Business & Finance
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8/16/2005
01:36 PM
Mitch Wagner
Mitch Wagner
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Keeping Your Best Employees On The Job

In This Issue:
1. Editor's Note: Keeping Your Best Employees On The Job
2. Today's Top Story
    - Langa Letter: A Must-Have Repair And Recover Tool
    - Langa Letter: Converting Audio Files? Let 'Er Rip!
    - Langa Letter: How To Build Better Passwords
3. Breaking News
    - AMD, Intel Slash Prices
    - Security Software Company Discovers Possible ID-Theft Ring
    - Microsoft Will Reissue Windows 2000 Rollup
    - Six Windows Security Fixes Slated
    - Internet Agency Reassigns Iraq Domain
    - Soap Opera For The *Really* Small Screen
    - NEC Develops Backup Battery With Organic Compounds
    - As Threats Loom, Audible Keeps Building
    - Logan Airport, Continental In Spat Over Free Wi-Fi
    - Opinion: Why The Symantec-Veritas Merger Didn't Lead To Other Security Megadeals
4. In Depth: Reports From India And China
5. Voice Of Authority: 'It Is What It Is'
6. White Papers: Taming E-Mail Management
7. Get More Out Of InformationWeek
8. Manage Your Newsletter Subscription

Quote of the day:
"In order that people may be happy in their work, these three things are needed: They must be fit for it. They must not do too much of it. And they must have a sense of success in it." -- John Ruskin


1. Editor's Note: Keeping Your Best Employees On The Job

It's easy to see our story on the latest job opening at Google as nothing more than frivolous, but there's some meat to it. So to speak.

Google is looking to hire gourmet chefs.

Google feeds its employees free breakfast, lunch, and dinner. And from the looks of things, Google employees eat pretty well. According to our article, a sample menu includes "ahi tuna and avocado poke, vegetarian tamale casserole, and seared day boat scallops in green coconut curry sauce."

I don't even know what half those foods are.

Google's lavish meal plan is more than just a frivolity, though. Hanging onto employees is always a tough task. Even during a bust, when there are hundreds of applications for every job opening, it's hard to hang onto the good employees.

What do employees want? Well, money and bennies, sure, but they also want to be treated with respect. Like people, not "human resources." And one of the best ways to show people you value them is to shovel good food into them.

But that's not the only way. Financial analysts are critical of warehouse store Costco, saying Costco pays its employees too well, according to the New York Times. (You have to pay the Times to access that article.) "Costco's average pay, for example, is $17 an hour, 42 percent higher than its fiercest rival, Sam's Club. And Costco's health plan makes those at many other retailers look Scroogish. One analyst, Bill Dreher of Deutsche Bank, complained last year that at Costco 'it's better to be an employee or a customer than a shareholder,'" the Times wrote.

But CEO Jim Sinegal argues that its good pay and benefits actually help keep prices down and deliver value for stockholders. Well-treated employees lead to low turnover, low recruiting and retraining costs, and reduced theft by employees.

I can testify personally that CMP Media, the company that publishes this newsletter, is a great place to work; I've been here 13 years.

The company cafeteria? It's OK. But it does a surprisingly good breakfast burrito; check it out if you ever come visit us for a morning meeting.

And Speaking Of Things To Check Out: Our New Search Engine

We recently upgraded the InformationWeek search engine. (When I say "we," I mean "other people, but I'm jumping in here at the end to claim credit for the work.") Visit any InformationWeek page, enter your search term in the tasteful text field at the top, and get improved, more targeted searching for articles. We can't tell you where you left your car keys, though; sorry about that.

Mitch Wagner
mwagner@cmp.com
www.informationweek.com


2. Today's Top Story

Langa Letter: A Must-Have Repair And Recover Tool
The free BartPE gives you a bootable Windows XP CD for system repair and recovery. If you ever have to recover files from an unbootable drive or try to bring a dead PC back to life, here's a free, zero-footprint tool you shouldn't be without, Fred Langa says.

Related Stories:
Langa Letter: Converting Audio Files? Let 'Er Rip!

Readers suggest more MP3 and audio-file tools than you can shake a memory stick at!

Langa Letter: How To Build Better Passwords
Stronger passwords don't have to be hard to create or use, Fred Langa says. Here are tools and tips that can help.


3. Breaking News

AMD, Intel Slash Prices
Intel cut prices on its Centrino chips, and AMD on its whole product line. More cuts may be in the works.

Security Software Company Discovers Possible ID-Theft Ring
Sunbelt Software says a server it discovered during research work may be harvesting ID information using keylogging technology.

Microsoft Will Reissue Windows 2000 Rollup
The company is at last agreeing that it needs to release a new Windows 2000 rollup, because the last one prevented some third-party applications from working, among other problems.

Six Windows Security Fixes Slated
Microsoft says it has six security bulletins on deck for Tuesday's monthly packet of patches, twice the number released in July. At least one will carry the "critical" tag.

Internet Agency Reassigns Iraq Domain
ICANN assigned the ".iq" domain to the country's new government. The previous manager, Texas-based InfoCom, lost control of the domain after it was convicted on charges of funneling funds to Hamas.

Soap Opera For The *Really* Small Screen
A Chinese company has created a soap opera made specifically for mobile-phone screens half the size of a credit card.

NEC Develops Backup Battery With Organic Compounds
The company is pitching its new battery, made without heavy metals, as a backup for everything from PCs to refrigerators.

As Threats Loom, Audible Keeps Building
The leader in online book sales is finally starting to show profits as Amazon.com gears up for its own audio book store.

Logan Airport, Continental In Spat Over Free Wi-Fi
The Boston airport is trying to stop Continental Airlines from giving free wireless Internet access to its frequent fliers. The airport charges $7.95 a day for Wi-Fi and says Continental's offering is unsafe.

Opinion: Why The Symantec-Veritas Merger Didn't Lead To Other Security Megadeals
Until Symantec can demonstrate synergies between its traditional security business and the storage business it acquired, its stock price will continue to wallow.


4. In Depth: Beyond The Sea

India's Next Step
First it became a hub for IT services. Now India stands to become a major force in the software industry, too, with its own vendors taking the global stage.

Intuit Opens Indian Development Center, Releases Quicken 2006
Intuit will set up a development center in the outsourcing hotbed of Bangalore, India, joining other U.S. firms such as Microsoft with engineering facilities in the city.

Look East
Low costs and high skills tempt businesses to outsource to China.

Microsoft Adds To Investments In China
A new venture with a Chinese company could help Microsoft learn more about the market. But CEO Steve Ballmer warned recently that software piracy is holding back Microsoft's revenue in China.

China Confirms Plan To Create $6 Billion Electronics Venture
The government will merge China Electronics and the China Great Wall Computer Group into a $6 billion corporation making electronics, including integrated circuits, hard drives, power supplies, cell phones, and radar systems.

U.S. No. 1 In Electronic Design, But China Moving Up
U.S. electronic-system design is projected to drive 33.5% of global semiconductor purchasing this year, amounting to $58.7 billion worth of chip sales, according to a study.

Google Expected Fight Over Microsoft Hire
Google agreed to pay Kai-Fu Lee's full salary and let his stock options vest even if an agreement he signed at Microsoft prevented him from being able to work for up to a year.


5. Voice Of Authority

'It Is What It Is -- Except When It Isn't'
Brian Gillooly explains why a casually used phrase may have more impact on IT than you'd think, and why we should do something about it.


6. White Papers: E-Mail

Taming The Growth Of E-Mail: An ROI Analysis
E-mail storage requirements are growing out of control because of simultaneous expansion on several fronts. Companies are looking for solutions.


------- Webcasts -----------------------

The News Show's John Soat has his usual offbeat take on the latest IT headlines. Watch The News Show

In Friday's episode:

Aaron Ricadela On Microsoft's New Chief

John Soat On The Week In Review

Ivan Schneider On Oracle Gets Flex-Able

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