You may have more to lose than your vacation snaps...

Massive security breaches seem to be making the headlines on a regular basis, from celebrity photos to the personal data of millions of LinkedIn, Yahoo and Ashley Madison customers.

But, the issue may be even more serious and widespread than previously thought. According to this article by Tim Burke, Director of IT at Bettercloud, 43% of companies experienced a data breach in 2014.

This isn’t just a professional issue though, with more than 12 million people annually falling victim to identity fraud, losing an average of $5,000. Unfortunately, the question is increasingly moving from “If… ?” to “When… ?”

There are a couple straight forward security measures that can be enforced both in the workplace and in our personal lives to mitigate the risk though.

For example, implementing 2-Factor Authentication and understanding the basics of phishing emails go a long way to protecting your organization and yourself. As IT professionals, it’s important to spread awareness and change the mindset of those around us.

What are some of your favourite ways to protect your personal data?

Principal Bruce MacDonald is a senior executive with extensive experience in finance, operations and information technology. View his profile.

"Permatemps" are here to stay

I came across a new term recently, used in this article to describe the employment trend in Europe. “Permatemps” describes those permanently in temporary or contract work.

It appears that the concept of “Permatemps” has hit Alberta as well. Latest Stats Can figures show the province lost 24,000 full-time jobs in January but added 25,000 part-time.

As mentioned in the New York Times piece, this rise in part-time work is the result of a troubled economy that has left employers wary of taking on the liability of full-time employees in tenuous times.

For us in the Interim Management business, this is nothing new. It’s a dynamic that fuels opportunities for senior executives looking to contract their services. However, of interest to me is that the “Permatemp” concept has become cross-generational, occurring in multiple industries and for all levels of wage earners.

I’m afraid our younger friends need to get used to this trend as it is not going away anytime soon. Where I see a difference at least in Canada is that if you have the right combination of education and practical experience, your job security may still be debatable but your income need not take the average 19% hit they say is the case in the EU.

There is an acceptable trade-off for employers and workers that both should appreciate. For the employer, they limit their long-term obligation or liability if the person doesn’t work out or there isn’t the anticipated growth for their business. The obligation for compensation beyond hourly or daily wages is much less. They can limit unproductive “down” time by being very work scope/project focused.

On the other hand, for the worker, they can invest more of themselves over a shorter period of time knowing that there will be a respite ahead. They can transfer their skills to different companies and cultures, have a broader learning experience and build a stronger resume. Over time they will be able to up their hourly ask to beyond what they would make as a full-time employee.

Lead, follow or get out of the way. The “Permatemp” concept is here to stay.

Principal Mark Olson provides leadership during a period of transition, rapid growth or crisis operating as Interim CEO, President or Executive Director. View his profile.

What's New

Join us on March 3rd, 2017 for a 60-minute discussion on protecting your business online, presented by Lydija Dahl. Hosted in partnership with the ATB Entrepreneur Centre, this session will cover protecting your business, employee and customer data. For more information, and to register, visit the ATB Entrepreneur Centre website here
Osborne is pleased to be providing Interim CEO services for Glenbow Ranch Park Foundation. Through a unique partnership with the Government of Alberta, the Glenbow Ranch Park Foundation (GRPF) supports the operations and development of Glenbow Ranch Provincial Park one of Alberta’s newest provincial parks located between Calgary and Cochrane.
Welcome, Bruce MacDonald! Bruce is a senior executive with extensive experience in finance, operations and information technology. He has an established track record of delivering best practice operational results, growth strategies, and improved bottom line at both established and emerging organizations through revenue improvements, cost efficiencies, customer service and meregers and acquisitions. View his profile here.

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