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  • August 22, 2017 11:12 AM | Office IFCPP (Administrator)

    Reposted from asisonline.org

    Security Management has partnered with the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) to bring you relevant articles on key management topics and strategies​. This article by Roy Maurer​ discusse​s the merits of a yearlong employee onboarding program.

    New employee onboarding is the process of integrating a new employee with a company and its culture, as well as getting a new hire the tools and information needed to become a productive member of the team.

    Onboarding new hires at an organization should be a strategic process that lasts at least one year, staffing and HR experts say, because how employers handle the first few days and months of a new employee's experience is crucial to ensuring high retention.

    Getting Started with the Onboarding Process

    Finding the best candidates for positions in your organization is only part of building an effective team. The process of onboarding new employees can be one of the most critical factors in ensuring recently hired talent will be productive, contented workers. 

    However, in some organizations, onboarding is often confused with orientation. While orientation might be necessary—paperwork and other routine tasks must be completed—onboarding is a comprehensive process involving management and other employees that can last up to 12 months.

    Before implementing a formal onboarding program, employers should answer some key questions to attain team and upper management buy-in, including:

    • When will onboarding start?
    • How long will it last?
    • What impression do you want new hires to walk away with at the end of the first day?
    • What do new employees need to know about the culture and work environment?
    • What role will HR play in the process? What about direct managers? Co-workers?
    • What kind of goals do you want to set for new employees?
    • How will you gather feedback on the program and measure its success?

    Once these questions have been answered, HR professionals and upper management can devise a plan of action to help new employees quickly assimilate company policies and workflow while getting fully acquainted with the organization's culture.

    Creating an Onboarding Program

    "If we don't worry about onboarding before the employee starts, then we're way behind," said Ben Peterson, CEO of BambooHR, an HR technology company. "Rather than having a stack of papers waiting for their signature, send them out to the employee beforehand, for electronic signature. Give them their benefits selection. Find the technology to help you automate the paper-pushing process."

    As soon as new employees receive a job offer, they can also receive access to the company's online onboarding portal, said Amber Hyatt, director of product marketing at SilkRoad, a talent management solutions firm. 

    "Here they discover content that's designed to engage them, like a friendly note from their manager, first-day information, welcome messages and photos from new teammates, a glossary of company acronyms, a virtual copy of your employee handbook as well as other details about the new hire's department and job responsibilities," she said.

    New-hire portals also benefit HR through dashboards that can organize and track tasks that need to be completed and managed electronically, such as W-4 or I-9, benefits and payroll forms, Hyatt said.

    In addition to having new employees fill out new-hire paperwork online, consider providing the answers to questions they may have, such as where to go on day one, who to ask for upon arrival and what to wear, she said.

    Set up new hires' desk, phone, computer and password logins before they arrive, said Peterson. 

    "The worst thing for a new employee is being wooed through the recruiting process and then arriving on the job and the receptionist isn't even expecting you or your office isn't set up," he said.

    The First Day

    The two main goals on the first day should be setting expectations and introducing objectives. Employees need to have crystal clear ideas about what their job duties and responsibilities are on Day 1, Peterson said. 

    "New employees need to get to know the job and get to know their new co-workers. Social interaction is critical. You want them back on Day 2, right?" he asked. 

    New employees at BambooHR are taken out to lunch on the first day. "We cared enough to hire them, we want them to know we care enough to build rapport," Peterson said.

    Aligning expectations is critical. 

    "Organizations that don't focus on acclimating new employees to their corporate culture are at a significant disadvantage," said Hyatt. "Employees who know what to expect from their company's culture and work environment make better decisions that are more aligned with the accepted practices of the company."

    To keep existing team members from resenting a new employee, make sure roles and responsibilities are outlined for the entire team, Peterson advised. 

    "Sometimes existing team members could feel threatened that someone new could take over their responsibilities. So it's a good idea to clarify the position of the new hire as well as [the positions of] other team members whose work is closely related, how they'll interact with each other, and how projects will run," he said.

    The First Few Months

    It's important for HR to have a one-month check-in to make sure that that the new employee is comfortable, happy and engaged, said Peterson. "Reviewing and giving thoughtful feedback on your new hire's early contributions are also important during onboarding," he said.

    According to a BambooHR survey, three-fourths of new hires said training during the first week on the job is most important to them. Meanwhile, 41 percent of HR professionals felt they needed to update training in onboarding. 

    "If you aren't communicating what new hires are supposed to be doing and arming them with the tools to do it properly, you're setting them up to fail," Peterson said. 

    You also don't want to inundate your new hires with too much information. 

    "While it's important to get your new hire ramped up and productive quickly, you also need to make sure you provide on-the-job training in a manageable flow," he said.

    Hopefully, new hires have picked a mentor by the end of the first month, Peterson added. Fifty-six percent of respondents in the BambooHR study said that having a buddy or mentor at work was very important when getting started.

    The Aberdeen Group report found that high-performing organizations are nearly two-and-a-half times more likely than lower-performing employers to assign a mentor or coach during the onboarding process. 

    "Mentoring programs can be as simple as assigning a new employee a go-to person or having an elaborate team of mentors for any questions that might arise," Hyatt said.

    The First Three to Six Months

    Peterson advised HR to conduct another check-in between three and six months, depending on the employee and the role. 

    "Unfortunately, only 15 percent of companies continue onboarding after six months," he said. Remember, nearly 90 percent of employees decide whether to stay or go within that first six months. "You have a huge impact on that choice. Sometimes you just have to show that you sincerely care," he said.​

    The First Year

    "An employee's performance at the end of the first year will prove if they're fully productive," said Peterson. "Now you can plan for future development. Show them what their career looks like at the company. Sadly, sometimes they don't belong there," he said.

    The end of the first year is when traditional onboarding transitions into retention and employee satisfaction. 

    "Shift from on-the-job training to continuous development. It's also a great time to have the compensation conversation," Peterson said.

    "Your new hires will thank you for setting them up on the path to success and your company will be well on its way to turning those new hires into seasoned employees."

    See Original Post


  • August 22, 2017 11:11 AM | Office IFCPP (Administrator)

    Reposted from The New York Times (security management daily)

    A 23-year-old Oklahoma man has been arrested after he tried to blow up a bank in downtown Oklahoma City using a vehicle bomb similar to the one that destroyed the federal building there in 1995, federal officials said Monday.

    The man, Jerry Drake Varnell, had been plotting the attack for months, the authorities said, but was thwarted by a long-running undercover investigation led by an F.B.I. joint terrorism task force.

    Mr. Varnell was arrested early Saturday after he parked a van loaded with what he believed to be a working explosive device in an alley next to the bank, and then dialed a number on a cellphone that he thought would set it off, federal officials said. The device was inert and could not explode, the officials said.

    According to court documents, Mr. Varnell had espoused an anti-government ideology and had expressed an interest in carrying out an attack that would echo the bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City in April 1995, which killed 168 people.

    The bank Mr. Varnell was said to target — the downtown branch of BancFirst, Oklahoma’s largest state-chartered bank — is about a half-mile from the site of that attack.

    During a meeting in June with an undercover F.B.I. agent posing as someone who could help him, Mr. Varnell said that he wanted to start the next revolution and that he identified with what is known as 3 percenter ideology, according to an affidavit filed in support of the federal criminal complaint against him. Mr. Varnell sought to form and arm a small militia group, inspired in part by the movie “Fight Club,” the authorities said.

    “I’m out for blood,” Mr. Varnell wrote in one text message to a confidential informant who cooperated with the authorities, according to the affidavit, which was written by an F.B.I. special agent. “When militias start getting formed I’m going after government officials when I have a team,” he wrote. The complaint did not name the informant.

    In another text message, Mr. Varnell wrote: “I think I’m going to go with what the okc bomber used. Diesel and anhydrous ammonia.” He was referring to Timothy J. McVeigh, who was executed for the Oklahoma City bombing. Mr. McVeigh and a co-conspirator, Terry L. Nichols, built a giant fertilizer bomb using ammonium nitrate and racing fuel as their primary ingredients. Mr. Varnell later told the informant to get him ammonium nitrate, adding, “That’s all I need,” according to court documents.

    Federal law enforcement officials said the public was not in danger at any time.

    “There was never a concern that our community’s safety or security was at risk during this investigation,” Kathryn Peterson, the special agent in charge of the F.B.I. in Oklahoma, said in a statement. “I can assure the public, without hesitation, that we had Varnell’s actions monitored every step of the way.”

    The bombing case appeared to have started in December, when the confidential informant told the F.B.I. that Mr. Varnell wanted to bomb the Washington building that houses the offices of the Federal Reserve’s Board of Governors. Mr. Varnell appeared to be especially angry with the banking and financial data system, and expressed interest in attacking corporate data centers and facilities known as server farms, including those run by Facebook and Bank of America, the authorities said.

    He told both the informant and the undercover F.B.I. agent that he did not want to kill “a bunch of people.” But when the undercover agent told him in June that any bombing might kill one or more people, Mr. Varnell responded, “You got to break a couple of eggs to make an omelet,” according to the affidavit.

    Mr. Varnell also wrote a statement that he wanted posted on Facebook after the bombing, and sent it to the informant, the authorities said. The statement refers to the bombing as an act of “retaliation” for government actions that he said restricted Americans’ freedom.

    “It was a wake-up call to both the government and the people,” Mr. Varnell’s statement said, according to officials.

    A variety of militia groups around the country regard themselves as 3 percenters. The term comes from their belief, debunked by historians, that only 3 percent of American colonists fought in the Revolution. These groups reject characterizations of them as racist or anti-government, describing themselves instead as pro-Constitution, pro-gun and, in many cases, pro-President Trump.

    The movement’s logo, the Roman numeral III encircled by stars, was visible on at least one of the heavily armed, camouflage-clad militia members at the white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Va. Militia leaders claimed to be neutral and told reporters they were not affiliated with either the white nationalists or the counterprotesters.

    Mr. Varnell lives in Sayre, Okla., with his mother and other relatives. The authorities said that he had been outfitting a bunker next to his home with end-of-the-world supplies and that he had spoken to the informant of using marijuana and methamphetamine. He was arrested in 2013 in Weatherford, Okla., and charged with domestic assault and battery by strangulation; it was not immediately clear how that case was resolved.

    See Original Post


  • August 22, 2017 11:09 AM | Office IFCPP (Administrator)

    Reposted from govtech.com

    Why is cybersecurity culture so important to organizational success? How can you build a culture of effective security? What are the actions, tips and steps that can help strengthen your cyberculture? Here's a primer.

    While running on my treadmill on Thursday morning, August 17, 2017, I was watching CNBC’s Squawk Box, as David Novak, co-founder and former CEO of YUM Brands, came on the show as a guest.

    He was asked how he was so successful at growing such a powerful set of global YUM Brands with great results including names like Pizza Hut, Taco Bell, Burger King and others. His answer made me slow the treadmill to a walk and listen closely.

    He said several things, but his clear messages focused on building a great culture with a set of core values and staff recognition. Here’s what stood out to me (paraphrased):

    Success is all about the culture. Great leaders know your core values and are true to them. What messages are you sending to your employees? Are you recognizing and rewarding your staff?

    As an aside: David Novak elaborates further on the recognition theme in this earlier article and video from last year. He challenged all of us to say “thank you” to employees and everyone in our lives more often. He even wrote this fun book on the 10 principles of recognition called O Great One!: A Little Story About the Awesome Power of Recognition.

    Near the end of his Squawk Box interview, the topic of what actions to take on several global cybersecurity issues came up. Becky Quick asked Novak what the Trump administration should do about China stealing our intellectual property via computer hacking.

    Novak said we need win-win answers that will work for both countries. Despite serious problems that require tough negotiations, we need to be positive in our approach, while enforcing laws and acting on areas where we have international agreement.

    Issue One: Back to Security Culture

    Management guru Peter Drucker is attributed with the well-known saying, "Culture eats strategy for breakfast." And while there are hundreds of books and thousands of articles on building great work cultures, not nearly as much is written about creating a positive enterprise culture emphasizing cybersecurity in the workplace.

    So how can we lead a digital transformation that is also people-focused and security-focused at the same time? Here are a few of the common answers I have seen around the Internet over the past few years:

    For several years now, the typical answers included a central focus on effective security awareness training for all employees as well as the need for management buy-in and business leadership for cybersecurity.

    Nevertheless, digging a bit deeper, here are, in my view, seven keys to building a lasting security culture that can outlive individual security incidents and staff turnover.

    1) Genuine Executive Priority and Support — We all know that children watch (and usually follow) what their parents do and not just what they say. In the same way staff learn what the real priorities are from executive actions. Are managers walking the talk? Are resources backing up the executive memos?

    For example, when I was CSO is Michigan government, Gov. Rick Snyder was a true champion for cybersecurity in the state, and in the nation, who frequently discussed cyberactions at cabinet meetings and led by example. If this executive priority focus is missing, you will struggle to succeed in the other areas in the long run. Consider these suggestions to build management support for cybersecurity.

    2) Honest Risk Assessment to Measure Security Culture Now — What is the security posture currently? How are security audit findings addressed? What are real technology and security priorities? Are there metrics and/or dashboards to measure progress?

    3) A Clear Vision of Where You Want Your Security Culture to Be — A lot has been written about benchmarking and following best practices in cybersecurity. One important question is whether you know where you are heading. What is the vision of what success looks like for your security and technology teams?

    Consider visiting your industry peers and learning from other public- and private-sector organizations that are doing cybersecurity culture well. Look at the National Association of State Chief Information Officers (NASCIO) award-winners, NGA best practices and state and local partners in your region. Consider a road trip to learn from others and benchmarking progress.

    For example, back in 2011-2012, Stu Davis the Ohio CIO, brought a team up to Michigan to see how we built our security architectures and governance. Ohio state government used that visit and follow-on conversations to build an excellent cybersecurity program. 

    4) Do You Have a Cyber Plan? — Many state governments have published cybersecurity plans to clearly describe where they are going, who’s involved, and what the expectations are for various groups. Examples include Michigan, Delaware, Missouri, North Carolina and others.

    5) Clear Cybercommunication to the Masses — Great, you have a plan and specific actions steps. But does anyone know what’s happening? What is the elevator pitch? How well are these messages received? Is the communication flowing both ways? Are you getting feedback?

    Communicating cybermessages is an ongoing challenge, and no leader has done that better over the past year than Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe — who has made cybersecurity the top topic during his year as NGA leader.

    6) End User Security Awareness Training for Everyone. This Includes Managers, System Admins and Other Specific Roles — As mentioned several times above, culture change definitely involves offering intriguing, relevant, updated, timely training that is brief, frequent and focused to the entire enterprise.

    And while this is the area that is the one most often discussed regarding security culture change, it is only one component. Still, this cannot be a check-the-box exercise and be successful. I described this effective cybertraining area in much more detail in this recent interview with MicroAgility CEO Sajid Khan.

    7) Celebrate Success with Food and Fun. Find out if security is a part of business DNA? How do you know what people are engaged in? Answer: See what they celebrate. When are their food and family showing up for awards?

    Ask this question of your organization: When do you celebrate success? Assuming this is happening at all, are people rewarded for doing the right things regarding security? Any bonuses for great cyberetiquette or awards for doing the right things?

    Here are some specific examples to ponder. And here are some cultural mistakes to avoid with security training.

    Final Thoughts

    In conclusion, building a healthy security culture is not a one-time project or one-year focus. Like building a great college football program at schools like Alabama, this is an ongoing challenge that must be repeated as the organization changes.

    For more details, I really like this ISSA series of CISO mentoring talks, which provide many practical tips for security leaders to consider from CISOs who have been successful in different industries over many years. Following their advice is a great way to enhance your culture of cybersecurity.

    Finally, I want to close with this quote from David Novak on the greatest challenge facing leaders today.

    “Seven in 10 employees in the U.S. are not engaged. They're going to work and they can't wait to go home," he said.

    Novak said great companies create environments where everyone counts and is valued.

    That’s why your corporate or government culture is so central to organizational success.

    Is security a piece of your culture change efforts?

    See Original Post


  • August 22, 2017 11:06 AM | Office IFCPP (Administrator)

    Reposted from the Chicago Tribune (security management daily)

    The American workplace is grueling, stressful and surprisingly hostile.

    So concludes an in-depth study of 3,066 U.S. workers by the Rand Corp., Harvard Medical School and the University of California, Los Angeles. Among the findings:

    - Nearly one in five workers — a share the study calls "disturbingly high" — say they face a hostile or threatening environment at work, which can include sexual harassment and bullying. Workers who have to face customers endure a disproportionate share of abuse.

    - Nearly 55 percent say they face "unpleasant and potentially hazardous" conditions.

    - Nearly three quarters say they spend at least a fourth of their time on the job in "intense or repetitive physical" labor. "I was surprised at how physically demanding jobs were," says lead author Nicole Maestas, a Harvard Medical School economist.

    - Telecommuting is rare: 78 percent say they are required to be present in their workplace during working hours.

    - Only 38 percent say their jobs offer good prospects for advancement. And the older they get, the less optimistic they become.

    - About half say they work on their own time to meet the demands of their job.

    "Wow — (work) is pretty taxing place for many people," Maestas says. "I was surprised by how pressured and hectic the workplace is."

    In many cases, less-educated workers endure tougher working conditions. For example, fewer than half of men without college degrees can take a break whenever they want to, compared to more than 76 percent of men with college degrees. Likewise, nearly 68 percent of men without degrees spend at least a fourth of their time moving heavy loads.

    Maestas wonders whether toxic working conditions are keeping Americans out of the labor force. The percentage of Americans who are working or looking for work — 62.9 percent in July — has not returned to pre-recession levels and is well below its 2000 peak of 67.3 percent.

    The unemployment rate is at a 16-year low, and many employers complain they can't fill jobs.

    "There's a message for employers here," Maestas says. "Working conditions really do matter."

    Not everything about American workplaces is grim. Workers enjoy considerable autonomy: more than 80 percent say they get to solve problems and try out their own ideas. Moreover, 58 percent say their bosses are supportive, and 56 percent say they have good friends at work.

    The first-time survey of Americans ages 25-71 was carried out in 2015. It is similar to a long-running European survey, and researchers plan to conduct another survey next year and eventually to draw comparisons between U.S. and European working conditions.

    See Original Post


  • August 22, 2017 11:04 AM | Office IFCPP (Administrator)

    Reposted from The New York Times (security management daily)

    After events in Charlottesville, Va., last weekend showed how much violence white nationalist rallies could provoke, police chiefs from Richmond, Va., to Boston were taking steps to avoid a repeat of a situation in which the police appeared to have little control of the crowd.

    Texas A&M University canceled a “white lives matter” rally at which Richard Spencer, a white supremacist leader, was to appear, citing safety concerns. Officials in Mountain View, Calif., where Google has its headquarters, were gearing up for one of several marches at the company’s offices around the country to protest the firing of a male employee who wrote a memo criticized as sexist.

    Rallies like the one in Charlottesville, fueled by overt displays of racism, attended by members of self-described militias, and attracting counterprotesters, pose novel challenges: Many of the demonstrators are legally and openly carrying firearms, including semiautomatic weapons. And instead of protesters versus police, as has often been the case in recent years, the situation is civilian versus civilian, with some participants spoiling for a fight.

    But to deal with these new circumstances, the police have few new tactics.

    Crowd-control techniques are much the same, experts said, whether demonstrators are armed or not. A crucial technique is keeping opposing sides apart, which the police tried and failed to do in Charlottesville on Saturday. In the hours leading up to the planned rally, people fought in full view of police officers. On Monday, a man was charged with driving a car into a crowd of counterdemonstrators, killing a woman and injuring more than a dozen others. The actual rally was called off by the police after the governor declared a state of emergency.

    “Charlottesville turned into a riot,” said Mayor Martin J. Walsh of Boston, where a free speech rally was thought to be planned for Saturday, although some of the details were murky. “Both sides were able to connect. In our city, we will do everything we can that those two sides never connect.”

    Mayor Walsh said that Boston wanted to discourage the rally’s organizers from coming, and that William B. Evans, the police commissioner, was developing a plan to keep the rally and any counterdemonstrations separate. By late Monday, it appeared that some of the billed speakers were backing out.

    But if there is a rally, unlike the authorities in Charlottesville, officials in Boston will probably not be forced to confront a large number of armed protesters because Massachusetts allows only those with a gun license to openly carry a firearm. In Virginia, no license is required for those over 18.

    In South Carolina, where there were dozens of protests related to the removal of the Confederate battle flag from government buildings, firearms are prohibited from the State Capitol grounds. Leroy Smith, the state director of public safety, said that intense anger over such issues combined with the presence of firearms would have been a toxic mix.

    “With the added element of open carry, it creates more of a challenge for law enforcement officers because usually when you see a weapon and that person is not a law enforcement officer, you know you need to defuse the situation,” he said.

    Many urban police chiefs have opposed open-carry laws, even in states where people feel fiercely protective of their gun rights.

    John Eterno, a former training instructor with the New York Police Department who now teaches at Molloy College, said the presence of weapons combined with the unexpectedly large crowds in Charlottesville might have thrown off that city’s planning. When people have the right to carry firearms, the police must balance caution with respect, he said. Officers can do little more than check the person’s demeanor for signs of aggression and monitor whether the firearm is properly holstered.

    The Charlottesville police have faced a hailstorm of criticism from protesters and counterprotesters alike. Witnesses have said officers did little as violent confrontations unfolded in front of them.

    On Monday, officials defended their response, noting the lack of property damage in the city, and the Virginia governor said little could have been done to prevent a driver from hitting pedestrians.

    At a news conference on Monday afternoon, Al Thomas, the Charlottesville police chief, acknowledged that there were times when police officers were spread too thinly. “We had to actually send out forces to multiple locations to deal with a number of disturbances,” Chief Thomas said. He added: “It was certainly a challenge. We were spread thin once the groups dispersed.”

    But he also noted a central problem with the strategy of keeping opponents away from each other: The police cannot always control who is going to go where. “We did make attempts to keep the two sides separate. However, we cannot control which side someone enters the park,” Chief Thomas said.

    He said that there had been a plan to keep the Unite the Right rally separate from counterprotesters, but that few cooperated.

    Virginia’s governor, Terry McAuliffe, cited a police estimate that 80 percent of the protesters and counterprotesters were armed, and that the militias, who described themselves as neutral peacekeepers, had arsenals superior to that of the police. But Chief Thomas denied that his officers were “intimidated by the firepower of the alt-right.”

    Officers began the day in regular uniform. “Once the violence erupted, once the plan was altered, we had to quickly transition our officers into their protective gear,” Chief Thomas said.

    Charlottesville had known that it would be ill prepared. The city, fearing that many more than the estimated 400 people would attend, said it would issue the permit only if the location were moved.

    “Because Emancipation Park is a relatively confined space of just over one acre in a densely populated urban area with limited parking space, it is unable to accommodate safely even a peaceful crowd of this size,” the city manager, Maurice Jones, warned rally organizers in a letter on Aug. 7.

    “The city’s law enforcement, fire and emergency medical personnel cannot adequately protect people in and around Emancipation Park due to the number of anticipated attendees trying to occupy such a small and confined space.”

    The city wanted to move the protest to another park, but the American Civil Liberties Union successfully argued in federal court on behalf of Jason Kessler, the organizer of the event, that the city was retaliating against him because of the “content” of his speech, citing the fact that none of the counterprotesters’ permits were revoked. Thousands attended.

    The leaders of the Unite the Right rally have pledged to return to Charlottesville.

    This weekend, the mayor of Lexington, Ky., announced plans to try to take down two Confederate statues.

    The chief of police in Lexington said he had already spoken with officials in Charlottesville for details on what worked and what had not.

    “You’ll have people feeling passionate wanting to come in, but you’ll also have professional protesters who want to come in and fight. We’ll be prepared for them also,” said the chief, Mark Barnard.

    But, he added, “You can have as much intelligence about the groups and their past behavior, you can have all planning and all the training, but you can’t predict what will go on.” Kentucky is an open-carry state.

    He said he doubted the city would give permits to groups with opposing views to speak from the same location at the same time.

    “You wouldn’t allow that,” he said. “You’d have to make a decision and have it at a different time. But it doesn’t mean the other side won’t show up.”

    See Original Post


  • August 22, 2017 11:02 AM | Office IFCPP (Administrator)

    Reposted from asisonline.org

    Guard scheduling in a security services company may seem straightforward, but the potential for costly consequences is huge. Scheduling-related errors can lead to financial penalties that can put the business at risk. Class-action claims for unpaid overtime, unpaid breaks, and illegal scheduling practices have cost companies millions of dollars. How can you minimize risk?

    The basic premise is simple: Get the right guard to the right place at the right time, doing the right things. But it takes only a few minutes on the job for the scheduler to realize that simple scheduling gets complicated—very complicated. Let’s step back and look at all the pieces that go into the scheduling puzzle.

    Repeated tasks. Each assignment requires the same basic actions. A guard scheduling process should handle the myriad details of scheduling easily and efficiently so that managers are freed up to keep their eye on the broader operation. Moreover, schedules are not done once and then left on a shelf. They are alive and active, so modifying them must be easy and accurately done. 

    Rules, rules, and more rules. Scheduling people is full of micro conditions that you need to know: overtime, breaks (paid or not), site rules, and business processes. Does your week start at midnight Sunday? Do hours worked fall into the week they are worked or into the last day of the week they are completed? You need to know the answers and keep track of them.

    Skill sets. Your top salesperson just signed a high-profile account in town. To onboard your staff for the new account, you need to clearly identify what skills and attributes are required for a guard to work there. For example, will the guard need to use systems or equipment that require training?

    Exposure. Security staff occasionally fail to show up, book off, or have emergencies. To protect your client and yourself from an uncovered site, you need a 24/7 alerting mechanism that can also help you quickly find a qualified replacement.

    Exceptions. We live in a world of exceptions—the “yes-but” clause. For example: “That is always the schedule except…” or “I will always work five days in a row, except when I…” The scheduling process has to be flexible enough to manage exceptions. 

    Overtime. Simply put, unbilled overtime (OT) can destroy profit margins, which are already tight in most guard companies. OT varies based on jurisdiction, but in general OT can be 1.5 or 2 times a regular wage rate. Even salaried people can be entitled to OT if they earn less than the weekly threshold (subject to conditions, the U.S. threshold is $913 per week). Does your process protect you from overscheduling individuals?

    Liabilities. Even if you prepare for every contingency, liabilities can occur. A guard who doesn’t know what to do or whom to alert can cause damage. Or, imagine that a new scheduler places an employee at a site they were previously banned from: client confidence will take a hit.

    Large volume. When you are running an event and need to book many guards at the same time, your process should allow you to book by multiple means. At events, getting guards logged in and attending to their posts with the required instructions are crucial; the process needs to be efficient.

    Special rules. Countries, states, provinces, and even cities have their own rules. On top of that, there are collective agreements and special function rules to consider, where applicable. Are compressed work weeks legal or not? What sort of rest periods are required between shifts?

    Scheduling errors. Client confidence can be shaken if you are repeatedly double-booking guards for the same shift. In that scenario, which guard gets paid? Both?

    Ecosystem. There are many moving parts in a security business: applicant tracking, onboarding, security operations, scheduling, payroll, invoicing, accounting, and other business operations. It is smart to have systems that integrate seamlessly with each other. Do not be held hostage to a system!

    The most obvious way to address the mission-critical function of scheduling and timekeeping is to adopt a back-office software tool. Such software is designed to automate the repeatable, consider all the rules, provide guidance when assigning resources, and adhere to functions in service-level agreements. To truly drive efficiency, systems must do more than just schedule. They should give you a leg up on contract management and invoicing as well as drive business intelligence data. 

    To fully benefit your operations, couple back-office tools with front-line automation tools to create an ecosystem that harnesses the data generated by the security company and drives overall service that is more accountable, reliable, transparent, and efficient. After all, a security business needs to invest in activity that drives business, and avoid wasting money on the management of lawsuits and exposure.

    See Original Post


  • August 22, 2017 10:59 AM | Office IFCPP (Administrator)

    In the wake of more WWII/Nazi era stolen art legal battles, the International Foundation for Art Research (IFAR) has issued a new Provenance Guide, which highlights the importance of archival research, and states that provenance research is “a must” for all art purchasers.  The Provenance Guide includes links to numerous archival websites and databases (including the Getty Research Institute), which will aid in provenance due diligence.  IFAR states that provenance litigation demonstrate that “all available archival materials must be consulted . . . ” because among other things, “documentary evidence may be open to interpretation.”

    See Original Post


  • August 22, 2017 10:56 AM | Office IFCPP (Administrator)

    Reposted from artnet.com

    As tides and temperatures rise, museums are rallying to protect themselves.

    The Bass Museum in Miami Beach does not think about collecting the same way it did two years ago.

    Situated in a region where sea level rise has tripled over the past decade and located a short walk from rapidly eroding beaches, the Bass has been forced to reckon with climate change more directly than most museums. “Do we feel comfortable purchasing a very humidity-sensitive watercolor for our collection? Or a light-sensitive black-and-white photograph?” George Lindemann, the president of the museum’s board, asked in a recent conversation with artnet News. “Probably not.”

    The Bass isn’t alone. As scientists report increasingly troubling findings about the expected rise in extreme weather around the globe, from droughts in southern Europe to floods on the east coast of the US, a growing number of institutions are realizing that they need to start planning for an uncertain future today. As New York magazine reported recently in a terror-inducing article, most scientists concur that Miami will be underwater within the century, whether or not we stop burning fossil fuel.

    “When I worked on Guggenheim Bilbao, we all mocked the requirement to accommodate the 100-year storm,” says Andy Klemmer, the founder of the Paratus Group, which manages the construction of cultural projects around the world. “Since then, 100-year storms seem to come along every five years…. Every project we work on now tries to predict the worst-case scenario and to accommodate it.”

    Some museums have already been hit hard by extreme weather. The Uffizi Galleries in Florence closed early on August 7 amid a massive heatwave sweeping Europe.

    The Louvre in Paris has been repeatedly battered by violent storms, including a downpour last month that flooded parts of the museum and damaged two works by Nicolas Poussin. The museum stores a quarter of its collection underground near the Seine, according to a 2016 report in the Art Newspaper.

    Klemmer notes that the Morgan Library and Museum’s gutters, designed to accommodate the maximum rainfall for the New York region, were “constantly being overrun” and “we had to make changes.” (According to the New York State Department of Conservation, heavy downpours increased more than 70% across the northeastern US between 1958 and 2010.)

    The Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, meanwhile, had to alter plans for its $422 million Meatpacking District building when Hurricane Sandy hit during construction in 2012, flooding the basement with 30 feet of water. Although the original design had already strategically placed the main exhibition spaces and conservation lab on upper floors, Sandy “was worse than everybody was expecting,” says the project’s lead architect, Elisabetta Trezzani of the Renzo Piano Building Workshop.

    In the aftermath of the storm, the Whitney waterproofed walls, added watertight steel doors to the loading dock, and developed a custom temporary barrier system. The additional measures cost $12 million, according to a Whitney spokesman. The museum now conducts flood drills once a year.

    Some institutions, however, have not bounced back so quickly. The University of Iowa Museum has been stuck in limbo since 2008 when a flood forced the museum to evacuate its collection, which includes Jackson Pollock’s famous Mural (1943). In the years that followed, insurance companies refused to cover any art stored there—but government agencies said the damage was not severe enough to justify federal funds for a new building.

    After nine years, during which curators sent the museum’s treasures on tour and organized programs off-site, the university’s board of regents approved a plan on August 3 to build a new museum above the 500-year floodplain. The new building is expected to open in 2020.

    Most experts agree that these kinds of concerns, barely discussed five or 10 years ago, are steadily making their way to the top of decision-makers’ minds. “Everyone, even the conservative board members who decry climate change, want their investment protected from its effects,” Andy Klemmer says.

    And these concerns are likely to have an impact not only on where and how new museums are built, but also what they look like. Elisabetta Trezzani notes that New York City, for one, is encouraging architects to use aquarium-style, flood-resistant glass on lower floors and to install mechanical equipment on the roof of buildings rather than in the basement. “As an architect, it means you have to think about things in another way,” she says.

    Nevertheless, some believe museums have still not tackled the issue as forcefully as they should. “There’s a disconnect between the daily practice of museum work and climate concerns,” says Sarah Sutton, the founder of Sustainable Museums, which consults museums on environmental sustainability.

    One problem, Sutton notes, is that it can be difficult to convince donors to dedicate money to a threat that may be years, or even decades, away—especially when there are always worthy, more pressing matters to address, like educational programs or acquisitions.

    Politics poses another problem. “As climate change has become less of a scientific issue and more of a political issue, museums are afraid that even if they are acting on the science, they could be seen as acting on politics, or even lobbying,” Sutton says.

    (Indeed, in his conversation with artnet News, Lindemann went out of his way to note that the Bass’s board does not “have a political opinion on what is causing climate change, or even to what extent the climate is changing.”)

    Still, many experts agree that museums have a particular stake in these issues—if for no other reason than because they are charged with preserving cultural heritage for future generations. They are playing a long game.

    “There is a certain responsibility when you build a cultural institution,” Trezzani says. “Museums plan to be around forever, so you need to plan for that.”

    Some museums are not waiting for storms to hit before they take action. The newest addition to the National Mall in Washington, DC, the National Museum for African American History and Culture, installed a top-of-the-line, $300,000 floodgate at its loading dock. Thanks to a built-in flotation device, the gate automatically rises with the increased water level.

    The Smithsonian Institution has been developing a climate change adaptation plan since 2014, investigating which museums are most vulnerable to flooding and what can be done to protect them.

    As a result, the National Museum of American History in Washington, DC, is now moving the storage of its collections to higher floors or other facilities, and the loading dock at the National Air and Space Museum will be redesigned in upcoming renovation. Staff across the Smithsonian are also receiving emergency training. “We expect more of these types of emergencies and for them to be more intense,” a Smithsonian spokeswoman says.

    Meanwhile, the Dia Art Foundation in New York is having internal discussions about how to confront the effects of climate change on important works of land art. Nancy Holt’s Sun Tunnels (1976) in the Great Basin Desert may become prohibitively hot for visitors if droughts worsen in the American Southwest. Robert Smithson’s Spiral Jetty (1970) in Utah is becoming overtaken by salt crystals as the Great Salt Lake recedes over time.

    Although Smithson believed in the importance of entropy and recognized that Spiral Jetty would inevitably change, Dia is beginning to ask for the first time if there is a particular point at which the work might require additional intervention or conservation.

    “This conversation is something we are having internally, and we’re consulting with many different people,” says Kelly Kivland, a curator at Dia. “I’m sure Smithson envisioned a time when the climate would be significantly different. I don’t know if he realized it was going to be so soon.”

    At the Bass, George Lindemann and a group of fellow board members have been working for the past nine months to draw up a list of considerations about long-term sustainability that all staff will need to address before making major decisions moving forward.

    Such questions include: If a show will be on view during hurricane season, how quickly can it be deinstalled and moved to a higher floor? Is a show of delicate sculpture (Lindemann uses the example of Sarah Sze) inappropriate for a volatile month like June? If a board member wants to join the museum’s ranks, does he or she have business ties that could bias the museum’s decision-making?

    This new approach “may sound like a minor thing,” Lindemann says, “but it’s really not minor at all. These questions are major.”

    See Original Post


  • August 08, 2017 3:00 PM | Office IFCPP (Administrator)

    by Steve Woolley

    ELEPHANT IN THE ROOM

    Since the last time…

    We have talked until now about:

    • Roles
    • Contribution Statements to those Roles
    • Connecting our Activities/Actions to solid related behaviors and the Objectives of our Job
    • Keeping our Contribution relevant…real
    • Measuring…but…Measuring What Matters Most
    • Discipline to Objectives/Goals (Say Do)
    • Seeking Feedback (seeing things as they really are)
    • Courage to change as needed
    • Ask
    • Are we listening ?
    • What do we hear ?
    • What will we do…Really?

    So many times we think ourselves into a frame of thought that ignores the "Key Issue”…

    The “Job to be Done” around us…that the “Situation is the Boss” is pushed into the corner…kicked down the road…”until later”, “not now”…The Elephant in the Room…

    In “The Inquisitive Man” written in 1814 by Ivan Andreevich Krylov, the fable tells of a man who goes to a museum and notices all sorts of things, but fails to see the elephant. This proverbial phrase has taken on meaning…

    An issue that everyone is acutely aware, but nobody wants address…”The Job to be Done”

    What’s our “Elephant”?

    So often we look outside…rather than inside.

    “So and So…needs to…”

    “The Project is so messed up !”

    “Why can't this get fixed…?”

    How inquisitive are we of ourselves…and the “Elephant” in our room…?

    Are we courageous enough to consider what that Elephant may be..?

    The real “Job to Be Done”

    Marshall Goldsmith in “What Got You Here, Won’t Get You There” has a number of great ideas,

    thoughts and methods that can support our growth…The Job to Be Done…for the Elephant in the Room…


  • August 08, 2017 2:57 PM | Office IFCPP (Administrator)

    Reposted from The Washington Post

    Welcome to the dark side of the art world.

    U.S. prosecutors recently seized a 2,300-year-old vase, painted by the great Greek artist Python, which had long been on display at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Evidence showed that tomb raiders had looted it in Italy in the 1970s. It is expected that the vase will ultimately be returned to Italy, as was the Euphronios Krater, another Greek vase that was illegally excavated in Italy in 1971, bought by the Met in 1972, and returned to Italy in 2008.

    Both vases passed through the hands of Giacomo Medici, an Italian art dealer who, in 2004, was convicted of dealing in looted antiquities, many of which ended up in the collections of museums.

    How is it possible for looted objects to find homes in esteemed cultural institutions such as art museums, and what have governments done to try to stop this? Here is what you need to know about the dark side of the art world and the attempts to fight what goes on there.

    This is how looted antiquities are laundered 

    The plundering of archaeological sites is a common problem afflicting archaeology-rich countries, especially in the developing world. The clandestine excavation and removal of antiquities can cause enormous and irreparable damage to the looted sites, destroy much of the historical information that the antiquities carry, and rob communities of their cultural heritage. The looted antiquities then flow to rich countries, where they obtain a veneer of legitimacy and become museum exhibits or collector items.

    Such laundering is possible, since most antiquities surface on the market and are sold without provenance: They carry no ownership history or information as to where and when they were found. The secrecy that typically shrouds the identities of buyers and sellers in the art market further complicates any attempt to trace an antiquity to its source. Excavated and exported illegally, antiquities often change hands several times before dealers and auction houses sell them to museums or private collectors. Any details of the objects’ illegal origin are erased or lost in the process: They often cannot be recognized as looted.

    Unsurprisingly, art-trade practitioners try to minimize this problem, arguing that many unprovenanced antiquities come from legitimate sources and are not necessarily looted. Yet archaeologists identify the art market as the culprit and denounce the no-questions-asked approach that prevails there: the failure to verify the legitimacy of antiquities and the willful blindness to their dubious origins. According to archaeologists, the indiscriminate acquisition of unprovenanced objects, especially by U.S. art museums, fuels demand for plundered antiquities and hence encourages looting.

    There is resistance to international cooperation

    Many of the “source countries” where objects originate have laws saying that all antiquities found within the national territory are under national ownership and cannot be exported. Because source countries have failed to enforce the export prohibition, they want the market countries where antiquities are sold to prevent the import of looted material, shifting the burden of curbing the illicit antiquities trade.

    In the 1960s, under the auspices of UNESCO (the U.N. agency that coordinates international cooperation in cultural matters), source countries initiated an international agreement that imposes significant controls on the movement of antiquities. This initiative, however, got a skeptical response from market countries, including the United States, Britain and Switzerland. These countries didn’t want to bear the costs of controlling imports of antiquities and wanted to protect their art markets, into which the looted antiquities flowed.

    Therefore, market countries initially refused to join the agreement signed in 1970: the Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property. In 1995, another international agreement was signed, which was intended to facilitate legal action for the return of looted antiquities. Market countries shunned that agreement as well, viewing it as a threat to their art markets.

    Even still, cooperation evolved over time

    The United States was the first market country to reverse its early opposition to international antiquities regulation  and join the 1970 UNESCO Convention. My research shows that this transformation was the product of public scandals, which exposed the unethical practices of American museums and collectors, as well as the efforts of the U.S. archaeological community. Archaeologists educated policymakers about the destruction that the illicit antiquities trade causes — and how the American art market fuels it. They urged U.S. participation in the UNESCO Convention to save the world’s cultural heritage and improve the United States’ image.

    Yet policymakers also came under pressure from antiquities dealers and art museums. Those vehemently opposed the convention, arguing that it undermines the public interest in the enjoyment of art and unjustifiably asks the United States to solve other countries’ problems. Given this opposition, although the United States did join the UNESCO Convention in 1983, it implemented it in a limited fashion: Import restrictions on antiquities are imposed selectively, through bilateral agreements with source countries or on an emergency basis.

    It took two decades for other market countries to follow the United States’ example. In 2002, Britain joined the UNESCO Convention after a series of scandals that called attention to the questionable practices of the London art market and its involvement with looted material. Other market countries, including Japan, Switzerland  and Germany, joined the convention in following years. Ultimately, these countries came to accept the principle that they had rejected early on: their responsibility to contribute to the prevention of looting through controls on the movement of antiquities.

    Pressure on museums is growing

    In recent years, the acquisition of antiquities by U.S. art museums has diminished. U.S. import restrictions — which many in the art community regard as too strong — have reduced the supply of antiquities. Museums caught unlawfully in possession of antiquities might become embroiled in legal battles over ownership and possibly even face criminal charges. The Association of Art Museum Directors has published guidelines that require museums to ensure the legitimacy of the antiquities they acquire. Media attention to the problem of looted antiquities has contributed to growing public awareness and concern, which pushed museums to behave more responsibly and made them susceptible to the pressure of source countries — such as Italy’s demand for the return of the Euphronios Krater.

    Archaeologists maintain that, notwithstanding changing policies and practices, the U.S. art market continues to be a catalyst for looting. Yet it is clear that the ethical environment has changed fundamentally: No longer operating on the basis of the free movement of antiquities, the art world has come to accept significant constraints that are necessary for the protection of the world’s archaeological heritage.

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