IT training specialist FDM Group has hired 182 new employees during the official COVID-19 lockdown.

The company, which specialises in equipping candidates with the latest digital skills in areas such as software development, data science and cyber security, has implemented new online programmes so that training can continue despite the chaos caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

The London-headquartered company, which has multiple offices globally, traditionally delivers its training courses within classroom-based environments inside its physical offices.

However, the COVID-19 outbreak saw FDM successfully move its nearly 6,000-strong workforce to a remote working environment overnight, with full IT operations in place within just four days.

As part of this new online programme, around 90 training classes involving 500 trainees take place every day.

“At its core FDM will always be a people business, relentlessly equipping, training and supporting our people to reach their full potential in their careers, and being there for them in tough times,” said CEO Rod Flavell.

“Yes, the disruption and economic uncertainty has affected us, but that won’t stop us offering fantastic career opportunities to a new generation of incoming IT talent.

“We’re very proud to continue hiring during this difficult time and look forward to welcoming new candidates into our diverse team.”

Overall, since the start of the new working model the company has seen its use of Microsoft Skype increase by 700 per cent, including 6,000 discussions every day. Microsoft Teams usage has risen 4,000 per cent with over 10,000 conversation messages and 400 meetings per day.

“We’re very proud to have shifted a large global workforce of nearly 6,000 staff into an effective, productive and enjoyable remote working environment in a four-day timeframe,” said CIO Jonathan Young.

“Of course none of this would be possible were it not for the efforts of our entire workforce, who have been quick to embrace this new way of working and carry on with a ‘business as usual’ approach despite the disruption and huge challenges facing everyone.”