FDM’s Cardiff Academy; 10 weeks in

Paul Brown
08.08.2018 Published: 08.08.18, Modified: 08.08.2018 09:08:58

In addition to our offices across APAC, Europe and North America, FDM Group aims to open pop-up locations across the world that will grow into fully functioning academies. Our Cardiff Academy is now in its 10th week and on its way to joining our ever expanding map of FDM centres.

Cardiff’s Academy and Business Development Manager, Lawrence Hill, has taken the programme under his wing and helped prepare trainees for their first placements. The FDM model has been well received in the area with positive feedback from trainees and clients, and Lawrence is impressed with the response the Academy has gained since it opened back in June.

“After serving 33 years in the Armed Forces both full and part-time, I have returned with the motivation that FDM has provided me, looking to expose graduates to the skills and potential they possess to become the IT consultants of the future. Through attending numerous networking events in Cardiff and hosting visitors at the Academy from various organisations, the Academy has gained momentum towards placing Welsh University Graduates within businesses here in Wales. The aim is for the Academy to grow further in line with the growth and evolution of the IT industry, eventually looking at delivering Ex-Forces and Getting Back to Business courses to provide more experienced and talented consultants for companies in the Wales and South-West region.”

“The most positive feedback has been with the aims of the FDM Cardiff Academy to keep the technical talent in Wales and the South-West. There is a vast skills shortage in the region and companies are keen to nurture the talent already here. The types of companies willing to work with FDM are across both the Public and Private sectors including Government, utilities, defence, insurance and banking.”

We spoke to several trainees on how they have settled into FDM, about their upcoming placements and what their next steps are as they approach the final three weeks of their training.

Nathan Shaw - FDMNathan Shaw

With the promise of high-quality training and experience with professionals in the South West area, I was instantly drawn to the Cardiff pop-up Academy. I found the training to be more intense and challenging than I expected, but I believe it will help me in the future. I was contacted by an account manager about a placement in Cirencester. I went through the interview process at the academy in London, and passed. I have recently started working at St James Place Wealth Management as a Data Analyst specialising in reporting for the company.


Simon Goodwin - FDMSimon Goodwin

The shortened timespan for Cardiff recruits has kept us on our toes, but I have learnt a LOT. The training has been intense but very productive, and the trainers are great at accommodating to the amount of questions thrown at them. The biggest surprise for me was the amount of effort put into business development, where progress is often measured with non-programming related skills like presentation and interviewing. Go in with a range of expectations, and if you don’t get something, asking peers for assistance will help often both parties.


Nathan Griffiths - FDMNathan Griffiths

What persuaded me to join FDM was the chance to gain knowledge and skills that I lacked coming from a physics driven background, as well as the chance to work with clients close to my hometown in Cardiff and the South West. The professionalism at FDM is like nothing I have experienced before. The care and consideration I received from both trainers and staff made me feel included and eased me into working in a professional, high-standard environment. I have enjoyed meeting new colleagues and creating friendships that will last, gaining knowledge from the trainers and enhancing my skillset as a developer.


Peter Maloney - FDMPeter Maloney

I was drawn to the Cardiff Academy due to its close proximity, and the opportunity arose at what seemed to be the perfect time. I applied for FDM as a way to re-focus myself on a career and avoid the ‘experience required’ dilemma for getting an entry-level position in the industry. The training I received at the Academy in Cardiff really helped me to secure a placement with a high profile banking institution in Leeds where there is already a large group of FDM consultants on-site to help me settle in.


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