WICT Names Best Companies For Women In Cable

Posted on in In The News, Press Releases

 

By: MCN Staff Oct 17 2013 – 03:25pm
Comcast, Cox, NBCU Share First Place Nods Based On PAR Survey Results

Women in Cable Telecommunications (WICT) picked the current “Best Companies For Women In Cable” today, based on results of the 2013 WICT PAR Survey. After each survey is conducted, distinguished operators and programmers are recognized as the highest achievers based on the survey data. This year two companies tied for the first-place position of best operator, Comcast and Cox Communications. NBCUniversal attained the first-place position of best programmer.

The PAR Survey gauges gender-related qualitative and quantitative employee data, and assesses companies’ practices as to how they support Pay equity, Advancement opportunities, and Resources for work/life support. Mercer, a leading global consultant on human capital issues, gathered and analyzed the data, creating an executive report that will be available in December 2013 on WICT’s web site, www.wict.org. This year marks the tenth anniversary and the ninth cycle of the PAR Initiative, which is now administered biennially.

In all, 25 companies participated in the survey, representing 59% of the overall cable work force.

Other companies singled out for recognition were:

  • Cable providers: Bright House Networks, second place; Time Warner Cable, third place; Midcontinent Communications, fourth place, and Suddenlink Communications, fifth place.
  • Programmers: Discovery Communications, second place; Disney ABC Television Group, third place; Scripps Networks Interactive, fourth place, and Turner Broadcasting System Inc., fifth place.

The PAR Survey is administered in partnership with the NAMIC AIM Survey. The PAR Initiative is underwritten by the Walter Kaitz Foundation and supported by each of WICT’s local chapters.

“This is the 10th year of the PAR Initiative, and as the industry continues to raise the bar on equitable gender employment standards, the data over time shows gains for women in several key areas, including a higher percentage of women at the executive and senior levels,” Parthavi Das, WICT Chief of Staff, said in a release. “However, promotion rates are lower for women as compared to men and departure rates are higher, and the concern is that if the trend continues the number of women in management will decline over the next five years.”

“We applaud those companies recognized as the best for women in cable. They offer great lessons that we will share as part of an ongoing advocacy campaign to help the industry absorb and enact best practices,” Maria E. Brennan, CAE, President & CEO of WICT, said in the release. “We appreciate the commitment of time and resources that companies dedicated to participating in the PAR Initiative this year. We are also grateful to NAMIC for their partnership, as well as to the Walter Kaitz Foundation and the WICT local chapters for their support of PAR.”

Initial findings from the 2013 PAR Initiative were released during a joint Town Hall with NAMIC, as part of Diversity Week. The Executive Summary may be downloaded from www.wictparinitiative.org; a full report will be released later this year.

CableLabs Plants Flag In Silicon Valley

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CableLabs Plants Flag In Silicon Valley

New Innovation Office and Lab to Open October 28
By: Craig Kuhl Oct 22 2013 – 07:31am

When the doors of the new CableLabs Innovation Office and Lab facility swing open on October 28 in the Silicon Valley, cable’s R&D consortium will embark on a new era of strategic thinking and boot up a venue tasked with sparking new ideas and the debut of a process aimed at bringing those ideas to fruition.

The 17,000-square-foot Innovation Office and Lab, located at 400 W. California in Sunnyvale, will report into CableLabs CEO Phil McKinney and represent the follow-on to a CableLabs office originally opened-up in San Francisco in November 2011.

The new facility, initially to support seven CableLabs employees, will focus on managing and developing the R&D organization’s innovation portfolio while also encouraging employees, CableLabs members, and potential development partners to identify and develop new technologies for the cable industry. It will also be used to host events and lay down firm roots in the tech-savvy area. In fact, it has already scheduled an open house on November 21 so vendors, members and Silicon Valley locals can poke around and schmooze.

The facility “will allow greater flexibility and collaborative efforts with bellwether, emerging technology firms,” McKinney said in an email exchange with Multichannel News.

A main goal of the Silicon Valley facility is to accelerate the process of developing new ideas and how to get them to market for efficiently, while also creating fresh investment opportunities.

“The intent of Innovation Office is to be a developer, catalyst and enabler of innovation and will reach out to contributors and thought leaders as well as innovative companies focused on emerging technologies,” McKinney added.

CableLabs vice president of innovation Christian Pape will head up the facility’s day-to-day operations. He’s also been charged with developing the office’s business model and establishing the vision of the new lab beyond its start-up period.

“We will look at innovations in three horizons; one, two and three years out,” Pape explained. The new facility will “make cable a relevant technology to developers in the Silicon Valley” and provide lab capabilities that are “on par” with the CableLabs facility in Colorado.

Setting The Innovation Process

CableLabs holds that the process of identifying and vetting ideas will be rigorous and disciplined, and will start with presentations made to “theme leaders” at the R&D organization.

“They [the theme leaders] are the execution arm, and pitch ideas just like a venture capital firm would. We have already generated a significant backlog of ideas and identified 20 worthy of further examination that could lead to investment,” Pape said.

Theme teams will assess ideas based on three key questions: Will it change the customer experience? Will it change the economics of the industry and its growth? Will it change the competitive business of industry and strategic alliances?

And, there’s a “wow” factor: Does it capture the imagination?

“It’s like a business case and the audience is the executive team,” Pape said. Once an idea is approved, it first enters a gated stage process before later heading to customer validation and proof-of-concept stages that look to deliver on the problem trying to be solved. “Data is then collected and presented to the executive committee,” Pape added.

The new facility aims to pursue new technologies and business models that extend beyond the traditional cable industry.

“That is the focal point. We recognize our members’ business is changing, so we’re serving their needs and strategies. We think it will lead us to new places beyond the cable space,” Pape said.

High on the Innovation Office’s radar screen are technologies such as IP, display technologies and Ultra HD/4K. Seven projects are already funded and being accelerated through the Silicon Valley facility, according to CableLabs.

“It’s not just about harnessing technology, it’s about building out to the future, so we’re looking for trends and opportunities,” Pape said.

 

NCTA: Cable Wi-Fi Pushes Past 200,000 Hotspots

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NCTA: Cable Wi-Fi Pushes Past 200,000 Hotspots

Number of U.S. ‘CableWifi’ Hotspots Rises From the 150,000 Reported in June
By: Jeff Baumgartner Sep 30 2013 – 05:14pm

U.S. cable operators have deployed more than 200,000 Wi-Fi hotspots, the National Cable & Telecommunications Association estimated in a blog post Monday.

That’s up from about 150,000 in June, the last time the NCTA offered a count, and up from 50,000 in May 2012.

The NCTA is also revealing the new figure as the House Energy and commerce committee gets ready to discuss next-gen “Gigabit” Wi-Fi Tuesday. The cable industry has been urging the government to loosen restrictions on the 5GHz band if Wi-Fi is to meet the anticipated demand of wireless broadband access.

The bulk of those 200,000 hotspots come from cable operator members of the “CableWiFi” roaming alliance – Cablevision Systems, Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Cox Communications and Bright House Networks.

Those operators have primarily used their hotspots as a free add-on for cable modem customers, though some operators also support pay-as-you-go plans for non-subscribers.

Comcast, meanwhile, has also kicked off a program that envisions turning millions of DOCSIS-powered wireless gateways in customer homes into quasi-public hot spots, hitting on a trend that is already well underway in Europe. When equipped with the right firmware, those gateways use a new “xfinitywifi” signal, or SSID (service set identifier), that are accessible to authenticated, roaming Comcast broadband subs. Comcast’s Xfinity WiFi site estimates that the operator now provides access to more than 300,000 hotspots through its upgraded gateways and  partnerships with other MSOs.

 

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