Consultant of the Month – November 2018

John Smith

An image of FDM consultant Lezlie ParkerLezlie Parker

Risk Analyst at Fannie Mae, US

Binghamton University: Economics

I have been with FDM for two years now, since beginning my training in November of 2016. I decided to join FDM because of the combined technology and business training, which would give me the best chance at succeeding in the career I wanted to have. The best thing about my time with FDM in the New York Academy was meeting so many great people and expanding my network. My placement at Fannie Mae has helped me to grow both personally and professionally, in a role that I never even knew existed prior to my training. My manager at Fannie Mae has constantly pushed me to do better and exceed my own expectations, which has been invaluable. In recognition of my award, I would like to say thank you to my manager at Fannie Mae for always giving me guidance and allowing me to lead projects. I would also like to thank FDM for giving me the opportunity to work at Fannie Mae. Something that sets FDM apart is the openness of their culture. I always felt that there was someone I could turn to with any question I had. I would recommend FDM to others because it is a great way to not only learn new skills, but also gain the opportunity to work for a top tier company.

“Lezlie has gone above and beyond the expectations of a Level one analyst. She consistently meets deadlines and continues to propose new approaches to our current processes. Lezlie has not just successfully supported the day-to-day responsibilities of her role, but also assisted with bringing four Continuous Monitoring dashboards to production, participated in two strategic initiatives, taken the lead on a process assessment, and acted as the team POC for knowledge on the new issues management tool. I chose Lezlie as our team lead for an assessment of all activities that rely on the use of physical checks – while a project of this level is not usually assigned to a Level one analyst, Lezlie has demonstrated the skills and knowledge needed to drive the project through to completion. Her contributions to the team and ability to drive projects forward have allowed us to be a strong business partner and meet many of our 2018 goals. FDM is focused on more than just technology, they identify talent and prepare the consultants for a wide variety of roles before joining our teams. The training they complete prior to on-boarding builds their understanding of business and gives them an advantage from day one.”

-Internal Control Process Manager at Fannie Mae


Maya Karaabova an image of Maya Karaabova F.D.M.'s consultant of the month

Data Analyst at BP, UK

Aberystwyth University: Business Management

 I joined FDM because I came from a business background and I wanted to work in the IT consultancy sector. I’ve been with FDM for one year and four months and have been placed with BP since I completed training, working for the IT&S Downstream Department. At first, I started as more of a Business Analyst – working on stakeholder management, gathering requirements, maintaining use case trackers and creating visualisations of the use case trackers using Tableau and Power BI. However, my role evolved into full-time Tableau development. Currently, I am working in a scrum team as a front-end Tableau developer, building financial reports for the Central Finance team in Downstream. I want to thank my colleagues (FDMers and non-FDMers) who are always very helpful, and especially thank my manager, who nominated me for this award. The culture at FDM is vibrant and diverse; the best thing about my time here has been the friends I have made during my time at the London Academy. FDM provides non-technical people like myself the opportunity to find jobs in the tech industry, and I would recommend it to anyone from a non-technical background that would like to kick-start their career.


An image of F.D.M. consultant of the month Janson ChungJanson Chung

CRM Developer at TD Wealth Management, CA

Ryerson University: Computer Science

I trained in the Toronto Academy for three months, and have spent 11 months on-site. My time at TD Wealth Management has been a great learning experience, especially with the opportunities I’ve been given to work with new technology and business software. I’m extremely grateful to FDM for these opportunities, their support and this award. I decided to join FDM after graduation in order to gain access to their great client list and learn from their distinguished training and unique business model. The best part about FDM for me has been the people I’ve met and worked with, which is a list that keeps getting longer. The culture at FDM is fun, co-operative and challenging, and is a great place to start for new graduates who are lacking relevant industry experience.


“Janson played a critical role in multiple projects, and has proved that he is always willing to go above and beyond expectations to meet delivery targets to deliver a quality product to our stakeholders. Janson was thrown into a recent project headfirst and had to learn multiple CRM systems from scratch while handling delivery expectations. He is a fast learner and was able to bring himself up to speed on the project within a short time. He was able to effectively absorb knowledge from existing teammates and quickly rose to become the SME in one of our CRM platforms. Janson has been a great influence on our expectations of services provided from FDM. His work ethic is very strong and the quality of his work speaks for itself. I would recommend FDM to other businesses as I have always had great interactions with FDM consultants, they have always come prepared for the job and required minimum training to get started. Janson’s work has received praise from multiple executive stakeholders, with whom he has developed a great working relationship. His hard work and dedication to his projects has played a pivotal role in their delivery. It has been a pleasure to work with Janson and I look forward to continuing to work with him throughout the remainder of his term at TD.”

-IT Manager at TD Bank

an image of F.D.M. consultant of the month James Pennington


James Pennington

Software Test Analyst at DWP, UK

University of Bradford: Graphics for Games

 My experience at DWP has been incredible! I started with FDM in May 2018 and was placed with DWP in Newcastle in July. I’m really enjoying the work that I’ve been tasked with and it’s helped me to understand the entire process of Software Testing; I have learnt so much in the few months I’ve been here. I would like to thank everybody that has made this possible for me. Without the teachings in the Leeds Academy and the team I joined at DWP, I wouldn’t have made such an impact. I wanted to expand my knowledge in IT, and after searching around I discovered the incredible reviews that FDM have received and decided to join. It turned out to be one of my better decisions, because for the first time in my life I enjoy going to work. The best thing about my time with FDM has been the amount of information and opportunities that are available to me. I had no knowledge about Software Testing when I started, and FDM trained me up not only in my chosen stream, but also in professional skills. I got a full-time job with a very understanding and committed team—it’s everything I was hoping to receive when I first applied. The culture at FDM is incredible, there’s so many people that are all committed to helping each other and it’s genuinely a fantastic team to be a part of and I’m incredibly grateful for that. I would recommend FDM to anybody who has a thirst for knowledge. What FDM offers is a unique experience that is tailored around your individual needs, with a very strong possibility of a lifetime career afterwards.

 “James joined the IT Test Team with no prior test experience and he has made amazing progress. His advice is actively sought even by experienced testers, regarding business and test processes we have adopted. He is dedicated, hardworking, organised and focused on continuously learning and developing best practices to manage routine activities both efficiently and effectively. James always goes above and beyond the call of duty in pursuing excellence. He has unquestionably become the ‘go-to’ person for anything regarding the System and Business functionality. He has tackled every challenge that’s come his way and has helped everyone around him to do the same, while staying upbeat and looking for positive outcomes in difficult circumstances. His personal ethics shine through and this will stand him in good stead for what looks to be a promising career going forward. James is an outstanding example of the consultants that FDM supply, and I would consider bringing further FDMers into the team based on the performance of James. I have worked for many years in the IT industry, the majority in the testing discipline and I am genuinely astonished at how James has picked up the test processes and the business knowledge in the time that he has been with us.”

-VME-R Test Manager at DWP


an image of f.d.m. of the month Siqi OuyangSiqi Ouyang

Business Analyst at Standard Chartered Global Business Services, CH

University of Birmingham: International Money and Banking

I was on a conference call when I received the email from Rod congratulating me for winning the Consultant of the Month award—I needed a few seconds to take a deep breath and continue concentrating on the conference! I still remember the first day that I started my training in the London Academy. Even though I was doubtful of my ability to pick up complex IT skills such as UNIX shell scripting, HTML and SQL, I was so excited to begin my training. After a few days I found myself getting used to the fast-paced learning environment, thanks to my kind trainers and classmates. The environment at FDM allowed me to be both creative and proactive. I have learned to become a better interpreter by communicating with trainers and students from different cultures. Over the past year and a half of my placement, I have been working on SCB’s Regulatory Reporting Project, which enables me to engage with many business departments, learn about banking structure and procedures, and enhance the skills I learned in FDM’s Academy. I even have access to fun perks at my placement –last July I played in the Standard Charted Bank’s Asia Badminton Tournament on behalf of the SCB China team. At FDM, we are always encouraged to work hard and play hard. I believe this is just one good example of how FDM culture is present, even on-site! I am very honoured to have won this award. Thank you to everyone who has guided me along the way, especially FDM through which I have received valuable skills, friendships, and great opportunities to kick-start my career.


Shaun Harrison an image of f.d.m. consultant of the month Shaun Harrison

Automated Test Developer at Worldline, UK

University of Nottingham: Biochemistry & Genetics

 I started my training with FDM in November 2017 and was placed with Worldline IT Services in March 2018. My placement with Worldline has certainly been an interesting one. I started as an automated test developer, tasked with writing code to mimic what a manual tester would have previously done. As I progressed, my fondness for systems design and engineering better and faster solutions elevated me to more of a process and design-focused role. I now work with one or two senior team members improving our software’s design implementation to make it more robust against failure, and to provide better diagnostics when it does. The FDM team at Worldline have gelled together well, and I’ve made good friends with the permanent Worldline employees; it’s a lovely sociable environment. My reasons for choosing FDM boiled down to a simple point; it is a fast-moving company that is committed to employee growth. I was also sold on the two-year contract tie in. Stepping into a new career can be daunting and risky in a competitive market. The two-year investment showed me that FDM are committed to their employees, providing them with adequate time to flourish in the industry.

When Shaun joined the project, he had no experience of automation testing or the software used on the project. He has picked up both very quickly and has been a valuable and productive member of the team, producing more automated tests than seven more experienced developers combined! He has also taken on more tasks that would not be expected of someone so inexperienced, but he is now the number one reviewer of code on the project. I would absolutely recommend FDM—not only have their consultants been professional and done what is expected of them, they have all shown that they are willing and able to learn quickly. As team lead, I was expecting to have to handhold most of the less experienced members of the team. Not only did Shaun not require this handholding, he has taken much of my workload from me. I can honestly say that this project would not have advanced to where we are now without his immense contribution.”

 -Automation Test Team Lead at Wordline

If you’re ready to jump-start your career as a business or IT consultant, apply to join FDM today

Read about previous Consultant of the Month winners below: