The Minor League : Little Data

In this digital age, data is constantly being collected.  As they say knowledge is power, so for many companies the more data available, the better.  This is called Big Data; data in sheer volume, velocity, and variety, that is used to make decisions.  But Big Data can also be overwhelming and costly if sophisticated software is needed to sift through all that information.  It also does not apply to every person, company, or project.

In comes Little Data.  For those who work on a smaller scale, collating data in a spreadsheet could be the first step.  Once you’ve been able to collect enough data to make informed business decisions, you can validate why an investment in a data-collection software program would be wise.

But we are getting ahead of ourselves.  In order to make the case for more sophisticated data collection, you have to build the foundation.  Think about what you are trying to accomplish and what data you’ll need to collect in order to do so.  Once identified, create a spreadsheet template that can be easily populated by your team.  After you’ve collected enough of a sample, its analysis time!

Managing The Built Environment has some ideas on how this can be applied specifically for facilities management, which you can read here: http://bit.ly/1oR4lFb

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Spark Collaboration By Sprucing Up

Whether it is a school project, a new business pitch, or a team brainstorm, collaboration is essential for success.  So how does one working in facilities or design inspire collaboration in these designated ‘collaborative spaces’?  It could be as simple as updating an existing space with new lighting or furniture.

In most higher educational institutions, state of the art, brand new facilities are not the norm.  Most of us have to be creative with the tools we have been given.  Today’s Facility Manager has several suggestions for creating an environment worthy of innovation and collaboration.

1. Convert unused faculty offices into breakout spaces with moveable furniture where students can meet and work on projects.

2. Utilize natural light which helps students stay alert.

3. Incorporating a sense community into shared spaces makes students feel more connected to their environment.  The use of artwork from students or local artists is a good way to do this.

For more information or tips, visit http://todaysfacilitymanager.com/2014/11/reinventing-the-college-experience-with-furniture-alone/

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Nuts-And-Bolts Focus Sets Wentworth Apart

President Pantic sat down with the Globe this week to tell them what sets Wentworth apart from the many other colleges in Boston.  The differentiator? ‘Focusing squarely on practical experience in classroom and real-world environments’, which sticks true to the mission founder, Arioch Wentworth, founded the school on in 1904.

The same holds true for the College of Professional and Continuing Education.  Although the majority of our students already hold jobs, our goal is to give you the skills that will help you to advance in that job.  We employ faculty that are active in the fields they teach, so that they can expand beyond practical theory and bring real world situations into the classroom.

A shortage in skilled workers around the world has drawn attention to the lack of student pursuing an education in the STEM fields.  ‘At current rates, the president’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology predicts the US economy in 2022 will suffer from a shortage of 1 million college graduates with degrees in STEM fields.’

Now is the optimal time to pursue your degree and gain the skills so many companies are looking for.  To read the full article on The Boston Globe, visit http://bit.ly/1wjRWZx.

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Is A Degree Still Worth It? Yes!

If you’ve been reading the news, you may be convinced that a college degree just isn’t worth the investment and potential debt you may incur.  Not to mention the high levels of underemployment and stagnating wages- let’s not forget those.

However, a recent student by two researchers with the Federal Reserve Bank of New York concludes that the value of a bachelor’s degree is near an all-time high.  How can that be you ask?

The researchers found that a bachelor’s degree for a 2013 graduate was worth $272,693 on average and when adjusted for inflation, the value of a degree hovered around $300,000 for more than a decade.  One reason the value of a degree remains high while wages have stagnated and tuition has spiked is that the wages of high-school graduates have been falling, reducing the opportunity costs of going to school.

In summary, despite the varying factors, wages of college graduates are still higher than those with only a high school degree, keeping the value of a college degree from falling. http://bit.ly/1qkILYv

For more information on our degree programs, visit: http://www.wit.edu/continuinged/programs/index.html 

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Using the GI Bill

The Wentworth community thanks all current and former military personal for their service to our country.  Wentworth strives to help make the transition from active duty to a campus environment as smooth as possible by providing support on campus, information on our website, and links to support within the community.

As a veteran of the U.S. military, you may be entitled to certain benefits.  GI Bill benefits have an expiration date, determined by the chapter of eligibility and last date on active duty or date of discharge.  To find out if you are eligible, visit http://www.mass.edu/forstudents/veterans/UsingGIBill.asp

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Stairs Are The New Elevator

Do you take the stairs at work?  You may not even know where the stairwell is, unless you’ve had a fire drill in the recent past.

Since the invention of the elevator, stairs have taken a back seat as a mode of transportation.  Most stairwells are hidden, hot, and not welcoming.  According to architect David Burney, former New York City commissioner of the Department of Design and Construction, it is time to bring the art of the staircase back.  Aside from the architectural benefits of a beautifully designed staircase, there medical benefits that can help one of the biggest problems we face in the US — obesity.

Elevators and escalators have allowed us to become lazy, sedentary.  If the average American adult climbed just two more minutes of stairs per day, we could burn enough calories to offset the average annual weight gain, which turns out to be about one pound a year.  For those not living in a city environment, who climb and descend stairs to public transportation, it may be difficult to get your daily steps in.  Try instead to take the stairs instead of taking the elevator.

Whether you’re an architect, project manager, foreman, etc., next time you are working on a new project, try and think about how you can make the building both beautiful and practical.  Consider incorporating stairs that will invite people to walk up to their office instead of relying on technology to transport them! http://n.pr/1pzrYz1

 

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RIP The 40 Hour Work Week

With constant access to email thanks to our smartphones & tablets, 88% of survey respondents said they work more than 40/wk according to a recent survey from PGi.

Those who think their employees are getting more done by putting in more hours than other are in for a rude awakening.  Not surprisingly, there is a negative correlation between hours worked and productivity levels.  As hours increase, the GDP per-hour-worked decreases.

Now there are those people who thrive off working 24-hours, but they are the minority, and they probably live in New York City. The majority of people value a decent work/life balance.  In fact, it is shown that working shorter hours creates more loyal, healthy, and productive employees.

We understand you may not have the access to overhaul your company’s work policy, so we wanted to share some tips on how you can make your work week more productive: http://bit.ly/1yxHfV0

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New Trend in Construction: Drones

When most of us hear the word drones, we think of one thing.  However, a construction firm in Dayton decided to think outside the box and utilize this technology to their advantage.

Danis Building Construction Company is using a DJI Phantom 2 Vision+ as a tool to help surveyors assess buildings in a faster, safer way.  Rather than sending workers into a questionable building to determine its stability, or setting up scaffolding, the company’s use of the drone to survey will majorly decreases the exposure of risk to employees.

What types of technology can you use to improve your work? http://bit.ly/V68BmZ

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