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Monday, 26 September 2016

How will automation aid the IT sector?


Automation is the process by which tasks switch from being performed by human employees to computers and machines. As one of the most important and divisive issues in society since the Industrial Revolution, automation has played an increasingly important role in all of our lives, having an effect on every aspect of our work lives, culture and free time. Currently, large changes are taking place in the IT sector, many of which are driven by automation. Here we take a look at how it could benefit the industry in the future.

Cost cutting

One of the key advantages to greater automation is the ability to cut labour costs and reduce the amount of time tasks take to complete. By handing over menial tasks to computers and machines, businesses can employ fewer people and increase efficiency. This is absolutely necessary in a business environment that is extremely competitive and in in which companies can prosper or die based on their ability to get the most from their investments. Although automated technology can initially be expensive, it cuts long term wage costs and reduces costs associated with human error.

Reduce differentiation between companies

Automation also has a positive effect when it comes to increasing the ability of all businesses to complete basic tasks to a high standard. Rather than relying on employees, who retain a number of advantages over computers but are prone to human error and imprecision, automation allows businesses to deliver basic services at similar or identical standards. This reduces differentiation between companies and allows them to focus on providing a better service by developing those areas in which they specialise and stand out.    
Disadvantages

Most of the advantages to automation benefit businesses and consumers by cutting costs or increasing productivity. However, automation does have its downsides. For many employees in the sector, automation is a growing concern as they are unsure about what it means for the future of their jobs and industry. In many countries, such as India, the IT sector has generated a great deal of economic growth and played a major part in the creation of a new middle class. In these cases, automation could be a devastating process, eliminating some of the jobs that businesses currently outsource to other countries. Automation in the IT sector could have a comparable effect on white collar workers as the robotic revolution did on the blue collar workforce, potentially causing wide-reaching disruption – although only time will tell.

Businesses will look to find the balance between workforce numbers and output/ productivity when it comes to automation, and those with specialist skills are most likely to find themselves in demand. Much of the process will still require some level of management, which is why staff numbers would appear unlikely to dwindle too much at this time.

Think you've got what it takes to make a great employee at Capita? Check out our vacancies and apply today!

Friday, 23 September 2016

How to successfully network as part of an internship


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Internships are a great opportunity for young workers to find out what kind of job they really want and whether they’re suited to a particular industry. However, they’re also the best way to begin building the professional and social networks that will really benefit you as your career develops. If an internship is a chance to get your foot in the door, networking is the way in which you open it fully and step on inside. With this in mind, we take a look at five things you can do to help you turn a summer internship into a full-time job.

Remember details

Although there will always be a lot of new people to meet when you first start an internship, it's incredibly beneficial if you can begin to learn and remember names and personal information. Not only is it fairly easy to do, it also demonstrates a commitment to the job and co-workers will often appreciate the effort.

Take part in social activities

In many workplaces, there are a variety of social and sporting activities to sign up to. Whether it’s playing football after work, joining the local tech and science club or just going for a few casual drinks, it's a good idea to start involving yourself in activities outside of the office. This gives you an opportunity to communicate with people that you may not otherwise meet, in a relaxed atmosphere.  

Ask questions

Don’t be afraid to ask questions and develop your skills while working on an internship. However, it’s important that you ask the right questions. Continuously grilling a co-worker with tough, technical and boring questions is going to make you come across as a pest, so think carefully about what you want to know.

Be personal

When you first arrive at your internship, it's vital that you’re friendly, personal and interested in the people you’re working with. Try to find out a little bit more about those you’re working most closely with and talk to them about something other than work. Knowing what coffee they like or remembering their partner’s name in passing conversation will strengthen those early relationships.

Talk about your future

Finally, it’s a good idea to talk about your future with management and co-workers if you get the opportunity. This shows that you are interested in the profession, are thinking carefully about your future career and value the advice of those around you.

Think you've got what it takes to make a great employee at Capita? Check out our vacancies and apply today!

Wednesday, 21 September 2016

Five small job application changes to get you noticed


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Sending in your CV and covering letter is usually the first step in the application process and is the stage at which most applicants will be rejected. Consequently, it is vital that you make a good impression with your CV and give yourself the opportunity to land the job for real in a face to face interview.

However, it can be tricky to know what to do with your application in order to make it stand out. Here we take a look at five small changes you can make to your CV with the aim of giving you a better chance of progressing to the interview stage.

Prioritise quality

With your CV and covering letter, you should be prioritising quality over quantity. Both need to be clear and concise and all superfluous information should be edited out. This is also true of the job search itself. Don’t apply for every single vacancy out there, instead prioritise a few vacancies that really interest you and for which you have the required qualifications and experience. This limits the amount of time you waste on failed applications and improves your chances of landing a job.

Make everything relevant

Everything in your application should be relevant to the job you are applying for. In the current job market, it’s not enough to simply list your past work experience. Instead you need to create a narrative that links your working history to this new job as if everything were building up to this moment. Show how skills learnt in previous jobs are relevant to the vacancy and give evidence of the ways you have used them in the past.

Make the most of past experience

If you are able to name drop in a job application, it is usually a good idea to do so. Applications are no time to be overly modest, so if you have worked for a large or prestigious company in the past, make sure you mention it more than once. It also makes sense to send your CV to all of this company’s direct competitors, as such businesses are usually more than interested in poaching a competitors’ employees.

Include personal interests

Many companies will now want to hear about your personal interests and hobbies in order to get a more holistic view of potential employees. Personality, communication skills and the ability to work in a team aren’t necessarily things that can be taught and employers will want to understand your character a little before they jump in and hire you.

Do your research

Finally, it’s essential that you do your research about the companies to whom you’re applying. Most businesses will talk about their vision, aims and goals on their website and it’s a good idea to demonstrate how you relate to these qualities in your application.

Think you've got what it takes to make a great employee at Capita? Check out our vacancies and apply today!

Monday, 19 September 2016

Five ways to make your work desk awesome


Considering most employees spend the vast majority of their time at their desks, most workspaces are not optimised for concentration or effective organisation.

It’s all too common to see desks overflowing with paperwork, cluttered with useless souvenirs or wallpapered with ancient post-it notes.
However, a well organised work desk does not necessarily require you to strip the space of soul or fun. Here are a few different ways you can make your workspace awesome.

De-clutter, de-clutter, de-clutter

The first step in creating an awesome work space is to get rid of all those things that made it so terrible in the first place. Have a good look around and start getting rid of all those items you haven’t used in a while or know you won’t want in the future. If it doesn’t work, get it fixed or chuck it out. Be ruthless, but make sure you have some supplies to repopulate your desk with when you’re done.

Work zones

One of the best ways to ensure your work space is well-organised and functional is to designate specific work zones for different items. Not only does this tidy up your desk, it also means you won't be scrabbling around trying to find that perpetually lost stapler any more. You can split the zones however you like, but dividing them into a main zone, with all your essential items; a reference zone, with all your paperwork and filed documents; and a supplies zone, think stationary and office supplies; is a good place to start.

Plant life

There’s nothing that breathes a little life into an office space like a few small plants or pieces of greenery. If you’re not great at looking after plants, go for something that’s easier to maintain, such as a cactus. Not only will a few potted plants add a little colour to the space, they definitely have a relaxing and calming influence when times get stressful.

Lamp light

Office lighting can be notoriously awful and a real barrier to that cosy and comfortable atmosphere many employees desire. Try to counteract this by introducing a lamp into your work space. This will dramatically alter the mood and help you really settle into your awesome new desk.

Simple and organised decoration

It’s often when people try to decorate their work space with personal items that things start to go wrong. Try and keep decoration well organised and not overly cluttered. This could mean getting your personal photos placed in matching frames, pegging Polaroids to a simple, hanging string display, adding a snazzy, comfortable cushion, or personalising your book shelf with some homemade book ends. However, the key is not overdoing it, otherwise you’ll end up back at square one.

Think you would have the best desk at Capita? Want to join our team? Check out our vacancies and apply today!

Friday, 16 September 2016

Four simple IT skills that you really can’t live without


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In the modern business environment, it really is impossible to live without certain IT skills. Though many jobs require a high level of specialisation in IT, the vast majority of entry level vacancies will require you to understand and be able to use a computer in a variety of ways. In order to ensure that you’re absolutely prepared for any position that may arise, we’ve compiled a list of four essential IT skills that will help you in most modern workplaces.

Using search engines

Though search engines are the way the majority of us navigate the vast resources of the Internet, using them in an efficient and effective manner is still a skill many people lack. Being able to extract the exact information you require quickly will help you a great deal when it comes to making the most of your time at the computer. A good understanding of search engines will also give you a better grip on the growing field of SEO, a vital consideration for any modern business that it looking to ensure it is easily found.

Spreadsheets

Though more and more businesses and websites are choosing to use complex infographics to display information, spreadsheets are still key to communicating important data. By being able to produce and interpret a variety of graphs and by using spreadsheets efficiently, you add an important means of getting your point across to your repertoire.  

Security software

Now that the Internet is being used to communicate vast swathes of personal data, security has become the prominent issue of the digital age. Not only are users becoming increasingly aware of the dangers of identity theft and fraud online, but businesses are also far more concerned with the implications of losing data. A large data loss or leak can lead to devastating negative publicity and ruin a company’s reputation instantly, whilst also proving incredibly expensive. A basic understanding of security software will prove incredibly helpful in your future career and will be expected in the vast majority of roles.

Social networking

It is impossible to deny the importance of social networking to modern businesses. Most companies will communicate directly with their potential clients through a variety of social networks and will compete directly with their competitors to capture the attention of an online audience. This radical change in the means of communication between a business and its customers has altered the way everyone approaches advertising, financing and sales and will continue to play a vital role in the day to day workings of companies for a long time to come. Consequently, an appreciation for, and an understanding of, social networking will contribute greatly to your skill set.

Think you've got what it takes to work with us at Capita? Have a look at our open vacancies and apply today!


Thursday, 15 September 2016

Five things you only know if you work in London


London is one of the busiest and most exciting cities in the world, attracting people from all over the globe to its streets, bars and workplaces. Unfortunately, there’s no comprehensive guide to working in London and, if you decide to take the plunge and move to the capital, you’ll have to learn a lot on the job. To get you started, we’ve compiled a list of five things you’ll only know if you’ve worked in London.


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Transport knows when you're in a rush

Though London boasts some of the most extensive and iconic transport networks anywhere in the world, it does have its fair share of problems. These problems become increasingly apparent when you find yourself late, or in a rush and praying for a smooth trip. In London, you can guarantee everything will go wrong when you need it not to. Buses will be re-routed or terminated, and tube workers will strike whenever you’ve got to be somewhere important. Journeys are never simple in the fast pace of the city.
  
Going straight home can be difficult

One of the best things about London is the social life. The atmosphere can often feel electric and the amount of life in the streets reminds you why the city is considered one of the most exciting in the world. Between catching up with friends, going to the gym, and checking out the latest rooftop bar, working in London provides endless social opportunities. The thought of going straight home from work is merely impossible.
  
Sometimes it’s best to take a packed lunch

If you don’t want to spend your entire monthly wage buying artisanal sandwiches, and incredible street food, getting back into the kitchen and preparing a packed lunch will spare you a few pennies for those weekends away. 

Your desk is an extension of your wardrobe

In the fast pace of the city life, having your wardrobe to hand is crucial to keep up with the lifestyle. Quick changes will become your forte, and your desk will be fully equipped for those spontaneous nights out and last minute plans. The function of your desk will transform from a stationary cupboard, into your own personal dressing room. 

Time is at a premium

When you work in London, you soon come to realise that it’s not just money you don't have enough of, but also time. Time is precious, so balancing your busy schedule with some time to restore your energy and catch your breath is key to surviving the city life.

Want to enjoy the London life? Think you've got what it takes to make a great employee at Capita? Check out our London vacancies and apply today!

Monday, 12 September 2016

The five top ways to manage your time effectively


Modern life can be incredibly busy and it is often difficult to fit in all those things you want and need to do without sacrificing free time. However, careful planning and time management can help you increase productivity and cope with the work pressures many people face. With this in mind, we take a look at five excellent ways to help you make the most of your time.

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1) Keep a dedicated schedule

If you don’t already, it’s time you started to keep a schedule or planner dedicated to everything work related. This allows you to keep track of all your appointments, conversations, ideas and to-do lists and will help you to plan your time accordingly. By recording everything in one place, you have instant access to all your notes whenever you need them and can remain up-to-date and organised at all times.

2) Designate time blocks

Though you may not like working to a deadline, they are often incredibly helpful in ensuring you don’t spend too much time on smaller tasks. By designating a specific time block to each task, you force yourself to acknowledge that you only have a certain amount of time to finish, providing an extra incentive not to overrun.
  
3) Prioritise productivity

The modern business world is very much results driven and employees need to make sure that they are getting the best possible product from their hard work. Consequently, it’s important to focus on those tasks that will ensure you are most productive. It is often easy to fall into the trap of spending too much time on an activity that doesn’t provide that greater a result. Instead, try to establish which tasks are most important and which tasks will yield bigger rewards with less investment of time.   

4) Take breaks

Taking breaks is an essential part of keeping your mind and body fresh and interested. If you aren’t taking short, regular breaks, you’ll be lowering your productivity and pace of work and will negate all the benefits of careful planning.

5) Block out distractions

Finally, try and block out all distractions from your work area. Today, the biggest distractions are social networks, the Internet and mobile phones, all of which can be avoided fairly easily. If making a conscious effort to avoid them doesn’t work, there are specific apps that limit the amount of time you can use them each day.

Think you've got what it takes to make a great employee at Capita? Check out our vacancies and apply today!