Weekly News Digest - 18th-22nd Jan 2021

Jenni Kavanagh our consultant managing the role
Posting date: 1/22/2021 2:56 PM
This is Harnham’s weekly news digest, the place to come for a quick breakdown of the week’s top news stories from the world of Data & Analytics.

TechRepublic: Go back to the office? Some employees would rather quit


In the past year, the shift to remote working has seen its fair share of highs and lows. To start with, many organisations were not prepared and did not have the right technology in place to support working away from the office for such a long period of time. However, this quickly changed, and professionals across a range of industries are now working from home in seamless fashion.

In this article from TechRepublic, they discuss how employees have become so comfortable working away from the office, that they would be happier (and feel safer), working from their homes moving forward. In fact, according to a recent survey from jobs platform LiveCareer, 29 per cent of employees would quit their job if they were told they were no longer allowed to work remotely. Companies will all be approaching the return to the office differently. Would you like to get back to an office environment?

Read the full article here.

Forbes: 5 Data Trends That Will Take Your Business Forward In 2021, From Google Cloud Leaders


We’re a big fan of this piece from some of the senior leaders at Google Cloud, writing for Forbes. There is immediate recognition that the past year has seen changes that have meant, most notably, that gathering and using data has become essential.

Leaning on their experiences and expertise, some of Google Cloud’s Leaders shared what they see come in 2021.

  • Real-time data analytics will help you see the future (Debanjan Saha, VP, Google Cloud)
  • In 2021, you’ll demand more of your databases (Andi Gutmans, VP, Google Cloud)
  • Analytics will no longer be dashboard-driven—they’ll come to you through AI-powered data experiences (Colin Zima, Director of Product Management, Looker)
  • "Location, location, location" matters for data, too: Geospatial data will be key to unlocking enterprise transformation (Jen Bennett, Office of the CTO, Google Cloud)
  • Data lakes will smarten up to support open and multicloud infrastructure (Debanjan Saha, VP, Google Cloud)

For data and its relationship with cloud services, this year is anticipated to signal its continued growth and application across a range of industries.

Read more on this here.

Analytics Insight: UNDERSTANDING DEEP LEARNING VS MACHINE LEARNING


We’ve seen a lot of buzzwords flying about of late, but two that are causing some to scratch their heads are machine learning and deep learning. The problem is, they seem to be identical, which is why understanding their differences is so important.

Analytics Insight pull apart both of these core functions within data and analytics, exploring the benefits, possibilities and what they actually mean and do.

Deep learning is a concept of artificial intelligence (AI) that mimics the functioning of the human brain in data processing and the development of patterns for decision-making use.

Machine learning is an artificial intelligence (AI) technology that gives systems the ability to learn and develop from experience automatically without being programmed specifically.


Whether you’re starting out in a new career within the market and need to understand these technologies better, or if you’re about to begin working on a new project, this is a handy article to help you understand the difference between the two.

Read more on this here

Marketing Mag: Why marketers should prioritise media optimisation in 2021


We’re now moving quite swiftly through January, a month where, typically, marketers are rethinking and planning for long-term campaigns that will deliver on their ROI. This will often involve exploring a range of different strategies to ensure the best possible results.

A few of these, as outlined by Marketing Mag, are:

  • Connecting data for a full picture
  • Optimise, optimise, optimise
  • Metrics for verification and viewability

One thing we can take from this is that media optimisation is going to be under the spotlight more this year, put in place to deal with unpredictable behaviours and a fast-changing environment. For example, by tracking campaigns in-flight, marketers can take action to capitalise on an effective campaign or mitigate the impacts of one that’s failing.

Click here to read more on the challenges and opportunities for media optimisation in 2021.

We've loved seeing all the news from Data and Analytics in the past week, it’s a market full of exciting and dynamic opportunities. To learn more about our work in this space, get in touch with us at
info@harnham.com.

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Three Years Of GDPR: The Evolution Of Data Protection

Since its inception in 1991, the World Wide Web – or the internet – has grown immeasurably, with its capabilities exceeding the expectations of anyone who witnessed its implementation only 30 years ago. Now, it’s hard to think of a world without it; where would we be without unlimited knowledge at the touch of a button, the ability to maintain friendships with people halfway across the world or cat videos? Of course, the internet isn’t always a positive place. As the popularity of the online world grew, there also became an increased risk, particularly to our identities and our money.  In 1998, to combat the mismanagement of data both online and offline, Parliament passed the Data Protection Act. Compiled of eight different principles, from fair and lawful processing to disallowing data transfers from outside of the EU, this law aimed to help reduce the risk of data mismanagement and data breaches, while holding the power to fine and prosecute those who didn’t comply.  In January 2012, the European Commission wanted to take these laws one step further. As we began to enter a digital-first age, where the online world began to blend seamlessly with our daily lives, questions around whether the Data Protection Act of 1998 was robust enough to protect EU citizens.  On May 25th, 2018, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) was introduced. Not only did this new law enforce tougher rules around data protection, including the protection of genetic data and biometrics, but it made business data collection far more transparent. For the first time, internet users were able to see exactly how and why their data was being used, and they were given the autonomy to opt-out of giving away sensitive data. Additionally, consumers now have the right to request ‘to be forgotten’, with all stored data being wiped from a business’ database with the click of a button.  As we edge closer to the three-year anniversary of the implementation of GDPR, we look at how the new laws have impacted both consumers and businesses, for better and for worse.  Consumer trust Both sides of the coin tell a very different story when it comes to consumer trust and GDPR. The general consensus amongst businesses across the EU is that GDPR has greatly improved consumer trust, with 73 per cent reporting that the regulations have notably improved data security. Unfortunately, this sentiment isn’t shared by consumers.  84 per cent feel that GDPR hasn’t been taken seriously by businesses, and the level of security they feel when giving data to certain sectors varies hugely. While financial services, such as banks, have gained nearly half of consumers’ trust, hospitality, for example, are lagging behind with not even a quarter of consumers happy with the level of security.  But, looking at data breaches that have occurred since the implementation of GDPR, this level of dissatisfaction and worry from consumers comes as no surprise. From 280 million Microsoft users’ data being left unprotected to over a million of Mashable’s staff and consumer data being leaked by hackers, GDPR hasn’t necessarily solved the problems it was set out to manage, and consumers are concerned.  Consumer control Despite the worry of continued breaches and hacks, consumers do feel however that GDPR has improved the control they have over their own data. From being able to opt-in instead of having to opt-out, to having greater choice over the information given away through cookies, consumers feel much happier to be able to walk away from the brands they don’t trust and/or have no interest in.  Education around Data privacy  GDPR, since its inception, has been something that has eluded many. Filled with jargon and lacking much in the way of accessible educational assets, consumers – while aware of their data concerns – are still unsure of how to protect themselves against hacks or breaches. For example, only 14 per cent of internet users encrypt private conversations and only a third change their passwords regularly.  While GDPR has undoubtedly been a positive step forward for businesses and consumers alike, it is clear there is room for great improvement. It is expected that as the world continues to evolve into a digital-first society, especially post-COVID as many of us move online for good in our working lives, and the need for much-improved data security becomes paramount, GDPR laws and business compliance will need to continue to evolve and improve and fast.  If you're looking for your next opportunity, or to build out your Data & Analytics team, we can help. Take a look at our latest opportunities or get in touch with one of our expert consultants to find out more. 

Weekly Digest: 26th - 30th April 2021

This is Harnham’s weekly news digest, the place to come for a quick breakdown of the week’s top news stories from the world of Data & Analytics. Computer Weekly: Microsoft outlines five-year plan for accessibility tech 1 in 5 employers have stated that they would be less likely to hire someone if they were disabled. A damning and worrying statistic highlighting the severe disability divide that still exists in the working world.  In a bid to help put a stop to this serious lack of inclusion, Microsoft have teamed up with the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to train up to 26,000 members of staff and work coaches to help them create a more accessible recruitment and working experiences for those with disabilities.  The three key areas of focus for Microsoft include: Educating workers to have a better understanding of accessibility.Showing how applied sciences can be used to create opportunities for all.Dedicating its cause to constructing inclusive office environments, whether on or offline. Brilliantly summed up by Brad Smith, Microsoft President: “Our work begins by guaranteeing that Microsoft’s personal merchandise are accessible by design, in order that as we advance our options and performance, we can assist everybody throughout the spectrum of incapacity be extra productive.” Read more on this fantastic story here.  Analytics India Mag: Why Data Engineering is the fastest growing tech job in 2021 As a result of COVID-19, businesses have had to work hard to not only navigate the ‘new normal’ but thrive in it. Remaining relevant and staying one step ahead of the competition has been, and will continue to be, crucial – and for this reason alone, Data Engineering is undoubtedly going to the fastest growing sector this year and perhaps beyond.  During this year’s SkillUp event, Sourav Saha, academic dean at Praxis Business School, and Prasad Srinivasa, assistant vice president at Genpact, spoke about the exciting career opportunities in data engineering. In a world driven by data, it is crucial that companies are using the data they have available to drive the success of their business. From being able to forecast future trends to gather consumer sentiment, data, and data engineers, will undoubtedly drive business success. Srinivasa highlights the three key roles he is expecting to emerge and boom over the next 6 – 12 months: Data OrchestrationData Architecture and Governance Data Strategy To read more on what to expect for the future of Data Engineers, click here.  Silicon Republic: How to ensure your Life Science career thrives after COVID Life Sciences became the saviour of the COVID-19 pandemic. Those within the sector worked tirelessly to create and deliver vaccines around the world, giving us all the hope we needed to get to the end of this crisis.  However, once we finally see the back of the COVID-19 pandemic, many Life Science specialists beg the question – what next? How do we continue to thrive in our careers and any future prospects post-pandemic? This insightful article from Silicon Republic highlights five key steps to ensure specialists can be prepared to take the next steps in their working journey once the dust has settled.  1. Take control and be proactive Before you do anything else, take proactive steps to look at the opportunities your current employer might be able to present you. Don’t be afraid to put yourself forward.  2. Look for innovation As the whole world adapts to the new normal, it’s more than likely your company is going to innovate to stay one step ahead of the competition. Explore where this innovation is likely to happen and put ideas forward to spearhead change.  3. Upskill across the board From those harder skills, such as technical knowledge, to softer skills, such as communication and empathy, will all need to be revisited and boosted as we come out of the pandemic. Make sure you take your learning into your own hands and show initiative.  4. Reflect on your career options If you’re ready to make the move away from where you are, make sure you’ve got a clear idea of what it is you want next before taking the leap. Tailor your CV, brush up on your knowledge and don’t be afraid to engage with a recruiter if you need guidance.  5. Learn how to present well in remote interviews  Computer to computer isn’t the same as face-to-face. Get up to speed with online etiquette and make the best first impression.  Read the full article here.  TechBullion: 3 sectors revolutionised by AI The pandemic has accelerated many businesses uptake and implementation of AI. But which sectors have we seen reap the most reward from this fantastic technology? TechBullion explores.  Insurance: Insurance firms have seen AI boost customer satisfaction like never before. Whether that’s through faster processing of claims, a reduction in fraud or improving loss prevention, AI has been making the sector smoother and more efficient.  Entertainment: The likes of Netflix and Spotify have taken AI and used it to transforms how they service consumers. With many users wanting a service that provides a seamless, efficient, and relevant experience, entertainment platforms have been able to create software that can learn personal preferences and offer timely suggestions based on users evolving needs and wants.   Education: The use of AI within education has become vast. From making every day learning easier through AI-based games that can be tailored to all learning types and needs to the personalisation of students’ curriculum depending on the results of past tests – the abilities are endless.  To read more on this, visit TechBullion here.  We've loved seeing all the news from Data & Analytics in the past week, it’s a market full of exciting and dynamic opportunities. To learn more about our work in this space, get in touch with us at info@harnham.com.       

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