'IT Technician' standard and register unveiled by BCS
A new general professional certification standard for people employed in the IT profession is being developed by BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT. The certification will be at a level equivalent to technician standards in other professions, and aligned to SFIA (Skills Framework for the Information Age) Level 3. The institute describes an IT Technician as an individual working in a field of information technology who is proficient in associated skills and techniques, and competent in practical application of the relevant theoretical principles. Individuals reaching the Registered IT Technician standard may choose to join an IT Technician Register, which BCS will launch in 2015. The register is another step in establishing IT as a profession in the same way that law, medicine and accountancy are, regardless of what specialist skill may be applied within them as an individual career develops, the institute says. Being on the register will mean that individuals can demonstrate a core knowledge of IT plus at least one specialist skill with assured competence, and that they are committed to a professional code of conduct. BCS is being supported to develop the IT Technician Register by the Gatsby Charitable Foundation, a Foundation set up by David Sainsbury.
Pictured: A Royal Navy Marine Engineering Electrical Technician in control centre of destroyer HMS Diamond, by Paul Punter/MOD
BCS Register of IT Technicians: www.bcs.org/it-technician-register
Mobile technology to help warn millions at risk from natural disasters
A mobile phone system which could save millions of lives from the devastation of natural disasters is set to be launched this April in India. The system, commissioned from wireless health specialists RegPoint by the Indian National Center for Ocean Information Services (INCOIS), will be used to alert people to impending perils such as tsunamis and typhoons. Tourists and businesspeople will also be able to access severe weather and earthquake alerts on their mobiles while on their travels, the company says. RegPoint disaster early-warning service has the ability to send SMS messages immediately to all mobile phones in a designated locality, pinpointing precise warnings, guidance or other information to individuals in a specific geographical region before a disaster strikes. It can provide users with accurate and rapid information on the size, scale and expected time of any impending incident, as well as advice on how best to secure their safety.
Younger employees drive business demands for communications services
Employees in their twenties and thirties are among the most demanding for communication services, according to new research covering small and medium-sized businesses commissioned by communications companies BT and Avaya. The survey of how communications are influenced by the age and personality of employees found that almost two thirds (62 per cent) of respondents aged under 35 were frustrated with the technology available to them at work. This is significantly higher than among those aged 35-50, where dissatisfaction drops to 38 per cent, and baby boomers (aged 50+) of whom 42 per cent are unhappy with technology at work. Correspondingly, the youngest groups of respondents were most convinced their productivity would improve with better sharing tools. More than two thirds (68 per cent) said better collaboration would help them be more efficient, compared to just over half of workers from older generations. Almost two thirds (62 per cent) of all respondents also said they want to choose communications that suit their personality. For example, extroverts prefer face-to-face meetings and instant feedback so prefer to use video conferencing, telephone and text. More introverted employees tend to favour email, IM or conference calls.
'The Workplace Shift' report can be downloaded at: www.globalservices.bt.com/uk/en/products/avaya_unified_communications
Medical robots will revolutionise most surgical disciplines: Frost & Sullivan
Surgical robotics technology is making its way into almost all major surgical disciplines despite the long time-to-market caused by stringent regulatory requirements, complex manufacturing processes and extensive research and development, according to new analysis from research group Frost & Sullivan. The report, "Innovations in medical robotics", finds that surgical robots are gaining widespread acceptance across the globe as they enhance the surgeon's abilities in terms of surgical imaging, navigation, planning and instrument manipulation. "The global demand for surgical robots is particularly high for prostatectomy and hysterectomy surgeries, as they are believed to offer greater safety, accuracy, and precision, and in turn leading to better clinical outcomes for the surgeon, patient and hospital management," said research analyst Geethu Roshan Verghese. However, the lack of randomised trials and appropriate comparison and outcome registries for robotic surgeries has raised questions regarding the efficacy of surgical robots, the report finds. But it says this will only be a restraint in the short run as robust clinical evidence to support the benefits of surgical robots - economic efficiency, improved ergonomics, and reduced surgeon fatigue - is likely to increase over the next few years. Innovations in Medical Robotics is published as part of Frost & Sullivan's Technical Insights subscription of newsletters and research services.
Frost & Sullivan Technical Insights: http://www.technicalinsights.frost.com