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.

 

Relocation Tips for Your Coast to Coast Move

Long before Microsoft held the tech fort in Washington, Boeing touched down. Rooted in tech, the Pacific Northwest has seen its share of hubs and does in fact boast the most jobs of the industry.  From the Big Apple to Apple’s HQ in California and Amazon’s orange smile in Washington State, the digital gold rush remains planted in the West. Not to be outdone, Google’s HQ and Microsoft square off as well in the Pacific Northwest. And like the Wild West, it’s a culture all its own. There’s no shortage of jobs, though Seattle, WA – desperately seeking experienced talent - and Portland, OR – work from home (WFH) opportunities - ply their workers in wildly different ways. Here are a few trends to consider as you debate if you should stay or go: Three Reasons to Make the LeapMake a Local Connection - The Silicon Forest, a play on California’s Silicon Valley, can be a bit intimidating to those outside the tech arena. But with a robust community of like-minded locals, groups, and events, it’s easy to find your tribe. Not interested in group functions? Not to worry. Portland boasts an abundance of remote worker opportunities to suit any personality.Get Your Resume Tech-Ready – With the rise of Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS), be sure your resume is laser-focused for a smooth transition. Even if you’re moving with a job already in hand, it doesn’t hurt to keep your credentials sharp. If you’re moving with family, helping them get their resume ready can ease their transition and job search as well. A Move to the PacNW Can Mean Lower Relocation Costs – Why? No sales tax. Well, not in Portland. On the flip side, Seattle doesn’t have income state tax. Either way, your check’s just a little bit bigger in the NW.Need more reasons to choose to move to the Emerald City of Seattle or the Silicon Forest of Oregon? Check it out here. TIME TO PUT A PLAN TOGETHER So, you've negotiated a relocation package, but you can't just pack up without a plan. What should be the number one item on your to-do list for your big move? Create a Budget – Moving costs can add up quickly. Whether you’ve been offered relocation assistance or not, it’s a good idea to have a budget so you know what to expect and can plan for any contingencies and unforeseen issues during your move. Include everything involved in a move, including packing boxes within your budget. Other things to consider?MoversGasLodging and Meals (along the way)o Grocery bills. Don’t forget,  you’ll also need lightbulbs, paper towels, batteries…all those little things which aren’t on your mind until you need them. Before You Can Stock Your Place, You Need to Find One – Finding Temporary or Rental Housing - While many companies offer temp housing until you can find more permanent placement, not everyone has that luxury. But, if the offer is made, take it. On the flip side, it can be difficult to find housing in an area you’re not familiar with, and can add to big move worries. However, there have been a few companies which have come online in the last few years to help with the housing search. One option, though, if you’re pressed for time is an AirBnB stay as many of them offer a discount for lengthier stays usually with a minimum of a month or more. Homeaway.com is another temporary rental option as is Sublet.com. Make All the Necessary Appointments as Soon as Possible - Try to organize your appointments and expected arrivals of furniture and such to happen on the same day or within a few consecutive days. This way, you can make your new boss aware of possible absences. They and their inbox will thank you.Start Building Your Network – Whether you’re looking to eventually by house, want to get setup in a new rental which offers a bit more permanence, or just want to know where the best restaurants are, and get settled into your new city, start building your network. Plenty of businesses offer get togethers at work, but consider building a network outside of your work life – go to meetups, attend local events, volunteer. Get in the habit of saying yes to new opportunities and activities. Making the effort can go a long way in enriching your new experience and helps to bring you more fully into experience your newfound digs. There is so much which goes into a move, whether its state-to-state, city-to-city, across the country, or around the world. But having a plan, making connections, and communicating openly with your new boss can help take some of the stress off moving. And whether you’ve negotiated a relocation package or are coordinating it on your own, there are plenty of ways to keep your eye on the prize and relax once you get to the other side and settled into your new job. Our brick-and-mortar locations are in San Francisco, New York, Berlin, and London, but we have clients around the world. Whether you’re looking for a permanent or a contract role, we’ve got you covered. Check out our current vacancies for opportunities or contact one of our recruitment consultants to learn more.  For our West Coast Team, call (415) 614 - 4999 or send an email to sanfraninfo@harnham.com.   For our Mid-West and East Coast Teams, call (212) 796 - 6070 or send an email to newyorkinfo@harnham.com. 

The Culture Rush of Working in the Pacific Northwest

When you think of the Pacific Northwest, images of Pike’s Place at Seattle’s Waterfront and Starbucks’ birthplace may come immediately to mind. Or shoot down the I-5 Corridor toward the Silicon Forest, Oregon’s tech hub nod and nickname, a play on Silicon Valley just a little further South down the I-5 to San Francisco. One thing which may stand out immediately on the drive is the ocean vista view. Relax and unwind with a good cup of coffee at a local shop, bask in the mild climate, and curl up with a good book when you get a bit of free time. Here, the mantra is to ‘work hard, play harder’. The Land of Tech Seattle, also known as Emerald City, is one of the largest tech hubs of the eight in the US seeking top tech talent. Available jobs are outpacing the skilled workers to fill them. While they could outsource to other countries, many businesses are choosing to offer remote work options. Commuting Like a Local For most people, commuting involves keeping your car gassed up and maintained whether your office is a few miles down the road or in the next town. But, in the Pacific Northwest, commuting is part of an active lifestyle, while at the same time lowering your carbon footprint. How?  Well, with plenty of walking, hiking, and biking trails as well as a robust public transportation system, it’s a breeze to get to work. And you’ll be helping to support a sustainable environment as well. Biking is the most popular commuting option. If you’re a biker or plan to become one, be sure your outfitted with good reflective gear, a waterproof windbreaker, and of course, a helmet. If you’re going sans car, don’t forget a waterproof back. After all, you’ll need something to carry your stuff in, right?  Work/Life Balance Whether it's because of the temperate climate, the mild winters, or the laid-back atmosphere, the work/life balance in Washington and Oregon offer a peaceful setting to refresh and recharge. Available communities to spend time with like-minded people and the abundance of tech-focused jobs available in the area offer an amazing work/life balance. Spending Time in Nature – plenty of islands, parks, and trails offer a chance to commune with nature whether your commuting to and from work or planning for the weekend. The Arts - Portland and Seattle are both known for their arts and culture scenes including art festivals, indie bands, symphonies, museums, and more besides.Activities – From hiking to surfing to mountain climbing to yoga, there’s an activity for everyone to enjoy, meet people, and make friends.  One Final Takeaway… The quirky culture of the Pacific Northwest is an exercise in the unexpected. Whether listening to local bands, dressing up in costume at random, taking advantage of sunbreaks when the clouds part, or hiking in the rain, the reward is a good meal with good friends. If you’re new to the area, don’t be shy. Invite yourself along. Our brick-and-mortar locations are in San Francisco, New York, Berlin, and London, but we have clients around the world. Whether you’re looking for a permanent or a contract role, we’ve got you covered. Check out our current vacancies for opportunities or get in touch to learn more. For our West Coast Team, call (415) 614 - 4999 or send an email to sanfraninfo@harnham.com.   For our Mid-West and East Coast Teams, call (212) 796 - 6070 or send an email to newyorkinfo@harnham.com. 

Computer Vision: Keeping an Eye on You

Computer Vision: Keeping an Eye on You

5 Animal Farm, Fahrenheit 451, and 1984 all wove tales of Big Brother watching. Remember when only Superman had X-ray vision and leapt tall buildings in a single bound? Well, as big tech grapples with the cause and effect of its place when it comes to facial recognition, security, and object detection, there’s a new superhero in town. Computer Vision.  The Eyes Which Sweep Our World While we still can’t be everywhere or see everything at once, we have eyes everywhere. Despite security cameras, motion detectors, satellites, computers, and smartphones, there are still dangers we may miss. So, by making our machines and computers visually-enabled using Artificial Intelligence, we significantly ramp up what we can see and how fast we can process it. Still growing, Computer Vision remains in an infant stage, given that autonomous cars still can’t differentiate between a rock and paper bag or worse, a person and a static object. Despite this, there are plenty of startups on the scene working toward a solution. As Artificial Intelligence increasingly blends with Biometric technology, it lends itself more easily to image recognition, allowing computers to correctly match fingerprints and facial patterns. But, no longer is it just matching two images. Now, it’s being taught to learn the difference between static images and liveness. This could prove invaluable for: Spotting weaponsSuspicious behaviorsDangerous object detection Safety Begins at Home With products such as security cameras prevailing within the security industry, businesses are hard at work creating and improving their products using the latest technologies.  One such company is working to boost the clarity of their home security cameras. Think grainy gray, blurry images from night vision options or overly bright and distorted in the day. Their camera chip will be HDR and will be able to take much clearer pictures even in low-light. At home, you might find this product in a doorbell camera which could prove quite useful for smart homes which offer the option of allowing service people into your home from a remote app on your phone.  And these cameras aren’t limited to your front door: ATMsIndoor/Outdoor camerasCCTV CamerasNumber Plate Recognition Cameras Though cameras have played a role in all of these areas for some time, the idea now is to keep them from being hacked and causing damage on both a product and a personal level. And like any type of Artificial Intelligence recognition system, these camera applications are created with advanced features to protect against hacking as well super speed processing of whether or not an object is an animal, a shadow, or some kind of inclement weather.  The best part? We’re only a few months away from products which can boost the benefits of many of available security cameras.  The Caveat of Image Recognition Systems More and more people around the world own security cameras, not the least of which is security personnel. With this increased level of ownership, the market is expected to have over $20 billion in revenue in less than five years. With such high demand, it’s no wonder only about five percent of footage ever gets viewed. But what if security professionals could navigate up to 80 video sources on a single server? What if the algorithms, analytics, and video processing worked with cameras of all types including, but not limited to:  Car dashboardsBody vestsDrone mounts With all these cameras surrounding us, the one thing to watch is that it is still humans who input the information the cameras use to process. When it comes to security professionals such as law enforcement, investigation, and government authorities its import to make sure the camera doesn’t discriminate or operate on bias. This an important issue even that even our most advanced intelligence agencies admits the algorithms for their facial recognition software are wrong about 15 percent of the time. However, one organization is working to improve and make these algorithms more ethically developed when it comes to image recognition as well as respecting individual privacy concerns.  As we navigate the growing pains of new technologies, it's important to understand these solutions are meant to ensure customers, the public, and communities can trust the solutions being created. If you’re looking for a new role in Computer Vision, take a look at our latest opportunities or get in touch with one of our expert consultants: For our West Coast Team, call (415) 614 - 4999 or send an email to sanfraninfo@harnham.com.   For our Mid-West and East Coast Teams, call (212) 796 - 6070 or send an email to newyorkinfo@harnham.com. 

Can Robots Think Like We Do? Computer Vision May Provide The Answer

Can Robots Think Like We Do? Computer Vision May Provide The Answer

It might surprise you to learn that we, humans, and machines, learn in much the same way.  When we “size up a person, product, or situation” or “eyeball” a distance or measurement, our brain makes lightning quick calculations and guesses. From this, we’re able to reason and making relational assessments of separate items bound together by their similarities. These tasks, we accomplish as early as about 18-months old. This is what we’re working on getting computers to do as well, though we’re not quite there, yet. And just as children learn block by block and bit by bit, so too can we teach AI.  Computer Vision, when it comes to the industry of robotics, offers one of the most challenging aspects of the latest technological advancements. Keeping Up Appearances Humans take in, process, acknowledge, and understand information in order to act, but the replication of this human software has been challenging. One way in which companies are meeting this challenge is combine Computer Vision  hardware with software algorithms and Deep Learning to help teach computers to better “see” objects and identify them accurately. But like the inner-workings of the human mind, Machine Vision and Deep Learning touch on several areas such as actual and predicted Computer Vision  reporting, the three-pronged recipe of a Computer Vision  system, and a product development ecosystem which gets to the root of the technology. According to one report, Computer Vision in robotics is expected to grow significantly over a 7-year period. Some of the markets expected to see growth and making major investments include semiconductor manufacturers, software companies, and product developers. The Building Blocks The Deep Learning Engineer is to Computer Vision  what the Data Engineer is to Data Science. In both regards, these professionals must begin with a solid foundation and build from there. In order to achieve 100% accuracy, hardware and software improvements must get underway and are tantamount to a fully developed ecosystem of Computer Vision product development. Acceleration of this rapidly evolving industry is due to a number of factors:  Wide availability of wireless networks to millions of people worldwide.Deep Learning advances.More cost-effective chipsets.Images that can be processed, analyzed, and transmitted more easily with availability of high bandwidth.Open source libraries help to build differentiated products without reinventing the wheel every time when it comes to infrastructure. On the flipside, there are some barriers to overcome as well. These include, but are not limited to: Cost issues due to the fact that most advances take place in university research labs or big companies.A skills shortage of  hardware engineers with Computer Vision and Deep Learning experience.A lack of recognized applications for these products, though the closest attempt may be self-driving cars. Though these considerations may seem unsurmountable in the short-term, they do provide plenty of opportunity for those in design automation. From the initial analysis to servers in the cloud, and high-level solutions to help computers make informed decisions. Looking Ahead So, what happens when we teach computers to think as we do? Will there be a battle for domination of one species over another? Probably not. But one of the biggest challenges to get to the next level in automated machine learning is understanding how much our thinking process involves predictions. This is important in fields which must coordinate information based on exterior data. This type of learning has impacted a variety of fields from online shopping to medical diagnosis. The massive amount of data available for consumption is staggering. Not only are Deep Learning and Machine Learning products of corporate and scientific solutions, they are also being put in the palm of our hand; our homes, our cars, and our handheld devices in order to help us more efficiently complete jobs which might be too slow going or for which mistakes are prone. If you’re interested in industrial robotics and the AI space, we may have a role for you. We specialize in junior and senior roles and have numerous opportunities in Computer Vision. Take a look at our current vacancies or get in touch with one of our expert consultants:  For our West Coast Team, call (415) 614 - 4999 or send an email to sanfraninfo@harnham.com.   For our Mid-West and East Coast Teams, call (212) 796 - 6070 or send an email to newyorkinfo@harnham.com.