Privacy Notice for Employees



Harnham Search and Selection Limited

Privacy Notice – Employees, Contractors and Workers

1.                 This Notice

1.1              We take the privacy and security of our staff’s personal information seriously. This notice explains our practices regarding the collection, use and disclosure of personal information we hold about employees, contractors and workers and applicants for roles with us.

1.2              This notice applies to all current and former employees, contractors and workers (“you”) of Harnham Search and Selection Limited (“we” or “us”).

1.3              This privacy notice does not apply to information we hold in relation to our candidates for roles with our clients, clients or third parties which is covered by a separate privacy notice available on our website.

1.4              This notice does not form part of any contract of employment or other contract to provide services. We may update this notice at any time.

1.5              This notice is governed by the EU General Data Protection Regulation (the “GDPR”) from 25 May 2018.

1.6              This notice applies to personal data we hold about you. “personal data” means information that relates to you as an identified or identifiable person.  

2.                 Legal basis on which we process personal data

2.1              Personal data we hold about you will be lawfully processed based on one of the following legal reasons (known as a “legal basis”):

2.1.1         Because you have consented to the processing;

2.1.2         Because the processing is necessary in order for us to comply with our obligations under a contract between you and us; or

2.1.3         Because the processing is necessary for a “legitimate interest”, a legitimate interest in this context means a valid interest we have as your employer which is not overridden by your interests in data privacy and security.

3.                 Data which we collect

3.1              We may collect and process the following personal data about you:

3.1.1         Personal contact details such as name, title, addresses, telephone numbers, and personal email addresses.

3.1.2         Date of birth

3.1.3         Gender

3.1.4         Marital status and dependants

3.1.5         Next of kin and emergency contact information

3.1.6         National Insurance number

3.1.7         Bank account details, payroll records and tax status information

3.1.8         Salary, annual leave, pension and benefits information

3.1.9         Start date

3.1.10      Location of employment or workplace

3.1.11      Copy of your passport

3.1.12      Recruitment information (including copies of right to work documentation, references and other information included in a CV or cover letter or as part of the application process)

3.1.13      Employment records (including job titles, work history, working hours, training records and professional memberships)

3.1.14      Compensation history

3.1.15      Performance information

3.1.16      Disciplinary and grievance information

3.1.17      CCTV footage, and other information obtained through electronic means such as swipecard records

3.1.18      Information about your use of our information and communications systems

3.1.19      Photographs.

3.2              We may also collect, store and use the following "special categories" of more sensitive personal information:

3.2.1         Information about your race or ethnicity, religious beliefs, sexual orientation and political opinions

3.2.2         Information about your health, including any medical condition, health and sickness records.

3.2.3         Information about criminal convictions and offences.

4.                 How we collect your data

4.1              We collect personal information about employees, workers and contactors through the application and recruitment process, either directly from candidates or sometimes from an employment agency or background check provider.

4.2              We may sometimes collect additional information from third parties including former employers, credit reference agencies or other background check agencies

4.3              We will collect additional personal information in the course of job-related activities throughout the period of you working for us.

4.4              From time to time we may collect sensitive data via a hard copy or online diversity monitoring form if we do so then we will seek to obtain your consent for processing this data.  

5.                 How we use your personal data

5.1              We may use your information to:

5.1.1         Making a decision about your recruitment or appointment

5.1.2         Determining the terms on which you work for us

5.1.3         Checking you are legally entitled to work in the UK

5.1.4         Paying you and, if you are an employee, deducting tax and National Insurance contributions

5.1.5         Providing employment benefits to you

5.1.6         Liaising with your pension provider if necessary

5.1.7         Administering the contract we have entered into with you

5.1.8         Business management and planning, including accounting and auditing

5.1.9         Conducting performance reviews, managing performance and determining performance requirements

5.1.10      Making decisions about salary reviews and compensation

5.1.11      Assessing qualifications for a particular job or task, including decisions about promotions

5.1.12      Gathering evidence for possible grievance or disciplinary hearings

5.1.13      Making decisions about your continued employment or engagement

5.1.14      Making arrangements for the termination of our working relationship

5.1.15      Education, training and development requirements

5.1.16      Dealing with legal disputes involving you, or other employees, workers and contractors, including accidents at work

5.1.17      Ascertaining your fitness to work

5.1.18      Managing sickness absence

5.1.19      Complying with health and safety obligations

5.1.20      To prevent fraud

5.1.21      To monitor your use of our information and communication systems to ensure compliance with our IT policies

5.1.22      To ensure network and information security, including preventing unauthorised access to our computer and electronic communications systems and preventing malicious software distribution

5.1.23      To conduct data analytics studies to review and better understand employee retention and attrition rates

5.1.24      Equal opportunities monitoring

5.2              Each type of processing listed above is based on our legitimate interest and the performance of our contract with you. These grounds for processing will overlap and there may be several grounds which justify our use of your personal information.

5.3              If you fail to provide certain information when requested, we may not be able to perform the contract we have entered into with you (such as paying you or providing a benefit), or we may be prevented from complying with our legal obligations (such as to ensure the health and safety of our workers).

6.                 Sensitive Data

6.1              Under the GDPR certain "special categories" of particularly sensitive personal information require higher levels of protection. We need to have further justification for collecting, storing and using this type of personal information. We may process special categories of personal information in the following circumstances:

6.1.1         In limited circumstances, with your explicit written consent.

6.1.2         Where we need to carry out our legal obligations and in line with our data protection policy.

6.1.3         Where it is needed in the public interest, such as for equal opportunities monitoring or in relation to a pension scheme, and in line with our data protection policy.

6.1.4         Where it is needed to assess your working capacity on health grounds, subject to appropriate confidentiality safeguards.

6.1.5         We may collect information about criminal convictions if it is appropriate given the nature of the role and where we are legally able to do so.

6.2              Less commonly, we may process this type of information where it is needed in relation to legal claims or where it is needed to protect your interests (or someone else's interests) and you are not capable of giving your consent, or where you have already made the information public.

6.3              We will use your particularly sensitive personal information in the following ways:

6.3.1         We will use information relating to leaves of absence, which may include sickness absence or family related leaves, to comply with employment and other laws.

6.3.2         We will use information about your physical or mental health, or disability status, to ensure your health and safety in the workplace and to assess your fitness to work, to provide appropriate workplace adjustments, to monitor and manage sickness absence and to administer benefits.

6.3.3         We will use information about your race or national or ethnic origin, religious, philosophical or moral beliefs, or your gender identification or sexual orientation, to ensure meaningful equal opportunity monitoring and reporting.

6.4              We do not need your consent if we use special categories of your personal information in accordance with our written policy to carry out our legal obligations or exercise specific rights in the field of employment law.

6.5              In some circumstances, we may approach you for your written consent to allow us to process certain particularly sensitive data (for instance for diversity monitoring purposes). If we do so, we will provide you with full details of the information that we would like and the reason we need it, so that you can carefully consider whether you wish to consent. You should be aware that it is not a condition of your contract with us that you agree to any request for consent from us.

7.                 Sharing your information

7.1              We will share your personal information with third parties where required by law, where it is necessary to administer the working relationship with you or where we have another legitimate interest in doing so.

7.2              We may share your information with certain suppliers or other group companies who are assisting us with human resources, the management of employee benefits or payroll services. We may also share your information with other group companies for general management purposes.

7.3              All our third-party service providers and other entities in the group are required to take appropriate security measures to protect your personal information in line with our policies. We do not allow our third-party service providers to use your personal data for their own purposes. We only permit them to process your personal data for specified purposes and in accordance with our instructions.

7.4              We may also share your information:

7.4.1         if we are under a duty to disclose or share your personal data in order to comply with any legal obligation (for example, if required to do so by a court order or for the purposes of prevention of fraud or other crime);

7.4.2         we may transfer your personal information to a third party as part of a sale of some or all of our business and assets to any third party or as part of any business restructuring or reorganisation, but we will take steps with the aim of ensuring that your privacy rights continue to be protected;

7.4.3         to protect our rights, property and safety, or the rights, property and safety of our users or any other third parties.

7.5              Other than as set out above, we will not disclose any of your personal information unless you give us permission to do so. If we do supply your personal information to a third party we will take steps to ensure that your privacy rights are protected and that third party complies with the terms of this notice.

8.                 Security

8.1              We will take all reasonable steps to ensure that appropriate technical and organisational measures are carried out in order to safeguard the information we collect from you and protect against unlawful access and accidental loss or damage. These measures may include (as necessary):

8.1.1         protecting our servers by both hardware and software firewalls;

8.1.2         locating our data processing storage facilities in secure locations;

8.1.3         encrypting all data stored on our server with an industry standard encryption method that encrypts the data between your computer and our server so that in the event of your network being insecure no data is passed in a format that could easily be deciphered;

8.1.4         when necessary, disposing of or deleting your data so it is done so securely;

8.1.5         regularly backing up and encrypting all data we hold.

8.2              We will ensure that our staff are aware of their privacy and data security obligations. We will take reasonable steps to ensure that the employees of third parties working on our behalf are aware of their privacy and data security obligations.

8.3              This notice and our procedures for handling personal data will be reviewed as necessary.

9.                 Data Retention

9.1              Our current data retention policy is to delete or destroy (to the extent we are able to) the personal data we hold about you in accordance with the following:

Category of personal data

Length of retention

Health and safety records (e.g. an accident book) being held at our premises

10 years from the date on which the relevant information was collected.

Records relevant for tax purposes including records of pay and benefits

8 years from the end of the financial year to which the records relate.

Applicant records (where no employment or engagement has resulted)

2 years from the date of your interview with us

Records relating to human resources

7 years from the end of your employment with us

Records relating to pensions

7 years from the end of your employment with us in the case of personal pension records 80 years from the end of your employment with us in the case of occupational pension records

 

9.2              For any category of personal data not specifically defined in this Notice, and unless otherwise specified by applicable law, the required retention period for any personal data will be deemed to be 7 years from the date of receipt by us of that data.

9.3              The retention periods stated in this Notice can be prolonged or shortened as may be required (for example, in the event that legal proceedings apply to the data or if there is an on-going investigation into the data).

9.4              We review the personal data (and the categories of personal data) we are holding on a regular basis to ensure the data we are holding is still relevant to our business and is accurate. If we discover that certain data we are holding is no longer necessary or accurate, we will take reasonable steps to correct or delete this data as may be required.

9.5              If you wish to request that data we hold about you is amended or deleted, please refer to clause 10 below, which explains your privacy rights.

10.              Your privacy rights

10.1           The GDPR gives you the following rights in respect of personal data we hold about you:

The right to be informed

You have a right to know about our personal data protection and data processing activities, details of which are contained in this notice.

The right of access

You can make what is known as a Subject Access Request (“SAR”) to request information about the personal data we hold about you (free of charge, save for reasonable expenses for repeat requests). If you wish to make a SAR please contact us as described below.

The right to correction

Please inform us if information we hold about you is incomplete or inaccurate in any way and we will update our records as soon as possible, but in any event within one month.

We will take reasonable steps to communicate the change to any third parties to whom we have passed the same information.

The right to erasure (the ‘right to be forgotten’)

You may ask us to delete or remove personal data if there is no good reason for us continuing to process it. You also have the right to ask us to delete or remove your personal data where you have successfully exercised your right to object to processing (see below), if we may have processed your information unlawfully or if we are required to delete your personal data to comply with local law.

The data may continue to exist in backup form, but we will take steps to ensure that it will not be accessible.

We will communicate the erasure to any third parties to whom we have passed the same information.

We may not always be able to comply with your request of erasure for specific legal reasons which will be notified to you, if applicable, at the time of your request.

The right to restrict processing

You can request that we no longer process your personal data in certain ways, whilst not requiring us to the delete the same data.

The right to data portability

You have right to receive copies of personal data we hold about you in a commonly used and easily storable format (please let us know a format which suits you). You may also request that we transfer your personal data directly to third party (where technically possible).

The right to object

Unless we have overriding legitimate grounds for such processing, you may object to us using your personal data if you feel your fundamental rights and freedoms are impacted. You may also object if we use your personal data for direct marketing purposes (including profiling) or for research or statistical purposes. Please notify your objection to us and we will gladly cease such processing, unless we have overriding legitimate grounds.

Rights with respect to automated decision-making and profiling

You have a right not to be subject to automated decision-making (including profiling) when those decisions have a legal (or similarly significant effect) on you. You are not entitled to this right when the automated processing is necessary for us to perform our obligations under a contract with you, it is permitted by law, or if you have given your explicit consent.

Right to withdraw consent

If we are relying on your consent as the basis on which we are processing your personal data, you have the right to withdraw your consent at any time. Even if you have not expressly given your consent to our processing, you also have the right to object (see above).

 

10.2           All SARs and other requests or notifications in respect of your above rights must be sent to us in writing to Marion van Vlierden, Harnham Search and Selection Limited, 3rd Floor, Melbury House, 51 Wimbledon Hill Road, Wimbledon, London, England, SW19 7QW, dataprotection@harnham.com.

10.3           We will endeavour to comply with such requests as soon as possible but in any event we will comply within one month of receipt (unless a longer period of time to respond is reasonable by virtue of the complexity or number of your requests).

11.              Data Breaches

11.1           If personal data we hold about you is subject to a breach or unauthorised disclosure or access, we will report this to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) and/or our Legal and Compliance Manager.

11.2           If a breach is likely to result in a risk to your data rights and freedoms, we will notify you as soon as possible.

12.              Transferring your information outside Europe

12.1           We do not expect to transfer your personal data outside of the EEA. However there may be circumstances in which we need to do so (for instance if our servers are based outside of the EEA or if your work is international in nature).

12.2           We may transfer your personal data to group companies who are outside of the EEA but if we do so we will ensure that the group companies have entered into a binding agreement with us to secure your rights in relation to the data.

12.3           If we transfer your information outside of the EEA, and the third country or international organisation in question has not been deemed by the EU Commission to have adequate data protection laws, we will provide appropriate safeguards and your privacy rights will continue to be enforceable against us as outlined in this notice.

13.              Contact us

13.1           If at any time you would like to contact us with your views about our privacy practices, or with any enquiry or complaint relating to your personal information or how it is handled, you can do so via the following email address Marion van Vlierden, dataprotection@harnham.com.

 

If we are unable to resolve any issues you may have or you would like to make a further complaint, you can contact the Information Commissioner’s Office by visiting http://www.ico.org.uk/ for further assistance.

 

CRO: Getting Customers Past Your Digital Door

Conversion Rate Optimization. CRO. If you’re an established business just getting on the technology track to improve your business, these words and acronyms can sound difficult and confusing. So, let’s put things a little simpler. Your website is your digital doorway to your business. Your service is your digital handshake. When you’re able to meet with customers face-to-face, you can get a firmer grasp on their likes and dislikes. You get to know your customers over time, they get to know you, and you begin to learn what the want so you can improve your business. If you’re a startup, you’ve opened your business because perhaps you’ve been a customer and saw a need no one could fill but you.  Whichever type of business you are, when you make changes to your website to improve your customer experience, you’ve worked through conversion rate optimization, though you may not have realized at the time. What is Conversion Rate Optimization? It is the penultimate testing strategy to convert visitors into customers. Let’s assume your eCommerce business is bringing in leads, but no one is clicking the ‘buy now’ button. If you’re wondering why, this is your chance to test your CRO through A/B testing. This kind of testing examines your original version against a change in your wording or colors. Consider the number of times you’ve seen Amazon’s logo change over the years. Today, the name is no longer needed, only the smiling arrow. The simplest of tweaks to your call-to-action (CTA), logo, colors, wording, or even a well-read or reviewed article can drive more leads for your business. Simple testing with big consequences can be overwhelming to consider. But with a few key points to consider, you may have a better focus on what you need to do. This focus will help you identify your goals, your audience, and the best conversion touchpoints for your business. What Do You Want to Optimize? Conversion means many things to many people. While ultimately the goal is to convert visitors to customers, there are a variety of ways to get there. So, what do you want to do? Do you want to have more visitors call or fill out your contact form? Do you want new subscribers to your website? Or do you want your visitors to click ‘buy now’ or ‘add to cart’? Choose one goal and work from there. Data you may already have or can gather, can offer you insight into your customers to help you know the best way to move forward. Know Your Customer Digital and Web Analytics can help you navigate the Data gathered about your customers. For example, who’s already visiting your site? How did they find you? Age, gender, and location are additional demographics which may help your team make informed decisions about what to test, why, and how it will improve your conversion rate. Bringing Your CRO Team Together There are three main roles most often brought together for conversion rate optimization. Smart businesses make CRO a part of their Marketing Strategy. So, it’s only fitting Marketing is on the list.  Marketing - These are the professionals who understand people. They know the strategy behind every level of the sales funnel within the customer journey. And from these understandings, they can troubleshoot, if needed, with acquisition, qualification, or optimization. Acquisition – These are the professionals responsible for bringing in new business. New leads. New customers. It’s their experience which can help to identify what’s optimizing well and what isn’t whether from targeting the wrong data point or on-page issues. Web Developer or Designer – These professionals assist with the technical aspects of conversion rate optimization. Begin at Your Homepage If you’re wondering where to begin, it’s best to begin at the homepage. This is where prospective customers find you and determine whether they’d like to look around a little more or not. So, knowing this there are a few things to keep in mind. ABT – Always Be Testing. This is a circular exercise in keeping up with the Jones’s of business. The more you know about your site, your goals, and your customers needs, your improvements can help to generate leads and increase sales. OTE - Optimize the Experience. When setting your goals, you’ll want to consider three goal types and set one or more. The first is to ask yourself, what do you want to happen immediately? If you want more clicks or views, this is an immediate goal. If you have a finite amount of time to generate leads, say fourth quarter of a given year, you may wish to set a campaign goal. And if you want to project net revenue or lead quality, you’ll want to set a long-term goal. Ready to optimize your conversion rate in your job search? Harnham may have a role for you. If you’re interested in the Digital Analytics, Data & Technology, or Machine Learning just to name a few, Harnham may have a role for you. Check out our current vacancies or contact one of our expert consultants to learn more.  For our West Coast Team, contact us at (415) 614 - 4999 or send an email to sanfraninfo@harnham.com.  For our Mid-West and East Coast teams contact us at (212) 796-6070 or send an email to newyorkinfo@harnham.com.  

Black History Month: Ethical AI and the Bias Within

According to Brigette Hyacinth’s 2017 book entitled, The Future of Leadership, the author suggests this when considering the ramifications of AI. “Using AI to improve efficiency is one thing, using it to judge people isn’t something I would support. It violates the intention on the applications of AI. This seems to be social prejudice masquerading as science…” How often have big tech companies backtracked their facial recognition software? What are the ethical implications of moving forward and leaving AI unchecked and unregulated? 2020 was in no way a traditional year amassing change on our daily lives at near lightspeed, or so it seemed. But what was brought to bear were unrest and tensions boiled to the breaking point. And when you look at it from the perspective of AI in our daily lives. What might the world look like in another year? When Social Sciences and Humanities Meets AI “To err is human, to forgive, divine.” Humans make mistakes. Biases are unmasked with and without intent. But, when it comes to AI, those unintentional biases can have devastating consequences. From 2015 to 2019, use of AI grew by over 250 percent and is projected to boast a revenue of over $100 billion by 2025. As major businesses such as Amazon and IBM cancel and suspend their facial recognition programs amidst protests against racial inequality, some realize more than regulatory change is needed. Since 2014, algorithms have shown biases against people of color and between genders. In a recent article from Time.com, a researcher showed the inaccuracies of prediction for women of color, in particular. Oprah Winfrey, Michelle Obama, and Serena Williams skewed as male. Three of the most recognizable faces in the world and AI algorithms missed the mark. These are the same algorithm and machine learning principles used to challenge humans at strategy games such as Chess and Go. Where’s the disconnect? According to one author, it may be time to create a new field of study specific to AI. Though created in Computer Science and Computer Engineering labs, the complexities of human are more often discussed in the field of humanities. To expand further as well into business schools, race and gender studies, and political science departments. How Did We Get Here? At first blush, it may not seem comparable to consider human history with the rise of artificial intelligence and its applications. Yet it’s human history and its social construct which explains the racial and gender biases when it comes to ethics in AI. How deep seated are such biases? What drives the inequalities when AI-enabled algorithms pass over people of color and women in job searches, credit scores, or assume status quo in incarceration statistics? Disparities between rational and relational are the cornerstone from which to begin. Once again, in Hyacinth’s book, The Future of Leadership, the author tells a story of her mother explaining the community around the simple task of washing clothes. Though washing machines now exist and do allow people to do other things while the clothes are washed, there is a key element recounted by her mother washing machines lack. The benefit of community. When her mother washed clothes, it was her and her surrounding community. They gathered to wash, to visit, and connect. A job was completed, but the experience lingered on. And in the invention of a single machine, that particular bit of community was lost. But it’s community and collaboration which remind humans of their humanity. And it’s from these psychological and sociological roles, artificial intelligence should learn. Create connections between those build the systems and those who will use them.  BUILDING AI FORWARD Voices once shuttered and subjugated have opened doors to move artificial intelligence forward. It is the quintessence of ‘those who don’t know their history are doomed to repeat it’. The difference within this scientific equivalent is there is no history to repeat when it comes to technology. And so it is from the humanitarian angle AI is considered. The ability to do great things with technology is writ in books and screenplays, and so are its dangers. While it isn’t likely an overabundance of ‘Mr. Smiths’ will fill our world, it is important we continue to break out of the siloes of science versus social sciences. If AI is to help humanity move forward, it’s important to ensure humanity plays a role in teaching our machine learning systems how different we are from each other and to consider the whole person, not just their exoskeleton. If you’re interested in the Data Sciences, Data and Technology, Machine Learning, or Robotics just to name a few, Harnham may have a role for you. Check out our current vacancies or contact one of our expert consultants to learn more.  For our West Coast Team, contact us at (415) 614 - 4999 or send an email to sanfraninfo@harnham.com.  For our Mid-West and East Coast teams contact us at (212) 796-6070 or send an email to newyorkinfo@harnham.com.  

Puzzle and Problem-Solvers: Software Engineers Drive Business

Software. It’s the drivers to your printer. It’s the word processor on your PC. And it’s the concept behind your productivity tools, your CRM systems, and your social media programs. Software engineers are to software what Data Engineers are to Data.  Software Engineers are the creators, builders, and maintainers of software systems and programs, so business runs smoothly. Now, that the majority of businesses have shifted online, it’s more important than ever to keep things running smoothly. These engineers must take into account not only what businesses might need to run, but also the limitations of the program. It’s a balancing act of software, hardware, limitations, and possibilities. If you took apart watches as a kid to see how they worked, Software Engineering might be for you. Are you a problem solver? Do you love putting the pieces of a puzzle together whether it’s on a board or in a crossword? Software Engineering might be for you. What Kind of Software Engineer are You? While there are a variety of roles to consider, below are some of the more popular paths taken. So, let’s say you want to build computer applications that affect what the end user sees. If you know programming languages such as Python and Java, and understand the mechanics of how to make a program work, then you may fit the classic example of a Software Engineer. If you’re more interested in the focus of robotics or automation, you may want to consider a role in Embedded Systems. You’ll still be designing, developing, and maintaining but your projects will be hardware and software used for a specific task.   Want to keep information secure? You may lean toward Security Engineer. In this role, you’ll ensure there are no security flaws. How? By operating as a ‘white-hat’ ethical hacker to attempt breaking into existing systems to identify threats. Technical Skills are Essential. Soft Skills are Important.  For anyone in the Data professions, technical skills are paramount. This not only gets your ‘foot in the door’, but ensures you know the basics. And for those who’ve been in the game a bit longer, also gives businesses confidence you can meet any challenges which may come up. Technical skills for Software Engineers include knowing programming languages like C++, Python, Java, and others like them. In this role, you’ll need to understand development processes as well as additional technical concepts. Technical skills are a standard requirement. And as important as it is to have a good portfolio and experience, you’ll want to show the business, you have the technical know-how to take on anything which may come your way. Now that cross-functional teams across departments are regular occurrences and C-suite executives are in the know, soft skills are just as important as technical skills. What are Soft Skills? In a nutshell, soft skills are communication skills. In the past, Data professionals may have been siloed away from other teams, and a liaison of sorts might have translated Data information into actionable insights. Now businesses and professionals have found it’s much more efficient to have the Engineer speak directly to their team, their leadership, or stakeholders. So, it’s imperative your soft skills are on par with your technical skills. Scope of Work for a Software Engineer According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Software Engineer employment growth is expected to grow 21 percent by 2028. Now that we’re working, studying, and socializing online more than ever, is it any wonder? Add to this the changing needs of organizations as they shift their practices into the cloud, and it’s more important than ever to have professionals who can design and maintain software to meet the needs of an organization. Whichever avenue you choose, whichever business you join or career path you follow, the full scope of work will be broad. You could be in charge of creating, developing, and maintaining a full product or just a single component of an app. Regardless of your scope of work, though, you’ll most likely be working with developers, cross-departmental staff, executives, clients, and stakeholders to mold, shape, and fulfill a design envisioned for their product. If you’re interested in the Data Science, Data Technology, Machine Learning, or Software Engineering, Harnham may have a role for you. Check out our current vacancies or contact one of our expert consultants to learn more.  For our West Coast Team, contact us at (415) 614 - 4999 or send an email to sanfraninfo@harnham.com.  For our Mid-West and East Coast teams contact us at (212) 796-6070 or send an email to newyorkinfo@harnham.com.  

Robot Companions in Senior Care Combine Computer Vision and AI

It’s 2021. Autonomous cars are no longer on the horizon. They’re here and being tested. Most businesses have shifted to a fully remote workforce or offer a hybrid option. And social activities have been redefined.  As social creatures, we humans crave attention. But does it matter from whom the attention comes?  Social distancing is a gold standard these days to keep the pandemic at bay as best we can. But what happens when the pandemic solutions affect one of the fastest growing demographics in the US?  Many active seniors have embraced the online – FaceTime and Zoom calls with friends and family, online classes for new experiences, and interactive activities to keep minds sharp. For those seniors in eldercare and assisted living, interactive has gotten a shape. Enter the robot. With Deep Learning, Computer Vision is able to enhance what a robot may see or what we see when we look into a robot’s LED face. We’ve worked hard to emulate the human experience in a machine, and have begun putting together instead a machine with human-like experience.  Unsurprisingly, robotics have become part of a variety of industries from manufacturing to construction to…eldercare? Socially Adept Robotic Companions in Senior Living Scenarios Since Jane Jetson ordered Rosey from U-Maid, we’ve wondered and worried about the roles robots might play in our lives. As we remain socially distanced and families and friends make contact through videoconferencing to those in assisted and senior living facilities, we’ve uncovered a new shortage of skilled workers. This time it’s those in the healthcare industries. Particularly those who care for the elderly. There is an ever-widening gap between healthcare workers and those who need them. In less than 10 years, there will be a shortfall of over 150,000 care workers in the US. In twenty years, that shortfall is expected to double. Recently, Robotic Researchers, Roboticists, and Data Scientists have been putting together plans for a robot much like Rosey, the maid was to Jane Jetson. Though expecting residents to only need or want help in things like delivery or picking up and delivering items, it revealed instead a desire for social interaction.  A prototype robot offers assistance from delivery to picking up items to karaoke and bingo activities. Add in a video-conferencing screen for interacting not only with friends and family members who are unable to visit, but also telehealth services with their doctor, or interacting with staff members who may not be nearby. Ways We’re Using Robots to Heal When we teach Artificial Intelligent beings and incorporate Machine Learning into our robots, we’re creating opportunities to heal. Already in use in healthcare from exoskeletons to assist stroke victims to Augmented Reality surgical practice, and real-life robotic assists in surgery, we’re able to help individuals heal physically. For many, the social isolation in eldercare homes can lead to depression and loneliness. But when someone, or rather, some thing is able to interact with them, some find a unique companion. For individuals who have difficulty connecting with people or those suffering dementia, it can be frustrating to not be able to communicate. But the role of robot in our lives just may bring a smile, a story, or a comfort. But robots aren’t just human-size companions. Some robotic companions are in the shape of pets. For those suffering from dementia, a robotic pet offers companionship and a less stressful alternative to live pets. There’s no need to worry about feeding Fido or Fluffy. These robotic pets love to be petted, but they don’t bark or meow, they don’t need to be let out, and bring to their caregivers a sense of purpose.  If you’re interested in the Data Sciences, Computer Vision, Machine Learning, or Robotics just to name a few, Harnham may have a role for you. Check out our current vacancies or contact one of our expert consultants to learn more.  For our West Coast Team, contact us at (415) 614 - 4999 or send an email to sanfraninfo@harnham.com.  For our Mid-West and East Coast teams contact us at (212) 796-6070 or send an email to newyorkinfo@harnham.com.