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HR needs to stop criticising itself

first_imgRelated posts:No related photos. Previous Article Next Article HR needs to stop criticising itselfOn 14 May 2002 in Personnel Today Many ‘experts’ criticise HR professionals for a lack of involvement inbusiness strategy. HR’s response should be to help one another become moreinfluential at senior level, writes Louise AllenCan I be the only person in the field of strategic HR who feels a wave offrustration wash over them every time an ‘expert’ highlights the shortcomingsof HR professionals? It is criticisms about our lack of understanding or involvement in businessstrategy that I find most tiresome. I agree that to work in the field ofstrategic HR and not understand the importance of business planning is a wasteof everybody’s time. As HR professionals, we are obliged to recognise thatthese are clear development needs and opportunities because we have to be ableto make a difference and to measure what we contribute. But we should challenge those who criticise so freely – providingconstructive suggestions is a lot more difficult. There are great HR directors and managers out there, who take their seat atthe executive table with great confidence and produce innovative people plans.However, there are also many organisations where this is not possible. Cultures in these employers are often dictated by a lack of acceptance andunderstanding by senior line managers who refuse to have anything to do with‘soft and fluffy people stuff’. These can be the same senior managers who often reject the notion ofbusiness plans as a waste of management time. Typical phrases include: ‘we havethe budgets – what else do we need?’ and ‘anyone who doesn’t know what’sexpected of them round here, doesn’t belong’. Where these prejudices exist in organisations, the opportunities for HRprofessionals to make a realistic contribution are much diminished. There are,however, ways and means to ensure that the HR team is doing everything it canto position itself well even when barriers exist. It is vital to understand your business. How well do you understand yourbusiness’ key performance indicators? It is important to be able to engageother managers about business performance and related issues. There also has to be clear business links in the HR strategy. Can youdemonstrate business benefits for all your activities? It is also important youare prepared to be held accountable for success measures in exactly the sameway other business managers are. HR has to be able to lead and manage business change. How confident are youthat you can support and lead managers through the constant challenge ofbusiness change? The implementation of an innovate people strategy will only be achieved ifyou understand the role your HR team plays. Are you and your HR colleaguesfocused on the improvement of business performance, or do you get caught up inenforcing rules and regulations? Influencing and leadership skills are also important. Are you able toconfidently present and represent the people issues? It is vital you caninfluence the business debate in your organisation to ensure people values arefully reflected in the resulting business plans. HR professionals need personalskills around ‘intent’ and ‘impact’ to be effective. While none of these suggestions are solutions in themselves, in myexperience they will provide opportunities to make a difference. Rather than HR criticising itself, we should be looking to help each otherlearn to be influential with senior managers. We need to make moreopportunities to share best practice through networking and the like. These are just some of the ways to overcome our deficiencies. I know this isan area the CIPD is keenly aware of and I – like many others – await itsdeliberations with interest. In the meantime, we are in the development business – so let us stop criticisingeach other and focus on support. By Louise Allen, a director of Cedar International Comments are closed. last_img read more

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Coastal Antarctic aerosol and snowfall chemistry

first_imgAerosol samples have been collected at three stations on the coast of Antarctica. At Dumont d’Urville Station, samples have been collected for 4 years, at Halley Station for 2 years, and at Neumayer Station for 12 years. Fresh snow samples have also been collected at the three sites. At Halley, daily surface snow samples were taken, as well as firn cores covering the sampling period. Meteorological (including upper air) data are available at the three sites. In the subsequent papers of this special section, the data from the three stations have been combined in order to make general statements about the chemistry of aerosol in coastal Antarctica, about the differences between sectors of Antarctica, and about the relationship between air concentrations and the chemistry that is eventually seen in ice cores. This paper summarizes the samples collected and the sampling methods used at the three sites. It also highlights the main role of each paper in this special section.last_img read more

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Leonardo to deliver radars for new Bangladesh Navy Dorniers

first_img Authorities Bangladesh Navy’s new Dornier 228 multirole aircraft will feature Leonardo AESA radars European defense contractor Leonardo will be delivering its Seaspray 5000E AESA radars for two new Dornier 228 multirole aircraft being built for the Bangladesh Navy.The Bangladesh Navy already operates two Dornier aircraft delivered by German company RUAG Aviation in 2013 and now has two more on order.The new aircraft will be used to monitor and protect Bangladesh’s 120,000 square kilometers of maritime territorial area and exclusive economic zone (EEZ).The radars will be delivered in 2018 and will help the Bangladesh Navy to conduct anti-smuggling and anti-pollution missions and prevent illegal fishing and migration.Optimized for search-and-rescue tasks, the new Seaspray-equipped multirole aircraft will boost the capabilities of the Bangladesh Navy in the Bay of Bengal which is prone to cyclones and hurricanes.In addition to supplying radars, Leonardo delivered two AW109 SAR helicopters to Bangladesh and was contracted last year to deliver two AW159 Wildcat helicopters to boost the Bangladesh Navy’s anti-submarine warfare capabilities. View post tag: RUAG Back to overview,Home naval-today Bangladesh Navy’s new Dornier 228 multirole aircraft will feature Leonardo AESA radars View post tag: Bangladesh Navycenter_img Share this article View post tag: Leonardo View post tag: Dornier 228 September 12, 2017last_img read more

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Prince To Receive Honorary Degree From University of Minnesota

first_imgBeloved pop icon Prince passed away earlier this year, leaving behind a wake of loyal supporters and admirers everywhere. The Purple One was adored around the world, but perhaps nowhere as much as his home state of Minnesota. While other artists might have abandoned the locale for big city life, Prince instead set up shop at his Paisley Park manor and poured funds into the local community.Though Prince passed away on April 21st, the University of Minnesota had been planning to award Prince with an honorary doctorate for not only his artistic contributions, but for his philanthropic and social ones as well. The nomination comes posthumously, and a ceremony will be detailed for later this year.“As Minnesotans and people around the world continue to celebrate Prince’s life and contributions to society, the University is privileged to award the honorary degree posthumously,” said President Eric Kaler on the U of M website. “Prince was transformational in American music and culture, and we are extremely proud of his many accomplishments, as well as his efforts to give back to his home state, a legacy we hope to continue.”“He changed the world’s view of what it meant to be Minnesotan,” said Michael Kim, Director of the University of Minnesota’s School of Music. “He demonstrated that far from provincial and unassuming, Minnesota’s creative talents were cutting-edge and brilliant. I can think of no better way to express the University’s esteem for one of Minnesota’s own sons, and one of the most talented and influential performing artists of all time.”There’s nothing but love for Prince. RIP.[Photo via Chad Anderson Photography]last_img read more

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Miles Davis And Deep Purple Songs Are The First To Be Successfully Encoded In DNA

first_imgOver the past century, technology has made leaps and bounds, and the music industry has done its best to keep up with the times. While jokes are frequently made about the death of the CD, cassette, and 8-track players (and debatably vinyl, though that’s a different conversation), these formerly lauded technologies were all thrown to the wayside as new, more efficient music technologies were developed. Looking to the future, it’s anyone’s guess what new technology may be developed that will revolutionize the music world once again, but could the answer be within ourselves already—literally?This Technology Gives Disabled Patients A Chance To Make Music With Their Minds [Watch]Researchers at a lab specializing in DNA synthesis, Twist Bioscience, have recently made history with their brand-new project. Working with Microsoft and the University of Washington, the researchers at Twist Bioscience made waves by their successful use of DNA to store archival-quality audio recordings long term for the first time ever—specifically, the researchers encoded recordings of Miles Davis’ “Tutu” and Deep Purple’s “Smoke On The Water” from the Montreux Jazz Festival archives. [Video: T. U. M.]Currently, digital audio uses binary code to capture and record soundwaves. In order to record audio onto synthetic DNA, the binary code representing sound is converted into the language of DNA. For those of us who may need to brush up on their high school science, DNA is built out of strands of four different nucleotide bases—adenine, cytosine, guanine, and thymine, which are commonly represented by the letters A, C, G, and T. The unique order and arrangement of these bases is what informs how organisms grow and serves as a roadmap to the body. When using DNA to store music, the size of the information is reduced significantly. As Karin Strauss, Ph.D., a senior research at Microsoft, notes, “The amount of DNA used to store these songs is much smaller than one grain of sand. . . . Amazingly, storing the entire six petabyte Montreux Jazz Festival’s collection would result in DNA smaller than one grain of rice.”Scientists Have Discovered The Area Of The Brain That Responds To MusicIn addition to a reduction in the size needed to store information, the researchers also argue that this method will be the future of digital storage. The group claims that the majority of the world’s data is being stored on technology that is unlikely to last longer than a few decades, and that DNA storage has the potential to outlast any existing data storage systems to date. Twist Bioscience explained, “Where the very best conventional storage media may preserve their digital content for a hundred years under precise conditions, synthetic DNA preserves its information content for hundreds or thousands of years.”The well-decorated musician and producer Quincy Jones—who has long been associated with the Montreaux Jazz Festival—also issued a statement about this new technology, “With the unreliability of how archives are often stored, I sometimes worry that our future generations will be left without such access. I’m proud to know that the memory of this special place will never be lost.”[H/T Pitchfork]last_img read more

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New Web page guides users through Santo Domingo Collection

first_img Read Full Story Harvard’s recently acquired Julio Mario Santo Domingo Collection centers on art, literature, and popular culture artifacts related to the chief avenues to altered states of mind: sex and drugs.  It is the largest collection of its kind in the world, and since its arrival at Harvard, this collection has sparked great interest.A new page has been created on the Houghton Library website, helping to guide users in the exploration of this unique collection.Including rare books, manuscripts, posters, photographs, audio material, and popular and underground cultural ephemera of all kinds, the 50,000-plus item collection will support teaching and research in many fields across the University.The collection was formed by Julio Mario Santo Domingo Jr., an investment adviser who resigned his business interests to devote himself to collecting. His acquisitions followed his wide-ranging personal interests.The Santo Domingo Collection is not physically together in one location. Materials are housed in the Botany Libraries; the Center for the History of Medicine, Countway Library; the Fine Arts Library; and Widener Library, as well as in Houghton Library. Readers can browse the collection “virtually” through the HOLLIS catalog.last_img read more

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Astronomers create first realistic virtual universe

first_imgPrevious attempts to simulate the universe were hampered by lack of computing power and the complexities of the underlying physics. As a result, those programs were either limited in resolution, or forced to focus on a small portion of the universe. Earlier simulations also had trouble modeling complex feedback from star formation, supernova explosions, and supermassive black holes.Illustris employs a sophisticated computer program to recreate the evolution of the universe in high fidelity. It includes both normal matter and dark matter using 12 billion 3-D “pixels,” or resolution elements.The team dedicated five years to developing the Illustris program. The actual calculations took three months of “run time,” using a total of 8,000 CPUs running in parallel. If they had used an average desktop computer, the calculations would have taken more than 2,000 years to complete.The computer simulation began a mere 12 million years after the Big Bang. When it reached the present day, astronomers counted more than 41,000 galaxies in the cube of simulated space. Importantly, Illustris yielded a realistic mix of spiral galaxies like the Milky Way and football-shaped elliptical galaxies. It also re-created large-scale structures such as galaxy clusters and the bubbles and voids of the cosmic web. On the small scale, it accurately recreated the chemistries of individual galaxies.Since light travels at a fixed speed, the farther away astronomers look, the farther back in time they can see. A galaxy one billion light-years away is seen as it was a billion years ago. Telescopes like Hubble can give us views of the early universe by looking to greater distances. However, astronomers can’t use Hubble to follow the evolution of a single galaxy over time.“Illustris is like a time machine. We can go forward and backward in time. We can pause the simulation and zoom in to a single galaxy or galaxy cluster to see what’s really going on,” says co-author Shy Genel of the CfA.The team is releasing a high-definition video, which morphs between different components of the simulation to highlight various layers (e.g., dark matter density, gas temperature, or chemistry). They also are releasing several smaller videos and associated imagery online.To read the full article, visit the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. Move over, “Matrix”  — astronomers have done you one better. They have created the first realistic virtual universe using a computer simulation called Illustris. Illustris can re-create 13 billion years of cosmic evolution in a cube 350 million light-years on a side with unprecedented resolution.“Until now, no single simulation was able to reproduce the universe on both large and small scales simultaneously,” says lead author Mark Vogelsberger of Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, who conducted the work in collaboration with researchers at several institutions, including the Heidelberg Institute for Theoretical Studies in Germany.These results are being reported in the May 8 issue of the journal Nature. <a href=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UlbndcHtdPw” rel=”nofollow” target=”_blank”> <img src=”https://img.youtube.com/vi/UlbndcHtdPw/0.jpg” alt=”0″ title=”How To Choose The Correct Channel Type For Your Video Content ” /> </a>last_img read more

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Making Sense of Your Multiple Clouds: 5 Takeaways From VMworld

first_imgAt VMworld 2019, we held an expert round table designed to explore some of the salient topics. Half of the round table participants were Tech Field Day community members, and the remaining half were from Dell Technologies, VMware VeloCloud, and Intel. With ten panelists in total, the discussion was lively — and ranged from highly technical to practical.Here are my top five takeaways from the talk.1. Ask your cloud providers the hard questionsThere’s no magic blueprint for picking the right vendor or vendors, and no solution is one-size-fits all. The consensus was clear: you should focus on your business requirements when evaluating cloud providers. Doing this right means asking tough questions about where and how your data will go.Essentially, think of the cloud not as a place, but as an operating model. Find technology partners that can deliver not just the technology, but a model that aligns with your business.There were a few considerations that the panel agreed were important:How edge vs. cloud data is handled. What is processed on the edge, versus in the cloud?The physical location of cloud servers. It’s important for compliance with local regulations and for reducing latency for real-time decision making.The data center is an overlooked part of the cloud ecosystem that will make a difference for most organizations. Having a Software-Defined Data Center (SDDC) that can automate, remove the burden of patching and infrastructure management, makes the on-premises experience more like the cloud by saving IT time and resources.2. Plan and build across cloudsOur panel agreed that any discussion on the merits of a single cloud vs. multiple cloud deployment misses the point. Like it or not, the hard fact is that most customers find their data and applications split across at least two clouds. For most companies, this was not a conscious choice but rather an accidental outcome driven by rapid organic cloud adoption, acquisition, or various other factors.The ease of setup with most cloud providers is almost a liability in this case. Departments can bypass IT, implement their own cloud provider for a departmental solution, and before long you have a fractured landscape. Like it or not, the business world often requires many clouds. By adopting a hybrid cloud model that offers consistency of management and easy workload migration across public and private clouds, you unlock the power of your cloud data.We agreed the solution is for strong ownership by IT, as well as effective communication between leaders across the organization. The role of IT implementers and developers will become more and more important as cloud services proliferate.For IT to keep that ownership and control, they must pivot to be seen as a deliverer of services, not a roadblock. There have to be enough people with the right knowledge to help support the organization. At Dell Technologies Cloud, we’ve seen that VMware’s training setup and the sheer volume of knowledge they have, make it a strong platform for establishing a digital business.3. Understand your security postureMost of the panel agreed that it was on organizations to treat all clouds as a zero-trust environment. Organizations are getting into trouble when it comes to establishing security best practices across so many environments. They must strive to deliver consistent security tools and extend their security best practices across all these clouds.That makes sense, because every cloud provider has some type of Shared Responsibility Model. Overall, cloud vendors are doing well holding up their end of the bargain, but customers need to be more aware of their responsibilities, and more consistent in implementing them.The goal should be to establish a standard security operating procedure that can be applied uniformly. Then, you can add additional measures depending on a specific provider.We’re starting to see, however, that just grafting on security measures isn’t going to be sufficient forever. The next movement is intrinsic security, that’s built into all aspects of a platform. VMware has been moving in that direction, and is enabling Dell Technologies Cloud to create a platform that ensures security across all customers’ cloud providers.4. Take a long-term approach to containerizationThe experts agreed that the shift from virtual machine to container is far trickier than moving from physical hardware to virtual machines. Container architecture requires considerable retrofitting for legacy applications; it’s almost easier to throw everything existing out and design from scratch for containers than it is to adapt existing apps.That said, we agreed that the business benefits from a move to containers will be worth the effort in the long run, but, existing legacy applications will remain in place for some time. Containers provide the ability to identify bottlenecks in your network or architecture and scale them out, with virtually infinite scalability.As a panel, we agreed that most businesses aren’t making containers a top priority. We also observed that it’s a tough transition to make without outside help. It’s best to start small and try a few pilot projects first.VMware and Dell Technologies Cloud are both working on infrastructure that will enable our customers to rapidly onboard containers in a way that is less disruptive, and reduces the amount of time and effort it takes to maintain these environments.5. Create a simple, consistent hybrid cloud with VMware + Dell Technologies CloudA big area of focus for our panel was on how companies could get more from their clouds. The great promise of the cloud was always about providing a simpler way of handling data: centralized and effortless, a virtual, “garden of Eden,” as one panelist put it.Why have we fallen so short of this ideal? For most companies, cloud deployments have answered some questions, but also created new ones. Getting it all to work together is now the great challenge.Clouds can offer immense value but only when deployed as part of  an effective strategy that spans all environments. Every company comes to the cloud with their own priorities, needs, and context. From our discussion, however, it was clear that the desire for simplicity and consistency is nearly universal.A consistent hybrid cloud can remove a lot of that complexity and provide a more easily managed, business aligned, and secure cloud experience. That is why Dell is working with VMWare to modernize operations, reduce costs and redefine networking for the multi-cloud world.What are your top cloud insights or best practices?Listen to the Cloud conversation i recently had with analysts Pat Moorhead and Daniel Newman:The Six Five Special Insider Edition featuring Dell Technologies Watch these in-depth Cloud interviews with Dell Tech Cloud experts hosted by CTO Advisor Keith Townsend: Dell Technologies Cloud UpdateDell Technologies Cloud Storage Learn about our key announcements at VMWorld 2019 Dell Technologies Cloud Accelerates Customers’ Multi-Cloud JourneyDell Technologies Advances Software-Defined Networking with Dell EMC and VMware Co-Developed SolutionsDell Technologies Cloud Advancements Deliver New Kubernetes Support and Hybrid Cloud Infrastructure Optionslast_img read more

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House resolution calls for mediation to head off 400 layoffs

first_imgAs the Douglas Administration began the process of laying off 30 state workers ahead of an expected 400 more, the Legislature passed a joint resolution today to send the process to mediation. The House passed the Joint Resolution, JRH 26, calling for the administration and the Vermont State Employees Association to enter into a formal mediation process to resolve differences regarding state payroll savings. Since the beginning of the legislative season, the administration has said that the state needs to save an addition $17 million in payroll to help reduce the cost of state government. In the current fiscal year, the nonunion (exempt) state workforce has been reduce by 3.5 percent to 586 workers and nonunion workers have had their pay frozen, with those making over $60,000 taking a 5 percent pay cut. Meanwhile, the union workforce has been reduced 2.7 percent to 7,597 workers without any adjustments to pay or benefits.The Douglas Administration has the ability to lay off workers, but under the collective bargaining process it cannot change pay or benefits without the approval of the union. The state was expected to notify 30 workers today that they were being laid off, but the union has some ability to transfer those layoffs to other unionized workers. The administration has said it needs to lay off an additional 400 or so workers if a pay and benefit deal is not struck with the union.At the beginning of the session, Douglas said at least 600 state workers would need to be laid off. According to press reports, rank and file members of the five unionized bargaining units are themselves divided on the issue of whether to suffer the layoffs, or instead cut pay and benefits. The administration wants to reduce overall costs for future fiscal years rather than taking the union offer of just reducing costs in the next fiscal year, through furloughs and other one-time cost saving measures.Senate leaders, meanwhile, have offered up a couple of different plans as compromise to avoid layoffs, including furloughs for two years and some pay reductions of 3.5 percent. The administration’s non-layoff proposals have included a 5 percent wage cut and a health insurance premium increase from 20 percent to 30 percent. The Senate plan has included a cut in the number of communications positions within the Douglas Administration from 10 to five. There has been an on-going battle between the administration and the Legislature over these positions. Democratic legislators have seen these positions as part of the public relations machine for the administration. The Democrats see these cuts as a way for the administration to shoulder more of the pain. The administration has always bristled at the notion that these are just PR positions and instead insist that they perform the vital role of informing the public of what is happening in state government.The joint resolution calls for the mediation process to be completed no later than Tuesday, May 5. With two weeks left in the session and further revenue downgrades today, it is imperative that the Administration and the union find a way past the gridlock to find payroll savings, preferably without laying off workers, said Speaker Shap Smith.  In these difficult times, we all must make difficult choices and I hope that, with a formal mediation process, the Administration and the State Employees Union can reach a compromise.last_img read more

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VBM, KeyBank celebrate Vermont’s fastest growing companies

first_img9.16.2011 2011 5x5x5 Award RecipientsConstructionReArch Company, LLC | 429%TFM Construction | 151%Denis White Interior Contractors, Inc | 88%Spates Construction, Inc | 73%Naylor & Breen Builders, Inc | 33% EnergyAll Earth Renewables | 5,250%Global Resource Options, Inc | 374%Vermont Electric Power Company | 257%NRG Systems Inc. | 109%Washington Electric Cooperative | 36%ManufacturingGreen Mountain Coffee Roasters, Inc | 740%North Hartland Tool Corp | 600%MicroStrain, Inc | 198%King Arthur Flour Company | 84%Harbour Industries  Inc  | 60%ServiceChoice Stategies | 410%VHB | 250%TPW Management LLC |213%The RehabGYM Inc | 210%Dore & Whittier Architects | 149%TechnologyDealer.com | 1,188%ASIC North Inc | 330%Logic Supply Inc | 156%BioTek Instruments | 107%Control Technologies Inc | 81% Vermont Business Magazine and KeyBank celebrated  the achievements of the five fastest growing businesses in five categories over the last five years in Vermont at a ceremony Thursday night at the DoubleTree in South Burlington. The 25 extraordinary companies are listed below. AllEarth Renewables had the distinction of being the fastest overall company with 5,250 percent growth over five years.The keynote Speaker was Janette Bombardier, site director of IBM in Essex Junction, who spoke on the constant need to innovate.Also speaking was Martha Maksym of the United Way of Chittenden County and Governor Shumlin, who was able to break away from his schedule to congratulate the winners and to offer remarks on how the Vermont spirit has led to a speedy recovery from Tropical Storm Irene. Photos: Janette Bombardier and Bob Zider. Governor Shumlin. Category winners below. Photos by Nino Abbott.last_img read more

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