Wednesday, December 31, 2008

IT Training Providers - What Should I Look For?

By Scott Edwards

If you're searching for IT training providers, you're probably considering who to train with. So let's make a few points about the stage you're at, and let's look at the options open to you:

* Your new training is to get a job.

* You'd like to develop a skill set that will enable you to do well, and not be stressed out due to gaps in your understanding.

* You want to be short-listed for interview so this qualification should be the best one for industry.

* Ideally you would like a provider who can offer you the right advice, quality training, decent support, and whose charges are reasonable.

So what are your options to choose from? If you're looking for qualifications to make you employable in the IT Industry, we recommend you avoid universities. Degrees are too academic and not specific enough for modern IT roles. If this is a bit of a revelation to you, look at the Jobsites and you'll see that most employers are looking for commercial qualifications.

Where can I find training for commercial qualifications? Historically there are two routes:

One option is Boot Camps. These are very intensive 10 to 14 week brain bending training sessions that are set up for people to pass qualifications quickly. If you're sharp and good at learning, and totally commit all your spare time over that period, they will.

However, employers tend to view Boot Camp students as lesser mortals! This is because in the past they've found students from this form of training haven't enough understanding of their subject to handle the cross section of challenges in the work place.

so these days you'll find a fair number of your classmates are experienced IT professionals who are upgrading their skills. They know the subject well, which will put you at a disadvantage in the classroom.

The second option has been the typical Distance Learning College, using study books, the odd CD, reference manuals and visits to a classroom at various times throughout the course. With commitment and grit, it is possible to succeed, but you'll be in the minority. Most of these providers couldn't make a profit if large numbers of their students didn't drop out on the way.

How Do I Choose The Right IT Training Provider?

Insist on seeing an example of their training, and judge for yourself whether you can learn from it. If they won't let you see it, do you really want to train with them?

Find out exactly how their support works. You'll need access to tutors at the times you intend to study, not a message system for a call back later in office hours, so please check.

Be carful of companies who include exam fees in the price up-front. These exams may be spread over the next two years, so why pay interest on the money? This is not in your interest. The only benefit is to the company, as you won't get it back if you don't take them all!

If these typical IT training provider descriptions are making you question your wish to train, there is a refreshing viable option. Cutting-edge interactive learning has now come of age, and can be delivered to your door on discs. You can also find companies that bolt on a direct access 24/7 support system to create the ultimate training package at a fraction of the cost.

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