Thursday, June 10, 2010

v:Came, v:Saw, v:Drunk, v:Drunk some more, v:Go home now!

Well tonight was Velrada's first birthday and once again, a fantastic event with great attendance from clients, partners, friends and recent recruits.

Perth is such a brilliant place for catching up with people. I saw people tonight I hadn't seen for years, and yet we picked up as though it was just yesterday.

There was a great buzz and as well as drinking and enjoying the company of some really great people, it seemed that there was a real hunger for more knowledge about Velrada's Information Management capabilities and also the complement around environmental issues.

Several clients discussed at length the challenges they were experiencing in collecting data, verifying/cleansing/adapting, then trying to find one place to store, analyse and report from. Dom Nolan, Director and Environmental Practice Lead was very proud to announce the launch of Hara, a hosted software solution which provides the data storage, analysis and reporting capabilities that businesses need today in order to manage their compliance requirements related to environmental and sustainability issues.

Hara is a global leading solution in this space, so linked with the specialist capabilties that Dom's practice provides, we now have a real solution available to Australian businesses. The key is that the solution is hosted, so setup, configuration and complexities around infrastructure and security are all a thing of the past.

We're now working on an integration platform to ease the workflow surrounding data collection and validation to ensure that quality of data is front of mind when importing into the Hara platform.

On another note, we started the process today of hiring our first candidate through the Australian Computer Society Foundation. This is a program that gets experienced graduates into professional placements, so they can start to augment some of their prior work experience. More on this soon. But I'm very proud that we're going to make a real practical contribution to the up and coming graduate community. As I always say, investing in the young people that are coming through, is the long term solution to our constant shortage of skilled consulting people.

So, Ciao 4 Now, and more from me soon.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

v:Launch - Great attendance - Some thoughts and tips

Well it looks like we got 40 people attending at the v:Launch careers night. It was fantastic to see so many of you there. It was very important to the team at Velrada to be able to share our vision for the future and how that involves people from the graduate community as well as those with many years of experience.

It's pretty clear to every business leader in WA that skilled people are going to get harder to come by. So Velrada's vision of investing in the future, by providing training and investment in people is a well thought out strategy. Remember the message we attached at v:Launch for junior to mid-level people? "I am the future!", that's the way younger people and recent graduates should be thinking, in my view.

If you're at the early stage of your career it can be frustrating trying to get an opportunity. It becomes tempting to try and grab anything that floats by! So my advice is to stay focused on the kind of opportunity that will advance your career in the direction that YOU want it to go. If you stay focused it gets easier to communicate clearly about what you are looking for, so employers will then have a very good idea of where you are going and how they can help.

Now, it has to be said that enthusiasm and confidence will take you a long way, charm can maybe even take you further...but there is obviously no substitue for experience, even a little experience. I met with a representative of the Australian Computer Society this week who explained about foundation opportunities, where they work with employers to get graduates into positions that will help them to grow. Universities also have various programs to drive students to work experience opportunities, and I suggest embracing these whole-heartedly.

The follow-up then, is to document that experience clearly and in detail in your resume. I've seen a few resumes this week that talk so much about what "the project" was about and what it did. Sure, I need to know that, but I need to know specifics of what you did on that project. Were their opportunities for you to provide leadership, solve tough challenges, overcome communication issues with a customer, write documents, run a presentation and if yes to these, then for how long.

Writing a resume is hard, in fact I think it's as hard when you have many years of experience as it is when you have only a bit. When you have years of experience you have to know what to leave out, but when you're starting out, you have to find ways to expand on the bit that you have. A good way to expand is to describe what you learned and how it can be applied to future opportunities - in your oppinion. So practice this and have others provide a review

Well I'll close this one by saying thanks to everyone who attended. We truly do value your time and its encouraging to see you all investing in all of our futures, yours, Velradas and Western Australia's too.

Take care and keep learning!