Virtual Workplaces

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With information technology playing a bigger role in the daily operations of many companies, virtual workplaces are beginning to replace the traditional office environment of cubicles and office buildings. International companies have seen a significant increase in business in the past decade due to the globalization and widespread use of technology.

  • Between 2000 and 2008 41 % of new jobs involved working at home at least some of the time. Today, 19.2% of employees and self-employed people in Canada work at home at least part of the time.
  • Telecommuting and working at home have become a principal alternative to the automobile as a mode of access to employment, rivaling public transit as a mode of access to employment in many Canadian jurisdictions.
  • Government policy should be used to promote working from home, because of its potential for reducing public expenditures, improving productivity, reducing pollution emissions and decreasing traffic congestion.

Statistics Canada data reveals that 44% of Canadian jobs are telework-compatible but only 3% of the population considers home their primary place of work.

Resources:

http://www.thestar.com/business/personal_finance/retirement/2011/05/10/making_the_business_case_for_telecommuting.html

http://www.fcpp.org/publication.php/3811?print=yes

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Technology Management

cloud-computer (1)[1]In Canada technology management is used throughout the country to manage their technological fundamentals in order to create a competitive advantage. Cloud computing has been adopted by Canada as well as many other countries to manage their technology. Cloud computing is the use of computing resources (hardware and software) that are delivered as a service over the Internet.

Canada has risen in the rankings by adopting policies that are conductive to cloud innovation. A study conducted by the Business Software Alliance (BSA) found in order to maximize the benefit of cloud computing a country must take action in seven different areas. The areas include: data privacy, cyber-security and cybercrime, intellectual property, technology interoperability and legal harmonization, free trade, and ICT infrastructure. In the study Canada was lacking in several areas, including the lack of a breach notification law and regulations around Internet Service Provider takedowns of copyright infringing content. Japan was one of the highest ranked countries, followed by Australia and the United States.

Resources:

http://www.itbusiness.ca/news/cloud-regulatory-environment-in-canada-improving-bsa/30683

http://ccskguide.org/cloud-computing-climate-in-canada/

Global Programming Industry

images-1Software development is a growing trend in Canada, valued in excess of USD $1 billion. Advanced telecommunications and infrastructure and regulatory policies that play in your favor, low operating costs and tax credits, and multi-cultural population effectively support the software industry.  Canada has many skilled IT resources, a stable workforce, similar culture to the U.S., and coordinating time zones with the U.S.  The nation benefits from having high-tech infrastructure, high English language fluency, an educated workforce, and quality voice-based businesses.

Canada in comparison to outsourcing to the global programming industry isn’t as strong compared to India. The chart below shows the exports of computer and information services In Canada in comparison to other countries. As you can see India leads the pack followed by the United States when it comes to outsourcing IT jobs.  Canada is still at the top of the list but falls a little behind in comparison to Israel and China.

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Many of Canada’s financial institutions have outsourced all or part of their IT departments. CIBC and HP signed a $2-billion contract to provide it with “comprehensive IT services” over the seven years. Laurentian Bank outsourced its IT services to CGI Group and Scotiabank outsourced its computer operations to IBM Canada. The Bank of Canada also outsourced by outsourcing the data and support services for its Canada Savings Bond program to EDS Canada, transferring 500 workers to EDS. IT outsourcing isn’t just about data processing, it can also include infrastructure, e-commerce, network management and security.

Resources:

http://www.cbc.ca/news/background/economy/outsourcing.html

http://www.sourcingline.com/country-data/exports-computer-information-services

Wireless Technologies

imagesThe wireless industry in Canada has made substantial investments over many years. Current provider and new entrants continue to invest heavily despite Canada’s challenging economic conditions. They are doing so to meet the increasing demand for high performance services which are enabled by new technologies. This investment is in the form of additional network nodes, fibre and microwave backhaul and new core network infrastructure. The Canadian wireless telecommunications industry supported 261,000 jobs in 2010 that ranged from direct employees, support staff, and those indirectly employed.

There are three main wireless technologies used in Canada. They include:

-WiFi Technology: Technology that allows an electronic device to exchange data wirelessley (using radio waves) over a computer network including high speed Internet connections.
-Zigbee Technology: Is intended for embedded applications requiring low data rates and low power consumption.  For example home automation or smart lighting, medical data collection and smoke and intruder warning.
-WiMax Technology: Is a wireless communications standard designed to provide 30 to 40 megabit-per-second data rates. It can providing portable mobile broadband connectivity across cities and countries through a variety of devices.

Canada seems to be improving over the past couple of years. In 2012 the total economic value for the Canadian economy generated by Canada’s wireless industry was $41.2 billion. As of today 99% of Canadians have access to wireless technologies. A survey done in Canada, July 2012 on Smartphone/tablet activities of young adult and parent smartphone or tablet owners in Canada found the following results:

(% of respondents):
– Text messaging: 88%
– Voice call: 70%
– Download and use apps: 68%
– Surf the net: 67%
– Connect to social networks: 61%
– Play games: 60%
– Listen to music: 57%
– Voice and video calling: 34%
– Banking: 33%
– Reading books/magazines: 25%
– Watch TV and movies: 16%
– Ecommerce/purchasing: 12%
– Watch sports: 3%
– None of the above: 1%

Resources:

http://cwta.ca/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2012/06/Ovum2012.pdf

http://www.newmediatrendwatch.com/markets-by-country/11-long-haul/45-canada?showall=1