Fourth Industrial Revolution – What, Why, When & How?

Though considered as an up gradation of the third industrial revolution, this is particularly a fusion of technologies; a sound, promising, affluent, and visionary and altogether different revolution coming up soon!The First Industrial Revolution came up to mechanize production using water and steam power, while the Second Industrial Revolution started to create mass production. Automated production using electronics and information technology was the mission of the Third One. The awaiting transformation cannot be considered as a prolongation of the Third Industrial Revolution due to its disruptive propagation, exponential evolution and a speed transformation with no historical precedent.What is Fourth Industrial Revolution?We are at the brink of a technological innovation; a change; a surreal transformation! According to World Economic Forum (WEF) founder and executive chairman Klaus Schwab, as a “technological revolution that will fundamentally alter the way we live, work and relate to one another”. The soon-to-happen and highly awaited Fourth Industrial Revolution combines digital, biological and physical systems and will propagate a new interaction between humans and machines. Built upon the first three Industrial Revolutions, this will prove the rapid speed of technological progress by fusing their boundaries.Artificial Intelligence (AI) will rule the Fourth Industrial Revolution! Technological innovation will be the best and the promising part of this phase of Industrial Revolution. Driverless cars, smart robotics, 3D printing, autonomous vehicles, nanotechnology, biotechnology, digital fabrication, synthetic biology, computation design, energy storage, quantum computing and the Internet of Things will be the milestones set in the Fourth Industrial Revolution. A WEF paper by Nicholas Davis, head of Society and Innovation says that, “reliant on the technologies and infrastructure of the third industrial revolution… , represent entirely new ways, in which technology becomes embedded within societies and even our human bodies. The new ways include genome editing, new forms of machine intelligence, and breakthrough approaches to governance that relies on cryptographic methods such as block chain”.Why is this buzz about Fourth Industrial Revolution?Because there are both massive opportunities and grave challenges!Skills will rule the Labour Market! One of the biggest and direct impacts of the Fourth Industrial Revolution will be felt by the labour market. Increasing technological invasion will lead to a large tranche of job losses, especially for low- skill jobs. There will be high demand for high-skill jobs. You will definitely smart coders for driverless cars, isn’t it? According to economists Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee, there will be rise in inequality in the labour market. Larger technological automation will lead to net displacement of workers and subsequently an increase in the growth and demand of safe and rewarding jobs. Oxfam estimated that just 62 individuals own as much as the poorer half of the world’s population, and that the wealth of the poorest 50 per cent fell by 41 per cent since 2010. A report by the Swiss bank UBS said that the spread of AI and Robotics will harm economies like India and some Latin American countries by cutting their cheap labour advantage. Earlier, researchers at Oxford had estimated that 35 per cent of workers in the UK and 47 per cent in the US can lose their jobs to technology over the next two decades. Hence the labour market will go like this: “high skill-high demand-high pay” and “low skill-low demand-low pay”. In other words, talent will acquire a bigger space and will be much in demand in the labour market than the capital during the Fourth Industrial Revolution.Improvise the Quality of LivingTechnology has improvised the quality of life for populations since its inception. Availability of new products, easier accessibility to market, increased efficiency and pleasure of personal lives and an affordable digital world awaits ahead. Starting from high end crucial daily requirements like making a transaction, buying a product till casual personal needs like listening to music or watching a movie; will be done remotely and easily. The Fourth Industrial Revolution will indeed result in a qualitative transformation in the life of people.Tremendous Gain in Efficiency and ProductivityNeedless to say that automation and technological innovation will cause a miracle in terms of efficiency and productivity. Long term gains are assured. Drop in the transportation and communication costs, increased effectiveness of logistics and global supply chains and reduced cost of trade will gear up the economic growth as well propel new markets to open up. It is easier to run trade with fewer workers today than it was half a quarter of a century ago. A company can earn a good money with a smart app with minimum requirement of capital leave alone the storage, logistics and transportation charges. Explaining in terms of economics jargon, marginal costs per unit of output will tend to zero and Return-of-Investment will be on a higher side; abruptly higher!Impact on Business World; Can be a reliable promise as well as a fatal peril!The Fourth Industrial Revolution will however mark a major impact on the business world. Development and prosperity will rest on four platforms: customer expectations, on product enhancement, on collaborative innovation, and on organizational forms. Customers will form the epicentre of the business. Increased digital transparency in the business sector will lead to a major change in the world of customer experiences, data-based services, and asset performance. The rise of new global niches and business models will definitely need a makeover and re-touch of the existing talent, culture, and organizational forms. Business leaders need to understand their changing environment, challenge the assumptions of their operating teams, and relentlessly and continuously innovate to be in the changing league.Grave Challenge Ahead for GovernmentsWhat will happen if citizens voice their opinions and circumvent the work of the government? A serious approach towards public engagement and policy making should be started! And this is what is going to happen very soon in the age of Fourth Industrial Revolution. Rapid digitilization will enable the citizens to opine more about the work of the Government subsequently putting more pressure on the latter due to redistribution and decentralization of power. Agile governance is the need of the hour. To do so, governments and regulatory agencies will need to collaborate closely with business and civil society. Technology can increase the risk of new fears related to warfare at the same time it will also create the potential to reduce the scale or impact of violence, through the development of new modes of protection, for example, or greater precision in targeting.Female mass will have a prominent part in this revolutionNegative effect on labour market can have a disproportionately negative impact on women than men. However with increasing women talent pool, the proportion of women expected to progress to medium and senior roles by 2020 is set to rise by nearly 10%. Job loss due to automation of technology, will affect women and men relatively equally. However, the fact that, women make up a smaller share of the workforce means that today’s economic gender gap may widen even further. According to The Industry Gender Gap Report, “The Media, Entertainment and Information sector is the only one that will see a reduction in the number of women in the next five years, with female composition expected to drop across all job levels, from 47% to 46%. However even here, women can expect to see more opportunity, with the proportion of women in mid-level and senior-level positions expected to grow from 25% in each today to 32% and 33% respectively”.When will be the onset of the Fourth Industrial Revolution?Resting upon the Third Industrial Revolution, the fourth is waiting for a major disruptor to mark its inception. A lot of instabilities and unpredictability are associated with the onset of this new digital revolution. A possible change in the Smartphone industry or just any new technological innovation that will wipe down the current technical aspects will mark the beginning of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. An invention that will “robotize” the humanity will set the Fourth Industrial Revolution.How will the Fourth Industrial Revolution affect India?

It will affect the cheap and unskilled labour market of India. According to a UBS report, “Automation will continue to put downward pressure on the wages of the low skilled and is starting to impinge on the employment prospects of middle-skilled workers. By contrast, the potential returns to highly skilled and more adaptable workers are increasing.”

There will be a need to upgrade the skills and invest heavily in skilling initiatives. “The greatest disruption, however, could be experienced by workers who have so far felt immune to robotic competition, namely those in middle­-skill professions,” the UBS report says.

Indian governance will face a major challenge to work on dynamic real time data. However there will be an increase in transparency especially in notoriously opaque sectors like real estate. There will be use of eWallets than cash.

Induction of 4G connectivity will enable Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) for the small town and village youths and help merchandising the agricultural products in the right price.

There can be a potential side effect of increased connectivity as well. “Connectivity increases the risks posed by cyber threats and the magnitude of these threats rises further as a result of networks becoming more connected. Extreme connectivity also fosters geopolitical tensions, as it increases the ability of diverse groups to organise and protest,” noted the UBS.

Age of 3D printing will increase India’s investment in space research. 3D printing can help to build space satellites easily.

A progressive tax regime will render equity.

How To Find Big Savings In Construction Projects

Knowing what to expect – including the places costs typically “hide” – provides an edge for efficiently managing the construction process.Step one
A well-defined interview process will assist you in selecting the best construction manager (CM) for the job. Be thorough; replacing the CM once the job has begun is costly and raises serious questions of liability.For renovation work, invite only CMs with considerable related experience. Interview previous clients to determine the CM’s ability to handle change orders, unforeseen elements and client decisions.Insist that the project executive, project manager and project superintendent assigned to the job be present at the interview. (The executive represents the company, the manager spends the owner’s money and the superintendent is the on-site contact.) Closely observe the interaction between these people. A successful project can hinge on the working relationship between them.Require all interviewing CMs to submit a detailed account of what they heard and agreed to at the interview. This important document will reflect the CM’s understanding of your conditions and form the basis for contract negotiations. This document will also serve to suppress potential disputes arising from construction contract issues.Where costs hideThe construction contract between the owner and CM is a legally binding contract but its terms are not universal. The owner should negotiate the specifics of the contract requirements and the particular needs of the project.The more knowledgeable the owner – often represented by the facility executive – is about the nature of the terms of the contract, the greater the awareness of the potential for hidden costs. Uninformed owners can unwittingly agree to pay more money for a longer period of time than necessary.Demonstrate your understanding of the construction process by first knowing the unit prices and labor costs of every item you agree to purchase and negotiating the following standard construction contract line items.• General Conditions. General Conditions should only be those non-construction costs that are necessary to get the job done and are directly applicable to the project. All general conditions should be a line item amount agreed to and guaranteed before the start of construction. Typical components of general conditions include funds for a site office, on-site project administration labor and necessary office equipment. Do not accept an amount that is expressed as a percentage of the cost.Substantial savings can be realized by asking the right questions about general conditions. For example, question the site office requirements presented by the CM, including how much new equipment is necessary. Who should assume the cost of purchasing and installing the computer equipment and software the CM lists as a site office requirement?• Overhead. Overhead is the CM’s cost of doing business. Should the owner be responsible for that cost? An argument can be made that the owner need only pay for costs directly applicable to this specific project, and not for costs the CM incurs on other jobs. This line item in particular is often the subject of legal disputes. Do not be afraid to eliminate elements of cost contained in this category and, again, do not accept an amount that is expressed as a percentage of the work.• Hourly Wages. Agree to pay only the wages for work on your project. The actual hourly wages, taxes and benefits (not a multiple of these) are the owner’s responsibility. Time off and educational seminars are not. Avoid a situation where you are asked to pay wages for a general superintendent or any other part-time supervisory personnel.• Construction Fees. To determine a fair construction fee, negotiate a percentage based only on the cost of the work. Be careful of the language of the contract. All fees are a direct percentage of the cost of the work, before the contingency and general conditions are added. A fair 4 percent construction fee could be 4.5 percent if taken as a percentage of a cumulative total. On multi-million dollar jobs, this can represent a substantial amount of money.Insist that the fee be converted from a percentage to a fixed amount before construction starts. Once construction starts and the potential for change orders (that can increase the cost of the work) exists, the fee will continue to rise without limit. Don’t allow the construction budget to be compromised in this way.• Contingency Fee. Most CMs require that a contingency fee be built into the guaranteed maximum price. The only responsible way to manage the necessary contingency fee is to insist that it be jointly controlled by the owner and the CM. Neither the design nor the construction process is a perfect science; CMs will insist that they need to “manage their risk” with the contingency fee. Maintaining some control over the allocation of funds will enable the owner to best justify the expenses.When negotiating the contract, the owner must “buy the schedule” with the cost of construction and guard against it slipping. Extending the construction phase is a costly decision.Agree on the completion date of the project and insist that a penalty be levied if the project is delayed. Do not agree, however, to a bonus if the project is finished before the scheduled delivery date. The CM might deserve a bonus for early delivery if extraordinary problems were overcome, but does not necessarily deserve bonus dollars for performing the job you hired them to do.Change orders and substitutionsIn negotiating the change order procedure in the construction contract, the owner should demand a “no work stoppage” clause. Too much time can be wasted if work ceases in anticipation of a general agreement of change order amounts and schedule implications.When presented with a change order, the architect should consider both the money and time the CM is looking to add to the job. Each is open for discussion. Don’t wonder why construction isn’t finished and then discover the architect has authorized an additional week of accumulated change orders.While the CM should aggressively pursue reasonable substitutions on your behalf, be sure you or your architect knows the cost of the originally specified product and the cost of the alternative. The construction contract should state clearly that cost savings realized by the substitution for a specified product go directly to the owner. Here, too, substantial savings can be realized.As your architect’s last element of control over the quality of the project, the punch list must be a thorough process. Accompany the architect to look at the job. Try to anticipate any problems that may arise once the space is occupied. If a fault is discovered after the owner has released the CM, the issue will be more difficult, time consuming, and expensive to remedy.Secrets of a successful renovationTo successfully manage a renovation process while the facility remains in operation, consider the following ways to minimize cost and disruption:• What you see is not what you get. In most cases, the older the building you are occupying and renovating, the greater the potential discrepancy between the budgeted and actual costs of the renovation. Work with an architect and a CM who have enough renovation experience to anticipate potential unforeseen elements (electrical, mechanical, environmental and code compliance) and to quantify the cost of the work before the construction contract is signed.• Designating a “swing space.” If your project requires renovating existing spaces while you are occupying them, provide a “swing space” for temporary use by each displaced department as its permanent space is modified. To determine the order in which the areas are renovated, consult with department managers and the CM to minimize the disruption to company productivity and maximize the efficiency of the renovating and moving processes.• Building a “smart” addition. If your renovation includes building an addition onto the space you are occupying, minimize traffic, dust and noise by building as much of the addition as possible before breaking through to connect with the existing spaces.• Establishing a presence. As the facility manager, your knowledge of the facility and daily operations makes your presence in the process invaluable. Attend weekly construction meetings and address issues before they become magnified and more costly. Often, because of your vast knowledge of the building and its systems, you will understand the issues and can offer a workable solution more readily than the construction team.Opening the lines of communicationPrecise communication with all of the individuals involved in the process, especially the clients you service and the employees who must be accommodated, is essential. One extreme case – the renovation of a hospital emergency room – demanded the cooperation of the local police, ambulance services, and other area hospitals to reroute and accept patients.Common scenarios involve notifying staff of an activity or a move (start date, duration, specifics), discussing the arrangement for temporary facilities, ensuring safety and security, and providing additional signs to redirect visitors. The more accurate the construction schedule and the more open the lines of communication, the more efficient and less expensive the process.Weekly progress coordination meetings should be attended by building administrators, maintenance and engineering staffs, and each subcontractor to review progress. Detailed meeting minutes should be distributed both internally and to the appropriate regulatory officials. These minutes will be the core documentation vehicle for the project.Not every owner or facility manager has the time, interest or expertise to devote to project management.The owner can still protect his or her interests by hiring an advocate to coordinate and oversee the construction process. As the owner’s representative, this individual defines the development process, negotiates project contracts, schedules and monitors all stages of the construction process, and coordinates communication between participants.The fee for this service can be offset by substantial savings in construction costs. Many clients hire these experts to “fix” a project that is already in trouble, but an advocate is most valuable if consulted from the start.

How to Plan For Corporate Event Entertainment

When planning a corporate event the planner knows that the key to a great success is planning the corporate event entertainment. Now there are several types of entertainers and hundreds of places to go to book these entertainers. In order to find the right entertainment for your corporate event you must first answer a few questions. First, what kind of event is it going to be? Is this a training session, or a company retreat or maybe a company picnic? Second, who am I looking to entertain? Will there be children, is this a family event, or will there only be adults? Once you answer those questions you will be on your way to obtaining the best entertainment for your corporate event.Figuring out what type of event you are planning is key in determining what kind of entertainment you will want. The corporate event entertainment can be an ice breaker for a training session, fun for the children at a company picnic, or perhaps the motivation needed for employees at a corporate retreat. Having the right entertainment at each one of these events can make a big difference in whether the party is a blast or a bust. You would not want to waste money on the wring kind of entertainment, you would not hire a circus act for a corporate retreat, nor would you hire a motivational speaker for a company picnic.Once you know what kind of event you are planning hiring the right corporate event entertainment will be determined by your audience. You would not want a motivational speaker to entertain children at a company picnic, nor would you want a magician at that same picnic if there will be no children present. The audience that you are planning on entertaining will be the key factor when you are calling around to hire the right entertainment.