Thursday, March 31, 2011

Unemployed Americans

Recently we got a 55 year old American that had been unemployed for years.  We were able to train her and place her in a project.  She was a great student and learned very quickly and we were able to place her within a very short time.

The real problem with her was her lack of confidence more than anything else.

I wish I could get more unemployed Americans to come to our training.  I tried advertising in The Clipper Magazine, but that was a big waste of money.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

India Office Pictures

Here are pictures from our new India Office: It is setup for up to 50 employees.  Our goal is to have 2000 employees in 2 years.  Not sure how attainable that is, but that is our goal.  We plan on BPO work for insurance company verticals.  Just thinking about all the work we have ahead of us makes me very excited and scared at the same time.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

More Info From Our SAP Guru

Here is some work that the SAP GURU has been doing to get ready for the April 16th class.  He will be teaching some subjects in addition to your regular FICO teacher.

Here is the note of what he has been doing for you:

I have done complete baseline config of all core processes for GL (including basic processes of New GL), Controlling (CCA – With Manual Planning and Real Time Integration of FI-CO), AP (including Logistics Invoice Verification), AR (including Lockbox) and Fixed Assets (Including Using Internal Orders for Investments) in E30. Can you please back this up at this stage and let me know?

I plan to focus on Financial Supply Chain Management areas of Dispute, Credit and Collections and Controlling -- Profitability Analysis next as time permits in this environment. Please do not grant access to this environment till I complete the entire setup and we backup the contents. I do have access to E17 (IDES) also….but I have not configured anything in this at all. I used it primarily to compare certain values for reference purposes. I would appreciate if this too can be excluded from access to other for a couple of weeks. 

Looks like the next batch of SAP FICO students are going to have a tremendous learning experience.  The SAP GURU comes by almost everyday and we chat about how to improve our processes and make the leaning experience better for every batch of students.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Another Student Review

The letter below is from a student and this is why I work as hard as I do.  I do not want my kids to go through other consultancies because I know what they are all about.  

Being an international student it is not easy to find a job in US, especially when the economy is not doing good and the companies are against hiring international students. I graduated in December’2010 and to tell you guys the truth, I had already made up my mind to go back to India if I didn’t find a job by end of March. I had been applying for full time jobs since august’2010, but here I was in December and graduated with an MBA and still frustrated with this whole job search.  It was at that time when one of my classmates told me about VXL. I have friends who have gone through consultancies before and I haven’t heard good stories about their experiences. But, I must say, coming to VXL was the best decision which I could have made after my graduation.

You guys will hear stories about different consultancies on various blogs, but I can assure you what Mr. Vijay is running, is a totally different “experience”.  You will notice that I have used the word “experience” and the reason I say this is because with the kind of infrastructure (computer labs, instructors, housing, and transportation) and the personal attention which this place gives, it would be a grave injustice to call VXL a consultancy, because it is not a typical desi consultancy.  With the kind of personal interest he takes in his students and his desire to see us succeed, I thank him for all his help in launching my career.  I am not the smartest person in the world, but I can tell when a person is “genuine” and when a person is just trying to lure students in. And I must say, Mr. Vijay is a kind of person who will tell you the “truth” the way it is, on your face, and that is what I liked about him the most, his sincerity towards his students.

Once again, thank you Sir for all your help!!!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Message From Our SAP GURU for SAP FICO Students

Our new SAP GURU has sent a message to our current SAP FICO students and to future prospective SAP FICO students:

In my experience, understand accounting and bookkeeping is mandatory to be a functional consultant in FI/CO. One does not need to be a CPA or even need a formal finance degree but a sound understanding of how accounting and double entry bookkeeping works is critical.

Attached are some of the web links that anyone not from a sound finance background should review prior to any FI/CO class.

Of course, there are many other resources on the web that anyone can search…bottom line is that these concepts have to be understood well to have a sound foundation.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

New SAP GURU added to our team

I have added a 16 year SAP Guru to our team.  He currently runs an entire SAP implementation, and on his recent project, which is currently 2.5 years old, he was the one that convinced the company to switch to SAP and is responsible for the entire project's success or failure.  He is an incredible human being, and wildly devoted to teaching and wants to help our students succeed.  There are very few people that would do this. Here is someone who is in such a position of power, but he is still willing to join our team. Thank you God, for bringing him to us.  (He was the one that hired the entire team of SAP consultants on his current project)

He will now be monitoring all of our SAP training including SAP Premium to make sure that the training meets our students' needs for success.

He understands the entire SAP landscape and he will be the one that will give the finishing touches to our SAP students to get them to think like a consultant.

Here are a few quotes from his recent conversations and emails to me:

Quote 1:

I feel that sound understanding of all concepts of SAP (in each subject) as well as being able to execute most processes like a business user (particularly for students not having adequate industry experience) will make a big difference to their understanding and effectiveness on the job.  This is similar to training that we give to business super-users.

Quote 2:

Focus on the rationale/logic/common practices in setting up configuration settings in a particular way. There is no course which will guide them on this aspect at all,, but we will do it. 

Quote 3: (I told him that I would pay him very well, and he gave me the below)

Thanks for your time. God has been very kind and I am very well off financially.  I am looking from a long term and really from a more holistic perspective than revenue from training. Hence, I am completely open to any arrangement (even teaching for free). In my 21 years of IT experience, I have spent 16+ years in consulting on turnkey engagements for midsize ($500M+) to global organizations with more than $ 40B+. I really feel that there are greater opportunities in placements/consulting and being able to do project work on a turnkey/project basis.

Reviews on VXL Training

I was looking for reviews on VXL Training online and I found a couple.  I was dismayed to find two older ones that gave us just average reviews. 

Then again you have to preface it with the knowledge that we have trained over 10,000 students during our years in existence.   Almost 95% of that was paid training.  When someone pays for training, and even if you get a result of 90% success in your students getting jobs, the 10% that do not succeed will be the ones that complain voraciously.

I have worked so hard to get and keep the best teachers.  I have had the same teachers for years now.  I pay the highest salaries, give them the best equipment, so that all they ever have to worry about is teaching.

I know that having only 2 average reviews and no bad reviews is probably considered a success, but somehow it still hurt me to see it.  It hurt me, because I have so much pride in what I do. I work so hard and spend so much money to make sure my kids have the very best in teachers, resources and facilities.

If my kids requested something from me that will make their training better or to get a better result, I would do it or buy it without hesitation.  So if you guys see something wrong, please come to me and I promise to get it fixed right away.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Elitest Training - No Thanks

I was talking to one of our fellow competitors and he was saying that he lets lots of students into his SAP training but out of his last group of 8 students he decided to only choose 3 students to work with on a personal basis.  Out of those 3, two got placed and 1 is almost placed.  Obviously his choice and method worked.  But my question is, is this correct?

Yes, is this correct?

I reflect and think and feel there is something so incoherently wrong in this method.

I come up with lots of questions in his method.

In his class of 8 students a few did not have the perfect communications but were extremely hard working.  A few did not have the right look.  A few were a little less than perfect.  He ended up choosing the 3 very best in that class for additional training.

I will tell you why that is wrong.  I currently have 4 students in my BA class that are trained and will surely get placed.  But out of that group, 2 will get placed no matter who trained them or what they learned.  They are simply that good and work that hard on their own.  I cannot then say I have some special training. Pick 2 of them and work with them additionally and then say my training is why they got placed.  They would have gotten placed no matter what.

I am also not saying that the additional training was not helpful.  What I am saying is, what happened to the other 5 people you rejected.  Do you think about them?  Do you worry about them?

Well I worry and think about them.  I believe that a weak student should get more help.  If you are too busy, you hire someone to put in the work that is necessary to get them ready for marketing.  You do not simply let them go.  That is the path of the coward.  I will not do that.

Every person you let go of is an opportunity to help someone that really needed your talent and help that you gave up on.

The training and placement I do for students, I do not do this for the money. If I had a lot of money I would do what I do for free.  I do this because of the immense satisfaction I get from helping a student begin his career and his life.  My students know that money is not what is important to me, but once I get a student into my training, they are what is important to me.  I will spend whatever it takes and work 'til I collapse to get them ready for a career.

I guess we just have different methodologies and different mind sets, that's all.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Questions from an American Indian Student

Looking at the title, you must be wondering what I am talking about.  Virtually all the Indian kids from India know about companies like ours.  But the Indian kids that grew up in USA simply have no idea how to crack the job market or do not believe that companies like us can do what we claim.

We basically teach you one years worth of material in one month.  If you are in training with us for 3 months, you have basically been to college for 3 years, that is how intense our training is and how hard we make you work.

 I am extremely patient with the American students, because I really want them to join and because I was one of them.

Here are his questions and my Answers:

1) I noticed online that the training courses are on weekends only. If you arrange for living accommodations, what does one do during the week?

Yes all our classes are on the weekend only (There are a few exceptions).  The accommodations are free.  During the week, you are given lots of reading and assignments and you are expected to work at least 40 hours a week to complete that work before the start of the next class.

2) If I was to arrange for my own living accommodations, would it reduce the cost of the program?

No.  The reason is that we already have the guest houses and this is a fixed cost and there is no reduction to our cost even if you do not stay there.  On a side note we keep 6 people in a 2 bedroom 2 bathroom and they are nice, but not extremely comfortable.  We want you to use your time at our office studying or interacting with the marketing department.

3) Since I have a MM training and need a refresh in the course, would I be allowed to take a different module in the same package or is there additional charges for other modules?

You can take whatever training you want, but you need to stick to one module, get a job and then you can take other modules to increase your skill set.

4) What is the primary module that has the most demand in SAP?

Once in a while there is a new module that is hot, but currently all modules are the equally in demand, there is no one module that is better than another.

5) Can you further elaborate on the contract that you require to be signed?

You can find the contract at our website.  You will need to sign a 90 day marketing agreement in which you will agree that only we can market your resume.  If I am unable to find you something in 90 days then you look elsewhere for marketing or you can market yourself.

After the first set of questions, here were a few more I got:

1) When will the training course begin? Need to know as I am arranging my move from Houston, TX.

Please check our website, the dates are pretty accurate, but sometimes I need a critical mass to start a class, and a class maybe delayed by 1 to 2 weeks so that we can get enough students.

2) Online, it shows you have about 4-5 modules to start the same day. Does this mean that each module has a separate instructor?

(I was surprised by this question.)  But yes of course we have separate teachers for each course.  Each teacher we have is currently working in their area of expertise and teaches on the weekend.

3) Do you guys provide any car service if One needs to go anywhere?

We have a company car and a person that will help you.  We are under no obligation to do anything, but he will try his best to accommodate your needs with pickups and drop offs.