Posted: Monday, May 20th, 2013
This year when we did Tough Mudder I was able to bring along my new GoPro camera to capture some of the action. While I still have much to learn about holding the camera steady and how to use video editing software it does give a flavour as what the event is like.
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Posted: Thursday, May 9th, 2013
Last Saturday, 27 Fluidata employees completed 20Km of hardcore obstacle course designed by British special forces, Tough Mudder North London. Doubling the amount of company participants in 2013, we raised over £7,500 for Parkinson’s Disease UK and tested our mental grit, stamina, strength and camaraderie for the second year running.
This year we entered as the biggest group Tough Mudder UK has seen to date, and we successfully completed the challenge without any major injuries (only a few bruises). The relentless training, long distance running, and dieting helped to prepare the team to run through mud, electricity, fire and an ice filled plunge pool. The atmosphere in the office has been at high spirits and the team will continue to train over the coming months to keep in shape and prepare for the next big challenge.
The question is what is next for the Bandwidth Bandits?
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Posted: Friday, January 18th, 2013
This week it was revealed that a US software developer has been caught outsourcing his job, which has been earning him a six-figure salary. Working from home, he had spent his days browsing Reddit and YouTube, whilst a Chinese software company had been working under a contract with him to carry out his work. He was paying them only a fraction of his annual wage.
While this is completely fraudulent, it throws up some very interesting debates on the nature of outsourcing. Both SMEs and larger enterprises often do not have the capacity to run all aspects of their own business, or it simply doesn’t make financial sense, and so look elsewhere to have the work carried out contractually. IT departments especially are often entirely outsourced to individuals or companies offsite or even abroad. This enables companies to have a far wider reach than their headcount or talent pool of full-time employees can offer. But when this chain extends and expands, it can be at the expense of efficiency. In a world where time is money, decisions and directions can end up taking longer, and company core values become more difficult to stick to.
Timothy Ferriss, author of The 4-Hour Workweek and self styled “serial entrepreneur and ultravagabond”, offers a step-by-step guide on how to outsource your entire life using overseas ‘virtual assistants.’ He describes his personal story of how he streamlined both his personal and work life, enabling him to add more zeros to his salary, as well as spending the majority of his life on holiday. While you family may not appreciate birthday cards written by your Indian personal assistant ‘Honey’, I certainly know a few people who would see the immediate benefits in this. However, somewhere along the way the line blurs between having an assistant do a bit of extra research for you for a short article, to defrauding your company and opening up security breaches.
The fact is companies will always rely on each other to provide services they are experts in, companies that can do things better, quicker or cheaper than one can do in house. Good working relationships are key, where both sides are clear and open with each other on what they require and expect, as well as a good understanding of the business itself.
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Posted: Wednesday, October 24th, 2012
This week sees the new Network Operations Centre in Hemel Hempstead go live, home to our own 24/7 support team. For the past two years the NOC has been based at the same site as one of our major datacentre presences outside of London, 3 Centro. The team had grown over the years and subsequently was too large for the modest office space.
This upgrade stays in the same building but now takes up the ground floor and sees the site take the look and feel of the More London office with much more room to grow. With a dedicated boardroom, hot desking capability and a generous kitchen it is not only nicer for staff but also our frequent customer visits.
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Posted: Monday, October 22nd, 2012
This weekend saw eighteen Bandwidth Bandits take on the challenge of Mud Runner and compete in a 12 KM off road race across some of the toughest terrain known to man. For the past 80 years Eastnor Castle has played home to Land Rover who use the 5,000 acres as a proving ground for their cars. For the race the hills, ruts, water and lots of mud left by the cars is turned into a gruelling race which saw over 2,500 people compete.
The Bandwidth Bandits obviously demonstrated their ‘Train Hard, Fight Easy’ philosophy by achieving excellent times across the course and with minimal injury. This was of course all in aid of charity and so far the team have raised nearly £800 for the Multiple Sclerosis Society. If you would like to contribute your donation would be gratefully received http://www.justgiving.com/bandwidth-bandits-mr.
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Posted: Monday, May 14th, 2012
Fluidata are delighted to report that on Saturday a crack team of 13 FD employees (known collectively as the ‘Bandwidth Bandits’) participated and successfully completed ‘Tough Mudder’ – a gruelling 12 mile endurance obstacle course designed by British Special Forces.
The event took place in Kettering, within the beautiful grounds of Broughton Manor – the 11,200 acre estate of The Duke of Buggleach. As a landscape it’s the very portrait of rural serenity, but on Saturday it was transformed; playing host to heinous barbed wire fenced mud pits, flaming hay bales and a plethora of malevolent sounding obstacles such as ‘Devils Beard’ ‘Death March’ and ‘Electroshock Therapy’, all of which 6,000 adrenaline pumped entrants on the day set out to negotiate.
The organisers call their course ’Probably the Toughest Event on the Planet’ and I can testify they might not be wrong. Wading long distances knee deep in mud, attempting to clamber up 4 metre walls, that was the easy part! Because when we weren’t doing that we’d be doing anything from slipping off purposely greased monkey bars into frozen lakes, to running through wire electrified to 10,000 volts!
Needless to say ‘Tough Mudder’ was a formidable test of individual strength, grit and endurance; however most of all conquering the course was testament to the merits of team work. Most of the tasks were not possible to complete on your own and throughout the course, and also in the months of tough training prior to it, maintaining morale was vital to success. Crossing the line together then felt like culmination of months of collective hard work and a real achievement for the strong camaraderie within our group .
Though we did suffer one injury a group (a suspected shoulder dislocation) Tough Mudder has been a real success for the company; great for morale and providing a real buzz in the office over the last few months. Half the company are now also very fit, which is excellent for energy levels and productivity.
Last but not least we rose over £8,000 for Help For Heroes. A great cause which, you’ll be pleased to hear, we are still collecting for!
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Posted: Wednesday, May 9th, 2012
In a few days thirteen brave Fluidata souls, aka the Bandwidth Bandits, will take on the might of the Tough Mudder course near Kettering. Our training mantra has been that of the Romans, ‘train hard, fight easy’ and as you can see in our branded gear we look like a formidable force. Training has been relentless for the past few months with regular runs around London and special training sessions near to the office.
So far we have raised over £7,000 towards Help the Heroes and it isn’t too late to contribute should you wish to add to the pressure!
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Posted: Wednesday, February 29th, 2012
On Monday sees our team (thirteen of us) complete a 10 KM run in preparation for Tough Mudder being held in Kettering in May. Our team, Bandwidth Bandits, have been training for a good few months now but this is the first big exercise all together in preparation for the event. Distances will quickly grow up to 20 KM before the event and lots of other training to make sure we can manage all the obstacles. However I am unsure as to how to prepare us all for the electric shock part of the track…
More updates to follow, especially with details of how to support us with Help the Heroes who we will be supporting in our endeavor.
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Posted: Friday, December 2nd, 2011
We will be taking orders up until Friday the 23rd December 2011. After that day there will be no sales or provisioning department available, support however will continue as normal. The office will reopen on 3rd January 2012.
In regards to our network freeze:
Last day for core network configuration changes will be December 20th, this is in line with the industry standard and to ensure maximum network uptime. This will mean new customers and changes for existing customers configurations for leased line and collocation will not go live until 3rd of January.
Standard DSL/PureFluid connections can continue to go live, however the last day for shipping hardware to customers will be 21st of December. This is a precaution due to the higher delivery failure rate at Christmas.
If you have any questions please contact your account manager.
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Posted: Monday, July 11th, 2011
A big part of the story at Fluidata is our people. We strive to deliver excellent customer service by investing not only in technology but also everyone who works at the company. This year we successfully achieved the Bronze Investors in People award.
This was helped by not only adopting professional business practices which you would expect from a much larger company, but also by utilising technology to give us a cutting edge HR platform. With scale up to 2,000 employees the system gives us a little room for growth even with growth in staff numbers of over 100% last year. Next year we will look to turn the Bronze into a Silver award…
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