisation, laws, budget, and future plans will determine whether a private or public cloud, or a combination of both, is the right answer for your needs. The good news is that there are numerous options to suit almost every use case or budget.
by Leonie Schaefer
The world's largest wildlife crossing is now being built in California
The Wallis Annenberg Wildlife Crossing, which spans 10 lanes of Highway 101, aims to improve the lives of mountain lions and other species in the Santa Monica Mountains. Crews broke ground on the $87 million wildlife crossing in Agoura Hills, California, last week, and once completed — the target is 2025 — it will be the world's largest such corridor, according to CBS Los Angeles. The 165-foot-wide crossing, which would be about 10 feet above the road, will connect the Santa Monica Mountains with the Simi Hills. The crossing will be enclosed by trees, bushes, and sound barriers to ensure that the cars and traffic below do not scare the animals away.
Hair-braiding class for dads
Annis Waugh's hair-braiding session for dads overturned preconceived beliefs. Waugh owns Braid Maidens in St. Albans, England, and she organised workshops for parents as part of a fundraiser for a local primary school. Waugh created a course called "Beers and Braids" after learning she had never had a man enrol in any of her hair-braiding sessions. She hoped it would appeal to dads. Hundreds of fathers signed up for the waiting list after the class sold out. Waugh displayed brushing and braiding techniques while teaching the dads about hair textures and varieties. Waugh told The Washington Post that the men practised on plastic heads and were "very engaged and extremely happy learners." John Hardern enrolled in the session so he could assist his children in getting ready for school, and he told the Post that learning how to braid hair with other dads gave him confidence. Hardern stated, "It shouldn't simply be one gender doing anything like this." "The more we help each other and share the burden, the better for my daughters."
Scientists finish sequencing a complete human genome
Scientists have sequenced the entire human genome for the first time, a significant achievement that will aid researchers in better understanding how DNA differs from person to person and the role heredity plays in disease. The Human Genome Project reported in 2003 that it has sequenced 92 percent of the human genome, and a team of almost 100 scientists has laboured for the past two decades to fully expose the remaining 8%. "Having this entire knowledge will allow us to better understand how we form as an individual creature and how we differ not just from other humans but also from other species," said University of Washington researcher Evan Eichler.
Global surge in turtle activity
Turtles are flocking to beaches in greater numbers all across the world. The decrease in people visiting the sandy beaches where turtles lay their eggs appears to have resulted in an increase in females coming ashore to do just that. Turtle numbers are expected to rise in the near future, according to reports from throughout the world, because people are not currently harming these marine creatures. The increase in turtle activity, according to David Godfrey, executive director of the Sea Turtle Conservancy, is directly tied to recent changes in human behaviour.
Contact lens technology could help those with diabetes
Medical technology is frequently employed to assess chronic illnesses, and diabetes is no exception. For the first time, a biocompatible polymer has been used on contact lenses to provide diabetics with real-time information on their blood sugar levels. People can use the technology simply by blinking rather than bringing a kit out to examine themselves. The lenses will make it simple to make up-to-the-minute assessments.
Coal use for electrical power on the wane
Coal is one of the worst fossil fuels in terms of carbon emissions into the atmosphere. According to sources in the British press, coal-powered electrical production in the UK reached an all-time low in April. What was less generally known was that Austria and Sweden both permanently shut down their remaining coal-fired power plants within seven days of each other. Both countries, according to Inhabitat, have accomplished their goal ahead of schedule. Belgium has already eliminated coal consumption, and France is expected to be the next large economy to do so by 2022.
Alzheimer's treatment developed in the form of a spray
According to an article in Interesting Engineering, a Japanese team may have developed a novel technique to treat the symptoms of Alzheimer's disease. The plan is to concentrate on the tau protein, which is found in the brain. This protein is known to accumulate in dementia patients. The protein was combined with a harmless virus and administered to mice through nasal spray. The immune systems of the mice recognised the tau proteins as a threat rather than accumulating them. This, it is hoped, will lead to the development of a similar treatment for individuals in the near future.
Breakthrough means good news for US coral reefs
According to CNN, the Florida Aquarium has grown a coral outside of its natural environment for the first time. The researchers have successfully generated a ridged cactus coral in a tank under human supervision. The reefs near Florida have been hit hard by disease in recent years, and it's believed that cultivating corals in this manner would help safeguard them for future generations, maybe allowing them to be put back into the environment.
by Jake Rickman
Work is an important aspect of many of our lives. It is where we spend the majority of our time, where we earn our money, and where we frequently...
Work is an important aspect of many of our lives. It is where we spend the majority of our time, where we earn our money, and where we frequently establish friends. Having a career that you enjoy can be beneficial to your mental health and overall well-being.
Many employers and business owners believe that an employee's mental health is not their problem. However, how an employee feels, thinks, and acts has an impact on everything from productivity to communication to their capacity to maintain workplace safety.
All mental health problems will not be prevented or reduced by a healthy workplace environment. These will still come from life experience and past trauma, which all contribute to the development of mental health issues. Good mental health at work, on the other hand, goes hand in hand with good management, and there is solid evidence that companies with high levels of mental wellbeing are more productive. Taking care of one's well-being at work can boost productivity by as much as 12%.
One of the most important steps an employer can take to improve an individual's well-being, as well as the health of their entire company, is to assist them in improving their mental health. So, how can you foster a positive mental health culture in the workplace?
Reduce the Stigma
Talking about mental health used to be a taboo subject, and it still is for some individuals. Establish a safe space for people to communicate about their mental health by discussing stress management, self-care, and mental health in emails, meetings, and other places. Employees who feel free to be themselves at work are more likely to speak up without fear of being judged or facing repercussions.
Discuss Mental Health in the Workplace
Openly discuss and bring up concerns such as stress, depression, and anxiety in the workplace, and make it apparent that everyone struggles to be mentally healthy at times. Encourage your managers to recognise the indicators of mental illness and to talk to their colleagues about it. Leaders can help by sharing personal tales regarding their mental health, such as problems they've faced and how they overcome them. Employees who bravely and honestly share their issues can help build a sense of trust, knowing that they will be supported if they come forward with their own problems.
Promote a Healthy Work/Life Balance
Productivity will undoubtedly decline without a proper work/life balance, and people will eventually burn out. This could mean finishing work on time, avoiding sending emails 'out of hours,' or not working while you're sick. Allowing employees uninterrupted time to relax, socialise, and pursue hobbies outside of work is a crucial way to support them and create a great workplace culture.
Make Wellness a Priority
Make it a priority to assist employees in developing excellent mental health practises at work. Employee wellness includes not only mental but also physical health – therefore to promote wellness it is important that the company encourages exercise for example with a walking club at lunch. For mental health, encourage mini breaks and be mindful of workloads.
Support Employees’ Efforts to Get Help
Some employees are more hesitant to discuss and manage their mental health concerns as oppose to other medical issues. Make it apparent that you appreciate and support your employees' efforts to care for their minds as well as their bodies. Allow employees to attend counselling appointments on a flexible work schedule or provide a mental health day as needed.
Encourage Mentoring and Peer Support
People sometimes find it easier to talk to people who aren't their superiors. Outside of the line management system, peer supporters would allow employees to support one another. This would provide a safe environment for someone to address any concerns they may have concerned their mental health. Implementing an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) or a Health Cash Plan might be quite beneficial. This will make it easier for employees to access health benefits while also providing a safe environment for them to discuss issues.
To summarise, a positive company culture can have a significant impact on mental health. This year has brought significant change to many organisations, affecting how we grow and experience culture. However, by focusing on these areas, you may help to create a workplace that prioritises mental health.
by Charlotte Robinson
Whether you're actively looking for new work or happy in your existing position, it's a good idea to keep your CV updated on a regular basis....
Whether you're actively looking for new work or happy in your existing position, it's a good idea to keep your CV updated on a regular basis. As your career progresses, you may acquire valuable new talents, experiences, and attributes that will appear on your CV. It's a good habit to examine your CV on a regular basis to highlight your most current accomplishments and eliminate any outdated information.
Your CV will most likely be your first opportunity to impress hiring managers, so it must effectively highlight your talents, experience, and qualifications. According to studies, recruiters spend only seven seconds on average looking at a CV before assessing whether or not a prospect is suited for the position. As a result, first impressions are crucial to success. So, before you start looking for a job, clean up your CV and give it a makeover.
Here are 4 keys things to keep in mind when updating your CV on a regular basis:
Tailor to the Specific Job
One of the most important things to remember when writing a CV is to personalise it to the job description and company you're applying to. No two positions are the same, and no two CVs you submit should be the same. It's a good idea to do some research to make sure your CV is optimised for the employment role you want. Look at job ads and job descriptions for the role you desire and underline common keywords that you can use in your CV.
Examine company websites and professional networking sites for talents, qualifications, and values that are significant in your chosen field. Locate relevant keywords in a particular job description to include in your CV. Where applicable, add those keywords throughout your skills section and other areas. When you apply to a second job, spend an extra 10 minutes repeating this process rather than sending in the same CV, and you’ll have a much higher chance of success.
Make it Easier on the Eyes
Don't only change the text on your CV; pay attention to the design as well. CVs are summaries of your whole professional and academic experience, plus a little more, so expect them to be rich. Make sure there's plenty of white space so the hiring manager can easily read it. Use clear titles for the various subsections so that they can skip right to the bits that are most interesting to them.
Other design components should also be considered. Choose a legible font and avoid using too many colours. Use clean columns to keep things organised, and if you haven't done, insert bullet points beneath career history and other relevant parts.
Remove Unnecessary Information
When you add a new piece of information to your CV, you can generally remove an old piece of information. Remove prior positions that are no longer relevant to your target position to make room for more information about your professional goals. You can consider eliminating your school achievements and solely mentioning your degree-level qualifications as your job progresses. This can free up space for you to emphasize more professional achievements that recruiters will find more impressive.
The value of proofreading cannot be underestimated. A single spelling or punctuation error could turn off a hiring manager, so double-check, triple-check, and quadruple-check your CV before sending it out.
by Ben Makepeace
In today's job market, your ability to acquire your desired job is no longer only determined by your technical abilities. Every job has essential...
In today's job market, your ability to acquire your desired job is no longer only determined by your technical abilities. Every job has essential hard skills and experience necessary for the work. Despite the importance of these abilities, there are specific "soft talents" that employers seek for when employing new employees.
While technical skills are commonly discussed during interviews, it is becoming increasingly important to assess a candidate's prospects of integrating into the company's culture and work environment. Soft skills include human characteristics like as communication, time management, teamwork, and work ethic. Soft skills are more important than ever.
Here are 10 soft talents that employers are looking for if you're thinking about improving yours:
Creative Problem-Solving Skills
Within companies, problems will always arise. Employees who can solve problems and identify solutions are more valuable to a company than those who find problems but no solutions. Some managers prefer to have an issue given to them together with possible remedies at the same time.
Be an Effective Communicator
Employers value individuals who can communicate well both verbally and in writing. It is impossible to overstate the impact of excellent communication. Employees must be able to communicate as well as listen in order to work effectively with bosses, co-workers, and clients in the workplace. An excellent communicator can inspire others, explain complicated situations, and provide vital feedback.
Leadership is not simply being the one in charge and leading a team. It's your ability to persuade other employers, especially your peers, to hire you. Employers want employees who can collaborate with others, explain their expert viewpoints, and persuade them to make decisions that are in line with their ideas. Persuasive leaders travel from project to project, use their abilities to ensure that their portion of the project is completed on time.
A Positive Attitude
A positive attitude can go a long way toward turning around a department or company. It's crucial for businesses to have that energy in the office since having employees with a positive attitude can be contagious. It keeps individuals going when they're stressed, makes difficult job appear less challenging, and can make a workplace more pleasant.
Even without the challenges of the past few years, change is an important part of the modern workplace. Due to the rapid growth of technology, we are constantly doing things differently. Adaptability allows us to be more flexible and adapt to change. Many of us dislike change but learning to adjust to constantly changing needs and goals in the job while maintaining a positive, problem-solving mindset can make you an invaluable asset to your business. It will also help you stay relevant in your profession so that you can continue to be a valuable contributor in the future.
This is an important soft talent that benefits both you and your employer. Time management refers to the ability to organise your schedule on a daily and weekly basis in order to complete jobs on time and efficiently. Taking care of any of these concerns and managing your time will show management that you are dependable and that you will give them your all every day.
A Strong Work Ethic
A strong work ethic is the will to work hard and achieve success. Finding and hiring people with a strong work ethic is critical to any company's success. A strong work ethic is difficult to instil and even more difficult to maintain if one does not already exist. Having a strong work ethic is incredibly valuable in any profession or business. Employers prefer to hire people who will work to their full potential. It's not about being perfect; it's about being trustworthy and professional, as well as respecting your co-workers and workplace.
The ability to notice, assess, and respond to your own and others' emotions is referred to as emotional intelligence. This soft skill, like communication and adaptation, goes beyond understanding and controlling your own emotions to placing yourself in others' shoes for optimal collaborative production and success. It can also aid in stress management, conflict resolution, and the assessment of nonverbal cues.
Employees used to look for jobs that matched their desire to work independently or in a team setting. Those who believe they know how to do the job and don't trust others to do their part might cause stress in the workplace and reduce overall efficiency.
Much of the work in today's workplace is done in groups; while employees must be able to work individually (sometimes as part of a team), you will almost certainly be part of a group working toward a common goal. Now you must be able to complete all of this while not in the same room as your co-workers. Learning to trust others, collaborate, and provide and accept feedback is a challenging talent to master, but if you can, you'll be well ahead of the competition.
Perform Under Pressure
Working under pressure requires dealing with constraints that are frequently beyond your control. Last-minute adjustments, impending deadlines, and a lack of expertise required to complete your job are all possibilities. When urgent needs emerge, you can keep your calm instead of being stressed out and overwhelmed if you have work under pressure skills. And no matter where you work, there will surely be times when you are required to work under pressure.
At each step of the job search, it's critical to cover both your hard (technical) and soft (transferable) skills. Consider how you'll express these abilities in your CV, and practise describing them in person before your interview. To give your future employer a greater understanding of your traits and abilities, include real-life examples of how you've used your soft skills.
Keep in mind that you offer a lot more to the table than just technical abilities. Soft skills are valued by employers since they show your personality and attitude. It's a big part of who you are!
by Isabelle Melton
As a recruiter, much of the advice I've seen published about the hiring process is aimed at the candidate, and how to make your profile more...
As a recruiter, much of the advice I've seen published about the hiring process is aimed at the candidate, and how to make your profile more appealing to a client. The current job market, on the other hand, is very candidate driven, with each candidate we see having multiple opportunities and offers. As a result, it is now more important than ever to make your company and job as appealing as possible.
Below are some tips on how you can go about ensuring you maximise your possiblities of securing high quality candidates in the hiring process:
A job advert is one of first impressions a candidate will get of a both you as a company, and then about the role. Knowing this, you need to really make your advert stand out from the rest. Use your advert to sell back to common desirables that candidates in your market often look for. If you have really strong benefits, include them! If you have a great development programme, mention this! By doing this and putting a little bit more time into your advert, it will not only increase the number of responses, but increase the quality of people.
The current market moves very fast for good candidates. If your interview process is too long, or too straining on the candidate’s time, this can be the reason for losing a candidate to a company with a faster process. It may be hard to hear, and although WE may know that your company and the opportunity you have is amazing…the market is filled with hot job opportunities who are all looking for your good candidate. Is not doing that technical test really going to affect you in the long run, or are you going to be more affected by losing out on good candidates?
It’s all well and good to shorten and improve the length of your hiring process, but it is then important to be selective about who you are putting in to interview candidates. From previous experience, this person needs to be able to truly represent your company, be a good advocate for your brand, and give a good first impression. By only choosing the decision makers to conduct the interviews, this can lose rapport with the candidate who may want to get a sense of what the company is like from someone more junior.
The most obvious way to secure good candidates, but something I see getting overlooked way too often, is the importance of paying a competitive salary. This is something that we as recruiters can definitely help you with as we have extensive market knowledge and will have insight into what salaries competitors are paying, and what good candidates are expecting. It is easy to think your job opportunity is amazing even at an average salary rate, and although this saves you money, it will not appeal to candidates who are financially driven. The national average in the US for a salary increase is 14.8%, meaning candidates will expect a good offer for them to consider leaving. On top of this, it is important to make your first offer strong. It is extremely hard to go to a candidate with a second offer after you have already low-balled them. They will ask questions like…If that flex was there to start with, why did they try and offer me lower? Do they really appreciate my value by offering me lower than we originally agreed?
Although potentially a bit biased, one of the best bits of advice I can give regarding securing good candidates in a tight market, is to utilise your chosen agencies…this really is what we are good at! As recruiters, we have extensive market knowledge and can help add value to your hiring. We also build up strong relationships with candidates and are trained negotiators, so will actively help you secure the candidate through knowing their selling points and lowering their expectations if needed. We also have the time and resources that are required to find those candidates that aren’t on job sites and aren’t going to reply to your job adverts. Don’t miss out on an entire pool of candidates, let us help.
by Robyn Trubey
We talk about diversity and establishing inclusive teams a lot as recruiters. A varied workforce brings to your firm an unique set of viewpoints and...
We talk about diversity and establishing inclusive teams a lot as recruiters. A varied workforce brings to your firm an unique set of viewpoints and opinions. In reality, businesses with a diverse staff outperform their competitors and report happier employees.
Despite the hype, just around half of firms have strategies in place to attract a diverse workforce. Approximately the same number of companies do not keep track of workforce diversity.
Unfortunately, bias – even if it is unconscious – can impede some businesses from naturally achieving diversity. It's critical for your recruiters to have initiatives in place that encourage more diverse hires in order to build inclusive teams.
Inclusive hiring can help your team develop more quickly, produce happier employees, form stronger teams, and help your company outperform its competition. Here are a few best practises for inclusive recruitment that your organisation can use.
The inclusive hiring process actively accepts a wide range of traits and viewpoints that candidates offer to the firm. It's not just about filling quotas by hiring persons from underrepresented groups or those with disabilities. Instead, inclusive hiring practises seek to level the playing field for all applicants in order to combat bias in hiring and discrimination in general.
It's difficult to avoid unconscious bias when examining a candidate's job application, even with the greatest of intentions. Organizations that want to improve their team's diversity and attract the greatest talent can't afford to have recruitment practises that unintentionally exclude specific groups of people. Bias can occur at any point of the hiring process, but the talent attraction stage, application review, and face-to-face interview are the most important to investigate.
Many candidates may be looking for jobs via print ads, contacting and visiting job fairs and boot camps, conducting searches on social media, or using their mobile devices to access job adverts. With this in mind, try looking for new employees in a variety of venues; this increases your chances of recruiting for a more diversified demographic.
Preventing and Exclusion in the CV Review
This problem has two solutions: removing identifying information from CV’s or abandoning CV’s entirely in favour of another way of candidate screening.
Blind hiring involves removing any information from resumés that could cause bias, such as age, ethnicity, gender, education, and geographic location. Ideally, only the facts that matter will be left: their skills, experience, and achievements.
The practice of replacing CV’s with skills testing is gaining traction in the recruitment industry. The idea is to hire based on skills rather than background. Candidates are tested for technical skills (such as coding) and soft skills (like communication), then graded and ranked according to their performance — creating a shortlist of top candidates without any identifying information.
The blind hiring method delays rather than removes bias if your recruitment process includes a face-to-face or video job interview. The key advantage is that you can rest assured that the shortlist of candidates for interviews was generated without bias, and that no promising candidate was screened out for the incorrect reasons.
Minimising Bias in the Job Interview
Screen questions for exclusive language
Ask every candidate the same set of standardized questions and stick to the script.
Use the same assessment criteria and debrief for every candidate.
Avoid one-on-one interviews. Have a panel of at least three interviewers.
Make sure your panel is diverse
Beware of hiring for likeability.
Don’t make a decision based on the interview alone.
Conduct panel interviews to reduce interview bias and provide for a variety of perspectives during the interview process. You can gather feedback, viewpoints, and ideas from people with a variety of requirements and expectations if you have a lot of people following along in the hiring process. Those outside of your recruiting and hiring staff should be involved in the hiring process. By reaching out to other departments, team members, and company executives, you can eliminate bias by considering other points of view and use their diverse experiences to build an inclusive workplace for newcomers.
The first step is to have an inclusive hiring process. Employees who don't fit a homogeneous mould will be unhappy in their new jobs if you simply focus on developing an inclusive hiring procedure and overlook your company culture.
You need to build an inclusive work atmosphere to persuade them to stay––and to actually enjoy their time at your company. Each employee has an unique voice in an inclusive workplace culture, which encourages them to be themselves. Not only are their particular needs met, but they are also encouraged to devote time to personal duties that they consider vital.
by Simon Nicholls
The importance of cybersecurity is increasing. Fundamentally, our society is more technologically reliant than it has ever been, and this tendency...
The importance of cybersecurity is increasing. Fundamentally, our society is more technologically reliant than it has ever been, and this tendency shows no signs of slowing. Technology's development and expansion have had a beneficial impact on human existence, but the ease has come at the cost of cyber-attacks. If you utilise a tech device for any reason, you're likely to be a victim of a cyber-attack.
You'll need to be secure, which is where cyber security comes into the equation. Whether you're a person, a small business, or a huge corporation, you rely on computer systems on a daily basis. When you combine this with the rise of cloud services, poor cloud service security, smartphones, and the Internet of Things (IoT), you have a slew of cybersecurity risks that didn't exist only a few decades ago.
The protection of electronic data and information is known as cyber security. It protects electronic systems on devices like as computers, phones, servers, and networks against harmful assaults. It is critical, regardless of who you are, to protect your data from unwanted access.
Cyber-security is at an all-time high, and we must all do our share to be protected. Everyone has a role to play. This does not imply that everyone should become a cybersecurity specialist; rather, we must raise awareness of the threats that your users encounter so that they are not caught off guard when they are attacked.
Here are some top, simple tips to kep yourself and your business protected against unwanted Cyber Attacks:
Many of your personal accounts may be accessed through your email, putting you exposed to identity theft.
Important security upgrades are included with software and app updates to help safeguard your devices from cyber criminals.
To ensure the security of your data, two-factor authentication is advised for email accounts.
Password managers can assist you in creating and remembering passwords.
With a screen lock, you can keep your smartphone and tablet safe and add an added degree of protection to your devices.
Back up your most valuable material, such as photographs and essential papers, to an external hard drive or a cloud-based storage solution.
by Isabelle Melton
Isabelle Melton joined our Franklin Fitch Training Programme in November 2021, which provided her with the tools she needed to get started...
Isabelle Melton joined our Franklin Fitch Training Programme in November 2021, which provided her with the tools she needed to get started in the recruitment industry. Fast forward to present day, Isabelle not only excelled in the programme, but has recently been promoted to Recruitment Consultant. We spoke with her about her recruitment career journey, her advice for individuals considering a career in recruitment, and how she's adjusted to her job and team at Franklin Fitch.
Introduce yourself, your career journey at Franklin Fitch, your current role, and your responsibilities.
My name is Isabelle, and I work as a Recruitment Consultant at Franklin Fitch. I've been here since November and was recently promoted from trainee consultant to consultant. I got into recruitment after earning a degree in Criminology and Psychology while also working in retail. I am now looking to start working towards my next promotion, which will be to Senior Consultant, with the ultimate goal of becoming a Team Lead here.
Since joining Franklin Fitch what has been one of the biggest challenges you have faced?
My most difficult challenge since starting here at Franklin Fitch has been organisation! You must be extremely organised as a recruitment consultant since you must juggle so many things at once.
What was the training programme like for you at Franklin Fitch?
One of my favourite aspects of Franklin Fitch, and one of the reasons I first joined, is the training programme. Even during the pandemic, I received extensive training and support, and I believe that in such a short period of time, I have significantly expanded my skill set and even worked on my own self-confidence.
What are your thoughts on being on the programme?
I absolutely love being a part of the programme. Going into recruitment straight out of university can be daunting, so working under Charlotte, our L&D Manager, is an excellent way to feel like you can grow and develop. That being said, there is no micromanagement at Franklin Fitch, and they allow you to get your hands dirty early on while guiding you through the entire process. This method of learning is beneficial to me because it gives me a push while also giving me the encouragement of knowing that I am supported.
Why did you choose a career in recruitment at Franklin Fitch?
I chose a career at Franklin Fitch because I am very money-driven, and after speaking with some of the team's more senior members, I realised that there are tremendous earning opportunities here. I also liked the idea of eventually moving to America, so the fact that they work in multiple markets and are constantly expanding in the US was very appealing to me for my career.
Any advice you would give to future recruiters?
My main piece of advice to aspiring recruiters is to trust the process. It can be difficult to keep a positive attitude during the first year of employment, and they say you will consider leaving several times. However, if you persevere and have faith in your own learning and development, as well as the procedures in place at Franklin Fitch, the opportunity can be life changing.
by Emily Jones
Dealing with stress in the workplace has long been a problem for businesses. However, the ongoing mental health impact of the coronavirus pandemic...
Dealing with stress in the workplace has long been a problem for businesses. However, the ongoing mental health impact of the coronavirus pandemic has shown us how quickly our world can change in the last few months. The ability to be adaptable and flexible has taken on a new meaning as many people struggle to find a happy medium.
Stress is a normal part of life; some stress is beneficial and motivating, but when stress becomes overwhelming, it can have a negative impact on a person's mental health. Recognizing the warning signs and intervening early can help prevent feelings from spiralling out of control. Taking steps to manage workplace stress is critical for both employers and employees in order to create a mentally healthy working environment where people feel supported.
The statistics speak for themselves. The total number of cases of work-related stress, depression, or anxiety reached 828,000 in 2019/20, resulting in 17.9 million days lost – a significant increase over the previous period. It is expected that the upheaval of COVID-19 and increased demand for services will have triggered a further increase in cases – in fact, a recent CIPD survey found that 37% of organisations have noticed an increase in stress-related absences this year.
Workplace stress manifests itself in a variety of ways, and it is critical to understand how to recognise it and effectively deal with it so that it does not escalate. Let's take a look at some scenarios and strategies you can employ the next time you're stressed at work.
Manage your Workload
When we work too much, we put ourselves at risk of burnout—a psychological syndrome that leaves us constantly exhausted, overly cynical, and feeling like nothing we do matters.
Everyone needs help from time to time and discussing your workload with your manager is important if you’re struggling. Simply getting your worries off your chest can help, and together you can work to set realistic targets. It’s okay to place boundaries: say no. Strong boundaries are essential in any healthy relationship, including your relationship with your employer.
Accepting a task that you are unable to complete may result in an excessive amount of stress in addition to the task being poorly completed. And without clear boundaries around the workday (and even during the workday), you’ll always be tempted to keep working. You might have a conversation with your boss about expectations and deadlines. They might be able to help you set boundaries at work and resolve any time-management issues you're having.
An important strategy to help manage your workload is prioritising your work. By learning how to prioritize means getting more out of the limited time you have each day. It’s one of the cornerstones of productivity and once you know how to properly prioritize, it can help with everything from your time management to work-life balance.
Ask for Support
Clarity about expectations and performance are important steps toward feeling more confident and less stressed at work. However, having an honest and open relationship with your boss is a critical factor. Having a difficult conversation about workplace stress, especially with your boss, is never easy. However, it can assist you in focusing on what is best for your own mental well-being, which will benefit the company.
They will have the tools and resources to inform you about what the workplace has to offer. Many workplaces provide programmes such as counselling to assist you in getting through these trying times. Take the time to explain how you manage your professional and personal lives to a friend, co-worker, or family member. Don't be afraid to express your worries and concerns. The vast majority of people are going through the same thing and are unsure how to discuss it with others. If you're feeling disconnected from your co-workers, try to find a way to reach out to them. When you are able to express your emotions, your thoughts become clearer.
Give Yourself a Break
If you've been under a lot of stress at work, it's okay to reward yourself and find a work-life balance. Create habits! It's possible that this is easier said than done... Try muting teams or deleting the email app from your phone. This is especially useful if you work remotely, as it can be difficult to unwind after a long day at work.
Why not make the most of your paid holidays? Take advantage of the time off you are entitled to and use it to reset your mind: plan a holiday, go to movies, visit family, or do anything else that you enjoy and will help you feel more relaxed. Try to balance things out by taking advantage of your free time, such as weekends. These activities can assist you in unwinding and enjoying life. This, in turn, can fuel your creativity and help you find fresh perspectives on your work.
These small steps can make a big difference in reducing stress, building resilience, and improving your mental health in the workplace.
by Matthew Bell
Cloud computing is massively on the rise in the current day and age. In fact, 81% of companies with 1,000 employees or more have a...
Cloud computing is massively on the rise in the current day and age. In fact, 81% of companies with 1,000 employees or more have a multi-platform strategy.
Cloud technology has redefined the way in which companies store and share information. It has transcended the limitations of using physical devices.
Cloud Technologies provides many benefits such as better scalability, better storage options, better collaboration with remote users and highly affordable for a lot of companies.
But what does the future of cloud technology look like?
Matt Riley CEO & Co-Founder of Swiftype commented “A decade from now, every business will be operating primarily from the cloud, making way for more flexible — yet more productive and efficient — ways of working. Hardware won’t be the problem in a decade — software will.”
The future is bright for cloud computing. Analysts at IDC estimate that the field will evolve rapidly in the coming years, with almost 75% of data operations carried out outside the normal data centre. Moreover, 40% of organizations will deploy cloud technology, with edge computing becoming an integral part of the technological setup. Also, a quarter of end-point devices will be ready to execute AI algorithms by the year 2022.
Cloud Computing trends on the rise - automation
The automation tools available to us have proved to be very important when it comes to addressing errors in business processes, meanwhile streamlining them to generate fruitful results.
For instance, developers can make changes to their websites hosted on the cloud before going live. If anything goes wrong, they can restore an older version of the website without affecting the sales process or user experience. As soon as the website goes live, it starts getting traffic.
Opting for cloud means there will be more data consumption involved. Managing applications and routine tasks can become tedious. Developers can use automation to get rid of the manual process they have to use to carry out daily operations.
The serverless paradigm is the next revolution in waiting, according to the CTO of Amazon. The concept of serverless paradigm relates to the fact that it facilitates cloud to execute a code snippet without any hassles for the developers.
Using this approach developers can divide software into chunks of code to upload on cloud to address customers’ desires, thereby delivering valuable experience. This practice ensures faster release cycle for software. Amazon Web Services (AWS) has already started using the serverless paradigm to its advantage.
As cloud computing continues to make inroads in enterprise worlds, all stakeholders are looking forward to the evolution of the model. As things stand today, almost every significant innovation such as blockchain, artificial intelligence, AR/VR, robotics, and IoT rely on cloud computing technology.
It’s not just computational power, networking speed, or storage capacity that makes cloud computing great. Those are just operational metrics that better technology would eventually change and replace over time. The real value of technology is what it does, not what it’s made of.
by Dominique Lianos
The four-day week went mainstream
Working fewer hours for the same pay may sound like a pipe dream, but it is quickly becoming a reality for employees in the United Kingdom.
According to a recent report, the number of companies offering a four-day work week has increased significantly. Academics at the University of Reading's Henley Business School surveyed 227 businesses and discovered that 66% now offer shorter work weeks, up from 50% in 2019.
Companies that did so reported improved work quality and said it was easier to attract and retain employees. According to academics, all of this helped businesses save money – an average of £18,000 per year. Employees, on the other hand, reported feeling less stressed.
Dr Rita Fontinha, who led the research, said increased interest in a four-day week was perhaps “the greatest silver lining to come from the pandemic.”
The EU hatched a plan to hasten renewables rollout
This week, there were more indications that Europe's rush to wean itself off Russian fossil fuels could hasten the transition to renewables. The EU published an energy plan that pledged to end the bloc's reliance on Russian gas and oil "well before" 2030.
To the dismay of climate activists, the REPowerEU strategy proposed increasing gas storage capacity and seeking alternative gas suppliers as short-term solutions. However, the plan also promised to speed up the deployment of wind farms, rooftop solar panels, heat pumps, and hydrogen.
"Renewables give us the freedom to choose an energy source that is clean, cheap, reliable, and ours," said Frans Timmermans, vice president of the European Commission. "Rather than funding fossil fuel imports and Russian oligarchs, renewables create new jobs."
Friends of the Earth said the plan contained “great words, but little action”. Last week, Germany brought forward its target date for decarbonising its energy supply by 15 years.
World leaders hailed ‘historic’ resolution on plastic
Despite the political fallout from Ukraine's war, 175 nations came together this week to strike what has been described as "the most significant environmental multilateral deal since the Paris accord."
United Nations countries have agreed to create a legally binding global treaty to address plastic pollution in the world's oceans, rivers, and landscape. The U.N. Environment Assembly voted unanimously at its meeting in Kenya's capital Nairobi for a resolution 'to end plastic pollution.' It sets the stage for international negotiations designed to produce a treaty by 2024.
"Against the backdrop of geopolitical turmoil, the UN Environment Assembly exemplifies multilateral cooperation at its best," said UNEA-5 President Espen Barth Eide. "Plastic pollution has become an epidemic." With today's resolution, we're officially on the right track to finding a cure."
WWF International's director general, Marco Lambertini, welcomed the agreement but stated that the hard work had only just begun. "World leaders must now demonstrate even more resolve in developing and implementing a treaty that addresses our current plastic pollution crisis and enables an effective transition to a plastic circular economy."
Panama enacted a rights of nature law
Wildlife-rich Panama has become the most recent country to enshrine nature's rights in law.
Nature now has the "right to exist, persist, and regenerate," as well as the "right to be restored after being affected directly or indirectly by any human activity," according to legislation passed this week.
Enacting legislation is one thing; enforcing it is quite another. In Ecuador, which recognises the rights of nature, controversial extraction projects in ecologically sensitive areas have continued. Panama joins a growing list of countries that have enacted laws protecting the environment. Among them are Bolivia, Mexico, and New Zealand.
UK supermarkets embraced refill shopping
Some of the UK’s leading supermarkets have agreed to install refill stations in shops by the end of the year.
Morrisons, Marks & Spencer, Waitrose and Ocado all signed up to the Refill Coalition, which aims to make package-free shopping mainstream. UK supermarkets get through an estimated 59bn pieces of single-use plastic packaging annually.
In a joint statement, the retailers said: “The Refill Coalition presents a landmark opportunity for us to make a step change in the commercialisation of refills, which we know can play a significant role in the reduction of single-use plastic packaging.”
by Patrick Griffiths
Are you stuck deciding whether to take that great new job or accept your boss' counteroffer and stay where you are?
These enticing offers can...
Are you stuck deciding whether to take that great new job or accept your boss' counteroffer and stay where you are?
These enticing offers can cause you to seriously reconsider your decision to leave, whether they offer you a promotion, more flexibility and responsibility, or a pay raise. But that's exactly the point.
On the one hand, it's a fantastic issue to have. If your boss/employer is willing to up the ante in order to keep you, you're obviously doing something right. Moving on to a new company, on the other hand, may provide you with additional benefits and opportunities that your current employer does not provide.
It can be difficult to decide whether to accept a counteroffer, and there are numerous factors to consider. Your decision will most likely have a significant impact on your career and should not be taken lightly.
Why do companies make counter offers?
Is your current employer making a counteroffer because they are concerned about losing a valuable employee or for other reasons? In a candidate-led market, where competition for talent is fierce, counteroffers are becoming increasingly common. Counteroffers are understandably, incredibly flattering, and can evoke lots of new emotions that make you wonder why you ever wanted to leave your employer in the first place. However, keep in mind that a counteroffer from your employer or a senior executive within the company is not about you.
Aside from salary, the costs of advertising your job, filling the vacant position you leave, and training a new hire can total tens of thousands of pounds. Furthermore, many IT and digital jobs are currently difficult to fill due to current skill shortages. Such difficult positions can remain open for months or even years, inadvertently costing companies money by delaying them from meeting their objectives. Employers do not make counteroffers because they like you and will miss having you around. Although their counteroffer may make you feel special, the main reason businesses make counteroffers is to save money.
Why You Might Accept a Counteroffer
Over 50% of employees accept counteroffers. At the time, it can seem like the right decision as you won’t have to master the working methods of another company or build relationships with new colleagues. Being offered more money is one of the most common reasons that employees will accept a counteroffer. This will work well if you are satisfied with your current position, like the company, and get along well with your work colleagues. You get to stay in a place that is comfortable for you, and you are fairly compensated for the work that you do.
Accepting a counteroffer should be done with caution, as the employer may question your loyalty to the company, and you may be perceived as only interested in financial gain. 80% of employees that accept a counteroffer leave within six months and 90% within a year. Proving that money isn’t always enough to overcome the problems that made you want to look for a new job in the first place.
Why You Shouldn’t Accept a Counteroffer
Unfortunately, there are more reasons to turn down than accept a counteroffer.
Consider the Reasons for Wanting to Leave
Getting a raise is, at best, a temporary fix. Only 12% of employees resign for financial reasons; poor work-life balance, a lack of career development opportunities, and a lack of benefits are increasingly motivating factors to leave. So, chances are you're looking for a new job for other reasons than a higher salary, and these reasons aren't going away with a higher salary. Consider why you started looking for other opportunities in the first place. Most likely, salary was a factor, but it was not the only one. Perhaps you felt stuck, with few opportunities for advancement, or you realised you were comfortable but not reaching your full potential.
Trust is Broken
Accepting a counteroffer will almost certainly harm your relationship with your current employer. Your resignation will be interpreted as a lack of dedication to the company. The desire you expressed to leave may indicate that you are not as loyal or committed as other employees, which may have an impact on your career development as you may be passed over for promotions in favour of co-workers who have not attempted to leave.
Will Things Really Change?
The frustration, suffocating feelings, and dissatisfaction that drove you to look for new opportunities will remain, and the raise in pay is unlikely to make them any less unbearable. Whatever turned you off about your job before the new offer will irritate you even after you accept it. Perhaps you were passed over for a promotion or were simply not given the opportunities to advance. You most likely expressed these concerns to your employer at some point, but they were not effectively addressed. These issues are likely to persist after you accept the counteroffer and will eventually force you to resign – this time for good.
Will my Job Security be Affected?
Accepting a counteroffer significantly reduces your job security. Your boss has worked hard to keep you from leaving, but you can bet that when it comes time to make redundancies or reduce personnel, you'll be near the top of the list because you've already tried to jump ship. This desire to leave may indicate that you are not as loyal or committed as other employees, which may have an impact on your career development as you may be passed over for promotions in favour of co-workers who have not attempted to leave.
Making a Final Decision
It can be difficult to decide whether or not to accept a counteroffer. It is critical to consider each of the previously discussed points and create a list of pros and cons. You may discover that you require additional information about your potential new employer. In this case, it's often best to consult with your recruiter so you have all the information you need to make the best decision for your personal and professional development.
Coming from a university background completing a BSc and MSc in Sport and International Business, you see both sides of university life. The...
Coming from a university background completing a BSc and MSc in Sport and International Business, you see both sides of university life. The relatively easy undergrad where every day is a weekend, there are no ties or commitments, and heaven forbid you get two one-hour lectures back-to-back. Then there's the full-on, demanding MSc, where you're drowning in deadlines and your workload triples.
You must develop strategies to help you deal with the news pressures and workloads. This can be a valuable learning experience in dealing with real-world pressure and stress. The coping strategies you learn here will help you manage and reduce stress later in life. You work hard to meet deadlines and maintain a work-life balance with sports and social circles, and then one day you turn in your last assignment and the adult world knocks.
This gives you some breathing room as you try to find your way. Trying to find that path can be difficult and perplexing at times. I'd advise you to keep an eye out for potential opportunities that will allow you to develop whatever qualities are important to you. Recruitment seemed like a no-brainer to me. Coming from a hardworking family, recruitment allowed me to continue to build on the skills I learned in my master's programme and previous experiences in my current line of work.
Coming from a social and sporting background, recruitment allowed me to continue to evolve social aspects of my life by developing communication styles. It gave me the ability to take on personal responsibilities and manage my own workload. Recruitment is a profession that rewards hard work, and it is often said that "what you put in, you get out." It is not an easy journey, and I would not recommend it to everyone, but it can be a highly rewarding and exciting career.
To be successful in this field, you must be resilient and willing to roll with the punches. No recruiter is finished after their first day, and I doubt they ever will be. Be prepared for highs and lows. You must enter this field with an open mind so that you can absorb all the necessary information and learn from those around you. You'll get into the swing of things once you've found your feet and your own style. Then success will begin to arrive, and your efforts will be rewarded. Dividends will be paid on what you have invested. Simply buckle up, brace yourself for the blows, and settle in for the ride.
by Dafydd Kevis
The increased reliance of business on their IT functions means that the cybersecurity sector is required to evolve and grow almost on a daily basis....
The increased reliance of business on their IT functions means that the cybersecurity sector is required to evolve and grow almost on a daily basis. From single phishing attacks to nation-state attacks used in the midst of the theatre of war, the versatility required from cyber professionals and organisations has never been so imperative, especially with the constant changes in threat landscapes and business operations.
Although not conventionally correlated, the global pandemic has directly influenced complexities in developing robust security architectures. The rise in remote working and the increased preference for cloud-based approaches have ensued major shifts in not just technical advancements, but also in operational.
How has COVID influenced operational arrangements?
The position of CISO has seen advancements in many aspects, from increased salary ranges to restructured hierarchies. With cybersecurity being viewed more as a business risk as opposed to a technological risk, the role of CISO has become fundamental to every business and therefore expanded to include business continuity decisions and liaising with board members for wider business decision making.
As the cybersecurity landscape continues to evolve the more prevalent the CISO is in the overall success of a business, especially considering the shift to more remote working. We have seen an increased requirement for senior cyber professionals to join organisations and begin maturing and building out their internal security functions.
What technological advancements are influencing the cybersecurity landscape?
The biggest driver of change has been the quick implementation of cloud-based services since the onset of the pandemic. This has meant that cybersecurity strategies have too required quick implementation of new and robust procedures and tools to remediate the increased variety in threats.
The increased aggregation of company data into cloud systems means an efficiency and practicality on terms of the client, however the provider becomes a prime target for data breaches and attacks. With the likes of IaaS and PaaS, the responsibility of securing data, user access, applications and operating systems falls under the remit of the organisations and at differing levels, requiring comprehensive plans and strategies to ensure robust security protocols. IAM and PAM requirements are prevalent in job specifications at the moment, simple access practises are no longer acceptable in environments with increase collaboration and remote access requirements.
What does the future of the cybersecurity landscape look like?
Ultimately, the cybersecurity landscape will continue to evolve and develop to coincide with the constant shifts in attack vectors. Organisations will continue to utilise the most up-to-date systems and platforms available and with this leaning more towards cloud-based computing, robust security strategies, functions and tools will become highly sought after.
There are increasing calls for more governmental regulated approaches to cybersecurity and defence, particularly due to recent events in which cyber attacks are being used in the theatre of war.
There is no doubt that cybersecurity will be at the top of corporate agendas in the post-COVID era, it will be interesting what innovations and transformations will come as a result of this.
by Lauren Greene
Who, what, where, when, why?
Despite common misconception, the concept of a metaverse isn’t a new one. First introduced in 1992,...
Who, what, where, when, why?
Despite common misconception, the concept of a metaverse isn’t a new one. First introduced in 1992, sci-fi writer Neal Stephenson coined the term 'metaverse' to describe a 3D virtual space. This idea was then realised for the first time in 2003 through an online multimedia platform called “Second life”.
Since then, there have been numerous examples of gaming platforms exploring the potential applications of this concept. For example, in 2020 the immensely popular video game Fortnite conducted a virtual Travis Scott concert within the game, and 12.3 million people worldwide tuned in. A more general example is any game within the MMORPG (Massively Multiplayer On-line role-playing game) genre such as World of Warcraft, where thousands of players can inhabit the same virtual space, with players logging in and out continually, and able to interact in various ways.
The Covid 19 pandemic has been a large extrinsic motivator for the growth of this industry, accelerating and driving the convergence of physical and digital. Companies invested heavily within collaboration and messaging technologies such as Teams, Zoom and Skype, and have now created a digital hiring, onboarding, and remote working world.
Meta, the rebrand of Facebook, and Microsoft, are leading the path for the metaverse alongside other large names in the tech industry which are all racing towards securing their name and real estate in the 3D VR world that will soon become a reality.
The evolution of emerging technology and digital transformations will see a huge transition for the main 3 pillars of human activity: Work, Education and Entertainment.
Over the years, Retail as an industry has taken a huge, and successful move onto online platforms, saving money for physical resources, allowing mediation of our activities remotely, and putting products in the hands of consumers worldwide. The metaverse could be the next evolution of this journey, allowing consumers to get that physical feel whilst they shop online from the comfort of their own homes.
Many companies are already looking at being a part of this virtual world and benefiting from a dedicated virtual space in which they can conduct interviews, doctors’ appointments and try on clothes without moving a muscle.
On a larger scale, geopolitics will see an impact, which could be both a help and hinderance to have present governing bodies for smaller counties but to also create communities transcending borders in reality.
Understanding how the Metaverse will be accessed
To first give a broad understanding of how the metaverse will be accessible, you first need to understand the different tech behind it. Extended Reality (XR) covers both Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) where VR enables you to fully immerse yourself in a 3D platform with the use of a headset whilst AR will overlay images onto the real world.
Whilst the metaverse doesn’t have to exclusively exist in XR, it’s the version of it that does that’s getting the most attention. This is because more immersive, experiential environments are central to the whole concept – something that XR interfaces lend themselves to very well.
Meta is focusing heavily on the VR aspects through its well renowned and recently bought hardware brand Oculus. 3D environments, avatars, and gamification – three fundamental aspects of the concept – all fit well with VR interfaces. And AR, too, with its potential to blur the distinction between virtual and real worlds, is another idea that meshes well with the metaverse concept.
2022 should see the release of Meta’s Horizon platform as an expanded VR world, this will be the first step into giving people a sensation of what the metaverse could become, and VR will be the window through which they experience it.
How will it ‘feel real’?
As a running trend for technology becoming smaller and more powerful, over the next few years we will also see this for VR which is a huge benefit for lighter headsets.
First seen in CES 2022 was the rebrand of the chunky VR sets to sleek and easily wearable AR devices which will be made available to buy over this coming year. HTC also made a device called the flow which is a slimmer stand-alone model making this device easier to use which focuses on entertainment and mental health.
AR devices will get lighter, too – California start-up Mojo-Vision has already demonstrated the potential for AR contact lenses that project information directly onto the retina.
Other innovations will attempt to solve the problem of enabling realistic movement within virtual environments (which will always be a problem if your actual environment doesn’t match the size and proportions of your virtual one and isn’t free of hazards that might cause you to trip over!). Proposed solutions to this problem include both boots, as offered by Ekto VR, and treadmills, like the one developed by Virtuix.
Another technology known as haptic feedback will attempt to solve the problem of providing sensations of touch in XR environments. One example is the Teslasuit that provides tactile feedback through electrostimulation. The suit currently costs around $20,000 and, among other uses, is used by NASA for astronaut training, but we can expect to see smaller-scale consumer versions on the market in 2022.
We can also thank the 5G rollout which is picking up pace in 2022 to become a mainstream proposition with speeds 20 times quicker than existing networks for data transmission. In addition to increasing this differential, the benefits also include different types of data and services. This is likely to include the large data volumes needed to run XR, making wireless and cloud-based VR and AR a possibility. Plutosphere, for example, and other start-ups offering similar services, let users stream VR games from cloud servers. This will dramatically lower the barriers to entry for many businesses wanting to deploy XR solutions without making large infrastructure investments.
How will this impact us?
Within education, XR technologies make it easier for students to visualize concepts – from the numbers used in accounting to historical events or even the inner workings of reality exposed through quantum physics – in interesting and engaging ways. Evidence suggests that when we learn through experiencing in this way, rather than simply reading dry facts, we can improve our knowledge retention by 75 to 90%.
Examples in a working environment include VR being used for training and to simulate operations in dangerous situations, such as the FLAIM system used to train firefighters to tackle wildfire and aircraft fires. AR is increasingly being used to provide real-time inputs to trainees during on-the-job learning, such as using computer vision-equipped glasses and headsets to recognize and warn of potential dangers in the work environment.
For businesses, AI will be able to inform target audience creation, creative optimization, and inventory forecasts.
In the agricultural world we have seen a ‘bovine’ matrix for happy cows testing in Turkey, where cows will experience a virtual open field and sunny setting rather than cooped up in a milking parlour which has proved results in higher quantity and quality of milk. Despite the positive results for farmers, the process raises serious questions about ethical farming. Would more milk be worth putting animals in a bovine matrix where they have no perception of the real world (a cooped-up milk farm with tens of other cows)?
Complexities and challenges of a new reality
Regulators will need to be put in place with facial expressions, blood pressure etc. being tracked for digital rights. On top of this if this is a pixelated replica of our universe, will this face balkanization as seen in our world where the internet already operates in different parts of the world.
Even more of a frightening thought is with a Metaverse containing so much private information, what risk is there for digital espionage and how much technical support will the Infrastructure and Security of a platform of this size need?
Control of data will also be the control of market. The opening advantage in the metaverse will go to those with the data to make the new virtual activities relevant to the user. The result is no different from the present online world in which those with the data hoard it to control the market.
Facebook algorithms are programmed to maximize user time on the site to maximize the number of advertisements that can be sold. As the algorithms are programmed to maximize engagement this means the algorithms send to each user news that is in line with their pre-established views, not news that creates a shared foundation. Even worse, is that one of the best ways to hold engagement is to create conflict and outrage, regardless of the veracity of the claim. This brings us around to the development of government-overseen behavioural standards protected consumer, workers, and competition in the industrial revolution—while simultaneously enabling a vibrant and growing economy. Where the digital revolution requires similar government-overseen standards. Facebook is currently discussing behavioural standards for the metaverse, but it is not sufficient. Many people are looking to distract from our current challenges with the shiny new metaverse, however we have yet to resolve the challenges in the current online universe—problems that will simply metastasize into the metaverse if not dealt with.
by Dominique Lianos
Efforts to increase diversity in the tech industry are missing a critical element if neurodiverse hiring practices are not included.
Efforts to increase diversity in the tech industry are missing a critical element if neurodiverse hiring practices are not included.
According to, 72% of HR professionals said neurodiversity was not included in their people management practices, and 17% said they didn't know if it was. This untapped talent market exists primarily as a result of a lack of awareness and comprehension of neurodiversity.
There is a lot of ambiguity in the terminology. The term "neurodiversity" refers to people who have certain neurological conditions or who are on a neurodiverse spectrum. Autism spectrum disorder, dyslexia, dyspraxia (a neurologically based physical disorder), social anxiety disorders, and other conditions fall into this category. People on the neurodiverse spectrum frequently struggle with social interaction and communication in the same way that a neurotypical person would, but many people with these 'disorders' also have above-average abilities, often in areas such as pattern recognition, concentration, memory, or mathematics.
However, when compared to other minority groups, neurodivergent individuals are frequently overlooked, and this problem exists across multiple conditions and on a global scale.
How can neurodiverse talent benefit a company's workforce?
Neurodivergent candidates are hardwired to think outside the box and are gifted in skills required for digital success. People with ADHD, for example, have exceptional focus and problem-solving abilities. Autistic people, on the other hand, are meticulous and have higher analytical thinking abilities.
Organizations can reap significant benefits from encouraging neurodiversity in terms of innovation, creativity, and thought diversity. It can also benefit neurotypical employees by allowing them to grow and prosper in a variety of ways.
How can organisations alter their hiring processes to attract neurodiverse talent?
Traditional hiring, employment, and workplace management models have a flaw in their design: they are centred on neurotypical people. A traditional job interview can be problematic because it favours neurotypical candidates while automatically excluding neurominorities. You may struggle to understand social norms and nonverbal communication if you have a neurodivergent condition such as autism or dyspraxia. Autistic people are also prone to sensory processing issues, which makes a panel interview difficult to navigate because the candidate must focus on multiple people's verbal and nonverbal communication at the same time.
The interview process can also be modified to create a welcoming environment for neurodiverse candidates. Instead of a panel of interviewers, you could, for example, conduct a series of sequential interviews with one interviewer at a time.The interviewer can give candidates extra time before and after the interview to settle in and have the best opportunity to demonstrate their technical knowledge and communication skills. In addition, an external job coach can help [candidates] prepare for interviews and provide support throughout the hiring process — and even afterward.
What are some effective strategies for creating an inclusive environment for neurodiverse candidates?
It is critical to educate neurotypical employees on the dos and don'ts of communicating with neurodiverse employees. Managers and team members must be trained in advance in order to get the most out of neurodivergent individuals. Greater education and understanding of our cognitive differences will not only help to dispel some of the misconceptions but will also encourage neurodiverse employees to feel more comfortable opening up to their employers and make it easier for managers and colleagues to understand the type of support they require.
Inclusion can also be seen from the standpoint of physical space in the office. According to the research, neurodiverse people are more sensitive to noise, smell, light, and crowded places. As a result, placing their workstations in less congested and dimly lit areas of the office can boost their productivity. Organizations can also provide noise-cancelling headphones to their neurodiverse employees to create a distraction-free environment.
When communicating with a neurodiverse individual, managers and team members should be clear, concise, and complete. They should avoid asking open-ended questions and be specific about who needs to do what by when. It is also preferable to use literal expressions rather than metaphors or ambiguous messages.
Creating a neurodiverse-friendly hiring process and workforce will require hiring managers and employees to take a step back, remove assumptions and communicate in a new way. The bottom line is that inclusion is worth the extra effort and ultimately companies are missing a critical element if neurodiverse hiring practices are not included.
by Charlotte Drury
One of the biggest issues within IT Infrastructure recruitment is access to skilled IT talent. Some people argue that it’s a case of demand...
One of the biggest issues within IT Infrastructure recruitment is access to skilled IT talent. Some people argue that it’s a case of demand being too high for the supply of talent that is available, others say it’s a case of talent going unnoticed by recruiters. Today we’re taking a closer look at the latter one: untapped talent pools.
Diversity and inclusion have been important topics all-round, but especially in the fight against skills shortages. At Franklin Fitch we are committed to raise awareness and tackle biases towards diversity & inclusion matters within IT infrastructure. Diversity and inclusion cover many areas, the most known being diverse ranges in sexuality, cultures and philosophy. Today we’d like to talk about a diverse range of different modes of thinking a.k.a neurodiversity.
The term “neurodiversity” is used to describe people with certain neurological conditions or people who are on a neurodiverse spectrum. This includes conditions like autism spectrum disorder, dyslexia, dyspraxia (a neurologically based physical disorder), social anxiety disorders, and others. People on the neurodiverse spectrum often have difficulties with social interaction and communication in the way a neurotypical person would cope with them, but many people with these ‘disorders’ also have higher-than average abilities, often in areas such as pattern recognition, concentration, memory or mathematics.
Autism affects more than one in 100 people which means a huge amount of talent. However, only 16% of autistic adults are in full-time employment and out of the ones that aren’t, 77% would like to be according to the national autistic society’s research. So now you might think ‘how come the tech industry hasn’t snapped all of these skilled workers up yet?’ Au contraire, many big tech companies like SAP, HPE and Microsoft (amongst others) have already implemented processes and programs to access neurodiverse talent. For those who haven’t it is probably a matter of one or some of the following.
Profile fit and awareness
One of the main issues is that neurodiverse people often don’t fit the profile or the common notions of what makes a good employee. Things like communication, sales-person-type personalities, the ability to conform to standard practices, emotional intelligence etc. Especially in larger companies HR and application processes are made to be scalable and applicable to the majority of the organisation. During an interview a neurodiverse person might behave different from a neurotypical person by making less eye contact or showing certain eccentricities. If the person interviewing isn’t aware of these conditions and doesn’t know how to work with them, the neurodiverse candidate might not get the job.
Conformity to standardised procedures
Streamlining processes and procedures makes organisations scalable, efficient and effective. However, employees on a neurodiverse spectrum might need accommodations outside the standard. Things like installing different lighting, or providing noise-cancelling headphones or separate workstations aren’t usually too expensive but require businesses and managers to individualise where they would usually standardise.
Awareness, Training and Development
As with most things there needs to be a plan, a strategy. Neurodiverse employees, like all employees, deserve career progression, training and development. Furthermore, neurotypical employees and managers need to be trained on working with their neurodiverse colleagues to avoid friction. This can be supported through social partners such as government or non-profit organisations that are committed to helping neurodiverse people obtain jobs. Managing neurodiverse employees means for some leaders that they have to further individualise their leadership and work with the individuals to find out what works best for them and the company.
Awareness is a big factor when hiring neurodiverse talent. Apart from the above, neurodiverse candidates bring a lot of benefits for employers. The biggest one being: A different way of thinking.
Diversity and inclusion have one big advantage – variety. As Steve Jobs put it “It doesn’t make sense to hire smart people and tell them what to do; we hire smart people so they can tell us what to do”. If you grow your team in a diverse way, employing talent that thinks differently you might end up changing processes for the better. Innovation is fuelled by differences. Changing the perspective on a problem often brings the solution. That is exactly what a neurodiverse workforce can do for you. Research shows that teams with neurodiverse workers become more productive. Neurodiverse workers often have the ability to spot patterns others do not see.
If you’d like to know more about hiring neurodiverse talent the following links might be useful for you: https://www.autism.org.uk/, https://specialisternefoundation.com/,
by Ben Makepeace
In August 2021, Oliver Boulton, a member of our London US team, enrolled in Franklin Fitch's Academy Program. From there, he has excelled...
In August 2021, Oliver Boulton, a member of our London US team, enrolled in Franklin Fitch's Academy Program. From there, he has excelled throughout the training programme and was promoted to Recruitment Consultant. We got the chance to speak with him about his career journey into recruitment, his advice for individuals considering a career in recruitment and how he's adjusted into his job and team at Franklin Fitch.
Introduce yourself, your career journey at Franklin Fitch, your current role and your responsibilities.
My name is Olly and I work for Franklin Fitch as a Recruitment Consultant. I started at Franklin Fitch in August 2021 following my graduation from Exeter University where I did a Bachelor’s degree in Business Management. I started off as a Trainee Recruitment Consultant and recently got promoted following five months of training. I am now about to start working towards my Senior Recruitment Consultant targets with the aim of achieving this by the end of the year.
Since joining Franklin Fitch what has been one of the biggest challenges you have faced?
One of the hardest adjustments I faced was going from being a student to full-time work – it is a shock to the system! However, I have had a great support system at Franklin Fitch who have always been ready and available if I needed any advice or assistance.
What was the training programme like for you at Franklin Fitch?
The training programme has been second to none. When I interviewed for Franklin Fitch, they sold me on their continuous training programme, and it turned out to be one of the biggest benefits of working here. It is led by a dedicated Learning and Development Manager, Charlotte Drury, who provided me with constant support and training and was always there to help with issues either inside or outside of recruitment.
The two main selling points for Franklin Fitch were the culture and continuous learning approach. Everyone is always accessible and willing to help regardless of their seniority within the company. Even though I have graduated from the Academy, my learning and development is still being closely monitored and every day I feel like I learn something new and improve my ability as a Recruitment Consultant. Regardless of where you sit in the company, there are always opportunities to learn and grow and they regularly bring in external industry experts to conduct training sessions, even when you reach Principal or Director level!
Why did you choose a career in recruitment at Franklin Fitch?
My main motivation to start a career in recruitment was the ability to make the same money in your first year as you would in your fifth year in a typical graduate job. In addition to this, there are no other jobs where you can potentially earn two promotions within the space of a year. The career growth opportunities at Franklin Fitch are clear and tangible, and you know exactly what you need to do to hit your targets and are given all the support required to do so!
Any advice you would give to future recruiters?
Stick it out. It is not an easy process, particularly at the beginning it can feel very overwhelming, and it requires a lot of resilience and dedication. I adopted the approach of no expectations for the first six months, I just focused on my learning and development and let the results come naturally. Focus on the process and the results will follow.
by Simon Nicholls
In the digital era, applying for jobs has never been easier. However, a consequence of this – along with the effects of COVID-19 on...
In the digital era, applying for jobs has never been easier. However, a consequence of this – along with the effects of COVID-19 on employment – is that applications per role are sky-high.
In a competitive job market, a standout job application is worth its weight in gold. A study revealed recruiters spend just 7.4 seconds looking at the resumes of job seekers – so being able to make an impression quickly is essential.
So, what can you do to make your job application stand out from the pack?
Follow these tips to make changes to your job application and improve your chances of success for a job interview.
‘I’ve never seen it so competitive out there’, says Practice Manager Simon Nicholls. ‘With that many people applying for the same role it’s impossible as a recruiter to review all of the candidates, and similarly impossible to get attention as a candidate’.
Despite this, there are things that you can do to make it as easy as possible to make your application stand out. Simon shares his advice below.
1) Make sure the role is a perfect fit for you
It’s common for people to apply to anything and everything when job hunting. This not only wastes your time, but also the recruiter/hiring manager who has to go through the applications. If your profile doesn’t match the job description, you won’t get the job – simple as! With this in mind, you do want to challenge yourself to a role that you know you can do, but requires some brain power and is engaging. Some people suggest your profile needs to match 80% of the job description – this isn’t an exact science and varies every time but might be worth keeping in mind.
2) Apply to the role on the job board/LinkedIn etc
This might sound like it’s a given, but you’d be surprised how many people call/email to say they’re interested in a job but haven’t actually applied yet. Job applications can be tough, so try not to procrastinate and get it done. You’ll be in a much better position after you’ve applied to the role.
3) Track down the recruiter on LinkedIn and send an InMail & Email. This InMail/Email should include a very short overview of your suitability e.g.
"Hi Simon. I've just applied for the ROLE in LOCATION. I feel I am a good fit for the following reasons:
- The rate/salary is in line with my expectations
- I am based near to the location (description)
- I have experience in X, Y and Z and companies A,B and C
- I am immediately available for interviews and starting
Please let me know if we could discuss this role further."
4) Follow up with a call (but at the same time don’t spam call)
It’s all about getting your name heard! (and having the application to back it up…)
This may not be a sure-fire guide to get your application viewed by decision-makers, but it can sure help. If you have any more suggestions or questions regarding this topic feel free to get in touch!
by Robyn Trubey
International Women’s Day (IWD) is a day to celebrated annually on the 8th of March. The purpose of the day is to highlight how far women have...
International Women’s Day (IWD) is a day to celebrated annually on the 8th of March. The purpose of the day is to highlight how far women have come in society, politics and economics, whilst addressing the inequality women face and what we can do to minimize these issues going forward.
IWD stemmed from the labor movement in 1908, which saw 15,000 women marching through New York demanding shorter working hours, better pay and the right to vote. One year later, the Socialist Party of America declared the first National Women’s Day.
Clara Zetkin, who was an advocate for women’s rights, suggested the creation of an international day to celebrate women. She put her case before the International Conference of Working Women in Copenhagen in 1910, where a 100 women from 17 countries, agrees unanimously.
IWD was first celebrated in 1911 in various countries in Europe, before the day became official in 1974 by the United Nations. The day adopts a different theme year-on-year, with this year calling for women around the world to #BreaktheBias.
In the build up to IWD, I have been highlighting numerous influential women in STEM. I wanted to put the spotlight on just a few of the many female role models, working tirelessly to make the technology industry more visible and accessible to others, helping to close the gender gap. This series considered what these women are doing to encourage greater diversity and representation in their fields.
1. Kimberly Bryant
Name: Kimberly Bryant
Role: Founder & CEO of Black Girls Code
Bryant earned a scholarship to Vanderbilt University, where she studied an electrical engineering degree with minors in mathematics and computer science. After graduating, she took on technical leadership roles in several pharmaceutical and biotech companies.
Later on, her daughter's interest in computer science highlighted the lack of Black women in STEM professions. She realized this wasn't due to a lack of interest, but very few opportunities to access and gain exposure to these topics.
Bryant founded Black Girls Code in 2011, a San Francisco based nonprofit that exposes girls of color ages 7 to 17 to STEM subjects. This provides the opportunity for them to learn in-demand skills as they think about what they want to be when they grow up. The organization has the goal of teaching 1 million Black girls to code by 2040. Today, the organization has 16 chapters across the US and 1 chapter in Johannesburg, South Africa.
2. Safra Catz
Name: Safra Catz
Role: CEO of Oracle
Catz immigrated to the US from Israel at age 6. She earned a bachelor's degree from the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School and her Juris Doctor from Penn Law.
Catz began as a banker at Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette, working her way through the ranks and eventually becoming the senior vice president of the firm. In 1999, Catz joined Oracle as their senior vice president. She joined the company's board of directors in 2001 and was named president in 2004.
Under Catz's direction, Oracle initiated more than 130 acquisitions and mergers over the next decade. The most well-known of these acquisitions was direct rival PeopleSoft, which Oracle acquired in 2004 for $10.3 billion.
In 2014, Catz became co-CEO of Oracle, along with Mark Hurd, and later became the sole CEO in 2019. She also teaches accounting at the Stanford School of Business and was elected to the board of directors of the Walt Disney Co in 2017.
3. Ellen Pao
Name: Ellen Pao
Role: Co-Founder & CEO of Project Include
Pao learnt how to code at age 10 from her mother, who was working as a computer engineer at the University of Pennsylvania. Pao later graduated from Princeton University with a BSc in electrical engineering and a certificate in public policy. She also earned a Juris Doctor from Harvard Law and an MBA from Harvard Business School.
After working for several Silicon Valley companies, she became the technical chief of staff at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, a San Francisco venture capital firm. She later sued the company for bias and gender discrimination.
In 2013, Pao became Reddit's head of business development and strategic partnerships, then interim CEO in 2014. Pao is an advocate for women's rights and transforming corporate culture, and she banned the use of unauthorized nude photos on Reddit. This move inspired other social media platforms to institute similar policies.
Pao later resigned from Reddit and founded Project Include with other #WomenInTech. The group's mission is to address and prevent sexism and gender discrimination in Silicon Valley, and to improve diversity and inclusion within tech companies.
4. Susan Wojcicki
Name: Susan Wojcicki
Role: CEO of YouTube
Susan Wojcicki originally pursued a career in academia, after graduating from Harvard with a BA in history and literature. In her final year of study, she developed a passion for technology. She went on to earn a MSc in economics from the University of California Santa Cruz and a MBA from UCLA.
She returned to Silicon Valley to work in Intel's marketing department and later moved to Menlo Park, where she rented her garage as office space to Larry Page and Sergey Brin, the founders of Google. Wojcicki was Google's 16th employee and very first marketing manager, assisting in the creation of Google Images and Google Books.
Wojcicki helped develop AdWords and AdSense, Google's advertising and analytics products. She became Google's senior vice president of advertising and commerce, where she led the company's advertising and analytics division, including Google Video.
She proposed acquiring YouTube, who was a direct competitor of Google Video. In 2006, Google purchased YouTube for $1.65 billion. She became the CEO in 2014, and continues to lead the Google subsidiary in its role as one of the most influential and frequently used platforms on the internet.
5. Reshma Saujani
Name: Reshma Saujani
Role: CEO of Girls Who Code
Originally graduating from the University of Illinois with a bachelor's degree in political science and speech communication, Reshma Saujani went on to receive her Master of Public Policy degree from Harvard's Kennedy School of Government and her Juris Doctor from Yale Law School.
In 2010, Saujani was the first Indian-American woman to run for US Congress, when she campaigned for a New York House seat. She was the first person to run a political campaign using Square to receive donations. Whilst visiting educational institutions as part of her campaign, she witnessed the gender gap in computer classes.
In 2012, Saujani founded Girls Who Code to address the gender gap in the tech industry, with programmes from grades 3 all the way through to college. The organisation offers online resources, books, summer immersion and campus programs, clubs and college alumni programs. To this day, the organisation has served more than 450,000 girls, approximately half of which are from underprivileged communities; made up of Black, Latina and low-income girls.
Saujani published a book, Girls Who Code: Learn to Code and Change the World, in 2017, to promote the tenets of her organisation.
6. Gwynne Shotwell
Name: Gwynne Shotwell
Role: President and COO of SpaceX
Gwynne Shotwell achieved a Bachelor and Master of Science degrees in mechanical engineering and applied mathematics from Northwestern University. Shortly after graduating, Shotwell enrolled in Chrysler Corp.'s management training program to begin her career in the automotive industry. However, she quickly changed course to work on military space research contracts with Aerospace Corp. in El Segundo, California. There, she became the chief engineer of an MLV-class satellite program, where she researched and developed policies for commercial space exploration for the Federal Aviation Administration and NASA.
In 2002, Shotwell's interested in space made her a ideal candidate for #SpaceX, who brought her on as their 11th employee and VP of business development. She is now the company's president and COO, so is responsible for day-to-day operations and company outreach and development.
SpaceX was the first private company to launch a commercial satellite into orbit, and is now the world's largest commercial satellite constellation operator. They were also the first private company to send humans into orbit and to the International Space Station.
Shotwell was introduced to the Women In Technology International Hall of Fame and was named one of Time magazine's 100 most influential people in the world in 2020.
We have come a long way since IWD officially began in 1911, however, there is still so much that can be done to create a fairer society for people of all genders. This year, IWD has encouraged individuals to ‘think globally, act locally’, so do your bit that the future for girls is bright, equal, safe and rewarding.
What will you be doing to celebrate International Women’s Day this year?
by Charlotte Drury
The UK got its first low-cost rail service
The United Kingdom received its first low-cost rail service.
This week, the UK debuted a low-cost, low-carbon rail service, offering a greener, cheaper, and more comfortable alternative to flying on the UK's busiest domestic route. The first Lumo train left London's King's Cross station at 10.45 a.m. on Thursday, arriving in Edinburgh 4.5 hours later. Tickets for the all-electric trains start at £14.90 and include free WiFi.
Lumo's service is described as "a template for low-carbon, cheap long-distance travel in the UK" at a time when the country's transportation emissions must be dramatically reduced.
New Zealand passed a landmark climate reporting law
Financial firms will have to disclose their exposure to the climate issue under legislation voted in New Zealand this week. Banks, insurance, and financial firms will be required to disclose the risks and opportunities posed by global warming.
Climate change minister James Shaw stated, "Climate-related disclosures will bring climate risks and resilience into the heart of financial and economic decision-making." "By considering the short, medium, and long-term implications of climate change into their business decisions, it will drive companies to become more sustainable."
New Zealand is the first country to enact legislation of this nature.
Major retailers committed to zero-carbon shipping
Amazon, Ikea, and Unilever are among the retailers who said this week that by 2040, they will have switched all of their ocean freight to zero-carbon vessels.
The announcement adds to the pressure on the shipping industry to reduce its carbon footprint. There is a pressing need to do so: if the industry were a country, it would rank sixth in terms of emissions, just ahead of Germany.
Stand Earth, a Canadian environmental group, applauded the decision, but demanded that the deadline be pushed out to 2030. "This earlier objective would ensure that the shipping industry contributes its fair share to keeping global warming below 1.5 degrees Celsius," the report stated.
Green hydrogen is a promising zero-emissions alternative to fossil fuels, but it is still in its early stages of development. In Scandinavia, battery-powered boats are already on the water, but they are not yet available in the United States.
An award showcased African solutions to plastic pollution
African entrepreneurs are inventing new ways to combat plastic pollution, such as turning it into house bricks, designer textiles, cooking fuel, and more.
The Afri-Plastic Challenge, which published its shortlist this week, is recognising such initiatives. The prize was established to assist businesses in Sub-Saharan Africa in expanding their efforts to combat plastic pollution.
A Nigerian project that turns plastic trash into designer textiles, a Kenyan buy-back plan that lets women earn money through plastic recycling, and a Rwandan project that turns plastic waste into school benches are all in the running for the £1 million prize. Hundreds of grants of up to £100,000 will be available to entrepreneurs with scalable ideas as part of the contest.
“The solutions to Africa’s ever-increasing struggle with managing the rising tide of plastic pollution are already out there,” said Constance Agyeman, director of international development at Nesta Challenges, which launched the prize.
“The Afri-Plastics Challenge is supporting the most promising sub-Saharan African innovators to refine and scale local ideas to have impact on the continent.”
The UK government pledged to repeal the Vagrancy Act
Rough sleeping has been banned in the UK since the Vagrancy Act was introduced in 1824, thus aggravating the situation for homeless individuals. The UK government announced this week that the Act will be repealed.
Home Secretary Priti Patel and Housing Secretary Michael Gove have teamed up to remove the Vagrancy Act, which dates back to the 19th century, from the statute book.
"The criminalization of homelessness has disgraced our country for nearly two centuries," said Matt Downie, chief executive of the homeless charity Crisis. But the Vagrancy Act's days are numbered at long last. This heinous rule does nothing to address rough sleeping, but rather entrenches it in our culture by driving individuals further away from help. We know there are better, more efficient approaches to assist persons who are homeless in overcoming their situation."
Money invested towards renewable in the US
The United States has been late to the renewables party, with domestic green energy investment falling far behind that of other countries – but not for long.
The United States hosted the world's largest auction of offshore wind development rights this week. The auction (for areas off the coasts of New York and New Jersey) drew a record $1.5 billion (£1.1 billion) in bids, signalling a significant vote of confidence in the United States' booming green energy sector.
Offshore wind growth is a key component of Vice President Joe Biden's strategy to decarbonize the country's electrical grid by 2035. It can't come fast enough: the United States is the world's second-largest carbon emitter, trailing only China.
by Oliver Boulton
The battle for talent is at an all-time high with organisations doing whatever they can to attract and retain industry-leading talent. Whether or not...
The battle for talent is at an all-time high with organisations doing whatever they can to attract and retain industry-leading talent. Whether or not you choose to accept this, the reality is that we are currently in a candidate-driven market and if organisations fail to adapt, they risk falling behind in the race to the top.
I recently spoke with a client who had been struggling to remain competitive due to having a six-stage interview process, and a technical assessment which even their most Senior Engineers were unable to complete. This resulted in candidates being unwilling to go through such a long, drawn-out process or receiving offers from companies with a more streamlined process. Thankfully, they were an adaptive company who were willing to recognise their downfalls and make changes to the way they structured their interview process. Following this, they reduced the size of the process by 50% and have since been thriving ever since.
I've summarised 5 key points in which organisations can do in order to attract and retain the top talent:
A well-written and informative job post that defines abilities and needs should not only weed out unsuitable individuals.
Once applications begin to roll in you must ensure that the candidates are acknowledged and informed on the next step. When you ask someone for an interview, tell them everything they need to know beforehand, including who’s doing the interview, how long it’s likely to last, if there are any tests, and who to contact if they need to change or cancel the interview.
In some circumstances, two or three step interviews are necessary, but with the current unemployment rate at around 4.1% it is likely that you will be competing with other employers and roles and let’s face it, nobody likes the waiting game created by an unnecessarily lengthy interview process.
Most of us expect to have a couple of interviews for a position. But many more than that and you risk losing Don’t forget about video interviews either – even though things are now returning to normality after the COVID-19 pandemic, a video interview could be much quicker to schedule. And it also means you can recruit from further afield. You could always look to carry out first interviews by video and then bring the best candidates in for a face-to-face later.
Always have a plan for your interviews. You’ll want to tailor each one for the candidate you’re talking to. So, make sure you’ve studied every CV – there’s bound to be some specific skill or experience that you’ll want to ask them more about. Having said that, you’ll also want to have some standard questions you ask everyone. This is a great way to help you choose between similarly qualified candidates.
You’ve got your perfect candidate. So don’t wait around to make your offer. And when you do, make sure you give them a deadline as to when you want their decision. A couple of days should be enough, although bear in mind they might have other companies interested in them as well – so try to be flexible if they need a bit more time Once they accept, keep in touch with them before they start. This will help make onboarding go much more smoothly.
My advice is therefore aimed towards both clients and candidates. Candidates: You are in demand. Understand your value and do not settle for long drawn-out interview processes where you are made to jump through hoops which even existing employees are not able to. Clients: Adapt. It is a candidate-driven market and I appreciate that you may have traditional processes which you have worked in accordance with for many years, but the most successful organisations are those which are able adapt in an ever-changing and increasingly competitive market.
by Leonie Schaefer
Brooke Feinglass, a member of our US Austin team, relocated to Austin in July 2021 and enrolled in the Franklin Fitch Academy Program. She has been a...
Brooke Feinglass, a member of our US Austin team, relocated to Austin in July 2021 and enrolled in the Franklin Fitch Academy Program. She has been a part of our training programme since joining the team, which has provided her all the tools she needs to get started in the recruiting industry. We chatted with her about her time in the Academy, her decision to work in recruiting, and how she's adjusting to her new job and team at Franklin Fitch.
Introduce yourself, your career journey at Franklin Fitch, your current role and your responsibilities.
I started my career in recruiting as a Trainee Consultant in Franklin Fitch's Austin, TX office at the end of July 2021. I had no idea what I was doing and spent most of my days attempting to soak up as much knowledge as possible from my colleagues and received specialised training and development from Academy Management Charlotte from beginning to end. With the help of my supervisors and colleagues, I gained confidence in dealing with applicants and made my first placement in September. I was promoted to Consultant in November after placing four candidates. Now that I've gained a thorough grasp of the hiring process, I'm tasked with sourcing, qualifying, and managing prospects throughout their job search, attempting to make the process as painless as possible.
Since joining Franklin Fitch what has been one of the biggest challenges you have faced?
Finding a strategy that helps me keep organised has been my biggest problem since joining Franklin Fitch. I've been able to discover strategies to successfully manage my time and keep organised with my calendar as a result of my training, which is a valuable life skill to learn and develop.
My training at Franklin Fitch consisted of discussions, peer mentoring, technical studying etc. and I was extremely impressed throughout the entirety of it. The thoroughness of the program and its attention to detail assured me I was surrounded by people that wanted me to the best I could be.
What are your thoughts on being on the programme and why did you choose a career in recruitment at Franklin Fitch?
Franklin Fitch's training programme continues to impress me. All of the training is designed to provide you with the support and resources you'll need to succeed. It's a true mash-up of several sorts of training, including on-the-job coaching, listening, and observation. The use of KPI challenges and activities to motivate you to meet your goals while still having fun was fantastic and made the experience even more pleasurable.
I chose a career in recruitment at Franklin Fitch because I wanted a company to give me the dedication, attention and training needed in order to be a great recruiter.
Pay attention to what your peers are saying and learn from them. Everyone has a range of expertise and experience, and they are always eager to help if you have a query or want guidance.
by Algida Gaidyte
What is LGBT+ History Month, and how can your company get involved? We've got all the answers right here, so keep scrolling to learn more.
What is LGBT+ History Month, and how can your company get involved? We've got all the answers right here, so keep scrolling to learn more.
What is LGBT+ History Month?
It is a month-long annual celebration of lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans, and non-binary (LGBT+) history. It is also an opportunity to reflect on the history of LGBT+ rights and related civil rights movements.
When is LGBT+ History Month?
Every year LGBT+ History Month takes place in February because that was when it was initiated by the LGBT+ Education charity ‘Schools Out UK’ in 2005.
Sue Sanders and Paul Patrick founded LGBT+ History Month in the UK as part of a Schools Out UK project in 2005, following the repeal of Section 28 of the Local Government Act in 2003, which stated that a local authority "shall not intentionally promote homosexuality or publish material with the intention of promoting homosexuality" or "promote the teaching of homosexuality as a pretended family relationship in any maintained school."
What is the goal of LGBT+ History Month?
The month's goal is to raise awareness about the challenges that the LGBTQI+ community faces, as well as to educate young people about the history of the LGBT+ rights struggle and to promote an inclusive modern society.
Why is it important to foster Diversity and Inclusion in the workplace?
It's no secret that a diverse perspective fosters innovation, creativity, and a sense of belonging among employees, enabling them to bring their whole selves to work. The need of fostering a culture of inclusion and human rights efforts in the workplace is recognised by most organisations.
According to a recent poll, 25% of the LGBTQ+ population has faced discrimination at work because of their sexual orientation, and 31% have felt sad or depressed as a result. These figures alone demonstrate the relevance of educational awareness initiatives such as LGBT+ History Month.
Recognizing your LGBT+ coworkers' successes, learning more about LGBT+ history, celebrating diversity, and considering how you can help to create a more inclusive society as an employer.
What should businesses be doing for LGBT+ History Month?
Several LGBT+ History Month initiatives are available to help businesses honour and support LGBT+ employees during this time.
• Take actions to make workplaces more inclusive to LGBT+ coworkers and customers, such as evaluating corporate regulations and putting in place safeguards for LGBT+ personnel.
• Host webinars to raise awareness of LGBT+ topics and concerns affecting LGBT+ persons.
• Encourage lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender employees to talk about their experiences at meetings, events, or webinars to raise their visibility.
• Share LGBT+ resources with coworkers to assist them better understand what it means to be LGBT+ and how it may effect their employment. In the Inclusive Employers member's area, you can get this and other resources for free.
by Charlotte Robinson
Microsoft launched Windows 11 on the 5th of October 2021 as a free upgrade. Throughout the previous 3 months, I have had many interesting discussions...
Microsoft launched Windows 11 on the 5th of October 2021 as a free upgrade. Throughout the previous 3 months, I have had many interesting discussions with candidates on whether Windows 11 is as good as it has been made out to be. Throughout this article post, I will discuss some of the benefits and disadvantages of Windows 11 and everything you need to know to make the decision on whether it's time to upgrade.
Microsoft has made it clear that Windows 11 is available to all. There is no additional cost associated with installing Windows 11. However, it is not available to everyone because the update is only compatible with a Trusted Platform Module 2.0 and an Intel Core 8th generation processor that was released in 2017. As a result, most PCs older than four years will be unable to download the update. Since Windows 10 will only receive one upgrade per year until 2025, when it will be retired, this is a major issue for businesses using older technology. Companies have only three years to change their computer hardware as a result of this.
Despite the fact that the update is difficult to obtain, it has its advantages. For gamers, it features automatic HDR, which enhances the vibrancy of game pictures, and direct storage, which allows the graphic card and the Solid State Drive (SSD) to communicate more quickly.
Additionally, given Microsoft has chosen a new MacOS-style taskbar, it should be easier for MacOS users to navigate Windows 11. Unlike MacOS, which allows you to pin the task bar to any of the four corners of the screen, Windows 11 only allows you to pin it to the bottom, which could be inconvenient. Furthermore, customers have been perplexed by the fact that they are unable to see their live programmes on the task bar, making navigating more difficult.
As well as the new tool bar, Windows 11 will also come with a “Microsoft Chat” App, very similar to iMessage and Facetime from Apple. The Chat App uses the users Phone Number or Email-ID to enable the chat feature.
One of my favourite new features will be the various Window Sizes; by that, I mean that Windows 11 has "Snap Layouts" that allow you to have multiple applications or documents open on your screen at the same time. As someone who works in a second language, I find that online dictionaries are my closest friend. Having a dictionary and a document open on the same screen at the same time will help tremendously. Individuals will be able to get more work done as a result of this feature, as they will be able to view a greater variety of jobs they are working on. Home office plays a key part in our working lives at the moment with not all of us having access to multiple screens, “Snap Layouts” provides us with an alternative. On the other hand, having more tabs open may lead to more distractions because you are not focused on a single job.
"Edge Browser" is the preferred browser for Windows 11. Sleeping tabs are available in this browser, allowing you to save memory and Central Processing Unit (CPU) usage. This means you have the ability to re-open the apps you had the previous time you turned on your computer. This has the advantage of allowing you to pick up just where we left off, but it also implies that if we want to start fresh the next day, we must ensure that all apps are closed at the end of the day.
I am really excited to be able to use the new Windows 11. I look forward to using the new taskbar, the “Snap Layouts” and the setting to have my last opened applications open again when I start in the morning.
For businesses that want to stay relevant to their customers and purposeful to their employees, diversity is essential. It plays a big part in...
For businesses that want to stay relevant to their customers and purposeful to their employees, diversity is essential. It plays a big part in attracting and retaining talent being competitive in a market where employees hold many of the cards. An inclusive work environment not only creates a culture of growth and progression, it also offers opportunity to win new business and embark on a wider range of projects.
At Franklin Fitch, we are actively working with our clients and their employees to reach a new talent pool, foster an inclusive culture, and inspire a a more diverse audience to join the tech industry.
It's time for the tech industry to recognise the need for change in order to foster diversity and inclusion. It's one thing to claim that more diversity is required; it's another to really do something about it. But how well do you understand IT diversity and how it affects your company?
This post seeks to provide an overview of diversity concerns in the tech industry and how we might address them.
Why is diversity in tech important?
You might be wondering why diversity in the IT industry is so critical. There are moral reasons for prioritising diversity in technology, such as greater equality. There are also important business reasons for supporting workplace diversity.
Racial diversity in tech is also a big problem. At Facebook, only 2.1% of tech jobs are occupied by Black employees. The situation is marginally better at Microsoft, where Black individuals making up 4.7% of the workforce. Black employees are frequently discriminated against in the tech workforce with 62% of Black workers reporting that they have experienced discrimination. This could range from being underpaid compared to a colleague doing the same job, to receiving less support from senior leaders or being passed over for growth and development opportunities. This makes tech jobs less accessible, and appealing, to those individuals.
Many businesses, particularly those in the "Big Tech" sector, have consistently stated their commitment to diversity. However, data on diversity in the tech industry shows that this has only modestly improved over time. More work is needed to increase racial diversity in the tech industry without a doubt.
How a Lack of Diversity in Tech Harms Businesses
A diversified workforce allows a company to better understand its consumers and end-users. People now have increased expectations for products and services that cater to their various requirements and tastes. Having a more diverse workforce implies having a wider range of viewpoints, opinions, and backgrounds. You'll have greater creativity, and a wider range of skill sets if you work with a diverse group of people. Plus, you'll have more options for solving business challenges, which will help your organisation succeed.
The world is bursting at the seams with diversity. Our tech-based world can't tap into the full variety of knowledge and experience of that diversity if there isn't diversity in tech.
We've seen how a lack of diversity in technology contributes to negative customer experiences, such as when AI fails to recognise customers with darker skin tones on several occasions. To prevent overlooking the blind spots in tech invention and development, we need to encourage more people from diverse backgrounds to enter technological professions.
Be Geographically Inclusive
There's no reason not to encourage remote work in the post-pandemic world. Remote employment has offered up amazing options for everyone. Companies could take advantage of this by being flexible with their work schedules as one example.
Because many tech companies are concentrated in expensive locations, the industry has lacked diversity for a long time. Companies must be open to remote work in order to appeal to people based in places across the country they are based in, or even the world.
Another alternative is to establish satellite offices in different parts of the country. In the US, new digital centres are springing up in less expensive states. Georgia, Texas, Delaware, Virginia, Connecticut, and Maryland are six states outside of the usual tech clusters of California, New York, and Massachusetts that rank high on the Tech Talent Diversity score. They also have a higher proportion of workers in tech employment and are located in states with lower living costs than the present tech clusters; and diverse employees are more likely to be found in these locations than in ‘traditional’ tech centres like Silicon Valley.
Attracting more Diverse Talent
Companies must adjust their recruitment and hiring methods in order to increase diversity in the tech industry. When it comes to filling a job vacancy, hiring managers must play an active role in attracting a diverse pool of candidates. They can do so by undertaking unconscious bias training, forming multi-person interview panels comprised of diverse staff, and other methods.
An applicant may have no clue what your organisation is doing to assist diverse employees when they apply for a position. You can recruit more diverse talent by promoting your initiatives and recognizing diverse employees via marketing channels and in interviews themselves.
Posting a job post won't actively seek for diverse talent. Instead, go out to organizations that advocate and promote diverse IT talent, and form partnerships with organisations that can help bridge the gap.
Put Effort into Nurturing and Retaining Talent
Hiring a diverse pool of IT talent is merely the beginning of the solution. Companies must build an inclusive workplace after acquiring diverse talent in order to retain their hires. Many firms are aware of the diversity aspect of diversity and inclusion and understand that a diverse workforce is crucial to its reputation and success in a global market. It's the part about inclusion that many don't get - establishing an culture where individuals can be themselves, where their unique talents and perspectives are valued, and where they want to stay.
To appreciate diversity and establish meaningful relationships, it is critical to foster inclusion and create a culture of belonging. It can provide possibilities for employees to learn from one another and collaborate on new ideas. When employees feel included in their work environment and have opportunity to develop new skills, collaborate with people from different backgrounds they are more likely to stay.
Many businesses have recognised the need of cultivating diversity and inclusion within their organisations and have begun taking significant actions to do so. However, much effort has to be done to enhance diversity in the tech world, as well as in tech-related occupations and professions in other industries. Diversity and inclusion in the IT business isn't just a "nice to have," it's a “must have” for the industry's future success.
by Robyn Trubey
In August 2021, Robyn, a member of our London US team, enrolled in Franklin Fitch's Academy Program. She has been a part of our intensive...
In August 2021, Robyn, a member of our London US team, enrolled in Franklin Fitch's Academy Program. She has been a part of our intensive training programme, where she has received classroom and on-the-job training from our committed L&D Managers, giving her the tools she needs to get started in the recruitment sector. We spoke with her about her experience in the Academy, her decision to pursue a career in recruitment, and how she's settled into her new role and team at Franklin Fitch.
My name is Robyn and I joined Franklin Fitch’s US London team in August 2021. After graduating from university in the spring, it was my dream to relocate to the big city that is London. I’ll be honest and say that recruitment wasn’t a career I had considered before Franklin Fitch reached out to me. I was pretty open in terms of what roles I was considering, I just know I wanted a career that offered unlimited progression, the chance to earn good money and be rewarded for my hard work, and meet new, likeminded people in the city that was soon to become my home. Six months on, I’m really glad I was open to having that initial conversation, as I’m now working in a role that ticks all of those boxes. Since starting here, I have been part of an extensive training programme, where I have been provided with all of the tools, support and expertise to get me up to speed with the world that is recruitment. I work with both clients and candidates in the US market, to either fill their positions or land candidates their dream role.
I would say the biggest challenge I have faced would be diving into the unknown. I had moved from a small, seaside town in Wales and jumped feet first into a huge city, living in a house with five other strangers and working in an industry I didn’t have much knowledge of. When starting at Franklin Fitch, I found a great support network. Everyone at Franklin Fitch couldn’t have been more welcoming and supportive, both in terms of work and my personal life. They really went above and beyond, and even offered to help me find somewhere to live prior to my big move. I found having a job that I could really get my teeth stuck into gave me something to focus on, and everything else slowly fell into place.
What was the training programme like for you at Franklin Fitch?
The training programme at Franklin Fitch is second to none. You are thrown all of the tools, resources, knowledge and expertise you need to develop the skills to become an excellent Recruitment Consultant; some of the more senior members of staff are testimony to that. You have a dedicated academy manager, Charlotte, who is there to support and guide you throughout the whole process. It is great to know that no question is a silly question. All the staff are so supportive and there is always someone who is happy to help you out when you need it.
What are your thoughts on being on the programme and why did you choose a career in recruitment at Franklin Fitch?
I’m really glad I have been offered the opportunity to jump onboard this excellent training programme. It is true that recruitment has a lot of ups and downs, and sometimes it can be tough when you experience knockbacks. However, working closely with your mentors can ensure that you have greater control over those factors, and help you to build resilience, so when you do experience those knockbacks, you can use them as lesson and bounce back quicker every time. The reason I chose a career in recruitment is that I wanted a job that would give me the opportunity to continuously improve and progress. I always used to worry about being stuck in job where I would hit a ceiling of progression; however, this is a job where that would never happen. The great thing about Franklin Fitch is that you never have to wait for a promotion, you are all on your own path and once you hit those targets, you can climb the career ladder. I wanted a job where I would be rewarded for my hard work, and would get out what I put in. I’m more than happy to work hard, stay late, go the extra mile, as long as I am seeing those results. Finally, it was the people for me at Franklin Fitch, the brilliant mentors, managers and friends. Since being here, I have made some really great friends and done some really cool things.
Any advice you would give to future recruiters?
My advice would be to take the leap. A lot of people don’t know too much about the recruitment industry, but be open to having that initial conversation and find out a bit more about it before you rule it out. Take advantage of the exceptional training and development opportunity on offer, as they help to build all the skills and confidence you need to be an excellent Recruitment Consultant. Be patient and persistent, show up for yourself every day and you will reap the benefits!
by Isabelle Melton
France’s Plastic Packaging Ban Begins
On New Year's Day, France enacted legislation prohibiting the use of plastic packaging on most fruits and vegetables. They're one of 30 varieties that won't be wrapped in plastic in the country starting January 1, 2022. Before the ban, an estimated 37% of fruit and vegetable products in France were assumed to be sold in plastic wrapping, and government officials estimate that it might save the usage of a billion single-use plastic items each year.
President Emmanuel Macron called the ban "a true revolution" that demonstrated the country's commitment to eliminating single-use plastics by 2040. From 2023, Spain will prohibit the use of plastic in the packaging of fruits and vegetables. Other governments have been encouraged by environmental groups to do the same.
Bacteria-Killing Packaging Could Keep Food Fresh Longer and End Waste
A new ‘smart’ form of packaging could eradicate food poisoning, according to a new study.
Scientists say it kills harmful bugs—such as E. coli, Salmonella, and listeria—keeping meat, fish, fruit, and veg fresh for longer. The water-proof wrapping may also help save the planet by reducing food waste. It looks just like plastic, but the team notes that it’s biodegradable and sustainable. The chemicals destroy any bacteria that grows on the surface of food or the wrapping itself
This invention would serve as a better option for packaging in the food industry, as it has demonstrated superior antimicrobial qualities in combatting a myriad of food-related bacteria and fungi that could be harmful to humans and can be applied to various produces such as fish, meats, vegetables, and fruits.
Latin American Countries join forces to Create Massive Marine Reserve in the Pacific Ocean
Four Latin American countries, Panama, Ecuador, Colombia, and Costa Rica, each with coasts off the Pacific Ocean, have joined forces and committed to linking each of their marine reserves together. This collaborative action will form a single interconnected area and create one of the richest pockets of biodiversity in the ocean. That area, to be called the Eastern Tropical pacific Marine Corridor (or CMAR), would be protected and thus free of any fishing. CMAR would cover over 500,000 square kilometres (or 200,000 square miles) including important migratory routes for a number of species, such as sea turtles, whales, sharks, and rays.
This action represents the first-time countries with connected maritime borders have joined forces to create a cooperative public environmental policy for those borders.
Lia Launches Its FDA-Approved, Flushable And Biodegradable Pregnancy Test On The Market
The company launched the first and only flushable and biodegradable pregnancy test on the market. Roughly 20 million home pregnancy tests are sold each year in the United States, and while some tests can be recycled, most join the 27 million tons of plastic waste that end up in landfills annually, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. When added to the compost bin, flushed down the toilet, or tossed in the trash can, this biodegradable pregnancy test is helping to reduce plastic waste and create a more private testing experience. It degrades after 10 weeks, making it a sustainable alternative to traditional pregnancy tests.
South Australia Smashes Renewable Record Using 100% Solar and Wind For Full Week
In the closing days of 2021, South Australia's solar and wind farms, as well as rooftop solar systems, supplied an average of slightly over 100% of local demand every day for over a week, setting a new renewable energy record. The record was set in the days coming up to Christmas last year, when wind, rooftop solar, and solar farms provided 101% t of the power required in South Australia. Natural gas contributed just 114 megawatts on average over that time period. Around 1.7 million people live in the territory, largely along the coast and in Adelaide, the capital city. The favourable circumstances for solar and wind energy have aided the growth of the renewable energy business, as evidenced by the fact that in the same period of last year, 142% of needs were met with these elements.
Billionaire Mark Cuban Opens Online Pharmacy to Provide Affordable Generic Drug
Mark Cuban has officially launched his newest endeavour, Cost Plus Drugs, an online pharmacy that seeks to lower the cost of 100 generic drugs in the United States. Cuban's firm is attempting to tackle giant pharmaceutical corporations' price gouging of prescription pharmaceuticals, promising that MCCPDC will be "radically open" in its pricing talks with drug manufacturers. Following that, the pharmaceuticals will be offered with a 15% markup across the board plus a minor pharmacist charge. Large pharmaceutical corporations, on the other hand, usually mark up prices by 100%. Drugs for cancer, high cholesterol, HIV, diabetes, and other illnesses are available for purchase at launch, with the business planning to extend its offers.