E-learning is about people, not just saving company money

first_img Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. E-learning is about people, not just saving company moneyOn 13 May 2003 in Personnel Today E-learning will only prove beneficial to those companiesthat put people ahead of cost savings. Remember, what works in a traditionalclassroom is not necessarily going to work on a desktop in an isolated officeE-learning is thriving in the public sector, with the Government puttingtechnology at the heart of education. In January, education secretary Charles Clarke announced that schools wouldbe given an extra £280m for e-learning credits to be spent on approved digitalresources listed on the Government’s new online resources catalogue, calledCurriculum Online. The cash that is emerging from government coffers into e-learning isn’t justrestricted to local education authority and college budgets. Since December2002, more than 250,000 UK police officers have been accessing the force’sintranet, either with a CD-Rom or over the internet, learning about improvingdiversity and community race relations. Nevertheless, despite the advent of ‘anytime, anywhere’ training and itsvirtues – gains in savings, efficiency and productivity, for example –e-learning in the private sector just hasn’t had the same success as it hasexperienced in the public sector. According to The realities of corporate LMS 2003, new research frome-learning market analyst and consultancy eLearnity, many corporates viewe-learning with suspicion. The most significant barriers to its roll-out, theysay, are cultural acceptance, level of usage, data quality and lack of internalresources. In my opinion, the root of this suspicion can be linked to two commonmisconceptions: people tend to disregard the needs of the user, the mostimportant component of e-learning; and they see e-learning as a mere exercisein cost saving. These are misguided and they are intrinsically connected. How is it that the all-important user gets left out of the e-learningequation? The problem is that traditional learning is too often replaced withonline training with little diligence. I’ve seen organisations implementinge-learning material as if it were classroom-based: they set up a group ofemployees in a lab with PCs and tell them to train there for four hours a week.They are expected to just get on with it. There’s no live instructor, nointeraction among trainees – just a bunch of people in a room, using computers.This approach fails to acknowledge that some employees find it hard to learnin isolation. It also fails to help the practical learner overcome difficultiessuch as IT illiteracy and unfamiliar terminology. Taking this approach toe-learning will not only isolate the user, but will also give them theimpression that it is merely about downloading sophisticated programs. It is important to understand that when it comes to e-learning, that whatworks in a classroom is not necessarily going to work on a desktop. HR managersshould understand that some online courses might be inferior to traditionalclassroom training. Teaching interpersonal skills or first aid are goodexamples. It is crucial not to view e-learning as a mere exercise in cost saving. Thisundermines one of its biggest benefits – adding value to the business. It istrue that companies will save money by avoiding travel costs, lost work timeand scheduling conflicts. But at the same time, it is important to remember e-learning’sother real benefits. It offers effective learning for individuals at aconvenient time and at the same time supports business objectives. E-learning needs to be about aligning personal and corporate performancealong with driving up standards. It is also a powerful way of investing inemployees and ensuring they have the right knowledge to perform optimally. Above all, e-learning is an excellent means of supporting the organisation’soverall performance. To do this, HR managers need to identify theorganisation’s needs and understand the benefits they want to gain from thetechnology. Having a plan in place to invest in employees and matching it toyour organisation’s business needs is the key. Ultimately, getting the most out of e-learning requires the content to befocused on supporting business goals as well as individual development needs.Explore the potential benefits of e-learning rather than putting the emphasison cost savings. As aptly conveyed by Charles Clark, e-learning is “notjust about the kit, but about what you use it for and how you use it”. www.sap.com/educationBy Lisa Clark, Education services director, SAPUK Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more

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Position Descriptions of Christmas Past

first_img Are the multi-skilled, or the specialists among us, more future-proof & better equipped for organisational evolution?I believe there are two trains of thought on this. These days with organisations advocating agile or iterative processes, we have witnessed a shift in not just how we meet deadlines and time restraints but in our professional mentalities. Everything is quicker, processes more streamlined and we are always looking for ways to create new efficiencies as we all deal with ever changing goalposts on a day to day basis. With this we of course become more than just what our defined position descriptions would have meant 5 to 10 years ago and instead we must be broader skilled, dynamic, out-of-the-box problem solvers who have to turn our hands daily to tasks which historically wouldn’t have been ours.On the other hand, we have a growing trend of positions being broken up into several roles where in the past they may all have been taken care of by one position. An example of this could be the role of an internal recruiter. In years gone by, a recruiter would be responsible for the end to end process of finding candidates for any given role – engaging them, appropriately screening them, interviewing them, coordinating interviews with relevant hiring managers – and thereafter would also be responsible for “closing” or hiring. However these days, a large number of recruitment roles are broken up more distinctly into sourcing, recruiting and account managing.There is merit in both methods but I will be interested to see moving forward whether it is the specialist or the broader-skilled that demonstrates more staying power. Position Descriptions of Christmas PastShared from missc on 19 Dec 2014 in Personnel Today Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed.center_img Related posts:No related photos. Read full article last_img read more

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These were the largest Manhattan real estate loans in December

first_imgOne New York Plaza, One Madison Avenue and 605 Third Avenue top the list of largest real estate loans. (Brookfield, Wikimedia Commons, Fisher Brothers) The 10 largest Manhattan loans recorded in December totaled $2.1 billion, a slight decrease from November’s total.For the second month in a row (and the third time in four months), the biggest was a single-asset, single-borrower CMBS loan on an office building co-owned by Brookfield. The CMBS market produced three of the month’s top four, with the exception being a construction loan for SL Green’s next major office development.Here were the borough’s largest real estate loans in December:1) SASBrookfield | $835 millionWells Fargo, Goldman Sachs and BMO Harris Bank originated an $835 million loan for Manhattan’s southernmost skyscraper, One New York Plaza. Brookfield acquired the 50-story, 2.6 million-square-foot office building in 2006 as part of its acquisition of Trizec Properties, and in 2016 sold a 49 percent stake to Chinese sovereign fund China Investment Corporation and 16 percent to AEW Capital Management. Morgan Stanley occupies more than half of the total space.2) Mad money | $425 million (recorded amount)SL Green Realty landed a $1.25 billion construction loan for its One Madison Avenue office redevelopment, of which $425 million was recorded in property records last month. The loan was provided by a consortium of banks including Wells Fargo, TD Bank, Goldman Sachs, Bank of America, Deutsche Bank and Axos Bank. In May the developer sold 49.5 percent of its interest in the 1.4 million-square-foot, $2.3 billion project to Hines and the National Pension Service of Korea.3) Fisher price | $309 million (senior debt)Morgan Stanley provided a $309 million CMBS refinancing for Fisher Brothers and JPMorgan Asset Management’s 605 Third Avenue, a 44-story, 1.1-million-square-foot office tower near Grand Central Terminal and the United Nations. In October, JPMorgan put its 49 percent stake on the market, aiming for a price that would value the building at about $600 million. JPMorgan bought the stake in 2015 from Rockpoint Group.4) Elo rating | $141 millionJack Elo’s Elo Organization secured $141 million in CMBS financing from Citi Real Estate Funding for a trio of Diamond District office properties. The loan financed Elo’s $110 million acquisition of 15 West 47th Street from the Chetrit family and also replaced debt on 151 West 46th Street and 48 West 48th Street, which the landlord has owned since 2001. In addition to numerous jewelry industry tenants, major tenants in the portfolio include Cuban restaurant Havana Central.5) Best… bye | $122 million (senior debt)Silverstein Properties landed a $171 million refinancing from JPMorgan Chase for 529 Fifth Avenue in Midtown, of which $122 million hit public records. The 283,000-square-foot, 20-story building’s retail tenant, Best Buy, is set to move across the street to Moinian Group’s 535 Fifth Avenue this year, and anchor office tenant Citrin Cooperman has announced that it will depart in September. The landlord will undertake major renovations following these vacancies.6) *Cooperative* Bank | $70 millionNational Consumer Cooperative Bank provided $69.9 million in leasehold financing for Rivercross, a 365-unit cooperative at 531 Main Street on Roosevelt Island. The former Mitchell-Lama building was privatized in 2014, making it the first privatized co-op on the island.7) Pinnacle portfolio | $64 millionJoel Wiener’s Pinnacle Group, listed on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange as the Zarasai Group, raised $64 million through a new Israeli bond series secured by four New York multifamily properties. These include the 84-unit 3647 Broadway and 79-unit 3657 Broadway in Manhattan, as well as the 90-unit 86-06 35th Avenue in Queens and the 53-unit 143 Linden Boulevard in Brooklyn. The Series E bonds have an interest rate of 5.45 percent and mature in 2025.8) Mortgageside | $51 millionPrincipal Life Insurance Company provided a $51 million refinancing for Morningside Gardens, a six-building, 982-unit co-op complex between LaSalle Street and West 123rd Street in Morningside Heights. According to property records, the loan replaces a $38.5 million package provided by Wells Fargo in 2011.9) Chetrit check | $49 millionChetrit Group received a $49.25 million senior inventory loan from Axos Bank for 51 unsold condo units at 49 Chambers Street in Tribeca. Also, Silverstein Properties issued a $41.5 million mezzanine loan for the units. Loan proceeds were used to pay off part of the 97-unit condo project’s existing loans, which were issued by SL Green Realty in early 2019 and later sold to Silverstein.10) Mystery mansion? | $32 millionFirst Republic Bank provided $32 million in financing to an anonymous LLC to fund its $26 million acquisition of a five-story garage at 332 West 11th Street in the West Village, as well as future development on the site. No plans have been filed with the Department of Buildings. Curbed reported in 2019 that the seller, Jack Jakub of Apple Parking, was seeking nearly $50 million for the site, dubbed “one of the last mega-mansion opportunities in the West Village.”  TagsManhattanMortgagesReal Estate Finance Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on LinkedinShare via Email Share via Shortlinkcenter_img Share via Shortlinklast_img read more

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Tephra analysis of sediments from Midge Lake (South Shetland Islands) and Sombre Lake (South Orkney Islands), Antarctica

first_imgLake sediment cores from Midge Lake, Livingston Island, South Shetland Islands and Sombre Lake, Signy Island, South Orkney Islands were analysed for volcanic tephra using light microscopy and magnetic susceptibility. Cores were dated using published 14C and 210Pb chronologies. Electron probe microanalyses of discrete tephra glass shards were undertaken to characterise the tephra geochemically in order to identify possible source volcanoes and refine tephrochronological data for the region. Results identified five tephra horizons in a core from Midge Lake. Four of these tephra at 3–4 cm, 8–9 cm (c. 450 yr BP), 15–16 cm (c. 755 ± 105 yr BP) and 21–22 cm (c. 1340 ± 100 yr BP) consisted of sodic basaltic to basalticandesitic glasses, containing abundant labradoritic feldspar inclusions, and a single ‘acidic’ tephra was found at 2–3 cm. Seven tephra horizons were identified in the Sombre Lake core including three basaltic tephra at 3–9 cm (30 ± 4 yr BP to 125 ± 25 yr BP), 31–32 cm and 44–46 cm (1325 ± 50 14C yr BP) and four acidic tephra at 21–22 cm and 24–25 cm, 33–36 cm (c. 1021 14C yr BP) and 54–56 cm (c. 1450 14C yr BP). These are the first tephra to be identified from the South Orkney Islands. Geochemical and grain size analysis indicated that the analysed Midge Lake tephra were derived from the Quaternary Deception Island volcano. Smaller grain sizes, congruent geochemical data and prevailing wind directions also indicate this volcano as the likely source of Sombre Lake tephra. Results highlight the importance of establishing geochemical consistency between tephra deposited across wide geographical areas, during apparently synchronous time periods, if they are to be used in a regional tephrochronology.last_img read more

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Interannual variation in the diets of two albatross species breeding at South Georgia: implications for breeding performance

first_imgThe diet and breeding performance of Grey-headed Albatrosses Thalassarche chrysostoma and Black-browed Albatrosses Diomedea melanophris breeding at Bird Island, South Georgia, were studied simultaneously during the chick-rearing period between 1996 and 2000. When samples for all years were combined, cephalopods and crustaceans were the main components in the diet of Grey-headed and Black-browed Albatrosses, respectively. However, their diets exhibited interannual variations. Cephalopods were the most important component in the diet of Grey-headed Albatrosses between 1996 and 1999 (60-75% by mass) but decreased significantly in 2000 (17%), when crustaceans dominated (61%). The Black-browed Albatross diet varied greatly, with cephalopods being the most important component in 1996 (49% by mass) and 1997 (48%), fish in 1998 (32%) and 1999 (40%), and crustaceans in 2000 (63%). In 1998 and 2000 there was a significant change in the cephalopod species present in the diet of both albatross species, when their breeding success was low. The consumption of the ommastrephid Martialia hyadesi was significantly and positively correlated with Grey-headed Albatross breeding success. For Black-browed Albatrosses significant correlations were found between its consumption of the Icefish Champsocephalus gunnari and breeding success, and between its consumption of M. hyadesi and M. hyadesi CPUE (Catch per Unit Effort). These findings suggest that Grey-headed Albatrosses are more reliant on Antarctic Polar Frontal Zone prey (M. hyadesi and Lamprey Geotria australis) whereas Black-browed Albatrosses are more dependent on Antarctic prey (Icefish and Antarctic Krill Euphausia superba). The differences between diets of Grey-headed and Black-browed Albatrosses breeding on different islands of the Southern Ocean showed that Grey-headed Albatrosses feed more on oceanic cephalopods (e.g. M. hyadesi) whereas Black-browed Albatrosses feed primarily on shelf fish (e.g. Blue Whiting Micromesistius australis), suggesting that albatross diets are likely to be influenced by the geographical position of those islands, albatross foraging preference and prey availability.last_img read more

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Using likelihood to test for Lévy flight search patterns and for general power-law distributions in nature

first_img1. Ecologists are obtaining ever-increasing amounts of data concerning animal movement. A movement strategy that has been concluded for a broad variety of animals is that of Lévy flights, which are random walks whose step lengths come from probability distributions with heavy power-law tails. 2. The exponent that parameterizes the power-law tail, denoted µ, has repeatedly been found to be within the Lévy range of 1 < µ ≤ 3. Here, we use Monte Carlo simulations to show that the methods used to infer the value of µ are inaccurate. 3. The widely used method of simply logarithmically transforming a standard histogram of movement lengths has been shown elsewhere to be problematic. Here, we further demonstrate how poor it is, and show that it actually biases estimates of µ towards the Lévy range of 1 < µ ≤ 3, and can bias estimates towards the value of µ = 2. Thus, previous reports of animals undergoing Lévy flights, or of µ being close to the reported optimal value of µ = 2, may simply be a consequence of the bias generated by this method. 4. A technique that has been recently recommended is to logarithmically bin the data and then normalize the resulting histogram. We show that this technique also produces biased results, and suffers from similar problems as those just outlined, although to a lesser extent. 5. The proposed solution is to use likelihood. We find that calculating the maximum likelihood estimate of µ gives the most accurate results (having also tested the rank/frequency method). Likelihood has the further advantages of being the easiest method to implement, and of yielding accurate confidence intervals. Results are applicable to power-law distributions in general, and so are not restricted to inference of Lévy flights. 6. We also re-analyse a data set of grey seal movements that was originally reported to demonstrate Lévy flight behaviour. Using Akaike weights, we test four models, and find no evidence for Lévy flights. Overall, our results suggest that Lévy flights might not be as common as previously thought.last_img read more

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Tropospheric clouds in Antarctica

first_imgCompared to other regions, little is known about cloudsin Antarctica. This arises in part from the challengingdeployment of instrumentation in this remote and harshenvironment and from the limitations of traditional satellite passive remote sensing over the polar regions. Yet clouds have a critical influence on the ice sheet’s radiation budget and its surface mass balance. The extremely low temperatures, absolute humidity levels, and aerosol concentrations found in Antarctica create unique conditions for cloud formation that greatly differ from those encountered in other regions, including the Arctic. During the first decade of the 21st century, new results from field studies, the advent of cloud observations from spaceborne active sensors, and improvements in cloud parameterizations in numerical modelshave contributed to significant advances in our understanding of Antarctic clouds. This review covers fourmain topics: (1) observational methods and instruments,(2) the seasonal and interannual variability of cloudamounts, (3) the microphysical properties of clouds andaerosols, and (4) cloud representation in global and regional numerical models. Aside from a synthesis of the existing literature, novel insights are also presented. A new climatology of clouds over Antarctica and the Southern Ocean is derived from combined measurements of the CloudSat and Cloud‐Aerosol Lidar and Infrared Pathfinder SatelliteObservation (CALIPSO) satellites. This climatology is usedto assess the forecast cloud amounts in 20th century globalclimate model simulations. While cloud monitoring overAntarctica from space has proved essential to the recentadvances, the review concludes by emphasizing the needfor additional in situ measurements.last_img read more

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Impact of climate change on Antarctic krill

first_imgAntarctic krill Euphausia superba (hereafter ‘krill’) occur in regions undergoing rapid environmental change, particularly loss of winter sea ice. During recent years, harvesting of krill has increased, possibly enhancing stress on krill and Antarctic ecosystems. Here we review the overall impact of climate change on krill and Antarctic ecosystems, discuss implications for an ecosystem-basedfisheries management approach and identify criticalknowledge gaps. Sea ice decline, ocean warming and other environmental stressors act in concert to modify the abundance, distribution and life cycle of krill. Although some of these changes can have positive effects on krill, their cumulative impact is most likely negative. Recruitment, driven largely by the winter survival of larval krill, is probably the population parameter most susceptible to climate change. Predicting changes to krill populations is urgent, because they will seriously impact Antarctic ecosystems. Such predictions, however, are complicated by an intense inter-annual variability in recruitment success and krill abundance. To improve the responsiveness of the ecosystem-based management approach adopted by the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR),critical knowledge gaps need to be filled. In addition to a better understanding of the factors influencing recruitment, management will require a better understanding of the resilience and the genetic plasticity of krill life stages, and a quantitative understanding of under-ice and benthic habitat use. Currentprecautionary management measures of CCAMLR should be maintained until a better understanding of these processes has been achieved.last_img read more

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Measuring turbulent dissipation rates beneath an Antarctic ice shelf

first_imgMicrostructure shear, temperature, and conductivity observations from a tethered profiler have been made beneath George VI Ice Shelf to examine processes driving vertical heat flux in the oceanic turbulent boundary layer. Such measurements at the ice-ocean interface within the cavity of an ice shelf are unprecedented, requiring the deployment of a profiler through 400-m deep access boreholes. We describe the drilling technique developed for this purpose, which involves using a brush to widen the deepest section of the borehole, and as evidence that this novel technique can be successful, we present shear and thermal variance spectra from the profiler. These spectra indicate that dissipation rates of turbulent kinetic energy, from which heat flux can be calculated, can be resolved beneath an ice shelf as well as they can be in open water.last_img read more

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