In this Season of Gratitude, 
We Simply Want to Say 
Thank You.

Everyone at RealStreet 
Wishes You  a Very 
Happy Thanksgiving!

Katy Cook, CSP
Marketing Coordinator

What's Happening at RealStreet?
We Still Need Your Help!
As one of the lead companies supporting the hurricane recovery efforts, we and those affected have a great need for skilled architects, engineers and construction professionals to assist in this critical mission.  We encourage you to check out the job posting on our website, look us up on CareerBuilder or reach out to us directly at 410-480-8002.  Resumes can be submitted via e-mail to  or online, directly from the job post

Why Join RealStreet's Team? 

RealStreet has been a  FEMA Public Assistance Technical Assistance Contractor (PA-TAC) since 2004. During this time, we have developed a reputation as a dependable and highly respected organization, not just because we provide FEMA with highly skilled Technical Specialists, but also because we take care of our employees. For example: 
  • They are W2 positions - enjoy the tax benefits!
  • Full expenses are paid, including travel to and from the site, lodging and per diem in accordance with the GSA schedule!
  • Receive reliable, weekly pay.
  • Health plans, LTD, dental, and vision plans are available.
  • A generous 401(k) with a huge company match is available upon attaining eligibility.
  • You will have a point of contact that ensures you are doing well when on assignment. 
Sound good? What are you waiting for? Apply today!

Please pass this email along to anyone you know who might b e a good fit for this vital mission. Thank you!

RealStreet is Heading to the 2017
SAME Small Business Conference
RealStreet is attending the 2017 SAME Small Business Conference in Pittsburgh, PA!  If you are attending, make sure to come to our booth (#710) on November 15th at 4:00 PM for our Boh's & O's Happy Hour!

RealStreet is Back from the 2017
CMAA National Conference & Trade Show
RealStreet recently attended the 2017 CMAA National Conference & Trade Show in Washington, DC.  During this event, we hosted our awesome Boh's & O's Happy Hour, featuring our hometown brew, National Bohemian. In addition to enjoying a cold one, attendees also had the opportunity to enter our grand prize drawing: a chance to win a night in a private suite at an Orioles game in the 2018 season!

The entries came home and we held a drawing.  Watch the video to see who won!  

Interesting Industry Information
How Does the Job Market Look?
For another look at the information, check out the  BLS' interactive graphs.
The U.S. Department of Labor - Bureau of Labor Statistics publishes a "M onthly Jobs Report"  soon after the beginning of each month. Each report describes the previous month's employment situation, based on data such as the number of jobs that were added to the economy and the unemployment rate.  The US economy saw a loss of 156,000 jobs last month while the unemployment rate decreased slightly to 4.2%, the lowest it's been since 2001. The September Jobs Report contained a call-out, describing how the BLS accredits the unexpected drop in jobs to the recent hurricane disasters, but why did both numbers drop? According to a recent Forbes article, the contradiction is possible because the data is from two separate surveys, with two distinct sample groups. 

The ADP Research Institute provides an alternative look at our country's employment situation. The report, which is always released two days prior to the publication of the BLS Employment Situation, showed an increase of 135,000 within the private non-farm sector. According to Market Realist, this report includes private non-farm payroll while the BLS Report includes both private and government sectors.

Construction Industry 

The construction community did not see as big of a hit to hiring as many other industries. In fact, as shown in the image below,  (from Architect Magazine)   it saw growth, particularly in the nonresidential sector.

However, with the decline in new construction projects, the  Dodge Data & Analytics ' Momentum  Index dropped 8.4% in September, from 127.1 in August, to 116.4. T he Dodge Momentum Index tracks and measures the initial reporting of non-residential building projects. Despite the decline, Dodge optimistically points out how the industry has seen significant improvements in recent years, and that it saw a decline around the same time last year.

Future Indicators  
According to the  American Institute of Architects (AIA) the September Architecture Billings Index (ABI) shows a slight decrease in demand for design services. According to the AIA, the ABI is the leading economic indicator of construction activity, as it "reflects the approximate nine to twelve month lead time between architecture billings and nonresidential construction spending." 

According to the AIA, 
  • September ABI Score: 49.1 (53.7 - August)
  • September New Projects Inquiry Index: 59 (62.5 - August)
  • September New Design Contracts Index: 52.9 (56.4 - August)
While unemployment has dropped to a 16 year low, architecture billings have declined and new construction project starts have decreased, not all economic indicators are as negative - or bad at all!  
  • The hurricanes had a more significant impact the service industries (which tend to have lower wages) and without these jobs, unemployment rate increases, while average wages increase (Washington Post)
  • Overall, average hourly earnings continue in an upward trend, up 2.9% from Sept. 2016 (Architect Magazine)
  • Average hourly earnings are 10% higher in the construction industry that others (AGC
  • The construction industry added 8,000 jobs in September, 184,000 jobs over a year (AGC)
  • Architecture & Engineering saw its 17th straight month of growth in September (Architect Magazine)
Uncertainty Lingers

Has the economy simply taken a temporary hit from the storms or are there other factors that need to be considered?  According to a recent CNBC article, Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody's, believes that the job market was simply hurt by the hurricanes, stating "looking through the storms the job market remains sturdy and strong."  Ahu Yildirmaz,  vice president and co-head of the ADP Research Institute, believes the job market was not only impacted by the storms, but also by the lack of competitive compensation for skilled talent. In other words, we cannot use the storm to cover up the impact of true and lasting issues. The need for skilled professionals is going to persist, and must be addressed. How companies respond, only time will tell.
Cyber Security
Are you careful about what networks you connect to and what types of information you send? While you may feel safe on your secure home or office network, the wireless world, and everything in it, recently became a lot more exposed.

A serious and wide-ranging wireless security flaw was announced last month, potentially impacting individuals and businesses alike.  It could affect most wireless devices, including cell phones, tablets, laptops, desktop computers, smart home devices, (e.g. wireless thermostats/lights/alarm systems, etc.) internet access points and routers, even gaming consoles!  The flaw, known as KRACK, is linked to WPA2, a security protocol used in most Wi-Fi devices. The protocol enables the encrypted transmission of information between wireless devices. 

A recent TIME article explained the wireless security protocol simply. When a device joins a protected Wi-Fi network, a four-way handshake takes place. The process ensures that the device has the correct login credentials for the network, and once confirmed, generates a new encryption key. The key is installed during the third step of the four-way handshake, but if the access point believes the message has been lost or dropped, it will resend the same key (and can be done multiple times). During this step, a misappropriated key can be reused in ways that undermine the encryption,  allowing attackers to intercept sensitive data transmitted between wireless devices.  Additionally, the flaw could allow the attacker to redirect traffic on a network or interject data, including malware, onto the network. 

All wireless devices can be impacted, however Linux based systems and Android devices using Marshmallow (Android 6.0) or higher are at an increased risk. At this point, businesses and public  Wi-Fi networks (e.g. Starbucks, airports, hotels, etc.) should be avoided as they provide a much richer environment (and cover) for an attack.  It appears  unlikely that individuals (homes) would be the target of attacks at this time, but it is important to take precautions.  

Microsoft has already released a patch and many others are working to do the same.  Some vendors, especially for older devices, may never address the issue. 

Android  Central provided the following tips to stay safe:
  • Avoid public Wi-Fi at all costs. This includes Google's protected Wi-Fi hotspots until Google says otherwise. If your carrier forces your phone to Wi-Fi when in range, visit the forum for your phone to see if there's a workaround to stop it from happening.
  • Only connect to secured services. Web pages that use HTTPS or another secure connection will include HTTPS in the URL. You should contact any company whose services you use and ask if the connection is secured using TLS 1.2, and if so your connection with that service is safe for now.
  • If you have a paid VPN service that you trust you should enable the connection full-time until further notice. Resist the temptation to rush and sign-up for any free VPN service until you can find out if they have been vetted and will keep your data secure. Most don't.
  • Use a wired network if your router and computer both have a spot to plug in an Ethernet cable. This exploit only affects 802.11 traffic between a Wi-Fi router and a connected device. Ethernet cables are relatively cheap and an eyesore strung across the carpet is worth it. Look for a Cat6 or Cat5e spec cable and there should be no configuration needed once plugged in. 
  • If you use a Chromebook or MacBook, this USB Ethernet adapter is plug-and-play
The Wi-Fi Alliance has found no evidence that anyone has exploited the vulnerability for malicious use. They are working with device vendors and solutions providers to ensure patches are integrated and/or released as soon as possible. Additionally, consumers are urged to install patches once they are available, stating the issue can be resolved through straightforward software updates from device manufacturers. 

Security is not a one-time purchase or update, it is a dynamic endeavor. Users are urged to stay up to date on this and other issues. Being knowledgeable on the subject will make you more aware of potential threats, help to ensure that you are as protected as possible and better know what to look out for, so that you are not blindsided in the event of an attack.

Featured News
Get Noticed by Companies
When Searching for a New Job!
Contract employees are only part of your team for a short while - unless you decide to bring them on board permanently at the end of their tenure - but they can make a huge impact. These professionals are working on behalf of your company, so you need to integrate them into your culture. Otherwise, they may feel disjointed from the rest of the team. If they are unable to grasp the beliefs and behaviors that drive your organization, their level of job satisfaction and the quality of their work could suffer.

Continue reading five ways to incorporate contract employees into your culture.

Seasonal Safety
Thanksgiving Safe Driving Tips 
The Thanksgiving weekend signals the start of the holiday season and a flood of drivers hit the road to spend time with family and friends, and enjoy a turkey feast! While it's not the busiest travel time of the year (5 to 10 days in summer get that honor), it can be one of the most dangerous. The National Safety Commission reports that there are nearly 400 automobile fatalities and thousands of injuries nationwide each year during the long Thanksgiving weekend. Distraction, alcohol, inclement weather, icy roads and heavy traffic all combine to create hazardous conditions. Keep your car insurance premiums low and avoid becoming a statistic with the Thanksgiving driving tips from EINSURANCE.
Thanksgiving Cooking Fire Safety

Did you know that Thanksgiving is the peak day for home cooking fires each year? Avoid accidents by following the tips from the  National Fire Protection Association  (NFPA). You can also c heck out this NFPA Infographic for more Thanksgiving Day Cooking Fire Safety Tips and Statistics.
Cooking a Turkey Safely

Unsafe handling and/or under-cooking turkeys can cause food-borne illness. Keep you and your Thanksgiving guests safe by following the tips from FoodSafety.govCheck out this convenient  FoodSafety Infographic for turkey cooking tips at a glance.
   RealStreet Recently Hired...
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  • QA / QC Analyst
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  • Field Superintendent / Quality Control Managers
  • Director of Facilities & Construction Management
  • Estimator
  • Owner's Representative
  • Auto CAD Designer /Drafter
  • Project Coordinators
  • Document Control Technician 
  • Mechanical Designer/Engineer
    Do you have an open position?  Contact us  to learn how we can help!
Keep in Touch!
Feedback Wanted! 
We Value Referrals!
Would you mind taking a moment to  write a few sentences  about your experience working with RealStreet?  Thank you!
Who in your network is looking for a new opportunity? 

Check our  open positions to see if any are a match to the job seekers that you know. At RealStreet we value great candidates and when it comes down to it, we know you're the Real Deal! We have a great referral program that compensates you for every qualified referral you provide us.