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Lisa Sullivan, COO of The Armada Group, discusses the increasing gap between our education system and US jobs today. She points out that 50% of college graduates are under or unemployed. Watch to find out more!

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A joint report from the Bay Area Council Economic Institute and Booz & Company, “What Makes San Francisco Bay Area Companies Different?,” revealed that San Francisco Bay Area businesses are almost 3 times as likely to say their innovation strategies are tightly aligned with their overall corporate business strategies.  When asked if their corporate cultures supported their strategies, “46 percent of Bay Area companies strongly agreed compared with just 19 percent of all companies - more than double the general population.”

To compete in the highly innovative Bay Area, it’s important for businesses to have great products and forward-thinking business strategies; however, the most important components of innovation are shown to be culture and operational innovations.  To foster a culture of innovation and growth in your business, leaders must create scalable business models that will capitalize on the unique strengths of key players in innovation strategy, while allowing the company to quickly expand teams to support rapid time to market.

1 in 4 CEOs said they were either unable to pursue a market opportunity or had to cancel or delay a strategic initiative because of talent constraints.

Creating hiring plans that support your key players in innovation strategy, including senior developers, hiring managers, and project champions, is essential to competing in a highly innovative market where business models and strategies are consistently changing.  Businesses who utilize these scalable models in the workforce, such as On Demand talent consultants, outsourcing, and VMS, are more than just keeping up with the competition, but consistently staying ahead of the competition due to streamlined operations and stronger corporate culture.  When your key players understand that your business will support their innovation, ideas, and projects with highly-qualified resources, your company can improve idea flow and creativity within the organization.

Lisa Sullivan, COO of The Armada Group shares with us her secrets of how success women lead. In her list of secrets, Lisa reveals that successful women build exceptional teams by developing a plan to aquire, develop, and retain the right talent. To find out her 5 other secrets, watch her video blog!

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The Armada Group presents the bill trends for quarter 4 with Jeff Tavangar, CEO.

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Many large enterprises and nearly 60% of the Fortune 1000 have turned to VMS (Vendor Management Systems) implementations with a Managed Service Provider (MSP), usually a large national or global staffing firm, to help manage their contingent workforce and supplier base.   While the “cost savings” pitched by the MSP are appealing on the surface, the hidden costs of the implementation are rarely taken into consideration prior to the system being implemented. While these systems can help companies with many aspects of managing their contingent workforce, 63% of companies report a negative or at best neutral experience with the implementation. As most of these VMS programs run by third-party MSP’s, these systems do not have the capability of sorting qualified candidates from unqualified ones to fill the company’s specific requirements. This means hiring managers experience a dramatically increased workload sorting through an abundance of resumes, and dramatically increased time to fill critical requirements. Frequently compounding the problem, many MSP’s rules of engagement don’t allow suppliers to communicate with the hiring managers, leaving suppliers in the dark about valuable feedback necessary to fill the role, and end users continue to be inundated with unqualified candidates.

In the fast-paced business climate of Silicon Valley, it’s more important than ever for companies to be able to not only create new and innovative products and services, but to seamlessly deploy these solutions more rapidly than ever. A Booz & Company 2011 survey of the top 1,000 most innovative companies showed that, in contrast to popular belief, spending more on research and development budgets doesn’t stimulate innovation nearly as much as the company’s strategy and internal culture. In fact, 3 out of 4 CEO’s surveyed are planning to make innovation a greater priority this year. For most companies, innovation doesn’t simply mean quickly creating new products or services, but improving internal processes, capabilities, technologies, and organizational structures to foster a more innovative culture.