There is still a substantial gender divide in tech. Women often earn less, struggle to be taken seriously, and lack strong female role models. However, there has been progress in recent years, even if it is somewhat slow-going.
Many women do strive to see the bright side of working in tech, even if they do face challenges in the field. By focusing on the benefits, many female tech professionals are happier in their positions and in the industry as a whole. While every woman is different, here are some of the things that are motivating women in tech.
Making a Positive Impact
Whether it's through the performance of their duties or their effort to eliminate gender biases in the field, women consider “making a positive impact” one of the biggest benefits of being in tech. When an employee feels like they are making a difference, it can be intrinsically motivating. Plus, if they believe they are improving the world in some way, be that with the products or services they provide or being a force for change in the industry, that increases their satisfaction.
Being a Role Model
Most women in tech want to encourage other women to get into the tech industry. By being a strong performer and respected professional, they are helping to create a culture that is more welcoming to female tech pros. Additionally, they have the chance to become role models for young professionals, especially as they personally rise through the ranks.
The world of tech is rarely boring. Along with the speed at which the industry changes, much of the work circles on finding solutions to problems, creating something new, and otherwise being highly engaged, all of which can be very motivating. When given a chance to explore emerging technologies or advance in the workplace, often thanks to professional development opportunities, their job satisfaction can increase even more.
Exploring Their Passion
Many women who get into the tech industry are highly passionate about the field. After all, female technology professionals are nearly guaranteed to face challenges on many levels - including lower compensation when compared to men, doubt about their capabilities, and company cultures that aren’t always welcoming - Without passion, it wouldn’t be worth it to face the difficulties many women in the industry contend with on a regular basis.
How You Can Support Women in Tech
When you hire a woman in a tech role, make sure to offer them the same level of compensation as their male counterparts. This allows everyone to be on a level playing field, ensuring that no one is being treated unfairly because of their gender.
Additionally, engage with your current female employees. Learn about their needs and preferences, and see how you can make the workplace and culture more attuned to them.
If you would like to learn more about women in tech, the skilled team at The Armada Group can help. Contact us with questions today and see how our workplace expertise can benefit you.
The C programming language has been around for over 46 years, and many people would consider that quite a feat. After all, few languages have that level of longevity.
Not only is C still relevant, but it’s also in demand, cracking many top 10 lists focused on the most desirable languages for programming professionals. But how has C managed to succeed while so many others have, by comparison, failed? If you are wondering about its retained relevance, here’s what you need to know.
The C programming language of today isn’t the same iteration as the original. ANSI C (or ISO C) raised to prominence in the late 1980s. C99 and C11 later became standards in many organizations.
Since C is ever-evolving, the language changes to meets the demands of today’s IT world. This has allowed those with C skills to simply update their level of competency and businesses to keep moving forward, treating it as an advanced version of the status quo.
C has been around for nearly five decades. That means a lot of existing code is written in C. Approximately 31 percent of Debian Linux was comprised of C programming, along with various legacy database systems.
The sheer amount of code written in C helps it remain relevant. Replacing these systems with alternatives focused on other languages would be costly, making it an unattractive approach for even forward-thinking organizations. And, if the current option is still meeting a company’s needs, the incentive to change is even more minimal.
C Is Popular
Whether developers enjoy, or are at least willing to tolerate, a particular language also plays a big role in longevity. When given a choice, programmers typically default to options with which they are comfortable.
The fairly wide use of the C programming language means many professionals operating in the development and coding arenas know how to use C. The increased level of familiarity helps keep it alive and increases the odds that newer systems will feature at least some C-based code.
Additionally, developers aren’t keen on switching to another language unless it offers an obvious benefit. While C++, Go, and Rust could potentially replace C, they don’t typically provide enough to make switching necessary.
Ultimately, C does the job, so moving away from something that works doesn’t make a lot of sense in the eyes of development professionals.
Will C remain a popular language for years to come? It’s hard to say. However, its widespread use, and general popularity help keep it relevant in 2018, making it a skill worth acquiring and maintaining for many programming professionals.
If you are currently looking for new developer job opportunities, including those featuring C as a requirement, the professionals at The Armada Group can connect you with some of the leading employers in the area. Contact us to learn more about our available positions and see how our services can help you take the next step in your programmer career today.
Coming prepared for a job interview is a must. But, even knowing that, many job seekers stop short when it comes to getting ready, focusing largely on practicing routine interview questions and digging up information about salaries.
If you want to make the best impression on the hiring manager, then you need to take it a step further by researching details about the company itself, as well as their products or service offerings. If you aren’t sure how this extra effort can help you land the tech job you want, here’s what you need to know.
It Shows You’re Informed
During an interview, the hiring manager wants to do more than just assess your background; they want to determine if your skills and experiences translate into value for their organization. While rehashing your accomplishments is helpful, it doesn’t always provide the interviewer with the context they need to feel confident in your capabilities.
By learning about the company, as well as their products or services, you can showcase your skills in a meaningful way based on their anticipated needs. You can craft your responses to be particularly relevant to their industry or offerings, showing you took the time to become informed about the business and how it operates.
Luckily, gathering this kind of information isn’t as difficult as it once was, thanks to the plethora of online resources. Refer to the company’s website to get a solid overview, dig into their social media accounts to discover recent news and developments, and check out employee review sites to get some background information that may not be available elsewhere. Anything you can find out about what they do and why they do it can give you an advantage during the interview, so don’t skimp on the research if you really want the job.
It Demonstrates Interest
Hiring managers generally favor candidates who seem genuinely interested in not just the role, but the company and its products or services, as well. When you dig into the details and use that information to color your responses, it’s easier to assert your interest in the position.
When a candidate doesn’t perform this level of research, the hiring manager may question whether they are truly passionate about the opportunity. This is especially true if they ask questions that pertain to their particular industry or offerings, and an interviewee can’t adjust their response to answer fully.
By knowing the details, you can stand out from other candidates who didn’t go the extra mile. This can help you make an especially positive impression on the hiring manager, and may make it easier to land the job.
If you are currently seeking a new position, the skilled professionals at The Armada Group can connect you to exciting opportunities throughout the area. Contact us to speak with one of our experienced recruiters today and see how our services can help you find your ideal job.
Generation Y, or the Millennials, are primarily considered to be the first generation to grow up with tech. Now, as even the youngest members gain traction as adults, their preference for technology is reshaping another industry: the baby market.
Tech-savvy Millennials are looking for innovative baby products and, if they don’t find what they are looking for, some are deciding to create offerings and enter the marketplace. Startups are supporting the tech baby boom, and it isn’t likely to slow down any time soon.
If you aren’t familiar with the burgeoning tech baby market, here’s what’s on the horizon.
Better Monitoring or Tracking
In comparison to many other forms of tech, baby monitors were largely lacking. While video-enabled devices entered the marketplace some time ago, new advances are adding AI-supported features.
For example, Cocoon Cam is creating a product that will monitor an infant's vitals, letting parents examine the information or potentially receive alerts if an issue is detected.
Knowledge-oriented services, like Tinyhood, look to provide parents with valuable information and expert device on-demand, helping them with everything from sleep schedules to breastfeeding challenges.
Most Millennial parents would likely describe themselves as busy and frequently on-the-go. This has created a need for services designed to help make planning easier to manage.
For example, Galore is an app-based program that helps parents plan activities and book classes. Fabric allows parents to create a digital will that can be accessed through the parents’ smartphones and adjust their life insurance plans whenever the need arises.
Most of these services focus on being user-friendly and highly accessible, ensuring that busy parents have access to the right tools to handle their obligations quickly and efficiently.
More Than Fashion
Young children often outgrow clothes much faster than they can wear them out, and services like Kidizen is looking to fill a void in the resale arena. The platform would help parents find second-hand items for their children or sell their children’s clothing or shoes when they outgrow them.
Since most Millennials are familiar with the resale concept thanks to services like Etsy and Airbnb, it is a void that seems only natural to fill.
The Baby Tech Trend
The baby tech trend likely began as many Millennial tech entrepreneurs started having children of their own, making the need for new products and services more apparent to their creators.
However, this isn’t a trend that is likely to end any time soon, especially since the next generation, Gen Z, has a similar affinity for technology and the oldest members of that generation are already adults. Additionally, IoT and smart devices are becoming more prevalent in general, showing that there is certainly an opportunity for similar offerings that focus on the needs and desires of parents.
If you would like to know more about the baby tech book, the professionals at The Armada Group can help. Contact us to speak with one of our knowledgeable staff members today and see how our expertise can benefit you.
When you’re getting ready to drift off to sleep, a single noisy distraction can leave you jolted awake, struggling to reclaim the sense of ease you need to get some quality shuteye. Whether it’s your neighbor’s dog barking in the yard, a car alarm that is set off by the slightest breeze, or the sound of your refrigerator kicking on, reducing the amount of noise you are exposed to should be an essential part of your nighttime routine.
If you struggle to get the rest you need, here are some options for eliminating noisy distractions so you can get some sleep.
Sometimes, the easiest way to deal with noises is earplugs. If you purchase high-quality industrial-strength versions, they can both be comfortable and effective.
You’ll need to find a brand that offers the proper size for your ears. Otherwise, they may become dislodged in the middle of the night. Once you do, consider purchasing them in bulk, so you can replace worn out or missing earplugs as needed.
Additionally, make sure you can hear your alarm through the earplugs, so you don’t sleep longer than intended.
Hang Heavy Curtains
Thick, sound-absorbing curtains can make a world of difference when you need to keep noises from entering your bedroom. Select options that will fully cover any windows, buying different curtain rods if necessary to ensure the fabric provides sufficient coverage, and hang a set over your doors as well. This helps give you protection from sounds that may slip through any cracks, making your room significantly quieter.
If your floors are wood, tile, laminate, or similar material, then invest in some carpeting to help dampen the noise. You can either install wall-to-wall carpet or purchase area rugs, as both can help. For additional noise reduction, consider adding a sound-absorbing pad, giving you an extra buffer. You can also layer area rugs over each other or place them on top of carpeting to reduce noise even further.
Try a White Noise Machine
White noise helps by overpowering ambient sounds, ensuring that any extraneous sounds don’t affect your sleep. You can purchase a white noise machine (including versions with built-in alarm clocks) or find a suitable app for your smartphone or tablet.
Alternatively, you can use a fan to accomplish a similar goal. So, if you already have a decent fan, consider turning it one every night instead of investing in a white noise machine.
If white noise doesn’t do the job, you can also try a sound machine that includes natural-sounding audio that you find soothing. You can also find nature sound tracks in a variety of apps or as downloads from a range of music stores.
By following the tips above, you can eliminate noisy distractions, helping you get a better night’s sleep each and every day. If you would like to learn more or are seeking out new opportunities, the professionals at The Armada Group can help. Contact us to speak with a member of our knowledgeable team today and see how our expertise can benefit you.
A lot of professionals have heard that having a mentor can potentially benefit their career. But, since these arrangements aren’t necessarily common or publicly announced, exactly how it can help you get ahead can seem like a bit of a mystery.
Ultimately, having a mentor can be incredibly beneficial, as long as the relationship is constructed in the proper way. If you are wondering how a mentor can help your career, here’s what you need to know about the role.
A Long-Term Relationship
One of the biggest differences between a mentor and a coach is the duration of the relationship. While coaches often make short-term arrangements, a mentor is usually in it for the long haul. The idea is to serve as a guide, supporting your growth and professional development, and acting as a source of insight as you move forward down your career path.
The nature of a relationship with a mentor is usually not finite, allowing them to function as a critical connection for months or even years.
A Source of Encouragement
Often, a person who serves as a mentor is a professional in a position that you would one day like to have. This means that they have usually been in your shoes at some point in their career, so they are capable of both empathizing with the challenges you encounter while also being capable of offering encouragement. After all, they have likely had to tackle the same issues as they were rising through the ranks, and they made it, so they know it is possible to overcome obstacles and reach success.
At times, simply having a cheerleader can do wonders for your career. Understanding that someone else has made it through these challenges and is rallying behind you can be both stress-relieving and empowering, allowing you to accomplish more than you previously thought possible.
A Sounding Board
While it isn’t a mentor’s responsibility to tell you exactly what to do to reach your goal or give you answers when you encounter difficult questions, they can often serve as a sounding board when you are faced with tough decisions. Again, they have a deeper understanding of the field, so their wisdom can help you work through complicated problems, giving you a chance to make the decision while ensuring you considered all of the key points along the way.
In the end, a mentor wants to see you succeed, so they are going to offer their insights and encouragement as a means of supporting you during your journey. If you are interested in learning more about how a mentor can benefit you and your career or are seeking out new opportunities in your field, the professionals at The Armada Group can help. Contact us to learn more about what we have to offer and to see how our services can benefit you as you work towards your larger career goals.
Job seekers are often anxious when it comes to having their references checked, with many wondering exactly what a former employer can say about their performance. For example, can a previous employer tell a hiring manager that you were fired? Can them tell them why that decision was made? Are they allowed to discuss the amount of notice you provided when you quit or how many times you were absent?
Questions such as those can leave a lot of job seekers worried, even if their overall work history is fairly standard for their field. If you have been wondering what a previous employer can or cannot say about you legally, here’s what you need to know.
Federal and State Laws
When it comes to federal regulations, there simply aren’t any. Employers, from a national perspective, have the ability to say whatever they want when they are contacted for a reference.
However, many states do have laws that dictate what can or cannot be discussed, though they can vary dramatically from one state to the next. This means you need to review the regulations that pertain to you, and not just based on where you live now, but where your previous employers were located too. If you are planning to relocate for a job, then review the laws in each of the states you are considering as well.
What Employers are Usually Allowed to Say
As mentioned above, what your former employers can say about you varies from one state to the next. However, there are certain things that are commonly considered legal.
Most previous employers can typically disclose if you were terminated from your position, as well as the reason behind that decision. Some states also allow them to talk about your performance, though the feedback may be limited to generalizations.
However, even if an employer can discuss specific details about their experience with you, the majority are very cautious when it comes to disclosing various kinds of information. Predominately, their goal is to avoid lawsuits that fall into the defamation category, which includes slander and libel. This means that, unless they are entirely certain that what they are about to say is accurate, they won’t provide the information.
Can You Ask Them What Will be Discussed?
Sometimes, the easiest way to find out what might be disclosed is to contact your previous employer’s HR department or a suitable representative and just ask them. In most cases, they will be upfront with you about their policies, so you can determine what they are likely to say during a reference check.
Ultimately, if you aren’t sure what they will cover, it is best to assume that they will provide a large amount of detail. This is one of the reasons why you need to always be honest on your application, as failing to be truthful can come back to bite you.
If you are looking for a new position, the professionals at The Armada Group can connect you with exciting opportunities throughout the area. Contact us today to learn more about our services, including how they can benefit your career.
Sometimes, it’s hard to figure out who to list as a reference. Ultimately, you need to select people who can speak to your professional abilities in a positive manner, as the information they provide the hiring manager is a crucial part of their decision-making process.
That means, there are certain people you should never include on that list. With that in mind, here are six people you should forgo listing as a reference.
Anyone Who Fired You
While it seems obvious, it’s still worth saying: anyone who fired you should never be used as a reference.
Generally, a manager who terminated your employment won’t have positive things to say about you in the workplace and may be inclined to be honest with the prospective employer about their experience. Even if the reason you were fired wasn’t related to an infraction or issue, such as when it just isn’t a great fit, it is best to avoid using them as a reference at all costs.
Someone with a Bad Reputation
Whether their reputation focuses on their performance or their attitude, such anyone who tends to bad mouth their coworkers or company, having such a person speak on your behalf may backfire. Essentially, there is an inherent risk that you will be considered guilty by association or, at a minimum, anything positive they have to say about you won’t carry much weight.
Anyone You’ve Never Worked With
Unless a purely personal reference is requested, you should only list professionals with whom you’ve worked. This ensures they can speak to your skills and performance accurately and based on firsthand knowledge.
Now, it is okay to list people who worked with you as a volunteer or even classmates that you completed projects with if you are a recent graduate. Otherwise, stick to current or former managers and coworkers whenever possible.
Someone You Don’t Know
If you have a particular company in mind, and you know someone who knows someone who works there, it may be tempting to ask the inside contact for a reference. But, since they don’t know anything about you, they aren’t going to have much to say. Plus, asking them to put themselves out there for a stranger may not turn out well, doing more harm than good.
Anyone You’ve Lost Contact With
Similarly, if you haven’t been in contact with someone for a few years, then they aren’t the best choice for a reference. First, the can’t speak to your recent experience, and that may not reflect well on the hiring manager. Second, you have no way of knowing what is currently happening in their professional lives, and there may be some factors that are relevant.
However, you can work to reconnect with the person first and then decide whether they make a suitable reference, particularly if the information they can provide is important.
Someone You Don’t Know Well
While an acquaintance may seem like a viable option, they may struggle if any of the hiring manager’s questions require in-depth knowledge about your experience or personality. Vague answers may give the hiring manager pause, leading them to assume that the reference is intentionally hiding something.
Ideally, your references need to be able to speak about your experience in a thorough, informed and positive manner, so you need to select people who can do so well. This ensures the hiring manager gets the information they need without having doubts about the quality of your references.
If you are seeking out a new opportunity, the professionals at The Armada Group can connect you with top employers throughout the area. Contact us today to see how we can help you take the next step in your career.
Augmented reality (AR) has garnered a lot of attention, particularly as the technology advanced throughout 2017. Significant launches by major tech companies propelled the forward momentum, generating a considerable amount of excitement about the potential AR technologies hold.
As they continue into 2018, many professionals are wondering what the future of AR development looks like. With that in mind, here are a few things to expect from AR developers this year.
AR Growing Pains
AR-capable applications are going to become significantly more prevalent in 2018, but that doesn’t mean the technology isn’t experiencing some growing pains.
From a developer perspective, the potential of the tech is hard to pass up, particularly as the tools become widely available. Additionally, the functionality is relatively easy to integrate, making it especially appealing.
While many AR advances will be incredibly exciting, the technology isn’t suitable for every application. This means there will likely be a push to add AR into apps that don’t require the functionality to be effective. Developers will need to manage their interest in the tech and thoroughly assess whether AR improves a particular application or is simply being added because it is possible. In many cases, this will lead some projects to be scaled back, if they are properly assessed.
Now that many tech giants, including Google, Apple, and Amazon, have created suitable platforms for AR exploration, developers working in the arena will need to spend some time exploring the various toolkits to identify which offerings provide the level of capability you need and reasonable ease of use.
As with any emerging technology, there is a learning curve, so comparing the available options to assess their suitability for specific projects will be a necessity.
In some cases, additional education or training may be necessary, particularly for developers who intend to focus their careers in the AR field. While a solid background in other forms of development provides a strong foundation, every technology has its idiosyncrasies, so time must be dedicated to learning those associated with various AR platforms and toolkits.
More Robust Technology
Another caveat associated with emerging tech is that the platform and toolkit offerings themselves will also change. You may have access to more robust features or an increased level of stability in the near future, but every adjustment means having to potentially relearn a particular solution, especially if you want to make the most of what the technology has to offer.
Ultimately, AR is still experiencing significant growth and change, and that is almost guaranteed to come with some hiccups along the way. But, by staying on top of new developments and spending time studying the new offerings, developers can become adept quickly, allowing them to experience the benefits that AR can provide to applications.
If you are interested in securing an AR developer position, the professionals at The Armada Group can connect you with leading employers in the area. Contact us today to learn more about our services and see how we can help you take the next step in your career.
With technologies like AI and machine learning playing a larger role in the business world and an increased focus on mobility, the tech job market is experiencing some shifts that are expected to continue into 2018. Additionally, as more technologies are implemented in nearly every industry, opportunities for IT professionals will likely be plentiful.
However, there are a few disruptions that must be considered if you intend to find a new position this year. With that in mind, here’s what you need to know about the future of tech employment.
Job Creation is Expected
The ever-increasing role of technology in business means new opportunities in tech and other industries is expected, leading to more opportunities for IT professionals. Job seekers with in-demand skills, such as those associated with data science and software development, may be particularly well-positioned to take advantage of this growth, especially when it comes to securing a higher salary.
As new innovations arise, the potential for finding unique roles based on emerging technology could also grow, though exactly where this will happen can be hard to predict.
AI is Changing How Businesses Operate
AI-supported automation is becoming more common in the workplace, fundamentally changing which duties are being completed by employees and which are being handled by complex systems. Advances in this area are expected to impact nearly every industry, but it also means that new opportunities are being created for tech pros who have skills in AI and machine learning.
Support for Mobile Job Applications Will Increase
Even as job seekers become more reliant on their smartphones, not all sites have embraced mobile job applications. However, this is expected to change somewhat in 2018, with more companies supporting the technology. It may take time for it to become common, but don’t be surprised if your job search activities end up easier to manage, even if you are on the go.
Hiring Process Transparency
Even now, sending in a job application online can feel like you are chucking your resume into a blackhole. But, with candidates demanding more insight into these processes, 2018 may bring about increased transparency, including real-time updates on the status of applications. This may alleviate some of the stress that typically accompanies job hunt activities as applicants won’t be left in the proverbial dark.
One effort that could be attributed to the increased importance of company culture is expanding opportunities to experiment outside of an employee’s current role. Businesses are becoming more open to the idea of letting workers branch out and explore their passions as a method of gaining access to new skills and reducing turnover. This shift means career development activities may become more accessible on the job, allowing tech professionals to explore new technologies and expand their knowledge base.
If you are looking for a new job this year, the team at The Armada Group can help you explore new opportunities while connecting you with some of today’s top employers. Contact us today to see how our services can benefit you.