FDM Group "trainees" Reviews | Glassdoor.co.uk

FDM Group Employee Reviews about "trainees"

Updated 15 Sep 2019

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3.2
56%
Recommend to a Friend
68%
Approve of CEO
FDM Group CEO, Founder, and Director Rod Flavell
Rod Flavell
749 Ratings
Pros
  • "Foot in the door to blue chip companies(in 88 reviews)

  • "The opportunity presented to the dedicated trainees is by far the biggest positive of the graduate programme(in 73 reviews)

Cons
  • "Might have a feeling that you are a product of the company, so account managers would try their best to sell you to their clients(in 159 reviews)

  • "2 year contract with buy out cost(in 80 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

Reviews about "trainees"

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  1. Helpful (2)

    "Better than reviews suggest"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Developer in Leeds, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I have been working at FDM Group full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    Have to say that my experience has been wholly positive. Trainers are friendly and helpful. Nice culture around the office and other trainees are only too happy to help too. For someone not from an IT background this is a great foot in the door of big companies and can really set you on your way if you are willing to work hard. I was a bit apprehensive after reading reviews but after experiencing it I can’t say I have a bad word to say and I have had a great experience.

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    Cons

    Not paid for training period and have to repay fees if you leave within 2 years, however they are up front and transparent about this so you should have no complaints if you choose to ignore this.

    Advice to Management

    Get better coffee in the machines.

    FDM Group2019-06-24
  2. Helpful (1)

    "Business Stream - Great Opportunity"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee 
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I have been working at FDM Group full-time

    Pros

    It’s now been 6 months since I started my journey with FDM. I took part in the BA/PMO Graduate Programme in Birmingham's FDM Academy. The training itself has its pro and cons. It is very demanding and challenging and it requires constant efforts because in the end of each week you have multiple assessments. The way the different modules were structured was not ideal but the trainers and the account managers were very helpful and very considerate to the individual needs of everyone. Another big positive of this course were the external industrial certifications covered by the programme. The successful trainee in the BA/PMO Graduate Programme would acquire a certificate in ITIL and BA Foundations. One thing that is certain is that FDM is a gateway to blue chip companies. The opportunity presented to the dedicated trainees is by far the biggest positive of the graduate programme. Large companies such as DeutscheBank and HSBC are one of the key clients to FDM My current placement is in HSBC and I can definitely say that the training is extremely relevant to my role. I managed to secure this placement in the 4th week of my training, so the opportunities are definitely there to grab

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    Cons

    The amount of money that you owe FDM in case your contact is terminated before the 2 years is heavily overpriced.

    Advice to Management

    Add more courses that include external certifications

    FDM Group2019-05-02
  3. Helpful (53)

    "Truth and nothing but, I implore you to read if you are genuinely considering joining FDM"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Trainee 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at FDM Group full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    For those without experience, who are willing and able to commit over 2 years to FDM, you will be exposed to good technical training in a variety of programming languages and practical training. IF you are lucky, you may even get a good placement in a role you desire at a great firm which could be a great start to your career. Trainers are genuine and very nice. Trainees are like yourselves and you can make many friends like I did. If you feel like you absolutely cannot find work elsewhere and can gamble just over 2 years of the start of your career, FDM could be a great potential start for you.

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    Cons

    Let's establish something that FDM very hesitantly talks about... this is a gamble. You have ZERO guarantee over a few major issues during your employment with FDM. 1- You may not get placed 2- You can get placed with any firm (good or bad) and you have ZERO say in the matter 3- You may not get a role you want and again have ZERO say in the matter 4- You can be placed anywhere in the UK and have ZERO say in the matter They are under ZERO obligation to place you anywhere you desire but they will however tell you that they will "try". Paraphrasing from an FDM employee, "Consultants cannot pick and choose where they want to go, our business model is demand and supply and thus you are obligated by contract, to go forward for ANY and ALL roles you are put forward for". To summarise, it is a complete gamble where you will be placed, (both firm AND location). Many friends of mine have been placed far from their homes forcing them to move to do roles they hate for up to 2 years. Essentially obliterating the career path they had in mind. IF you decline, you WILL be charged £20,000 training fees (or potentially more if you had additional training, some consultants have been and are liable for £35k+ training fees due to the courses they took, these costs incurred over only 2 months). One of the biggest faults of FDM, is that Account Managers (the people who place you), have no incentive to care about where you are placed. They don't need to worry about FDM consultants leaving, or being unhappy as if they leave, they are charged with an extortionate amount of money, £20,000 which for recent graduates like ourselves, is near impossible to pay off. Many consultants like myself, have seen this first hand. The account managers are nice up to the point you have been placed, then they act like they don't even know you, and if you question the role or try to get out of the role, you are sent to HR or management to have a "chat" about how you are obligated to go for the role. The majority of account managers care about one thing only, their commission for getting you placed. The entire business model in my opinion is completely unethical. Why care about the trainee when you can put a £20k+ leash on them instead? Training is 2+ months long and UNPAID... if you are paying rent, especially in London, I hope you have deep pockets... Conclusion: FDM is a gamble, you could be placed somewhere great, or you could be placed somewhere terrible, or you might not be placed at all wasting a huge amount of time. Account managers don't care about you and as a result, I would argue that from my experience, 50-60% of consultants end up in a desired placement. Too many of my friends have been threatened by management with the £20k+ fee, this is completely unethical and unwarranted and is not done so by other professional companies who train employees and do not charge them with anything should they choose to leave.

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    Advice to Management

    Treat the trainees with some respect, we are told that we are peers and colleagues in our first week but spoken down to and treated like products to be sold by account managers and other seniors of FDM. Tell 'The Warden' to stop yelling at Trainees like they are children in the break room... we were told that we are 'Colleagues and peers', not 'Teacher and students', so please treat us with the same respect that is due to all others. Consider us like human beings and that this is the start of our careers, we are more than just your commission...

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    FDM Group2018-03-24
  4. "The First Step on the Career Ladder"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Contractor - Anonymous Contractor 
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I have been working at FDM Group

    Pros

    If, like me, you have no previous experience/education within the IT industry but are seeking to pursue a career in the same sector, then I would recommend FDM as a first step for you. The staff are very welcoming and happy to help you with any concerns or difficulties. I spent 14 weeks on the Java Development Stream, which was long enough to build up a sense of community with trainees and staff within the office. The course is slow to begin but builds up relatively quickly towards the 6/7th week of training. Coming from an unfamiliar background with no coding experience, it was a definite challenge at times. Having said this, eventually things began to click and I found my way around the numerous projects thrown at me.

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    Cons

    Many things I say here will almost certainly be repeated elsewhere. The key issue I and others have/had at FDM is a lack of living expenses intertwined/in addition to the travel expense. While £100 a week was suitable to cover my daily commute (~1 hour each way), I know many others who were required to relocate in order to attend the nearest academy to them. If living expenses were included to a certain extent, then I would imagine that it would encourage others to join the company. While the Java stream was challenging, it would have been great to have been able to speak to a variety of trainers who were experienced with Java as a language. However in the Leeds Academy, there was unfortunately only one trainer with sufficient experience with the language. Although we could approach him for help, we were unable to view the different perspectives needed to fully develop a wider understanding of Java. Lastly, I would say that I was slightly mislead in my early stages. I went into a development stream under the conception that no previous experience was required & that it would not put you at a significant disadvantage to those who had experience. While this seemed true, it was clear after several weeks that my CV lacking previous coding experience meant that I was not put forward for as many of the opportunities that others were. While I believe that this is the way it should be (prospective employers should be hiring the most qualified people), I just feel that wasn't made entirely clear from the beginning.

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    Advice to Management

    Year 1/2 salary is consistent no matter where you are placed. I feel in areas where the living cost is (dramatically) higher, this rule places even more constraints on consultants who are also likely dealing with long-distance relocation.

    FDM Group2018-01-04
  5. Helpful (11)

    "Good trainers but bad environment of work..."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Trainee in London, England
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at FDM Group full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    Good training that allows you to improve your technical knowledge. Gets used to the 9-5 system Office is very pleasant Good relationship between trainees

    Cons

    They not very clear with the terms & Conditions. They basically sell you a dream, making you think that you have a guaranteed job at the end of the training and then when you meet signed off trainees that have been waiting for placement several weeks you start concerning but it’s too late because you already past the first 2 weeks of training. The relationship between trainees and the administrators of FDM is awful. They don’t care about you. It’s all good when thins are going well but when you start struggling they don’t care about helping you. Account managers don’t even look at you when they come across you in the corridor. They treat trainees as an asset when they should treat us like human beings. Everything gets out of control when you in FDM. They do anything they want with you. I could say million things but never mind. Think twice before you sign a 20k training agreement.

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    Advice to Management

    Be more clear with the training agreement. Smile at trainees to make them feel welcome to the office Try to motivate trainees because there are loads of them that lose their hope and motivation during the training. Don’t change trainees streams only because it will suit clients.

    FDM Group2017-12-06
  6. Helpful (1)

    "Ex forces employment"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Contractor - Software Tester in Leeds, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at FDM Group for more than a year

    Pros

    FDM Group are an IT consultancy company that offer post grads and ex forces the opportunity to train in a choice of fields including Software Testing, Software Development, Project Management and more... the training offered is high quality and designed to give the trainee the best knowledge and skills to become successful in the IT industry. They offer support throughout a 2 year consultancy contract and have a large high profile clientele including many blue chip companies as well as major banks. The experience you can gain working as a consultant with FDM is second to none!

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    Cons

    You do need to be geo-flexible. Although the training is free, you do not get paid while training.

    Advice to Management

    Keep up the great work!!

    FDM Group2017-11-04
  7. Helpful (1)

    "Awful Company - Do not join unless absolutely desperate."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Intern - Trainee 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at FDM Group for less than a year

    Pros

    Connections with fellow trainees, you could potentially make some friends.

    Cons

    First of all, most of the reviews on here are fake and are posted by staff who actually work for FDM. The training is rushed and the trainers aren't supportive. Quite often they rushed through a large amount of content extremely quickly, with little explanation and then just expected trainees to get on with it. They even proceeded to leave the training room, so help wasn't even available when it was needed. The training is not innovative or engaging at all. Powerpoint presentations and lots of them. Make no mistake, the graduates are treated as products to make profit from, rather than people. The contract is awful and doesn't work in the graduates favour in the slightest, they really don't care whether you finish training or not, as long as the company makes it's money. Once training is complete, you can expect to be shipped here, there and everywhere to different buisnesses around the country, don't expect to find somewhere you can call home.

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    FDM Group2017-11-15
  8. Helpful (4)

    "A good foot in the door, but expect to stub your toe"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Test Analyst in Bristol, England
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I have been working at FDM Group full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    A great opportunity to enter an otherwise quite opaque IT industry. FDM holds corporate relations with some extremely prestigious clients across multiple industries. The training and the 2 year trainee program that FDM offers will set you up with the experience needed to forge a good career in the IT industry. The trainers and staff at the Leeds academy are very friendly and knowledgeable, and help to inspire confidence in all of it's trainees.

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    Cons

    My experience is that as a whole, the way FDM treats it's employees is cold and clinical. Make no mistake - to FDM you are a resource more than you are an employee. As a trainee (under 2 years experience) at FDM, you must be geo-flexible, meaning that FDM may send you anywhere in the country. In my experience, FDM do not take into account the preferences of it's employees when deciding this. Speaking from personal experience, it is possible for an employee to lose thousands of pounds in relocation costs when changing placements, as the notice periods given are often laughably short, leading to overlapping housing contracts and such like. FDM do provide some assistance towards this, but in the short term consultants can unexpectedly find themselves very short on money. The holiday allowance provided is the absolute bare minimum required by law - FDM employees are only entitled to 20 days of bookable holiday plus bank holidays, which they are not paid their full working day rate for. Sick pay is not provided for your first 6 months with FDM, and even as an employee with nearly 2 years of experience I am only entitled to 4 days per year without incurring a pay reduction. The pension scheme used by FDM is not very generous in my opinion - were I to stay with FDM long-term, I would definitely set up a personal pension to compensate for this.

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    Advice to Management

    Work on making your employees want to stay with FDM. Out of all the consultants I've met during training, out on placements, in the beach, and at social events, I have not yet met one that is pro-FDM.

    FDM Group2017-08-22
  9. Helpful (5)

    "FDM Opens the Door... You Have to Walk Through It"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Consultant in London, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at FDM Group

    Pros

    As is usual on GlassDoor, there seems to be a disproportionately large number of negative reviews for FDM Group. However, it is worth treating these with caution. I recently completed the Risk, Regulation and Compliance training programme and my experience has been overwhelmingly positive. Almost without exception, the FDM trainers are industry veterans who provide valuable insight and are always happy to help. In a very short period of time, I developed significant expertise across a range of subjects. FDM's client list is fantastic, and hard work can easily result in a career-defining placement. In my case, I interviewed with three leading investment banks and was offered an amazing job in exactly the area I wanted. To be clear, this would not have been possible without the training and connections that FDM afforded me. The vast majority of trainees are placed within 90 days of their programme's conclusion. In my case, 6/9 of my training intake were placed within 2 weeks, and the remaining 3 are almost certain to be placed within the next month. However, to draw attention to the headline of this review, any prospective candidate should be realistic about what they are getting themselves into: FDM is an organisation that provides opportunities, NOT guarantees. Receiving an offer to join one of the Group's training courses does not assure you of a job at the end of the programme. By providing relevant industry training and facilitating introductions to blue-chip clients, FDM opens many doors. The most successful candidates are those that work hard to exploit these opportunities. As long as you understand this and don’t consider yourself entitled to a job, FDM will help you achieve considerable success.

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    Cons

    The pay structure is fairly uncompetitive considering the sectors that successful trainees will be working in. Furthermore, the pay structure itself is overly complicated and could easily be simplified. One of FDM's greatest strengths could also be a weakness. The company works best for those that try hardest, those that are comfortable seeking assistance when necessary, and those with the confidence to present themselves well. If you are none of these things, you will struggle to succeed.

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    Advice to Management

    A better salary / holiday / sick pay scheme would make FDM Group more appealing to graduates and would likely attract an even higher quality of prospective candidates.

    FDM Group2017-06-12
  10. Helpful (14)

    "With the benefit of hindsight I would not have joined"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Java Developer in Leeds, England
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I worked at FDM Group full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    An introduction to a working type environment for recent graduates and a reintroduction to civvy st for ex forces staff. A real sense of camaraderie with fellow trainees. I made some good friends in the academy that I will keep in touch with. Good interview training. Initial training is of high quality (Common weeks Pro skills, SQL, Excel) though it is very much over valued by FDM. So much so that I felt after these weeks I knew the subjects well enough to instruct them myself Could be a good introduction to IT for non stem grads but if you aren't enjoying it by the end of week 2 leave. A corporate subscription to pluralsight for upskilling

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    Cons

    A very poor (possibly unenforceable) contract that hangs over you for 2 years. I don't believe that FDM fulfilled the terms of its training agreement with me and had they attempted to recoup their overvalued "investment" I would have fought them in court and according to my solicitor I would have won, my advice to any prospective hire is that they note every interaction with HR and management in any way and if called into a meeting ask for minutes to be taken and a witness to sit in. The sense of camaraderie is driven by a sense of us vs them in the way there would be camaraderie amongst prisoners vs their guards No money Little to no communication with the account managers who are supposed to be finding consultants roles. After the initial well structured training the development training is not of the same calibre and to be honest a Udemy or pluralsight course would teach you just as much. No certification for the development courses. Though there is for some of the other streams.

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    Advice to Management

    Stop messing with these reviews, having spoken to every single FDM consultant I'm still in touch with not one single one of your employees that I know rates the company at 5 stars. Stop lying about the churn of trainee consultants. Prospective trainees are told by over eager recruiters that 3/4% of trainees are unplaced. I find this incredibly hard to believe given that I know as many released staff as I do working consultants. If management reply to this they will say these 4% figures are true but I can name 70 to 80 trainees off the top of my head and at least 30 who weren't placed. Stop the churn. Hire fewer better quality trainees and pay more attention to the training of those trainees. Tailor the training to the client and give individual syllabuses to trainees. Tie the process of recruitment and placement closer. Pay and treat consultants better and maybe you wouldn't need to hire so many as more would stay.

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    FDM Group2017-07-06
Found 69 reviews