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  1. #1
    DF Jedi BigBrand's Avatar
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    Default Is it too late to retrain?

    Scenario,

    You're 30 years old, you're married, you have no children but are trying, you do not own your own home but are wanting to within a year or so.

    You've worked your way up in an office role, you have great responsibility, not a whole lot of pay, you have brilliant benefits, it's secure and you're going no where. But you REALLY want to get into a trade.

    Have you missed the boat on apprenticeships?


    Realistically, you're talking about doing a course over a year or 2 years during the evenings, then joining an apprenticeship scheme at say £800 pm, for a few years until you're more established.

    Is this still the case?

    Would a 31 year old newbie get laughed off the park?

  2. #2
    DF Moderator JonEp's Avatar
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    Default Re: Is it too late to retrain?

    It's never too late, you only get one go at life!

    Thanks to JonEp

    akimba (15th October 2015) 


  3. #3
    DF PwNagE B.I.G.'s Avatar
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    Default Re: Is it too late to retrain?

    After working on the shop floor for many many years and now in a nice cushy office job, work are currently putting me through college to get a HND in engineering.

    One day a week for the next 3 years at least...

    I don't give a fuck but my daughter hates that I'm in the same college with her mates from school. You're still a young pup at 30 I'm 44!!

  4. #4
    DF PiMP Copex's Avatar
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    Default Re: Is it too late to retrain?

    you getout what you put in, its never to late........... i say go for it...

  5. #5
    DF PlaYa DavidF's Avatar
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    Default Re: Is it too late to retrain?

    The grass isn't always greener lol but with that said 30 is young. You need to look around at what you fancy and also talk to people in that profession - DO NOT believe the adverts that promise you £50k per years as an electrician (Thats my trade btw and the reality is different) - same for plumbers too - unless a gas fitter with all the badges they seem to earn decent coin. Whatever you do please go to college and do the courses properly, forget all these magic short course who's only aim is to fleece people of their cash.....short course prepare you for....bugger all.
    All sound a bit negative ? Im just being realistic BUT there are plenty of people much older than 30 who have retrained properly and went on to have very successful rewarding careers. Good luck if you put the effort in mate you will/can succeed at anything.

    Thanks to DavidF

    BigBrand (14th October 2015) 


  6. #6
    DF Jedi Ashley's Avatar
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    Default Re: Is it too late to retrain?

    It's definitely not to late, approach companies in the trade you like and ask for work. You'll be able to do day release for most trades.

    At the moment it's actually good time to go into construction as there is so much work about.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  7. #7
    DF PwNagE Geko's Avatar
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    Default Re: Is it too late to retrain?

    The company I work for runs Engineering apprenticeship schemes. I went through it at 18. It is open to everyone now, due to EU law and we get people of all ages applying. Even before the EU law change we took people up to 27. There were 2 people of 27 in my year of the intake. We get applications from people as old as 60. Although I am not aware of anyone over 40 being successful. The wages are good, but this is London. I think you start on 18k and go up to 40k when you complete it.

    I worked for many years in Engineering after completing my apprenticeship. I now work as a construction project manager for the same company, on projects which have ranged from 1 Million Pounds to 5 Billion Pounds. So plenty of opportunity.

    Not all apprenticeships are equal. But I can't thank the scheme that I fell into at 18 (as I had no direction at that age) enough...!

    Thanks to Geko

    BigBrand (14th October 2015) 


  8. #8
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    beansontoast's Avatar
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    Default Re: Is it too late to retrain?

    11 years ago I was 30 (no, really, why thank you) and I'd finished a HNC in the summer. I was working nights at the time as a machine setter/operator. What pushed me into the HNC was when I started I was just a machine operator and knew I didn't want to do that for the rest of my life, fuck that, and I knew I should have been doing something more technical. Straight after the HNC I asked my manager if I could do the BEng(Hons) and he said yes. Happy days, so I started in 2004. The company took their support away after one year which was fairly awful. I got on well with the university staff so they kept the timetables handy for my night shifts, whichever modules I needed were timetabled on a Monday. Not having the time off was a killer though and towards the end of the degree course I had to follow a standard timetable which meant going to university a couple of weekdays in between night shifts. This made me ill. I finished that in 2008, four years later. Between 2000 and 2008 I applied for perhaps a dozen engineering roles in the business to no avail. I did eventually get an engineering role at the end of 2008, the role I am still in today. Over the last few years I completed an MSc but with the support of the company all the way. I got a distinction and won the faculty prize for being so damned brilliant. Modest, too Whatever you want to do it is better to do it with the support of your employer, if it is a complete change of field then maybe get employed in that field first?
    Apologies for going on a bit, but maybe you can do in eleven years what I've done. I'm currently applying to be a chartered engineer which I think I will get. After I have the CEng I will most likely leave my current employer after 19 years service.
    No sympathy for the devil; keep that in mind. Buy the ticket, take the ride...

    Thanks to beansontoast

    BigBrand (14th October 2015) 


  9. #9
    DF Super Moderator Over Carl's Avatar
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    Default Re: Is it too late to retrain?

    I've lost count how many times my career has totally changed direction. I often think I should have just stuck to one career, rather than always starting from the bottom again. I suppose having no real responsibilities e.g. dependants or mortgage allows me this freedom. In your shoes where you are thinking about a child and house, I would strongly advise you speak to people who have gone down the path you are planning to get a rough idea how long it will take you to come out on the other side so you can consider how this fits with your life plans.

    About 4 years ago (I was also 30 then), I realised I didn't want to go for another IT role, and I ended up taking an offer working in a garage. Pay was terrible (less than minimum wage), but I at least had some basic reliable income, and I got the opportunity to get better on the tools and to practically apply a lot of the theory I had previously learnt out of interest due to my geeky obsession with cars.

    That job lasted just over a year, then I went out doing my own thing diagnosing cars and doing electrical repairs. Things were just picking up quite nicely when I suffered the stroke earlier this year, since then I only try to do about 2 cars in an afternoon. Despite this, I'm happy I went down this route as it means I can pick the times I go out to work so if I don't feel up to it I just blag to my customers that I'm fully booked for the day.

    The only thing that is sometimes disheartening is that if I ever make a nice chunk of money, that often will go straight away on a tool I've wanted for ages, leaving me with just enough to get by, although I reckon I only need approx. another 7-8K worth of kit before that stage will finally end and I can actually enjoy (or maybe even start saving) some of my money.

    I remember I used to work for an electrical firm that did apprenticeships. I was trying to get one of my mates who is a spark on their scheme so he could get experience of large scale sites rather then his current house bashing. After trying for a bit, I found out that firstly his age (late 20's) was not officially a barrier but practically would be. Secondly, the places unofficially only ever went to kids whose families knew senior management in order to pull strings for them.

    Dunno if every company is the same, but seeing that made me decide to do what I practically consider an unofficial apprenticeship (that year for less than minimum wage). In ways it was better than a proper apprenticeship as I didn't have to spend 6 months cleaning the yard and making tea before I progressed to another 6 months of fitting tyres before I was allowed to do some real work. However the place was a great opportunity to learn, but I didn't get taught FA, I often ended up figuring out things myself that no other fucker there knew or understood.

    If you think your plans will take you down the self employed route, do what you can to clear your debts and get as many credit cards as you can while you are still in normal employment. Once you do become self employed, you may find no fucker wants to give you any form of credit, so if you already have a few cards and have built up the limits, at least you have something to fall back upon if you really struggle.
    Last edited by Over Carl; 14th October 2015 at 09:09 PM.

    Thanks to Over Carl

    BigBrand (17th October 2015) 


  10. #10
    DF Jedi Brydo666's Avatar
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    Default Re: Is it too late to retrain?

    Read this post with interest, I'm also 30 and have a well paying professional job (HR Systems Manager), two kids, mortgaged house with 18 years to go.

    I enjoy my job and have a good team of people under me, but deep down I've always wanted to be an electrician. I've no idea how to get into it, or if I can afford to leave my current job and train.

  11. #11
    DF PwNagE Geko's Avatar
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    Default Re: Is it too late to retrain?

    You can do a night school course to pick up some skills towards becoming an electrician. A lot of the guys I did my apprenticeship with, I went the electronic route they went the electrical route, are working on their rest days as electricians.

    When I did my electricians piece, as we all did in the first year, it was the C&G 236 Parts 1&2. I believe this has been superseded (I googled, so could be wrong) with the City & Guilds 2365. I also did the 16th edition wiring regs, this is now on the 17th edition. I believe you also need Part P now (again I could be wrong).

    These course are all available on evenings or weekends. The 17th edition is more of a test on how to use a book (the books are expensive), than actually recalling the regs. I did a 5 day course, but I think you could probably get away without it as I pissed about for 3 of the days.

  12. #12
    DF PlaYa DavidF's Avatar
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    Default Re: Is it too late to retrain?

    Quote Originally Posted by Geko View Post
    You can do a night school course to pick up some skills towards becoming an electrician. A lot of the guys I did my apprenticeship with, I went the electronic route they went the electrical route, are working on their rest days as electricians.

    When I did my electricians piece, as we all did in the first year, it was the C&G 236 Parts 1&2. I believe this has been superseded (I googled, so could be wrong) with the City & Guilds 2365. I also did the 16th edition wiring regs, this is now on the 17th edition. I believe you also need Part P now (again I could be wrong).

    These course are all available on evenings or weekends. The 17th edition is more of a test on how to use a book (the books are expensive), than actually recalling the regs. I did a 5 day course, but I think you could probably get away without it as I pissed about for 3 of the days.
    Part P is just a building regulation - IE you work in certain areas of a house then you must notify the local council building control. The scam is local authorities are insisting that only electricians who are members of a scheme are deemed as competent enough to sign off an electrical installation cetrificate(Which is basically what the council want). The schemes being NICEIC, ELECSA, STORMA....and others. Entry to a scheme is laughable as ALL it requires is paying the fee £500+ per year and very few basic quals with even just the fact that someone who ONLY has the 17th edition as their sole qualification can actually be signed up and allowed to go out and work in a domestic setting.
    Another small fact - this part p scheme has been in force since the 1st of Jan 2005 - To date there are no cases of ANYONE being taken to task for failing to comply with the part p reg.
    Last part of my mini rant lol - These schemes are just that - schemes and not regulatory. Their record as a collective of booting out rogue electricians is almost zero....over a ten year period.

    Thanks to DavidF

    beerman (17th October 2015) 


  13. #13
    DF VIP Member chizh's Avatar
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    Default Re: Is it too late to retrain?

    Night/weekend school whilst staying in my current job would be my choice. Personally, I could never do without the security of a steady income.

    Which trade are you thinking about?

    1 thing to bear in mind is that learning is only part of a trade.
    Experience is the key and you only get this by working hands-on which might mean starting at the bottom in your chosen profession and therefore on poor income to start with.

    A likely consequence of making long-term plans like this is that your missus will probably get pregnant once you've made the change and your perspective will change.
    That's when things will get interesting

  14. #14
    DF Jedi MajorFU's Avatar
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    Default Re: Is it too late to retrain?

    at 39 years old I kicked in my 20 year IT sales career(earnt 55 or 65k in my best year), did cisco ccna and ccnp got a servicedesk job and 6 years later I'm Highest level customer support engineer and manage the company network along with about 2 dozen other companies networks including a certain battery mfr and a well know insurance co who also host a fuck loads of websites you all would have heard of

    anyway, the point, an old dog can not only learn new tricks, he can surpass many pups along the way whilst doing so

    Barely pulling 35k but I love my job rather than loath it and work more than 50% from my bedroom lol so its well worth less money....actual quality of life. However someone less content and more ambitious than me who hasn't almost paid their mortgage off could be worth double what I get paid after 6 years of networking experience.

    Thanks to MajorFU

    Over Carl (20th August 2016) 


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