Monday, July 18, 2005

Standards, standards and standards

The funny thing about standards is that there are so many. Except when you need to find some.

I've found CADD standards are a little like that. Everybody seems to have them but can you find them? In the "old days" most of us keep our "CADD standards" in a 3-ring notebook or some other type of binder. While these "standards"were easy to use and generally find they were (still are) a pain to keep up to date.

Along came the web and voila out went the book. We couldn't wait to get everything out on the internet. The problem is that while this made the distribution of our standards easier it made them a bit more difficult to use. Now instead of reaching for the "manual" you had to connect to the web (assuming the network was up). Now while I still prefer the "written word" we still have the same problem we had before -- How to keep the stuff up to date?

There has to be a good, easy and affordable way to create, collect, DOCUMENT and maintain cadd standards for publishing in both electronic or paper form. Any suggestions?

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

In State Outsourcing

It's funny you can't pick up a newspaper or magazine these days and not see an article about some company outsourcing this or that service to India or some offshore country. What's even funnier (if it wasn't so sad) is that you never read about an organization or business using the tools that make outsourcing possible to make their organization or business more competitive and productive.

For example say you have an open engineering position in the capital city of a state yet the best candidate for the position lives 200 miles away in another part of the state. Let’s also say that the person wants the job but for various reasons doesn't want to move. Should he or she have to? In today’s world I don’t see why it would be a requirement. Unless the job demands that you be in a specific location 24/7 (like running a hotdog stand) and you can always move the hotdog stand. Just about any “professional” engineering or computer job can now be done from just about anywhere. Given a high speed internet connection, a phone and the proper software you can do design and programming work from just about anywhere. For that matter you can manage hundreds of people doing just about anything from anywhere you want to. The days of looking out the office window to make sure everyone has his or her head down over a drafting board is long gone.

So the next time you think read an article about outsourcing this or that job give some thought by how you can take advantage of the tools and technology of outsourcing to expand your staff and fill vacancies while keeping the jobs and experience “AT HOME” or at least in the same state.

We all talk about the “virtual organization” it’s time to start building them!