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3 Risky Areas Where Automation Shouldnt Solve Your Business Issues

 

Automation has been a blessing for many businesses. Not only can it help cut costs, but it can also achieve amazing results while removing tedious tasks from the hands of your employees. In essence, it’s a win-win-win, making it hard to ignore.

 

However, automation isn’t always the way to go. There are some situations where using the technology introduces significant risk, at times in unexpected ways. Before you automate every aspect of your operations, here are three potentially risky outcomes.

 

  1. When It Allows the Manual Skill to Disappear

While automation is touted for reducing the need for manual processes, freeing up employees to focus on activities that genuinely require the human touch, using automation to the point where the manual approach is no longer known isn’t a great idea.

 

Even though technology is robust, it is bound to fail at some point. Technical issues happen every day, so you can’t assume that your company will be immune to trouble. If you rely too heavily on automation, when that problem occurs, no one will know how to default back to the manual process. This can bring business to a standstill.

 

  1. When It Leads to Disengagement

Automation is often an excellent way to boost engagement as it gives your workers the ability to handoff duties that are a bit mundane or repetitive. However, when technology is used to make decisions for employees or allows them to distance themselves emotionally from the company’s operational essence, disengagement can occur.

 

For employees to feel satisfied on the job, they need to connect with the company. Automation has the ability to eliminate core business knowledge over time, making it harder to create a bridge between what the worker is doing and the success of the organization. If morale begins to decrease, productivity generally falls and turnover increases, creating a less than ideal scenario for everyone involved.

 

  1. When It Creates Poor Customer Experiences

At some point, everyone has had a poor customer service experience thanks to automation. For example, being stuck talking to an automated call attendant that won’t let you reach out to a person can be infuriating, especially when the system can’t provide you with the information you need.

 

While using automation to make customer interactions easier can be wise, it shouldn’t be used to dehumanize the entire process. Instead, striking a balance is essential. Otherwise, customer frustration is going to lead to poor word-of-mouth, and that can be incredibly damaging to your business.

 

Ultimately, automation is a powerful tool, but it must be used wisely. Without an adequate balance between technology and the people-factor, automation can actually do more harm than good.

 

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If you would like to learn more about how to use automation to your advantage without harming operations, morale, or customer service, the professionals at The Armada Group can help. Contact us to discuss your questions with one of our experienced team members today and see how our workplace automation expertise can benefit you.

 

 

Be an Irreplaceable Software Project Manager

 

Companies are increasingly seeking out skilled software project managers to ensure that their projects go forward without a hitch. However, if a project manager doesn’t meet expectations, businesses usually won’t hesitate to seek out someone who will.

 

Becoming an irreplaceable software project manager means you need to bring specific skills and experiences to the table. Additionally, you must have the proper mindset, perspective, and attitude. Otherwise, you might end up more replaceable than you had hoped. If you aren’t sure where to begin, here are some tips to help you excel.

 

Software Development Knowledge

Project managers usually have a combination of business and subject-matter knowledge. However, not every tech project manager focuses on software development.

 

By concentrating on the software niche, you can provide companies with additional value. You understand what is involved in the development process, ensuring you can build realistic timetables, manage expectations, and set achievable goals. Plus, you will function better as a liaison between the software developers on your team and management, customers, or other stakeholders, as you will understand exactly what is being asked of them and may more easily garner their respect.

 

Exceptional Planning Skills

It’s no secret that project managers are responsible for planning. Any shortcomings in this arena can be detrimental to your career, so you need to be diligent about exceeding expectations.

 

Project managers need to be able to complete various steps, including defining the scope, scheduling activities, and identify risks. Additionally, the ability to produce Gantt charts or otherwise create a visual representation of the timeframes is beneficial.

 

Leadership Ability

When you work as a project manager, you are guiding a team toward success. You need to be able to provide them with clear direction, specific goals, and well-defined expectations, all while being polite and professional.

 

Make sure you can articulate each team member’s role. Additionally, learn about each person’s skill set so you can align tasks with the individuals who are most likely to excel in those areas.

 

You also need to be ready and willing to act as a mentor. At times, your team is going to have questions, so you must be prepared to point them in the right direction and offer them support when required.

 

It’s important to note that leadership also goes beyond managing your team. For example, standing up for them when a stakeholder places an unrealistic expectation on the project is also part of being a good leader. Similarly, controlling scope creep can fall into that category.

 

Let the Expert Recruiters at The Armada Group Help You Find Your Next Job!

Ultimately, all the skills above are necessary if you want to excel in the project management field. By focusing on the areas above, you can become an irreplaceable software project manager. If you would like to learn more or are seeking out a new project management opportunity, the team of skilled professionals at The Armada Group can help. Contact us to speak with one of our experienced staff members today and see how our project management expertise can benefit you.

 

 

Be a Rock Star in your FIrst 90 Days

 

Your first 90 days on the job are critical. During that period, your coworkers learn what to expect from you and managers are deciding whether you were actually a good hire or not. Your initial few months at your new company set the tone, and missteps during this time can haunt you.

 

Luckily, there are things you can do to make sure that you shine during your first 90 days. If you want to make sure you make the best impression, here’s what you need to do.

 

Find the Flow

Every workplace has patterns. They may expect certain tasks to be completed in a particular order or have an innate understanding that some phrases should be interpreted in a specific way.

 

By finding the flow, you can integrate yourself into what is already there. Not only does this makes you seem like a more natural fit, but it can also save you a lot of frustration. Instead of pushing against the norm, you are recognizing it and working with it, which is going to be universally appreciated.

 

Now, this doesn’t mean that you can’t be a champion for change in the future. However, coming into a new workplace and asking people to conform to what you want isn’t going to win you any allies. Similarly, telling a group of colleagues that you don’t know well that their wrong is going to leave a sour taste in their mouths.

 

Always strive to make yourself a part of how things are first, as this gives you a chance to have the full experience. Plus, you may learn that things are the way they are for a reason, and that change isn’t actually necessary. If you do have a potentially beneficial idea, then you can share it once you garner the respect of your colleagues, and that usually won’t happen in the first 90 days.

 

Seek Out Expectations

Exceeding expectations is usually a great way to make a positive impression. However, you can only do that if you actually understand what expectations exist in the first place.

 

If your manager hasn’t clearly defined any expectations, objectives, or goals associated with your role, schedule a meeting and ask about them. You can also talk to your coworkers about what they anticipate you’ll be able to provide, giving you an idea of how they think your position fits into the bigger picture.

 

As you learn about the expectations, don’t make grand promises about exceeding them. Instead, acknowledge them and make commitments that give you a little breathing room whenever possible. Remember, it can take time to familiarize yourself with a new environment, so it’s always better to under-promise and over-deliver in the beginning.

 

Contact The Armada Group for More Help with Your Career!

By following the tips above, you can excel during your first 90 days on the job. If you would like to learn more about making a great first impression, the professionals at The Armada Group can help. Contact us to discuss your questions with one of our skilled team members today and see how our workplace expertise can benefit you.

 

2019 Tech Trends

 

Every new year brings a new set of trends. After all, the business and tech worlds are continually evolving, and the points on the horizon often approach faster than many anticipate in the beginning.

 

In 2019, there are a few trends that tech pros should expect to encounter as the year moves forward. Here are the ones that deserve your attention.

 

Enterprise AI

Artificial intelligence (AI) has been a trend for several years, though much of the attention fell on the consumer space. Options like Alexa, Google Home, and Siri are increasingly present in the daily lives of the masses but didn’t provide substantial value to many companies.

 

In 2019, expect an increased emphasis on enterprise-level AI. Advances in natural language processing mean more companies will integrate AI into customer support mechanisms and even certain internal resources. Similarly, the ability to automate a wider range of tasks should be anticipated as well as the chance to derive value from available data with greater ease.

 

More Custom Hardware

As once cutting-edge technologies become more affordable, companies integrate them at a faster rate. Custom hardware is one option that is becoming more financially viable, so businesses may explore opportunities to either develop solutions for internal use or for customers.

 

For example, the Amazon Dash Button concept – where a simple click of the button allowed a preset product to be ordered – could be extended into a variety of consumer experiences. Office-oriented products may also be on the horizon, allowing certain actions to be initiated with a button press, like reserving a conference room.

 

How it will manifest isn’t entirely clear. However, as companies have increased capacity to create custom hardware solutions, they opportunities will be easier to visualize.

 

Data Science Reimagined

Big Data has been a trending topic for years, but what companies expected and what they experienced often differed, leading to frustration. While many businesses initially accepted the limits without much complaint, that climate is changing.

 

While data scientists will continue to clarify what is and isn’t possible, companies are beginning to push for more. As a result, finding methods for overcoming barriers may become a priority, creating opportunities for technological advancement.

 

However, it also means that data scientists should expect pushback when they assert that a particular limit makes a request impossible. Instead of just accepting it as fact, organizations are going to want to understand the “why” behind the “no.” Then, they may rally against the restriction, expecting data scientists and other tech professionals to find a way to turn that “no” into a “yes.”

 

Let The Armada Group Bring Your Team Into The New Year!

Ultimately, 2019 is going to be an interesting year, particularly in the tech arena. If you would like to know more about the trends, the team at The Armada Group can help. Contact us with your questions today and see how our tech trends knowledge can benefit you this year and beyond.

 

 

Be a Top Systems Administrator

 

Since the world of technology evolves so quickly, systems administrators need to bring a lot to the table if they want to thrive in their field. This is especially true as the cloud gains greater traction in business, introducing something that is still seen as relatively new even as it enters the mainstream.

 

If you want to be a top systems administrator, bringing the right skills and experience to the table is essential. If you aren’t sure that you have what it takes, here are some key points that can help you decide.

 

Experience with Multiple Platforms

By having experience on multiple platforms, even if your career is largely focused on one, you show that you are versatile and adaptable. After all, you had to learn each one individually, demonstrating that you aren’t afraid of tackling something new to remain relevant and valuable.

 

Quick Problem-Solving

Systems administrators need to do more than just resolve issues; they need to problem-solve with speed and a sense of urgency. This ensures that everything is fully operational as quickly as possible, allowing the workplace to remain productive and efficient.

 

Adapt to Changing Security Standards

Security is increasingly a priority in business, and systems administrators need to be able to modify solutions as required to meet new standards. Without the ability, systems may remain vulnerable, and that can be detrimental to the company.

 

Strategic Mindset

Top systems administrators are often tasked with thinking strategically when determining the ideal direction for a system. This requires the ability to look beyond one’s own sphere and focus on the big picture, ensuring that the greater needs of the company remain the priority.

 

Similarly, being able to apply the principles of system configuration management in a strategic way is also vital. This not only requires a deep understanding of the concepts but also the ability to use them effectively for the most gain.

 

Strong Communication Skills

When you work as a systems administrator, communication skills are essential. Not only do you have to function as a vendor liaison, but you may also be tasked with making presentations to clients, customers, and your professional peers.

 

Further, you’ll need to coordinate with a larger tech team and any stakeholders outside of your department. Strong interpersonal skills and the ability to communicate complex ideas in simple language are must-haves. Otherwise, those without your level of technical expertise may be lost in the conversation.

 

Find Your Dream Job Today!

If you have the skills and experiences above, you are poised to one day become a top systems administrator. If you’d like to learn more or are seeking opportunities in the field, the skilled professionals at The Armada Group can help. Contact us to speak with one of our highly knowledgeable recruiters about our current openings or for career guidance today and see how our expertise can benefit you.

 

 

Beat the Competition and Land Your Dream Job

 

When you have your dream job in sight, it can be as exciting as it is scary. After all, you have to outshine the other candidates if you are going to land the role, and that isn’t always an easy task.

 

Luckily, there are things you can do to beat out the competition and secure your ideal job. If you aren’t sure how to begin, here are five ways you can get started.

 

  1. Bring Something Unique to the Table

When you are applying to a job, you can almost guarantee that your strongest competitors are bringing similar technical ability to the table. After all, if they didn’t have the prowess to handle the tasks, their resume would likely get discarded.

 

If you want to stand out, finding a unique non-technical offering can make a difference. Consider your personality and attributes and identify points that can help you excel in the role. Then, find ways to add them to your resume and cover letter, making sure the hiring manager is aware of the fact that you have more to offer than hard skills.

 

  1. Make an Emotional Connection

How a hiring manager feels about you can play as much of a role in their decision as for how well your skills and experience match the job posting. If you have a chance to bond emotionally with the hiring manager, take it.

 

For example, if you can connect your passion for the opportunity to the company’s mission, that can help forge a bond. Similarly, by being friendly and open during the interview, they may see you as more likable, which can also create a connection.

 

  1. Make Subtle Comparisons

If there are areas where you perform better than average, you can stand out from the crowd with a subtle comparison. While you should never directly bash other candidates, showcasing how you outperform the average person in your field can help.

 

You’ll need to do some research about statistics that apply to your chosen profession and then identify areas where you perform better than average (and can prove it). While this can take some time and energy, it can allow you to highlight why you should be considered for the job.

 

  1. Correct Mistakes When Possible

Nearly everyone makes a mistake during an interview at some point in their career. Maybe they draw a blank on a topic or accidentally get an answer wrong. While this can feel dooming, a single misstep isn’t usually the end of the world. Plus, you may also have a chance to correct your error if you proceed properly.

 

For instance, if you missed an answer during the interview but remember the correct one before the meeting is over, you may be able to revisit the topic in a later response or when you are given a chance to ask questions. While you don’t want to force it into the conversation, as that may not impress the hiring manager, if it can work into the discussion naturally, touch on it.

 

Otherwise, when you send a thank you email, you can also cover it then. Let the hiring manager know that you remember the mistake and correct it quickly and concisely.

 

  1. Have a Closing Summary

As your interview draws to an end, having a closing summary ready that allows you to touch on your key skills and attributes, bringing everything together. This can help you stand out by making sure your last impression is a powerful one.

 

Want the Most Exciting Contracts in Silicon Valley?

By following the tips above, you can beat out the competition and land your dream job. If you are looking for more valuable information, the professionals at The Armada Group can help. Contact us to speak with one of our skilled team members today and see how our expertise can benefit you.