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Irony of mid-aged Indian IT professionals facing layoffs

Indian IT professionals layoffs - thecloudblog.in

“While the world sleeps, destiny plans the next move to take”. This quote seems so true for all middle aged Indian IT professionals in the current layoff situation. Internet, newspapers and other communication mediums are flooded with info related to IT professionals in India being laid off. The cause of this situation is actually the IT professionals themselves. They didn’t keep up with the changing scenario in the technology world. The buzz words “Big Data”, “IoT”, “Automation” were everywhere but most of the IT professionals ignored them, especially the middle-aged IT professionals. The destiny was planning the next move in this fast changing industry, but the professionals were busy in drinking beer, watching movies, shopping in malls. They could not figure out the storm coming their way. Now, as the storm has struck, there is no way to run but succumb to the destiny.

The game of numbers

“Greed” is the next main driving factor against all these layoffs. Indian IT companies are facing a lot of pressure to maintain their balance sheet and P&L statements and show profitability in the coming quarters. In the current situation, it has become very difficult to keep up with the projections shown to investors. Getting new projects in today’s scenario has become a herculean task for the Indian IT majors. Moreover, the big companies in US, UK, Australia are themselves looking for new ways to increase profitability in terms of Automation, Robotics, Data Analytics. As they themselves are discovering new ways to enhance their profits, so there is no point generating new work for Indian IT majors. Clearly, there is a cycle of increasing the numbers going on which is having adverse effects on the Indian IT sector.

Can Indian IT professionals fight them off?

It is very unlikely that Indian IT professionals can fight with the companies like Wipro, HCL, Infosys, Accenture etc. Indian IT professionals do not have any umbrella from Indian government to protect their interest in such situations. Being a major contributor to India GDP, Indian IT companies do have many privilege in terms of tax breaks, but there are no privileges to the professionals who work for these majors.

Reason for huge number of Indian IT professionals layoffs

The number of layoffs may be huge in comparison to what has been projected. This will be due to the widespread panic in the industry. The companies who didn’t have planned for it, will start planning for the bad days ahead and may start laying off. There will be few companies who will take this as an opportunity to lay of few employees whom they wanted to layoff but due to different reasons were delaying their decision. The pressure will mount on the employees who will be retained as the tasks performed by the laid off employees will be distributed among them. There could also be layoffs if the productivity of employees goes up. Increased productivity is clearly visible and will work as a deterrant for few employees but opportunity for employers. Such kind of situations usually create a cycle which doesn’t end easily and result in mounted numbers.

Check if you have prepared well in advance

If you are financially secure with no EMI and less monthly expenses, then you can consider yourself prepared well in case of any adverse situation.

But you will find very few people who are well prepared for such a situation as most of them in this age have Home Loan EMI, Car Loan EMI and School fees as mandatory monthly expenses. The situation will be critical for those who get laid off with high monthly commitments.

In case, you are not prepared well, then you need to become emotionally strong and have to possess a strong will to transform yourself to get out of this situation.

How to prepare for the coming layoff wave without being hurt?

Now, the question arises if you can survive this layoff wave without being hurt.

Yes, you can do it with your mental strength.

It is evident that the trend will continue and a lot many professionals will have to face this difficult truth. If we can evolve and learn the new technologies around and prepare our self for the new opportunities, then we still stand a golden chance. It will not be an easy shift but will be the only chance to stay in the race. We need to fight with our full strength and face off the situation like a winner.

For a mid-aged professional, it is not easy to learn the new technologies like IoT, Data Analytics, Robotics or Automation. In case if you feel like not getting into new technologies, then its important you look at the alternates available as per your interest & passion. One thing is for sure, there are very less areas where you could earn your bread & butter in a short span of time.

I am trying to list a few areas which you can explore to use your current knowledge. Choose them as per your interest & passion and don’t expect to get the returns in a short span of time. You also need to be prepared to work hard to succeed in these areas. Just imagine if you have started as a fresher who need to get through difficult APIs before having the final code is ready. Also make sure that you take a wise decision while selecting the alternate career.

1. Blogger

You must have been to multiple blogs on the internet to get different kind of information and thought if you could find time then you will start writing yourself. If you think that this is something which is your cup of tea, then don’t think twice but start honing your skills to take on the world. There was a time when newspaper was the only medium to get your voice across. In this information age, your audience is not too far; just need to have that bent of mind to reach them. “Pen is mightier than sword” is changing to “Keyboard is mightier than the nuclear bomb”. The recent ransom ware attack is the best example which shows the power of keyboard. So, don’t shy away from your interest and start writing.

2. IT Trainer

Are you inclined towards making the next generation ready? Then Trainer could be your alternate profession. Although, there is high demand for the new technologies, but the basics of computing have still not died. Even today, every computer student need to learn the basics before they could move ahead to learn the advanced technologies. A lot of new schools/colleges are getting

3. IT Consultant

A little difficult field to choose as you need to have good contacts before you could be hired as an IT consultant. If you see yourself providing services to big corporate as independent IT consultant, then be ready for a long wait. The most important skill here is networking which should be your forte. You need to be passionate about making contacts especially with the influential people. You also need to be ready to explore every area which

4. Social Media Marketer

Lately, this has also been a key area for the big companies to indulge IT people. Internet has become today’s TV. The advertising on internet is considered more important than TV channels. It proves how important internet is for these companies. Similar to advertising, social media portals also needs to be flooded with companies information. This has also been considered a well known skills where IT people with marketing skills are getting involved. If you think that you have developed marketing skills in your career in terms of Presentations, RFPs, SOP etc. and this excites you more than other fields, then you can plan to get into this.

5. SEO Expert

A technical field where you need to understand how search engine works and how to beat them to bring your rankings to the top. An exciting field but difficult to get assignments. It goes perfect in combination with Blogging, as bloggers need to make themselves visible on internet.

Today’s situation is definitely not a good one, but this is something which mid-aged Indian IT professionals are going through.  It’s time to create a personal action plan similar to the one which you created for your projects.

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Computing with Skin and Mind – Facebook Building 8 Initiative

thecloudblog.in

Using our skin and mind to control computing looks like a science fiction coming true. But this is the truth which is currently being invented at Building 8 of Facebook. Although futuristic but this is what the future of computing will be. Moreover, having Facebook behind such a vision removes all doubts about its feasibility. Facebook only works on those technologies which affect the larger population on the planet whether its facebook, messenger or internet for all. Their decision to buy Whatsapp also came for the fact that the most of population of earth was using Whatsapp.

Impact on human race

Although, current focus is to help specially able people to use this technology. But the larger picture is going to be different when this technology spreads to the whole population. We are in for some healthy ways for our eyes and fingers as it will aid us in having communication with computer without looking at a screen or exerting our fingers. Similar to other technological advancements, this will also be adopted slowly but adoption will increase with the passage of time.

Slow Adoption but large impact

Like our senior generation who still don’t want to use computers, the adoption of such embedded technology will also be fairly difficult. The change will take some time for us to adapt to such advancements. But it will be the kids whose fascination of such new technologies will make them adopt it fast. In the initial days, we might just have signals sent to brain as text but as this technology will develop the change from text to images will not be a distant dream. It will be something similar to computers which changed from text to image based and got widely accepted.

Do humans need it

This is an attempt to create super humans who can calculate like computers, have knowledge like computers. We certainly don’t need to become super humans as we are programmed to be happy with whatever we possess. Such things are being invented as today’s entrepreneurs have exorbitant resources to explore such complicated areas. This might help us in exploring the universe, but why to get computing embedded in our skin and brain. The purpose of such technological advancements must be well laid so that we are not adversely affected.

Some Side Effects

Every good thing comes with its own side effects, and this is no different. This is going to affect our intelligence directly. We might stop thinking about daily trivial tasks and become dependent on artificial intelligence. The recent study on use of Satellite navigation shows that use of navigation switches off the navigation part of our brain (Info link).  Similar to this, if we have computers wired into our nervous system then they will surely make us dependent on them. Just imagine, you are asking computer to know how much water you should drink before every glass to remain healthy. Although, it looks like a positive direction but similar to the Navigation case, we might be putting that area of brain to rest which directs us to drink water appropriately. This is just one example, I am sure it will have real bad side effects on our brain functioning.

I know it’s coming and will eventually rule us but still we have time to build protocols for the next generations so that they don’t succumb to computing power and keep using natural senses.

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Data Cloud – A Social Networking Approach (data.world)

Data Cloud

The social networks have been there which cater to our personal/professional requirements to connect. Although, they are promising and at the top but still there is a missing element in them which is currently being explored. The exploration has taken us to have subject specific/niche networks. Niche networks are those networks which cater to specific subjects. One of such network is data.world. It is meant for the data hungry people who are looking for data or would like to share data. This network gives us functionality similar to twitter, Facebook but restricts you to have data related themes and discussions. I have termed it as Data Cloud as it can also be used to store data privately as well.

Emergence of content specific networks

Facebook, Twitter, G+ are crowded network and searching relevant information on such networks has become a headache. All these networks fulfill our requirement to connect but also give us a lot of noise in terms of advertisements, hollow posts etc. Niche/Content specific networks are here to fill that void and give us a space where we can go to look for relevant information. Another value which such networks provide is the easy reach to specific audience. Facebook’s value is from the way it connects you with friends and families. But when it comes to business/professional connect, it is only an advertisement platform for promotion. The content specific networks like data.world, slideshare.com have understood this need and given us these niche platforms.

Data Cloud – Platform for sharing data

We are already aware of having storage available on the cloud for personal/professional use. It is all unstructured data which we store on the cloud today. Data Cloud refers to having subject specific data with relevant details so that it could be reused. It gives us the opportunity to create data specific group which can be accessed publicly. It has features similar to twitter which lets you follow individuals and groups. Other useful feature is that you can even have the licensing terms defined for the data you share.

Simplified Data Views

As we have a social network dedicated to Data, so it also makes sense to have the data displayed in a simplified way. Data Cloud – ‘data.world’ shows all the data in simplest form which can easily be browsed. Whatever is the format of data you upload, it will show the data in specified configured forms. You don’t need any extra software to have a look at the data uploaded on data.world.

SQL Query execution

If you are in data business, then you must be in love with SQL. And amazingly, data.world does give the flexibility to run SQL queries on the data even if its uploaded as excel, pdf, csv or any other format. So, no need to run manual filters on excel, just execute the SQL to achieve your dataset.

Aspiring Data Scientists

If you are an aspiring data scientist, then there is no better place than data.world to hang around. You can get loads of data to fiddle and many good data scientists to follow. Instead of looking for sample data on the internet, now there is one place where you can search for the required sample data which is real. Statistical analytics is the most important skill for a data scientist, and it can only be achieved through experience. When you have a lot of data to play around, it gives you confidence to achieve your level of perfection. So, join this new community to have your share of experience.

It’s the rise of niche networks which is making a big mark on the internet industry. I am sure there are many more areas which are currently being explored and will have its own impact in the near future.

 

New Terms
Hollow posts- posts which have no significant or real worth; The social networks today are crowded with posts which have no significant value for us but they eat away our time.
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Messaging Cloud, a new marketing phenomenon

The Cloud BlogAs a small startup, it is always difficult to find out budget for marketing. Marketing is the most important thing a business needs to reach its customers. But when it comes to budget allocation for marketing, it always seems less. We need to do a lot of research to reach the right customers and to find out the best medium to communicate. Any miss on the decision taken can put the whole campaign at risk as the cost may go up or the target audience might not be reached.

Fortunately in today’s times, we have cloud/internet to the rescue. Now-a-days, we have multiple options available to reach out to our customers. The availability of internet has made everything affordable and customized as per your business needs. A few techniques mentioned below are now available on the cloud and are more affordable.

Email Marketing

Email has been a very reliable medium for marketing your products and services. Although, there are many options available to the receiver to filter out the promotional messages but still most of the organizations are still using it to promote their products. Earlier, organizations used to have their own servers to send promotional mails. But with Cloud, the situation has changed. Such services are available online and with customization. Mailchimp, Zoho etc.

Social Advertising

Another way of advertising has emerged after the advent of facebook is social advertising. Now, a days most of the social networks have grown to such an extent that they have subscribers which exceeds the number of people on single continent. As their reach has grown, so have their impact. These social networks offer advertising on their networks for promoting your business, products, services etc. These seems to have become more relevant as most of the people go to social networks everyday to connect with their friends and family. A recent addition to social advertising is Linkedin which has recently started offering advertising on their network.

Blogs

Another medium to connect with the customers is through blogs. All those business who understand the usage of blogging have added blogs to their business websites. Business can share relevant and valuable information through blogs to connect with their customers. It is judged as the cheapest medium to keep customers coming back to your website. You should always share information relevant to your business as that is what will be your customer’s interests.

Messaging Cloud

A new medium to connect with customers which has recently gained a lot of limelight is through cloud on digital mediums like browsers, mobile notifications, messengers. This makes the communication a whole lot easier and less expensive. As most of the communications have become over-crowded, it’s the requirement to advent new ways to communicate with customers. Showing messages outside the browser(Chrome, Firefox etc.), notifications on mobile, messages on the messengers through chatbots are making it the most favorite medium to communicate. Other than the benefits of these new ways, it is the cheapest medium also.

It is for every business to understand what is best for them to connect with their customers. As the stakes are always high on a campaign, the business needs to play it right everytime.

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Amazon Dash – IoT in the simplest form

The Cloud Blog - Amazon Dash - IoT Button

The Cloud Blog – Dash Button

Now a days, we hear a lot about automation, robotics, IoT, cloud services, digital transformation.  All these terms are not easy even for a techy guy to digest then how can we expect a common man to understand them. For a common man, its just another technological advancement happening in the background. Amazon gave it a thought and has brought the complexity out of one their innovations which is Amazon Dash – IoT Button.

IoT Button – Easy way to order stuff

Amazon Dash – Iot Button is so simple and easy to understand, program and use that a common man can use it with maximum utilization. It is one such small IoT device which can assist you in remembering things which we usually forget. The most common use depicted by Amazon is to order on Amazon.com through this button. You can put this button close to your washing machine and use it to order consumables related to it. Similarly, it will be for kitchen and office stuff also. I would say that these are easy things to consider for such an innovation.

Innovative ways to use Amazon Dash

One of the most important use which I think of it as a safety switch. Anybody can carry it along with himself/herself and press it in case of any adversity to send message to the dear ones. This can be very useful for people who needs to travel late night or to far off places. You might not have a chance sometimes to give a call to your loved ones but this button can be savior in such cases. It can also be used by elderly people to alert their loved ones in case of emergency.

Another innovative use of this button could be to call a waiter at a restaurant. Instead, the waiter keeps on watching the customer at all times for a call, a button placed on the table can be utilized to order. There have been innovations where iPad is being used to order stuff from the table but that takes away the simplicity out of the restaurant. Having IoT button will keep it simple and away from digital influence.

I like the way Amazon is leading the industry with its innovative products. These innovations are the key for them to become no. 1.