Month: November 2014

Your Resume stands alone!

Remember when you send your resume in to a company, it stands alone.  Make sure your resume packs a punch, you need to stand out from the other 100’s of resumes the company receives:


Profile:  These 4 or 5 sentence paragraph or bullets are the first step on the ladder to selling yourself.  Make sure you fine tune it to the job description.

“Java developer with 5 years of experience handling multiple projects at the same time working in a Windows environment.  Led a Digital Team working in the finance and banking sectors.  Education includes a Bachelors of Computer Science and Sun  Certified Programmer for the Java 2 Platform certification.”

Education:  University Degrees and Certifications are listed in the job description.  Put them right under your Profile. Recruiters and Hiring Managers scan quickly for these qualifications.  They don’t want to hunt for them so put them right at the beginning.  Now they can move onto their next qualifications.

Skills and Technologies:  If the job description says you need Java then put down that you have Java or have worked in a Windows environment.  This is another qualification they do a quick scan for.  If it isn’t there your resume is tossed.  If it is there they can move onto the nitty gritty of your resume – the positions and achievements.

Professional Experience:  Underline your Company name.  CAPITALIZE your position, this will help it to stand out.  Next come your achievements.  Start them off with action words.  Again use the job description to make your achievements pack a punch.  Expand on the job description points using examples.

  • Strong technical background using C++, Java, JavaScript and C#.
  • Designed distributed high-performance trading systems ……expand
  • Mentored 3 Junior Developers …….expand


After you shorten your resume to 3 pages maximum, what’s the last thing that you do?  Yes – Proofread.  Spelling errors show that you didn’t make the extra effort.  Yes, they seem like a minor thing, but they are a huge red flag – are you careless, don’t care, don’t know.  Will you make the same mistakes in your job.  If you are a developer – oops – your program won’t work.  Prove you want the job by starting off with a clean concise error free resume.

happyfacehanddrawn Good luck job hunting


Lynne Carlson started her career off in administration, moved to Cobol Programming and for the last 14 years worked in all things recruitment.  Absolutely loves social media and excited about all the new innovations appearing every day!

Job Tips

#JobTip:  Keep your #resume to 2 to 3 pages, but feel free to put lots of information in your #LinkedIn Profile.


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Job Tips

#JobTip: When asking someone to connect with you on #LinkedIn be sure to put in a personal message rather than the standard LinkedIn message

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Google X

Forget Area 51, the new hot conspiracy topic belongs to Google.

Have you heard of Google X?

Google X is a semi-secret facility run by Google. It is dedicated to making major technological advancements.

This is the division that has been experimenting and testing those self driving cars we’ve been hearing so much about.




Their experiments and innovations don’t stop there.  Google X is tackling everything from augmented reality to a cure for cancer.

A Brief History

The rumour is that Google X was born from a dare. If it weren’t for the robo-cars, it might have never been born.

The lab’s conceptual origins reach back to 2005, when Chief Executive Officer Larry Page met the Stanford computer scientist Sebastian Thrun at the Darpa Grand Challenge.

Thrun’s team of graduate students was competing to send an autonomous vehicle through a 7-mile obstacle course in the Mojave Desert. The two men shared passion for technology and the potential of  Artifical Intelligence. They quickly became friends.

Two years after the competition, Page convinced Thrun and several of his students to team up to help create what would eventually become Google Maps.

Although the idea began there, Google X wouldn’t truly be born until 2010 when the company earnestly started designing the self-driving car.

What’s in a name?


Since then it has mostly remained hidden from view.

Today, it styles itself as the heir to the classic research lab – evolved versions of the facilities that created the innovations of their times.

Think NASA 2.0.

A lot of companies in the west have cut down on research funding since the 2008 financial crisis. Big, innovative projects that involve no immediate payout are considered too high risk for many companies that are still hurting from the recession. Google X suffers no such fears or restrictions.


Location Location Location

Regardless of all the strange experiments rumoured to be going on behind their closed doors, the official building where Google X exists is remarkably ordinary. It occupies a pair of  red buildings about half a mile from Google’s main buildings.  It has no official website – which is understandable! Given all of the top secret projects, what would they post there?

Of course, these are just the ‘official’ headquarters. Google has many other secret locations that are hidden from view, or filed through dummy cooperations.

In 2013 it was revealed that Google has purchased four barges. They are all registered under the name By and Large. And yes, that is the name of the evil corporation from the Wall-E movie that destroyed the planet.




Then, last week Google signed a 60 year lease on a former Navy dirigible hanger in Silicon Valley. They will pay 1.16 billion dollars for the 350,000 sure foot structure called Hangar One.


The theory goes that a Google subsidiary, Plantary Ventures LLC, will use the spot for research and development of technologies related to space and aviation, assembly and testing on the areas of space exploration and aviation robotics. It will also work with other emerging technologies.


Google has some unbelievable projects. In fact, it prides itself on  working on things that have a slim chance of succeeding. Google calls these endeavours Moonshots.


Generally speaking, there are three criteria that X projects share. All must address a problem that affects millions—or better yet, billions—of people. All must utilize a radical solution that at least in part resembles science fiction. And all must use technologies that are now (or very nearly) obtainable.

All Google X projects start with the Rapid Evaluation team, Rapid Eval for short.

They choose ideas and test out the most promising ones by doing everything possible to make them fail. These are the steps:

  1. Problem identified
  2. Idea developed
  3. Solution tested
  4. Prototype built
  5. Product introduced

As of 2014  there have been eight projects listed as under construction at Google. These include:

  • Self Driving Cars
    • Cars that essentially drive themselves. These are already being tested on many roadways in Canada and throughout the world.  Futurists are predicting that these vehicles will be the norm by 2030.
  • Project Wing – Drone Delivery
    • The original concept behind Project Wing — which has been in development for more than two years — was to deliver defibrillators to heart attack sufferers within two minutes. Due to integration problems with the 911 infrastructure, Google has shifted the project to the much more general problem of same-day deliveries, disaster relief, and generally delivering to places that couriers cannot reach.
  • Google Glass
    • Check out our previous blog post about it HERE.
  • Contact Lenses that monitor glucose in tears
    • A smart contact lens that’s built to measure glucose levels in tears by using a wireless chip and miniaturized glucose sensor that are embedded in contact lens material. This project is a long way away from being completed.
  • Project Loon
    • Balloon powered internet for everyone! Project Loon balloons float in the stratosphere, twice as high as airplanes and the weather. People can connect to the balloon network using a special Internet antenna attached to their building. The signal bounces from this antenna up to the balloon network.
  • Makani Power
    • An Airborne wind power company.
    • Makani is developing an energy kite that generates more energy at lower cost than conventional wind systems. The kite uses less material and accesses more consistent wind at higher altitudes.
  • Lift Labs
    • A tremor cancelling spoon for Parkinson’s patients.

It is worth noting that X’s moonshots are not as purely altruistic as Google likes to make them sound. While self-driving cars will save lives they will also free up drivers to use the internet and Google. Wi-Fi balloons could result in a billion more Google users.



Even Google X isn’t perfect. It has had its share of spectacular failures.

They may not be readily discussed, but Astro Teller, the head of Google X, is starting to shed some light on these hidden misnomers.

  • Space elevator – the cost and potential dangers of this far outweighed the benefits.
  • Hoverboard – this was actually invented by another company called Kickstarter after Google X gave up on it
  • Teleportation- this project was abandoned when it was found to break the laws of physics




Movember at Planet4IT UPDATED

That Mo is coming along excellently Andrew!


Day 24


Only one week to go!

You can watch his progress or donate money to his cause HERE.

We all look forward to your fabulous Mo Andrew!

Day 10

Day 10


Need a reminder on who Andrew is? Check out his profile below.


Andrew is one of the newest members of Planet4IT, but he brings with him a fresh new perspective.

With one eye on the job market and the other on the IT world, he’s the man to go to for information on how the latest advancements in Data, Digital Marketing and Social Media are effecting business.

Andrew encourages you to reach out to him through not only telephone or email, but LinkedIn and Twitter as well


Career Change – How to Decide?

 Changing  Careers – Where to start?

It is important to assess or clarify exactly what you are looking for short term and also where you want to be long term.  Remember when changing your career it also affects your family life and your social life.  So don’t forget to include these categories in your list.  Here are 8 categories to help you analyze your next career change:

  1. ›What is your objective
  2. ›What type of organization
  3. ›Supervisory or not
  4. ›Salary
  5. ›Type of employment
  6. ›Location
  7. ›New technologies
  8. ›You and/or your family


What is your objective

  • ›Are you looking to gain new skills?
  • ›Do you want to move into a leadership position?
  • ›What technologies do you like working with the most?
  • ›Where do you want to be in 5 years and what will help you get there?

What type of organization

  • ›Is there a specific industry you are interested in, ie finance, manufacturing, health, government?
  • ›Would you be interested in a large national/international company where there is room for transfers to other locations?
  • ›How about a start-up?  Do you have the skills that could take a start-up to the next level? Or just like the excitement of new and innovative environments?
  • ›Do you like bureaucracy or are you more comfortable in a family environment?

Supervisor or not

Some people are made to be in a supervisory position, other people find it very challenging.  There is nothing wrong with either side.  It is important for you to analyze yourself and decide if you like and want the extra challenges that go with supervising people.

  • ›Do you like a challenging puzzle? If you like getting involved in a puzzle then supervising might not be for you.
  • ›Supervising means making time for people and their problems and idiosyncrasies.
  • ›You have to be tough and soft and fair.


How important is Salary

  • ›Is money the most important thing in your life right now?  No shame in admitting this.  Money makes the world go round and helps you buy a house, go on a vacation, or pay off a loan.
  • ›Is learning a new skill more important than the salary?
  • ›Is this a good time to add extra experience and education to your resume and not worry as much about the salary?  Sometimes a long term career path means not necessarily going for the big pay cheque.

Contract or Permanent

  • ›Do you like the security of a permanent position?  These can include scheduled raises, health benefits, vacation time, possibility for advancement.  Your job may be like your family.


  • ›Are you more comfortable being a contractor and being your own boss.  Like having control of your salary and where the write-offs go.  The larger salary compensates for time off between jobs.  Do you like the idea of being able to take a summer off or travel for 4 months?  Do you find that new people, new systems, new companies enhance your work experience or do they stress you?

Location – to commute or not

Commuting is a big deal breaker on my list.

  • ›Do you like to drive?
  • ›Are you and the company close to public transportation?
  • ›How about the expense of car, parking, public transportation?
  • ›How long does the commute take?  Are you going to be happy with needing an extra 2 hours for transportation?
  • Don’t forget to think about those long Canadian winters when you factor in commuting.

New and Innovative Technologies

Are you comfortable with the technologies you are using or do you want to train with the new technologies on the marketplace?

  • ›Keep up to date on new/emerging technologies and what companies/systems are using them.
  • ›What’s hot, what’s not?  COBOL, Java, Hadoop.  What companies offer training in the new technologies?
  • ›Read industry publications to keep up to date on emerging technologies.
  • ›Do you need to go back to school or take a course/certificate?

You and Your Family

Times change and so do you.  Just graduated, no family ties – then long hours and travelling with your job are great.  Add a family into the scenario or have an older parent you need to help with.  Your needs change and so do theirs.

  • ›There is nothing more fun than coaching one of your kids at yours/their favourite sport.  Will the new job provide the opportunity to get home early enough for that?
  • ›Does the new company have a day care centre?
  • ›Health Benefits can make a huge difference in your life style.
  • ›Older parents, spouse’s career, are you at an age when you would like a little more time off.  These are all factors that you have to analyze when you are looking for a new position.

What factor is the deal breaker for you?

Everyone has different needs.  As you grow in your career your needs will change.  It’s important to analyze each factor for each time in your life.  Be honest!!  Changing careers and companies is a hard decision and not something you want to regret.

Start with these 8 factors and analyze each one.  Let me know which factor, either one of these or one of your own that made the difference in your decision.


happyfacehanddrawn Good luck job hunting


Lynne Carlson started her career off in administration, moved to Cobol Programming and for the last 14 years worked in all things recruitment.  Absolutely loves social media and excited about all the new innovations appearing every day!

Job Tips

#JobTip:  Setting up a #Linkedin account start with connecting with family and friends.  Most wedding lists have 200 people on it, start there


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