Social Media Hot Spots for Job Seekers

The largest city in the United States has the highest volume of social media jobs. No surprise that New York is atop both lists (based on 2010 population figures and a recent report from OnwardSearch, an Internet marketing staffing company that used job postings as its basis for comparison).

Size isn’t always a determing factor when one views the rest of the list. The top 10 social media hot spots for jobs included the following (with their 2010 population ranks in parentheses):

  • 2. San Jose (10th in population)
  • 3. San Francisco (13th)
  • 5. Boston (23rd)
  • 6. Washington, D.C. (25th)
  • 7. Baltimore (22nd)
  • 9. Seattle (24th)

Rounding out the social media top 10: Los Angeles, 4; Chicago, 8; and Philadelphia, 10. Each are among the top five in population.

Go the opposite route and the largest cities not showing up on the social media top 20 are San Antonio (7th in population), Jacksonville (11th) and Indianapolis (12th). Making the biggest jumps (low population, top 20 in jobs) are Atlanta, Minneapolis and Miami.

What does all this prove? Not sure. There may have been a disconnect between city population totals and metro area job postings. Nevertheless, social media is here to stay (and the jobs are widespread).

Making the Move to Indy, Colts Style

Home football game this weekend for the Colts – OK, it is preseason. But excitement is still definitely building for NFL fans. After all, Indianapolis is hosting the next Super Bowl.

With that milestone event coming up, it’s a good time to reflect on the Colts and how they came to be our team.

In the September/October issue of the Chamber’s BizVoice ® magazine (in the mail and available online August 26), we do just that. I spoke to those who were most heavily involved in the big move – and they had many great recollections. Here’s one amusing story in detail not found in the magazine article.

Michael Chernoff¸ then legal counsel and negotiator for the Baltimore Colts, on the media and the actual relocation:

“When I flew from Indianapolis to Baltimore to supervise the move, one of the executives of Mayflower (the company that moved the team) flew with us. When we landed in Baltimore, the press was already there. My guess was somebody in the tower called the press and said the Colts plane is on its way in. We got off of the plane and were met by one of the Colts people in a car that originally was going to take us to the complex, but with all the press there and everything, I didn’t want to go there.

“So instead he drove us to a motel down the road from the complex and we checked in there. It was a two-story motel; he went to his room and I went to my room. We talked a little bit and every time I would open my door to go out, the TV antenna on the trucks would go up, they’d turn on their motors and they were ready to go. I couldn’t go anywhere without bringing them with me.

“I called the guy from Mayflower and said, ‘I know where your room is, go across to the motel next door and when you get there, call me and let me know if anybody saw you.’ They didn’t. I said, ‘Sit tight, I’ll have somebody pick you up.’ I then sat around for a couple of hours. By this time I was getting hungry, so I went across the street with the (press) entourage to have a bite. I called the complex and they said, ‘Don’t worry, the press is already here. You might as well come out.’ So, I did. We finished up the move well into the night. … And then we picked up the franchise certificate that the NFL issued to the Colts many years before, put it on the plane and the group of us flew back to Indianapolis to set up shop.”

Education Innovation Welcome in Any Form

The headline, subhead and opening sentence of this item found on the Governing magazine web site are wrong, wrong, wrong. Check them out and then I’ll share why and the fact that what is taking place is a very, very good thing.

Creating Competition for Charter Schools
Massachusetts is opening more “innovation schools” this fall to keep kids from transferring to charter schools and taking education dollars with them.

Every time a student is accepted into a publicly funded but independently-run charter school, the traditional public school he or she leaves loses money. To stay competitive with charter schools, Massachusetts enacted a law last year to allow for the creation of "innovation schools," a hybrid between charter and public schools, reports the Boston Globe. Like charters, a committee at each innovation school has control over all curriculum, staffing and budget decisions, allowing for the needs of the individual students and school to be taken into account. Unlike charters, though, the hybrid-model schools have to negotiate their freedom with the superintendent and abide by all contract provisions from the unions, which support the new schools. About a dozen innovation schools are expected to open this fall, following another dozen next year. They can be created from scratch or converted from existing ones (if two-thirds of the teachers agree). This past year, three districts tested the idea by launching schools with unique focuses: one caters to the emotional and social well-being of students in poverty, another operates almost entirely in cyberspace, while another focuses on college prep. Similar schools have also been seen in Baltimore, Colorado and Cleveland.

So what are the problems?

  • I hope traditional school districts aren’t trying to best serve their students with a variety of strong education options simply to "compete with charter schools"
  • Pretty much the same reasoning applies for the subhead. Sure, the district doesn’t want to lose students, but would it really embrace innovation solely for that reason?
  • Finally, the subhead and first sentence both state that a student goes to a charter school and the home district loses money. That fight has been played out endlessly in Indiana in recent years during debates on charter school caps, school funding and related legislation. The simple response: Are taxpayers funding schools or are they funding students? Why shouldn’t the money follow the child?

Despite my qualms with the beginning of the story, what’s taking place in Massachusetts (and other cities cited in the story and I’m sure a few other places) is exactly what should be happening in school districts across the country. It’s what charter school supporters have said would happen — the education establishment embracing innovation.

Are they doing it because of the competition, because of the serious shortcomings for students with the "we’ll do it this way because we’ve always done it this way" mentality or because it’s simply the right thing to do? I would like to assume it’s the latter reason, but maybe the best answer is that the reason doesn’t matter as long as innovation is embraced and our young people benefit.

The Joys of Somerville: Massachusetts Mayor Lauded for Government Reform

If you’ve been following our blog over the past year, you’ll realize we haven’t been too kind to Massachusetts. For evidence of our Commonwealth-bashing, see here and here — and for good measure, you better take a look at this as well. (Sorry, perhaps it’s just our Belichick aversion coming through.) But alas, the day has come to offer praise to the Old Bay State as we feature a column from former Indianapolis Mayor Stephen Goldsmith in Governing, in which he touts the reforms of Somerville, Mass. Mayor Joseph A. Curtatone:

Mayor Joseph A. Curtatone has enacted transformative changes in the management of Somerville, Massachusetts, and has done so by championing the importance of cost and efficiency data for all city services to improve accountability and performance. These efforts led to the creation of the SomerStat program. His approach to reform serves as a particularly timely primer on how to establish new norms for tracking and improving service delivery, giving officials the tools to know where to cut costs, where to keep investing and where there are opportunities for innovation…

SomerStat has now taken Baltimore’s CitiStat program one step further by integrating real-time data into its arsenal. According to Hirsch, this has allowed the city "to intensify its reliance on data for decision making." The mayor’s office requires that all city data be centrally accessible by the SomerStat office. This means that data from more than 50 sources are reported to the SomerStat office, from enterprise-wide and stand-alone systems. In fact, Curtatone subsequently created a major new source of performance data by implementing a centralized 311 constituent center (the first such center in New England) that tracks and issues work orders for every resident request for city services.

The first success to come from SomerStat’s analysis of this data was when it revealed a persistent problem of excessive overtime in the police department. The biggest culprit was that overtime costs were incurred whenever an officer was needed to cover someone who was out sick. Police leadership immediately started working with the mayor’s office and the union to create a solution. By increasing the number of officers assigned to each shift, the police and the mayor were not only able to rein in overtime costs, but were able to improve their community policing efforts by maintaining higher staff levels for each shift. "We’ve reaped one of the first rewards of the SomerStat process," Curtatone said. "This is part of our overall effort to modernize city government, cut waste and improve services."