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think before you start training - beware of cowboys

Discussion in 'Training & Development' started by jacek, Nov 15, 2006.

  1. jacek

    jacek New Member

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    Please be careful if you are going to buy on-line course from companies providing distant learning. If you don't you might end up in a big troubles like me.

    Let my situation be warning for you. I wanted to get out of working nights in a supermarket and wanted to get IT qualifications. Fifteen months ago a salesman from certain company of many names has promised me that in a year I will have 30k job or money back. He painted very optimistic picture of shortage of qualified IT staff, and that I will get a good job as soon as I get certified.

    So my training started, I took loan for nearly £3000, set up direct debit £60 a month and started doing my N+ course work, with a view of getting CCNA later. Few months later my situation has changed and I couldn't afford paying for the course any more. The refused to cancel the course, as I got past the loan cooling off period.

    I tried to juggle money and tried to continue paying for next couple of months until my finances have completely collapsed. After that I started being harassed by their loan company, threatening me that they will take me to court if I don't pay.

    Today I got a letter that they are sending debt collectors after me if I don't pay all the amount of money in full. I have no idea how i can do it since I have lost a job and will be homeless soon.

    Instead of getting a good job I got CCJs, so it will affect my chances of getting a job, or a loan. so if you consider risking taking course with them you'd be better if you save up money for the course, instead of taking a loan, because they will have no mercy when you get in financial troubles.

    All they seem to be interested in is making you sign for the loan. As the quality of their training wasn't very good. their tutors are either lazy and incompetent, or overloaded with work. I had my correct answers in assessment marked as wrong, and then the same answer marked as correct in second attempt. In one case my tutor even thanked me for drawing a diagram, when I wrote description. Course material is out of date, and i learned more from Wikipedia than from their books. so I am really worried how I would do at the exam if I carried on training with them.

    So I think I would be better off buying books for the course at Waterstones, and preparing for the exam myself, when I can afford it.

    They promise you that you can learn at your own pace. But you must remember, you can not pay them at your own pace!!! So if you get into financial troubles such course might ruin you.

    That is why self study is much safer option, as you can stop it whenever you want, if you can't afford it.

    Please do not believe in promises made by their salesmen. There is no such shortage of IT jobs that you will get 30K a year job after 12 months course, or your money back. Don't be fooled by thinking that it is so safe to go for a course with them.

    So please be VERY CAREFUL when you go for certification, beware of cowboys, who use naive people like me, who have no idea about reality of IT job market.

    Make thorough research, and think about it properly before you go for training.

    Good luck with your training.

    Jacek Podkanski
     
  2. drum_dude

    drum_dude Gigabyte Poster

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    Sorry to be harsh but...you took out a loan but couldn't repay it due to losing your job? You'd be treated the same if it were a bank loan for a car, credit agreement for a hi-fi etc etc...you signed the dotted line therefore YOU are responsible for paying!

    Would you have posted had you not lost your job and could pay the loan?
     
    Certifications: MCSA , N+, A+ ,ITIL V2, MCTS
    WIP: MCITP 2008 Ent Admin, Server Admin, Exchange 2010, Lync 2010, CCNA & VCP5
  3. mattwest

    mattwest Megabyte Poster

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    I have to agree... if you take out a loan you cannot afford you are going to struggle, especially the loan from a training company... i can only imagine what their rates are.

    A bank may have been a safer bet but they would also have come after their money if you stopped paying.

    I know this also sounds harsh but you should have planned your finances a bit better, and i'm probably in a better situation to advise than most.

    5 years ago i paid £2000 for 30 days training - recieved 5 days and then the company went bust. Only recently did i recieve a whopping £27 back from the auditors.

    I borrowed that money from my folks and paid every penny back, knuckled down and did self study and thats got me where i am now. Although if it was a bank loan i would still have paid it off.

    All i can offer for advise is to get yourself back on a sure financial footing and try again if IT is your passion, but this time with self-study!!
     
    Certifications: See my signature...
    WIP: Maybe re-certify my CCNA
  4. jacek

    jacek New Member

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    to certain extent you are right...

    you took out a loan but couldn't repay it due to losing your job? You'd be treated the same if it were a bank loan for a car, credit agreement for a hi-fi etc etc.

    But, it is not the same when you realise that signing loan for good product you get old broken banger. And those who sold it to you promise you that if you working on it the way they tell you, and using tools and materials they provide, in a year it will turn into nice Ferrari.

    Such things don't happen. And if naive people buy it, then it is using people's naivety to make money.

    Being in such troubles wouldn't hurt so much if I didn't realise that all job promises that made me to sign the loan were false, and that you would get better product much cheaper if you went somewhere else.
     
  5. jacek

    jacek New Member

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    you ask...

    Would you have posted had you not lost your job and could pay the loan?

    Well, maybe not at this stage, but sooner or later I would realise that I could pay for the certification much less if I took different route.

    Also I would realise that these well paid job promises were false.

    It's like with buying car.. one day you realise that you were ripped off, and car doesn't work as promised, you might complain even if you have no troubles paying back the loan.
     
  6. Clyde

    Clyde Megabyte Poster

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    show us the promise or guarantee on the contract you signed janek ... let's evaluate it for it's merit and see if you're right or not...
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+, Security+, MCSA, MCSE
    WIP: MCITP
  7. jacek

    jacek New Member

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    It's looking even more strange now.

    On the course contract paper from them they say there about insuranse in case of redundancy illness etc. But after a closer look there is nothing how can I claim it. And it is for contract with college , not the loan company. Ooops,

    They made me to pay take loan for the course from a loan company whre there is nothing like this.
     
  8. Clyde

    Clyde Megabyte Poster

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    I doubt they 'made' you; rather you chose to...
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+, Security+, MCSA, MCSE
    WIP: MCITP
  9. jacek

    jacek New Member

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    I should say they made me choose, by painting very optimistic picture of what I was getting myself into.

    So I do not mean they forced me to choose, but looking back I must admit I am impressed with skills of their salesman.

    After all I started to believe that they have special relationship with $RECRUITERS and that they will get me the job I want.

    In a letter from them they wrote:

    All $COWBOY'S courses are career focussed and designed to deliver the skils sought afer by employers. We recognise, however, that not all students are neccesarily well positioned to take full advantage of their newly acquired skills and qualifications and may not be properly equipped to make the most of the job opportunities on offer. Consequently, in conjunstion with the UK's most prestigious human resources organisation, each and every student who succesfully completes the course will receive a career interview and assesment with $RECRUITERS, completely free!

    Problem is that I didn't know that $RECRUITERS have requested $COWBOYS to stop using their name months before I even started the course. I only found about it recently.

    Do you think I would go for a loan for the training if I knew that their claims are false?

    EDIT SG: Remove comment that could be used to 'name names'.
     
  10. Mr.Cheeks

    Mr.Cheeks 1st ever Gold Member! Gold Member

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    note career interview and assesment - not a job... your local jobcentre can do that.
     
  11. NetEyeBall

    NetEyeBall Kilobyte Poster

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    Happened to me to some degree. I took a loan for quite a bit of money and the only cert I got was an MCP. However lucky for me I was fired up and leveraged that in Network Admin job for a manufacturing company. During that year I worked and studied hard and got my MCSE and then left to work for Northern Telecom.

    Think of it as an initiation. You learned a valuable lesson. Money spent doesn't always equal the outcome that you were sold.

    Study hard and you can do it. In IT nothing is guaranteed. I guarantee it.
     
    Certifications: CCNA, A+, N+, MCSE 4.0, CCA
    WIP: CCDA, CCNP, Cisco Firewall
  12. jacek

    jacek New Member

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    Every cloud has a silver lining.
     
  13. drum_dude

    drum_dude Gigabyte Poster

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    Some very good point there m8!
     
    Certifications: MCSA , N+, A+ ,ITIL V2, MCTS
    WIP: MCITP 2008 Ent Admin, Server Admin, Exchange 2010, Lync 2010, CCNA & VCP5
  14. Clyde

    Clyde Megabyte Poster

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    re the letter they sent - basically it says they'll set up an interview with Manpower... hardly a guarantee of a job...
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+, Security+, MCSA, MCSE
    WIP: MCITP
  15. NetEyeBall

    NetEyeBall Kilobyte Poster

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    Whats done is done. Now you belong here, and with a good book or twenty and hard work you can study pass a cert or two and land a job in a helpdesk or breakfix computer center.

    You can do it! Just put in the sweat. (Note I am saying this for myself as well. I have been putting in the sweat but not on certs for the last three or four years...now I need to start buckling down.)
     
    Certifications: CCNA, A+, N+, MCSE 4.0, CCA
    WIP: CCDA, CCNP, Cisco Firewall

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