Consultants of the Month – February 2019

John Smith

Nicholas Kline (US)

Business Systems Analyst at RBC

Temple University, Japan Campus: International Business Studies

I decided to join FDM because I wanted to work in a role that used a combination of Finance and IT. Recently graduated, I did not know how to gather the right experience to enter that type of role. FDM gave me the knowledge I needed and the chance to gain experience in a competitive industry early into my career. I cannot thank FDM enough for making my dreams come true. The best thing about my time at FDM was the training. Right from the first day of training at FDM, my entire life was nothing but a plethora of opportunities. Opportunities to make friends, connections and to change the direction of my life. Additionally, being able to say you worked on Wall Street is a good “tell me about yourself” fact! From my first day at RBC to now, the teams I have worked with have always been willing to help in any situation. I would not be where I am today without the support of my friends, family and RBC/FDM colleagues. The culture at FDM is hard-working with a splash of social inclusion. When it’s time to work, you work hard. When it’s time for a break, everyone gathers together to socialize. No one is excluded and no one is forgotten. I would definitely recommend FDM to those who are looking to enter the IT sector of the finance industry and don’t have the required level of experience. FDM gives you the chance of a life-time by giving you the opportunity to prove yourself. If you are willing to put in the work, learn from your failures, and take advantage of all your opportunities, then FDM is the choice for you.

Vernon Nava (CA)

Technical Systems Analyst at RBC

Ryerson University: Business Technology Management

I’ve been with FDM since August 2017, and have been placed on-site at RBC since November of 2017. My experience at RBC has been second to none. When I first started out, I took on projects with my team that posed fun challenges and were tremendously valuable to the business. This was an amazing opportunity for me to apply what I had learned at FDM and grow as a leader. One on-site milestone that I will never forget was the opportunity I had in leading, testing, and deploying a few VBA-based applications that the business still uses to this day! I would like to give a huge thank you to my on-site manager as well as my fellow business partners and colleagues; without all their insights and collaborative efforts, I don’t think I’d be in the position that I’m in today. I’m very humbled and honored to receive such a prestigious award by a great company like FDM. There are so many great selling points about FDM – the location in the heart of Toronto, the fun and engaging classes, the on-site experience, the “work hard-play hard” culture – that it was essentially a no-brainer for me to apply. Ultimately though, what it came down to was the fact that it gave me the ability to come out of university and jump-start my career right off the bat, which is something you don’t often see. I would absolutely recommend FDM to others, especially those wanting to get into the business & IT field. FDM has a solid reputation of transforming the aspirations of individuals into reality, giving them the opportunity to build the career they’ve always wanted. I would go as far as saying anyone who wants to take that next step in their career in business & IT, choose FDM!

Andrew Hastings (UK)

SharePoint Analyst at Aberdeen Standard Investments

University of York: Biochemistry

I joined FDM after graduating from university in 2016, I was then placed on-site in January 2017. Aberdeen Standard Investments has been a very welcoming and open company. They were keen to allow me to develop my skills and learn new areas which were of interest to me. The development opportunities have been phenomenal, allowing me to learn more complex coding, business analysis, people skills, leadership skills, and more! I would like to say a huge thank you for this recognition. We have so many FDM consultants globally so it is very rewarding to be recognised, especially when more and more FDMers are joining ASI. To be recognised for my work in getting the LGBT+ network global, alongside my day-to-day work feels like an excellent success. From university, I knew that I enjoyed working with data and always had good experiences with computing. FDM seemed like a natural progression to move away from sciences and into technology. The best thing about FDM is the number of courses, clients, and opportunities involved; benefits that not many places offer. I am keen to continue learning which is made possible by the modules which FDM continues to offer.

Shuang Li (CA)

Software Developer at Morgan Stanley

McGill University: MS, Information Studies

Before joining FDM in January 2017, I had just resigned from my job at a startup as a web developer and was having a hard time finding Java-related jobs. Most of the positions were for senior java developers with almost no openings for beginners. It is FDM that gives recent graduates like me the opportunity to secure their first professional job! After my training in Toronto, I started my first placement at Morgan Stanley in March 2017. During my time with Morgan Stanley, I was constantly exposed to new things including financial products and new technical tools. My typical work includes analysis, coding and testing, as well as providing technical support. My role is dynamic and challenging, and there is always room for me to learn and grow. All the people around me are very supportive—my managers care about what I need and what type of work I am interested in. I can see myself getting better every day. FDM is energetic and fun; it brings young people together and provides a great platform for us to connect with high-profile companies. At FDM, people care about each other, and the relationship between trainees is collaborative, not competitive. I remember we used to hold game nights every Friday night and celebrated major holidays together. I would definitely recommend FDM to people who are looking for their first job out of school or would like to transfer to a new industry. FDM connects people to their dream jobs, giving them industry training, as well as friendships and the opportunity to establish a professional network that will benefit them in the long-term.

“Shuang is a key developer in the Fixed Income Electronic Trading and STP system in Morgan Stanley. She has been actively involved in many of the projects we delivered for the Credit Trading Desk. Her responsibilities include design/development/deployment/Integration testing and supporting production plant from Development team when required. Within a very short span of time, she became one of the key developers in the team. She had to learn quite a bit of business and technology very quickly in order to deliver the IT solutions effectively. She proved to be an extremely quick leaner and an enthusiastic team member. Her collaborative work style and commitment and dedication is an inspiration to the entire team. She is a very quick learner which she amply demonstrated with her successful deliverables this year. She also takes initiative in finding out solutions to problems by collaborating with others, both within the STP team and other stake holders. She also takes initiatives in organizing team building activities in the office.”

-Vice President at Morgan Stanley

Huadong Yang (APAC)

Business Consultant at Finastra

London School of Economics and Political Science: BSc Statistics with Finance

In 2017, I graduated from the London School of Economics and Political Science. In my final year of university, I took a quantitative finance course, which is about using computers to valuate financial assets and monitor financial risks. I realised IT would play a key role in the financial industry in the foreseeable future and decided to join FDM to enhance my IT knowledge. FDM equipped me with fundamental IT skills such as SQL, UNIX and VBA. After my training in the London Academy, I was placed with Finastra, one of the world’s leading Fintech companies. As a business consultant, I work with several major Chinese banks to develop their trading systems. The financial industry is rapidly changing so it is fascinating to be a part of it whilst gaining hands-on experience.

“Huadong is so far the best qualified junior consultant that can work independently and earn client’s recognition within one year, he really deserves this award. As the sole FO/MO consultant of the project assigned, Huadong independently implemented and provided training to the client with limited guidance. When working independently in the project, Huadong followed the guideline of Company to serve the client and made the best of his effort to provide qualified analysis documents and training materials, which earns client’s recognition of his expertise. Huadong is the rising star per company’s assessment. We expect that he can contribute more and become an impactful consultant in the region. He has given me great confidence in FDM. I would recommend FDM as it provides stable and quality consultant resources.”

-Manager at Finastra

Sheenah Usman (UK)

Business Analyst at Aviva

Leeds Beckett University: International Tourism Management

I joined FDM in December 2016 because I was unsure of what I wanted to do once I graduated from university. Working at FDM sounded like a challenge and it was different compared to anything else I had done. Aviva is a renowned company to work for and everyone you meet wants you to do well; they help you progress and widen your skillset and experience. I would like to thank my manager for nominating me for this award and to all the people I have had the pleasure of working with and have supported me in my role. I started off feeling massively out of my depth as I was working in a team full of experienced people who had worked at Aviva for over 10 years. My peers supported me by helping me grasp the skills I needed to get where I am today. I stand in good stead to continue broadening my knowledge and excel as a Business Analyst this year.

Brian Difiore (US)

Application Support Analyst at UBS

Rutgers University: Information Technology and Informatics & Economics

I decided to join FDM in January 2017 to help prepare me for the challenging career path of application support within investment banking. I started my consultancy at UBS in April 2017 and am very happy with my team at UBS.  Everyone is kind and helpful despite working in a fast-paced environment. My team and I monitor and support over 15 applications in the Global Equity Derivatives business and support regional and global applications used throughout the equities business. This includes pricing derivatives, booking deals, monitoring risk, lifecycle processing, and more. I also coordinate with different internal teams and external parties to conduct and manage special events, as well as release new code to production environment. Receiving this accolade means a great deal to me, and further fuels my motivation for success. The best thing about my time with FDM was being placed into a great team at a high-profile global investment bank like UBS. This has really helped jump-start my career and set me on a path to success. I also made some good friends during my training at FDM. FDM’s culture is very inviting yet formal, encouraging collaboration and comfortability without being a lackadaisical environment. The culture helps prepare you for your consultancy on client-site. I would recommend FDM to others who are looking for a long-term experience and success with a career in the financial district.

“Brian has done a lot during this time with us, but his biggest achievement is developing and implementing a new automated process that will detect and alert to any potential server issues during the weekend.  This allows us to proactively catch potential issues and resolve them before they can affect the business during the week. Brian was tasked with completing this project in addition to the high volume of support requests we already get from our users.  He was already working late hours to cover the backlog of support issues.  He was still able to dedicate a portion of his time completing the automated weekend checks without degradation of his other work to clients. Brian has done a very good job showing the type of employees FDM can provide.  He demonstrates his diligence and responsibility to his work. This is clearly seen when he goes above and beyond what we expect from him.  His work ethics and commitment have convinced us to choose FDM in our recent search to recruit a new member of our team.”

Head of Americas Equities Derivatives Support at UBS

Diego Mora (CA)

Software Developer at RBC

University of Toronto: BSc, Chemistry and Biology

I have been with FDM since November 2016. My experience with RBC has been incredible. I have encountered many new challenges which have helped me grow professionally these past two years. I was lucky to join a team that is consistently supportive. I’ve worked on countless relevant financial projects and learned new technologies. I never imagined my work would be recognized to this extent. It is an honor to receive this award and I am very thankful to FDM, who made this possible. I decided to join FDM because I wanted to explore more of the technology industry and thought it would be a good addition to my skillset. The best thing about my time at FDM has been the exposure to the broad field of IT for the first time. I have managed to find a passion in what I do now, and will be eternally grateful to FDM for that. The culture at FDM is great; the human resources team, account managers, and trainers are always willing to answer all questions the trainees/consultants might have at any point in time. I would definitely recommend FDM to others, especially if they want to start a career in IT, but do not have a high level of technical experience. FDM clients are mostly blue-chip companies, and the experience one acquires from an on-site placement with them is invaluable.

Katharina Schiedel (UK)

Test Manager, Analyst & PMO at Information Services Group GmbH

Otto-Friedrich University: Economics

I started at FDM in June 2017. My placement at ISG has been great so far with lots of new challenges. I’m currently working on a big project at Fresenius Netcare which involves providing IT services to internal users on a platform. I would like to say thank you to FDM for the award and for motivating and supporting me so I can reach my full potential. FDM encouraged me to develop my career in IT even though I didn’t have an IT background. The best thing about my time at FDM has been the community and the possibility to join other academies for courses and trainings. Three words to describe the culture at FDM are open, international and supportive. I would recommend FDM to any graduate. I was a little confused about what I wanted to do after obtaining my university degree but FDM was the perfect way to kick-start my career.

Want to jump-start your career as a business or IT consultant? Apply to join FDM today.

Read about past Consultant of the Month winners below: