It is a shame that computers which still work but can’t run the latest business software or games tends to either lie in the basement for ages or go straight to recycling, when a more useful thing to do might be to give it to other people who could put it really valuable use.
Last Sunday’s SBPost Computers in Business magazine had a feature which I put together on the decommissioning and re-use of IT equipment. This included a look at Camara, an Irish NGO which takes in used IT equipment from companies or normal people, securely deletes all data and then refurbishes the machines for use in schools in Ireland and Africa.
“We reuse the equipment in schools, but that is not the reason businesses deal with us,” said ” said Eoghan Crosby, technical director of Camara. “They come to us as we offer them a clean efficient service, we can match any quote that a business gets and the company get some good PR. It costs €50 for Camara to send a computer to a school in Africa. We try and get €20 from the original donor, the business or individual, we fundraise €20 and we ask the school for €10.”
The full article, which also has info on issues like secure data destruction and the relevant environmental legislation, is through here on the SBPost site.
Or you can go straight to Camara’s own website and learn more about their activities by clicking here.
I did an interesting interview with Libby Gribben, international human resources director with US chip design firm Xilinx, for last Sunday’s recruitment page of the Sunday Business Post.
Xilinx has been in Ireland since 1995, growing to 450 workers by 2005, but since shrinking to 130 as the company re-organised its global operations, leaving high level R&D and sales support jobs in Ireland and moving the rest elsewhere.
‘‘India is our engineering and software development hub,” said Gribben. ‘‘We have centralised our operations and logistics function in Singapore, close to our manufacturing. We need to be near our customers across the globe, so we have the Irish operation covering Europe, Middle East and Asia. It is not that each region carries out the same role – and is therefore in competition with each other – but more that each region has a value of its own. Over 80 per cent of our staff in Ireland would be educated to third level and above.”
We didn’t really have time to get into whether it was better for Ireland as a whole for multinationals with Irish operations to have 450 jobs spread across different specialities and levels or 130 high value ‘knowledge economy’ jobs. It’s a moot point anyways I guess.
Full article, including comment from Gribben about the HR challenges of going through a restructuring process, how Ireland is fixed for attracting high value jobs and the technology being developed by Xilinx in Ireland, is through here though on thepost.ie, if you want a read.