Announcing OnPlan Next Gen: Consultant Training Program

OnPlan Next Gen offers a rewarding career to individuals who'd like to break into the industry through making a career change, and those who are fresh out of college. We feel this provides a rare opportunity to learn the ropes as an Oracle consultant as well as provide an affordable option for our clients who can benefit from utilizing a Next Gen Trainee. 

Following up on our last post, an interview with Tim Allen, I wanted to also speak to Eric Mumm who represents trainees who've recently graduated college. I also wanted to get our clients take on what it's been like to have two trainees onsite working with our senior consultants and their internal teams. 

So with that, let's meet our latest addition to OnPlan Next Gen; Eric Mumm. Eric joined our Next Gen program not long after graduating with a degree in Computer Science.

“I had a lot of database theory knowledge, but was lacking in real world experience.” He told me when I asked why he chose to become an apprentice.  “OnPlan Next Gen allowed me to get that critical experience, it’s an opportunity to get paid while learning Oracle systems and so much more.” -Eric

Currently Eric and fellow Next Gen apprentice Tim Allen are learning on the job, while working together at a client site in Forest Grove. There’s no better way to learn the ins and outs of working with clients, and how real life projects run, then to put all that book knowledge to the test on a current engagement. With the help of seasoned OnPlan consultants like Sean, and Jason, they are able to get the added guidance needed to learn quickly, adapt those new skills, and become a vital part of keeping the project on time and on budget for our client.

“It’s been enjoyable working closely with Tim and it’s nice to learn as a team. Sean and the client employees help us out a lot, everyone knows we are still learning.” Eric told me. “I have learned a ton so far. Coming into this job I had some SQL and practical database setup experience but it has definitely expanded, I am learning PL/SQL and I love it! I’ve learned the structure of the Oracle system; concurrent programs, reports, PL/SQL packages, forms, templates etc.  Learning how all of them interact, and rely on each other to produce valuable information has been very valuable.”

I asked Eric what’s been most challenging about his new role, and he said; “When I first started it was a bit overwhelming. There is a lot of knowledge you need to learn before it feels like you can contribute, but luckily everyone has been patient and ready to help me.

I think the biggest benefit is the ability to learn the Oracle system in a structured environment. We have been incrementally able to take on new tasks and learn as we go which has really helped us manage the unexpected small problems that always pop-up on projects. Being able, and trusted to do troubleshooting has allowed me to learn new things that much faster.”

I was curious after speaking with both Tim and Eric, what our client on this project thought about having two apprentices’ onsite. So I asked Adam why he chose to include OnPlan Next Gen in his resource lineup for this project.

“We chose to use the apprentices as part of our project for a number of reasons. The biggest of which is the price point offered by using OnPlan Next Gen. At a time where we were adding unexpected scope to our project and this option provided us with a way to stick close to our budget, while still adding needed headcount to get things done. We have a number of tasks to do that may be somewhat monotonous to a senior developer, but would help someone more junior learn the Oracle ropes.  As the apprentices are learning the ropes, we are getting an opportunity to see if we would like them to continue on the project long term." Adam told me.

"We’ve found that working with these apprentices has been really good. OnPlan was very selective in who they considered for these positions and we had the opportunity to interview each of them before they were hired. We have been quite impressed by the skills they initially brought to the table, and they are providing a great value-add to the project.  All in all, they are exceeding our expectations.”  -Adam Kolb, Director IT Regional Business Systems, North America for TTM Technologies. 

It's exciting to see the program taking off and see how well both Tim and Eric are picking up the skills needed to become industry experts. It's also great to know that more quality consultants will be coming into the NW industry and providing great value for our clients at unbeatable rates!