Facedwith serious skill shortages at home, many high-tech firms in the US haveturned to talent imported from the developing markets. Liz Simpson looks at howthey have made this workIfthere’s one thing you can’t get away from in Silicon Valley it’s the phrase”Now hiring!”. Enticing techies to fill the scores of computerprogramming and engineering vacancies constantly on offer here has promptedemployers to engage in some creative approaches in their bid to attract themost talented people. It’s common to find pleas of “Come work for us”advertised on the insulated sleeves around take-away coffee cups. Or to seelight aircraft trailing banners inviting IT personnel to call a company todiscuss the great opportunities on offer. But since there’s apparently notenough homegrown IT talent currently in the US to meet the immediate demand ofhigh-tech companies, searches are also being conducted further afield. Indeed,many organisations are taking advantage of the fact that there is a big, wideworld out there in which to fish.TheClinton administration facilitated the importing of global talent into the USlast year by passing legislation that significantly increased the number ofannual temporary visas (H-1Bs) available to foreign-born workers. That allowedrecruiters to fill those critical gaps in their workforce with the best andbrightest from emerging markets like South America, Pakistan, Russia and thePhilippines, although it’s anticipated the majority will come from India.That’s because the Indian educational system places great emphasis – certainlymore than its Western counterparts – on gaining high-level qualifications inthe computer sciences and mathematics.Importingtalented people into a very different culture is not without its challenges.Indeed, as the emerging field of cultural psychology recognises, attitudes andbehaviours are always influenced by culture, and major misunderstandingsbetween people with very different expectations are common. However, with someforethought and planning these can be mitigated. Softwareengineer Naga Sridhar Kataru, from southern India, was recruited straight fromuniversity to work for Lucent Technologies. His experience of working in acompletely different culture has been smooth, thanks mainly, he feels, to theefforts made by his employers.SaysKataru: “On my first day one of the HR personnel took me to the nearestgovernment office so I could get my social security card, which, among otherthings, facilitates opening a bank account. It’s the practical issues that areimportant – knowing how to find reasonably priced accommodation, understandinghow long the commute will take, buying a car – not just issues concerned withthe job. Coming from a country where things operate very differently puts youat an immediate disadvantage compared with US recruits. But if you have helpdealing with lifestyle issues like arranging credit then you can focus betteron your work and perform more effectively for the company.”Whathe particularly valued was the fact that Lucent hadn’t just identified theissues that all new recruits confront, or simply ones that were unique toforeign-born workers coming to the US. They were also sensitive to the factthat, as a young man just out of university, he had unique personalpreferences. “Iwas matched with a mentor who was my friend and guide, who took me out todinner and made sure I knew what social life was available so I didn’t feellonely and isolated. That too had a positive impact on my ability towork,” says Kataru.JuliaSullivan, a marketing manager in the Internet business solutions division ofJapanese-owned high-tech company NEC Systems, came to the US from Taiwan 11years ago and praises her company’s two-day cultural orientation workshops. Shesays they are invaluable in facilitating communication between diverse culturesbecause, unbidden, it’s difficult for someone to recognise their culturalbiases.”Easterncultures tend to be less outspoken, more conservative. When I first came to theUS and someone praised me I’d reply, ‘I didn’t do it well enough’, because I’dbeen brought up to be humble and not brag about myself. I realised the hard waythat Western management regards that negatively.”AddsSullivan: “Language is best understood in the context of culture,something that requires experience and help. It’s invaluable in a workshopsituation to practise saying to foreign co-workers: ‘This is what I heard yousay – is that what you meant?’”Shealso feels that it’s important for managers to be sensitive to an individual’sstrengths and weaknesses and to allow them to focus on work which suits theirpersonality as well as skills, since individuals with English as a secondlanguage may not feel comfortable dealing directly with customers.”Acompany culture that supports values like open communication, respect fordiversity and good humour is the foundation for a workforce that operateseffectively together, irrespective of their backgrounds.”Butwith lay-offs making the headlines daily and talk of a US recession, what couldhappen to these foreign-born employees in the future?”Underthe terms of the H-1B programme, if someone loses their employment they caneither transfer their visa to another company or the original employer mustprovide for them to return to their country of origin,” answers JanetBriggs, senior vice president of HR at application service provider, Corio,based in San Carlos, California.”However,we wouldn’t want to get a reputation as a company which considers its people –including its H-1B people – as being disposable. We ask for a high level ofcommitment from our H-1B employees and show them the same level of commitmentby immediately beginning work on their green card applications, if they sochoose.”Hercolleague Bill Greenhalgh, director of HR and staffing, points out that theconcept of the global village is here to stay. “It’s time to wake up andsmell the coffee. We are a global economy. With the networking available today,employees can be in India, Australia or anywhere else for that matter and stillproduce for an organisation.”Casehistory: NEC SystemsBackgroundDennisBaker, director of HR and general administration at NEC Systems in San Jose,uses the term “offshore developers” to describe a new trend that involveshiring foreign workers but leaving them in their own countries. Some call them”virtual workers”, others “cross-border collaborators”. “Moreand more Internet companies are looking at this philosophy from the standpointof it being more cost-effective,” explains Baker. “After all, thecost of the H-1B visa process in the US, which the company pays, is around$850-1,000 per employee. There may also be considerable travel expenses. Forexample, the average airline ticket from India to California costs around$3,000.” Howit worksByshifting away from immigrating new workers into the US and using offshorerecruits instead, NEC avoids the time delays around processing their visa andsubsequent green card. “Currently it’s taking the Immigration & NaturalizationService eight to ten weeks to process visas,” says Baker. Toreduce the time and high costs of bringing people in, NEC has developedrelations with recruitment consultants in emerging markets to find the talent theyneed. For example, recently it has instigated consulting contracts with anumber of Russian multimedia consultants who have been hired to develop anInternet advertising campaign for the company. According to Baker, managingthese offshore technical workers is not a particularly challenging or riskyprocess. “As consultants, they are paid according to their productivity.Yes, it does involve a bit of development time, sending people to Moscow toensure they understand the level of quality and time sequencing we require. Butthe time difference actually works to our advantage since something is alwayshappening on the project around the clock.”Thefuture”Ican increasingly see us hiring foreign workers and leaving them in their homecountries, as that way we can benefit from the skills and talent of, say, fouror five multimedia producers in Moscow for the price of bringing one personover to work in the US,” says Baker. “It’s a win-win situation. Therate we offer moves them up two economic levels within their own culture and wehave a stable asset since national companies in Russia aren’t able to competeon pay.”Checklist for hiring overseas workers–Consider using a recruiting agency that specialises in finding overseas talent,particularly if you need to fill a vacancy quickly. Their outsourcing skillsshould include help with ensuring resumes are accurate, following up onreferences and advising or assisting with relocation issues.–Ensure you have an attractive relocation package that not only covers help withaccommodation but also addresses other lifestyle needs. The more time, energyand stress that’s involved in handling such issues the less happy andproductive the new employee will be.–Offering a short cultural orientation course for all employees has helped manycompanies avoid misunderstandings between co-workers, particularly with regardto differing work attitudes and communication styles.–Assign a mentor or “buddy” to each new overseas hire so they feelwelcome, can get to know the company and neighbourhood quicker and have someoneto chat to about personal and professional issues.–Remember that the culture and values of your organisation, particularly aroundopenness, respect for diversity and opportunities for team and company-widesocial activities, will facilitate quicker and easier integration of overseashires into the workplace.–Constantly update and improve the help and care you offer to new recruits fromother cultures by asking what they need and requesting feedback on what has orhas not assisted them in embracing a new company and new country.–Consider the less expensive option of cross-border collaboration – leavingindividuals with the skills you need in their own countries to work”virtually”. Related posts:No related photos. Comments are closed. Previous Article Next Article Completing the circuitOn 1 Apr 2001 in Personnel Today
More than 4,000 Co-operative Bank employees will have to pay contributionsinto the group’s pension scheme for the first time in the company’s history. The bank is battling to cut a deficit of £140m and has told staff they muststart making contributions of 2 per cent of salary from next January, rising to6 per cent within three years. The company, which prides itself on its ‘people’ policies and fairness as anemployer, said it was “not immune to pressures from the wider world”and had to address its overall financial position. Ken Lewis, Co-operative financial services resources director, said HRworked very closely with the banking union Unifi and its in-housecommunications department on the best way to inform staff of the changes. “We had face-to-face briefings with two tiers of management who thenfully cascaded the information through to staff,” he said. “There was no point in dressing up the news as anything other than whatit was. We wanted to present people with the bare facts and make it clear thecompany was still committed to providing a generous scheme.” Lewis added that the bank was still gathering feedback from staff and wantedto gauge reaction on not only the news itself, but also how it was delivered. Previous Article Next Article Co-op bank staff to contribute to pension schemeOn 20 Apr 2004 in Personnel Today Comments are closed. Related posts:No related photos.
Late Triassic Radiolaria have been recovered from a bedded chert collected early in 1977 in the South Orkney islands. This is the first reliable palaeontological evidence for the age of the so-called basement complex that forms most of the exposed rock of a microcontinent on the southern limb of the Scotia Ridge. The fossils place a lower limit on the age of deformation of at least part of the complex as post-Karnian or Norian. The basement is overlain by undeformed Jurassic to Cretaceous conglomerates, which suggests this event took place during the early Mesozoic Gondwanian orogeny. The new data are consistent with the interpretation that the basement complex of the South Orkney Islands represents part of a subduction complex and was accreted to the Pacific margin of Gondwanaland during the late Triassic or early Jurassic time.
Oxygen consumption of individual larvae of the Antarctic sea-star Odontaster validus was measured during the 50-day period following fertilisation. Values ranged from 0.76 pmol O-2 h(-1) for one specimen at the coeloblastula stage to 77.6 pmol O-2 h(-1) for one bipinnaria larva. At 0degreesC the mean oxygen consumption rate of an individual larva increased from 10.9 pmol O-2 h(-1) (standard error of the mean, SEM, 0.13) for a gastrula larva, 13 days post-fertilisation, to 25.4 pmol O-2 h(-1) (SEM 3.5) at the bipinnaria stage (50 days post-fertilisation). Gastrulae reared at -0.5degreesC did not have significantly different oxygen consumption rates between dabs 13 and 45 post-fertilisation (mean=11.4 pmol O-2 h(-1)). Individual metabolic rates were highly variable, covering more than a 40-fold range. At 2degreesC gastrula oxygen consumption was on average 45% higher (17.35 pmol O-2 h(-1)) giving a Q(10) temperature effect of 4.4. For bipinnaria, mean oxygen consumption in 2degreesC larvae (31.4 pmol O-2 h(-1)) was not significantly different from that in larvae at -0.5degreesC, suggesting bipinnaria metabolism may be less sensitive to temperature change than earlier stages. At 2degreesC the bipinnaria stage was,reached at 30-35 days compared with 45-50 days at 10degreesC, giving a Q(10) of 4.5 for temperature effects on development. The method here used a new, highly sensitive micro-respirometry method that is inexpensive and straightforward in design. Individual larvae of O. validus were held in 35- to 50-mul respirometers. These larvae :have very low metabolic rates, and published work on,such organisms have utilised at least 25 individuals per chamber. The oxygen content of the respirometers was measured using a 25-mul sample injected into a couloximeter. Oxygen consumption rates down to -1 pmol h(-1) can be detected. Under optimum conditions oxygen consumption of a single larva of -4 pmol O-2 h(-1) was measured with an accuracy of +/-20%. Values of similar to15 pmol h(-1) could routinely be measured with this accuracy. This method would allow oxygen consumption to be evaluated in individual field-caught larvae of most marine ectotherms.
Euphausiid crustaceans, commonly referred to as krill, are fast-moving, pelagic, exclusively marine, and found in all oceans generally below 50 m. While restricted to only 86 species in two families, the six largest-size species are abundant in higher latitudes and of commercial interest. Assessment of stocks and collection of specimens generally involves location using active-acoustic surveying and towed equipment from research vessels. Capturing live euphausiids for physiological work requires particular care. The appropriate treatment of specimens obtained depends upon the reason for their collection and a range of options are discussed.
A tenant at the centre of a much-publicised argument with a Brighton lettings agency over the condition of his rented property is claiming to have been made homeless.Jim Haughey, a young renter living in the seaside town, had complained to managing agent King & Chasemore about the poor state of his rented property’s garden after moving in.Pictures he took show dilapidated garden furniture and bird droppings.After several emails between the two parties over a two-month period, he has told local media that the problems were not sorted out and that a subsequent Section 21 notice served on him by his landlord has the hallmarks of a ‘revenge eviction’.ACORN, the local renters’ union organisation, claims the eviction notice came just a day after his final complaint about the property and that this has lead “both Jim and ACORN to believe that his eviction must be in line with the complaints he’d been issuing”, its website says.Sit-in protestBut police were called when members of ACORN staged a sit-in at the lettings agency’s branch and several staff claimed to be intimidated by the protestors.“The eviction came after a back and forth of emails requesting repairs and was a total surprise to us both,” says Haughey.“Since then, we’ve been searching for a new place and we’ve not been able to come to an agreement with any lettings agent or a private landlord due to the fact that we’re both self-employed and have a dog. Landlords don’t want us.“In effect, we’re facing homelessness.” Acorn Section 21 evictions August 21, 2019Nigel LewisWhat’s your opinion? Cancel replyYou must be logged in to post a comment.Please note: This is a site for professional discussion. Comments will carry your full name and company.This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.Related articles BREAKING: Evictions paperwork must now include ‘breathing space’ scheme details30th April 2021 City dwellers most satisfied with where they live30th April 2021 Hong Kong remains most expensive city to rent with London in 4th place30th April 2021 Home » News » Row between lettings agency and tenant leads to high-profile eviction previous nextRegulation & LawRow between lettings agency and tenant leads to high-profile evictionCampaigning group claims Section 21 notice served by landlord has hallmarks of a revenge eviction that will leave tenant homeless.Nigel Lewis21st August 20190825 Views
“A spirit of solidarity and activism among the JCR will be beneficial for members of the college.” St Hugh’s College currently pays its scouts £9 per hour, below the Oxford Living Wage currently set at £10.02 per hour. The Oxford Living Wage, set by the City Council, is set at a higher rate than the National Living Wage to reflect the higher costs of living in Oxford. “The JCR should support and stand in solidarity with workers at St Hugh’s. The Council also expects all suppliers with contracts over £100,000 to pay the Oxford Living Wage to their staff and subcontractors. The motion argued that “Scouts, housekeepers and everyone else employed by St. Hugh’s ought to be paid at least the Oxford living wage. The Secretary pointed out the potential for conflicts of interest between JCR and the Liaison Officer in terms of student rent levels. “The JCR should seek to organise, lobby and take whatever action necessary to improve the wages of the workers at St. Hugh’s. Higton explained that, although as a finalist he does not have the time to set up an Oxford Living Wage campaign at the college himself, “the idea was that this would create some kind of momentum or inertia in that direction for other people to take it on.” Brown called the low number of colleges paying the Oxford Living Wage to all staff “disgusting.” Recently, Labour Councillor Martyn Rush told Cherwell that these campaigns made him “hopeful of progress on these fronts soon.” Oxford was recently classed the least affordable city in the UK, with average weekly rental prices at £121.15, much higher than the national average of £87.68. In the JCR meeting, it was suggested that the person sitting on College’s committees is best placed to raise this issue, and that students could not fulfil this. The JCR President also argued that the motion appeared to be “quite patronising”. However, Higton maintained that the motion was “simply backing staff members in line with the Living Wage Campaign.” Oxford SU currently operates an Oxford Living Wage Campaign, which has been arguing for colleges to pay all staff the recommended by the council as a minimum. The motion also called for St Hugh’s JCR “to launch a campaign for the Oxford Living Wage at St Hugh’s and seek to utilise creative methods to pressure college into improving pay conditions for staff.” Higton suggested that this motion was more about raising awareness, so he was not sure what the drawback of this would be. “I think it’s disappointing it didn’t pass, and it shows that sometimes people become too concerned with the technicalities and inner workings of JCR business rather than wider goals.” According to the minutes of the meeting, “college have stressed staff wages as a key argument for proposed rent raises in the past and during this year’s rent negotiation.” One of the concerns raised during the JCR discussion of the motion was that the role of a JCR Officer is to represent the student body and to be elected by those that they were representing, which would not be possible in this case. It is the minimum which the council pays its staff and agency workers. Higton told Cherwell: “I think the motion didn’t pass mainly because the committee opposed it, but I also think I ought to have prepared the motion better and anticipated the pushback – I didn’t expect anyone to oppose it because I think it seems fairly straightforwardly good. While 17 of Oxford’s 38 colleges and Oxford University are signed up to pay the Real Living Wage of £9.00 per hour, currently only two Oxford colleges and PPHs, Blackfriars College and Campion Hall, pay the Oxford Living Wage – a separate wage rate due to the substantially higher costs of living in Oxford. Other colleges have also launched campaigns to pay their staff the Oxford Living Wage. St Hilda’s students began a campaign in February, while Wolfson students are also calling for the college to raise staff pay. St Hugh’s College JCR has rejected a motion to create a Liaison Officer “to liaise with college staff and help promote the Living Wage in college”. This comes after Susan Brown, the Leader of Oxford City Council, wrote to the wealthiest Oxford University colleges to ask if they could pay the Oxford Living Wage to their lowest-earning staff. The motion was proposed by Joe Higton, a finalist at the college. After an online vote, it was rejected by 39 votes to 26. Oxford City Council recently launched a new Oxford Living Wage Accreditation Scheme. The motion also called for the JCR “to launch a campaign for the Oxford Living Wage at St Hugh’s and seek to utilise creative methods to pressure college into improving pay conditions for staff.”
Comments0 commentsFacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmail Former Prosecutor Stan Levco Weighs In On Roy Bebout’s Criminal HistoryOCTOBER 16TH, 2018 MEGAN DIVENTI EVANSVILLE, INDIANA46-year-old Roy Bebout was arrested Friday afternoon after attempting to kidnap a teenage girl in the 200 Block of North Main Street Friday evening.Evansville police say she was near the IGA store when Bebout approached her with a gun and put her in handcuffs. She used pepper spray and was able to get away.Police say they were able to track down Bebout because he left his phone at the scene. This case is a close reflection to one from 1998 when a Vanderburgh County teen says she was Bebout’s victim.“I remember the case well,” says Stan Levco, former Vanderburgh County prosecutor. “It was really, he had abducted a young lady here and had taken her to Posey County and it was really, all rapes are aggravated, but this one was particularly so. It was at gunpoint and was a pretty brutal case.”Former Vanderburgh County Prosecutor Stan Levco presided over the case against Bebout 20 years ago. A jury found him guilty of kidnapping and criminal deviate conduct.“I remember capturing him was interesting in that the victim had given a composite drawing of him that was so accurate that one of the police officers from one of the counties recognized him even though I don’t think he had a prior record,” says Levco.Bebout was sentenced to 45 years in prison. According to the Indiana Department of Corrections, he served 18 and half years and was released in September of 2016. Bebout was still on probation for another case out of Marion County when authorities arrested him in Gibson County Friday.“This is an individual that is offense was three hours North of here that put him in prison, he gets out, they send him back down to Southwest Indiana, he doesn’t even live in Evansville, but this is where he chooses to find a victim,” says Sgt. Jason Cullum, Evansville Police Department. “So it’s very frustrating and we understand that.”“He may not have served all of his sentence, which then would be 50 percent but today it would be 75 percent,” says Levco. “Under the new law, if he would’ve been convicted and given this amount of time, he would’ve had 33 years instead of 22 and a half. So he would still be in jail.”Bebout is being held in the Vanderburgh County Jail without bond. His six felony charges include attempted rape, kidnapping, strangulation, and criminal confinement. An initial hearing date has not been set yet.
Gluten-free brand Genius has reportedly received a funding boost from a private equity backer.According to The Grocer, a sister title to British Baker, the company has had a cash injection from Brussels-based Verlinvest.Genius has refused to comment on the investment.Earlier this year, Genius announced a new deal to supply gluten-free pies to Asda.Commenting on the deal, Roz Cuschieri, chief executive of Genius, said the new listings “underline the quality” of the product line-up, which continues to go “from strength to strength”.
How do we know if we’re looking at the three-dimensional world or at a kind of trompe l’oeil image painted on the inside of a huge glass sphere? More to the point, how would a robot know?Blessed with brains and the power of biological computation, humans can compute the most likely explanation for what we see. Our neural networks turn the fizz of photons, hitting a curved screen, into perception.That’s awfully difficult to translate into code, says David Cox, who holds a joint appointment as assistant professor of molecular and cellular biology and of computer science at Harvard.“Vision is the process of figuring out what’s out there in a 3-D world, from a set of 2-D images cast onto our retinas,” Cox explains. “It’s actually really hard, and the only reason it seems easy is that we’re seeing the world through the solution to the problem.”After all, evolution over hundreds of millions of years has given us a system that works rather well. When we look out at the world, Cox marvels, “we sort of just transparently see.”“That’s one of the challenges for computer vision,” he says: “Our intuitions about what’s easy and what’s difficult are usually wrong, because all of our intuitions are coming by way of this biological system. When you sit down and try to write a computer program that does the same thing, you discover just how hard it is.” Read Full Story