How The API Helped me stand out from the crowd in the health and safety sector

006awb_5098AWB_5098My whole life I have enjoyed watching Detective shows from the Equalizer to Luther and found it interesting in how they would investigate incidents, piece the clues together and come up with a conclusion based on the facts.

In 2012 I was an office manager for Skanska at the time when my manager suggested I get involved with a health and safety initiative in the company called IFE (Injury Free Environment). I decided to take him up on the offer and with Skanska’s support completed the training and not only really enjoyed it but decided to make health and safety my career. From there on I become the on-site Unite the Union Health and Safety rep and helped my manager carry out joint investigations into accidents/incidents. I found this very rewarding as together we were able to see what had happened, why it had happened and then introduce control measures to stop it from happening again. Not only did our site have an impeccable safety record but it left you feeling that you had made a difference and helped keep the people you work with safe.

Later that year I took it even further and decided I wanted to take an accredited course to build upon and improve my investigation skills. This was when I came across the API (Academy of Professional Investigation) and decided to study their Diploma in Advanced Professional Investigation. I self-funded this and carried it out in my own time and really enjoyed the course. It gave me insight into and taught me every aspect of investigation, the principles behind it and the techniques used. I enjoyed it that much that later on in the year I joined Derbyshire Constabulary as a Special Police Constable. This gave me the experience in investigating backed up with my new qualification and helped me focus and sharpen my skills.

 

4 years on I am pleased to say that I am now a Chartered Health and Safety Professional and work for a company called Altius VA Ltd. As part of my role as a health and safety consultant I go out to businesses where they have had an accident/incident and investigate these on their behalf. I attend the site, carry out interviews and once I have completed my investigation create an in-depth report for the clients on my findings.

I really enjoy my job and can safely say that the API have helped me get to where I want to be. Not only has it helped me be the best I can be in investigating accidents it has also helped me in interviews as it normally comes up as a talking point which I believe has helped me stick in the minds of the employer and stand out from the crowd.

In closing I would recommend the course for anyone and believe that I am a good example of how it is not just limited to the role of a private investigator. All I can say is that I thoroughly enjoyed it and am glad I took up the opportunity.

Adam Gomes – Derby

“I have been a police officer for over 30 years and I never thought that  there was much more to learn in becoming a private investigator. I just figured that my policing expertise would suffice. Was I wrong!  My expertise was very helpful in taking the exams and understanding the modules but the civil side was very engaging. This course took me through the fundamentals of civil law with regards to data protection and RIPA 2000. And so much more! My jurisdiction does not have these laws so I would like to think that I am a specialist criminal investigator.. I am feeling as confident as can be. API has been in touch with me during the course and my tutors were professional and knowledgeable. Telephone conversations were always polite and accommodating. Anyone taking this course will be a better private investor. My favorite lessons were process serving and electronic surveillance.. Now I have my trade license as a private investigation agency and am getting ready to launch out!

Thank you API!  I am going to join a reputable association and be a part of this very rewarding and noble career.”

J M Gumbs API

Mr Jack O’Connor the North Herts Homes Nuisance Officer, has been awarded his National Vocational Qualification for Investigation Level 4. Jack who has been an employee of North Herts Homes for the last 7 years is at the front line of carrying out all the required Investigations into Anti-Social Behaviour and reports of Nuisance.

Jack, an ex-police officer with many years’ experience, said that “It has been a worthwhile achievement actually to demonstrate that all my years as an Investigator can now be recognised in this way by receiving my Certificate”. John Edwards from the Academy of Professional Investigation stated that the fact that Jack has so many years’ experience and a vast amount of knowledge in tackling and investigating Anti-Social Behaviour has made the assessment of his abilities that much easier, this achievement also demonstrates the high standards that he maintains on behalf of North Herts Homes.

Jack went on to say that the Academy offers nationally recognised qualifications through distance learning programmes leading to investigation qualifications in professional private investigation for both students with little or no previous private investigation knowledge or experience together with highly experienced seasoned PI’s who wish to demonstrate their knowledge and ability. Jack went on to say that throughout the process the Academy have been totally committed to providing the necessary guidance and advice to enable him to successfully complete this very worthwhile Qualification.

cache_270_john_edwards.jpgJohn Edwards receiving his Certificate from Stuart Withers MD of the Academy of Professional Investigation. John said “I decided to do the course to give me a better understanding of what students have to achieve, I already have an NVQ Level 4 Investigation but this was a completely different kettle of fish, the NVQ took me a number of months to achieve, whereas I completed this course and was ready to sit the final exam after only 3 weeks. The two are totally different, with the NVQ I was demonstrating to an assessor my vocational ability, with the certificate it was pure supported learning with a written exam at the end”. Stuart Withers went on to say that the course was ideal for newcomers into the profession to obtain. However both Stuart and John are of the opinion that any experienced investigator wishing to obtain a recognised qualification could sit the final written exam without recourse to any long term study.

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Ron Bonnelame, a serving police officer receives his NVQ in Investigation Level 4 Award from Helen Withers, the Academy’s course administrator.

Ron had previously served in the Military Police from 1996 to 2005 leaving as a corporal after which he joined Nationwide Investigations Group as an Assistant Operations Manager.

Ron has since joined the civil police.

“I found the course extremely beneficial and it complimented my police experience perfectly. The British methods of investigation and the training from former Scotland Yard detectives I found to be as relevant in Zambia as they would be in London or New York.”

Teddy Sambake
Council Police Commandant
Head of Institute of Security Management
Lusaka, Zambia

‘I found the course very well constructed. It’s a shame it took me so long, this is down to my work load, I will definitely recommend the course.’ – Paul Macarthur

I would like to thank the founders and creators of this noble institution, the Academy of Private Investigation (API), especially those who were recently involved in my course, for giving me the opportunity to advance my studies in pursuit of a new and exciting career in Private Investigation.

Now that I have completed the course and have received my qualifications and my proud diploma, and after a long hard reflection, it is fitting that I give you my unreserved and sincere opinion about the course.

On the whole it was a privilege to be able to study with a reputable institution, like the API, that seeks to put both its students and academic achievements first. The Academy is truly that institution.

Having done other courses in the field of Private Investigation (PI) prior to studying the Academy’s modules, both in this country and overseas (USA), I could only say without hesitation that the PI course run by the Academy is second to none. I do hope that they keep up the good work.

The modules were well laid out and easy to understand. The references mentioned in the modules are, in my opinion, easily accessible and accurate. The case studies are interesting and relevant in that they helped me to understand the core principles and the ethics of good investigation. Hence, there was no need for me to bother my tutor.

It would be naïve of me to say that I understood everything I learned from the modules, of course not. The truth is that I understood more than 90% of the modules and that I feel confident that I could actually use the information in each and every module.

For once….! I do not feel like a rogue or a bogus institution has ripped me off. In fact I got more than I paid for because it was clear to me that the Academy did not cut corners for a quick buck, nor did the Academy shy away from giving me (the student) all the tools I would need to succeed.

The knowledge gained from the course has improved my networking and research skills, has helped me to understand and appreciate the workings of various legislations and would no doubt enable me to start practicing as a Private Investigator. I am most grateful.

The course was challenging that has to be said but it was fun all the same to study with the Academy. You are more than welcome to take this letter as a reference, if you are reading this as a prospective student of the API.

Sincerely,

Alpha A. Bah

“As an ex-police officer, I wondered what this course could do for me. I was impressed with the way the course was laid out and with how much I learnt.”

Brian Goulding
Seascale
Cumbria

“Excellent, a very fine Course.”

Brown Odagwe
Shell
Nigeria

“I found completing the Distance Learning Course to be a great asset in my employment in the world of international finance. I am of course hopeful of one day becoming a private investigator.”

Joanne Clements
B.A. (Hons)(Law)
Beckenham
Kent

“I personally went through the manuals with a fine-tooth comb and on refection feel that this API distance learning package is well considered and written, covering many of the basic elements for a beginner. In discussions with colleagues here we all agree that you have done a really good job. Your case studies were all helpful; people tend to remember anecdotal stories.

We routinely recommend this course to those who ask us about where to start training. Frankly, in our view it beats what we have seen on sale elsewhere. The really strong point in its favour is the detailed coverage of basic necessary law including the DPA.

I would just like to say well done. I commend it to any newcomer.”

Dr E Bliss
Blayze Ltd, Expert Witness, Process Service & Enquiry
Wiltshire
United Kingdom

“I personally went through the manuals with a fine-tooth comb and on refection feel that this API distance learning package is well considered and written, covering many of the basic elements for a beginner. In discussions with colleagues here we all agree that you have done a really good job. Your case studies were all helpful; people tend to remember anecdotal stories.

We routinely recommend this course to those who ask us about where to start training. Frankly, in our view it beats what we have seen on sale elsewhere. The really strong point in its favour is the detailed coverage of basic necessary law including the DPA.

I would just like to say well done. I commend it to any newcomer.”

Dr E Bliss
Blayze Ltd, Expert Witness, Process Service & Enquiry
Wiltshire
United Kingdom

“Since completing the course I have started my own detective agency and have already secured enquiries from many clients. I have also been networking on the internet with other PI’s in the UK and around the world which is keeping me more than busy.

The fact that I have achieved my API Diploma has enabled me to not only join professional associations and networking groups but has also got over the credibility gap with new clients. Without completing the distance learning course I would not have made it”

Kevin Midmore
All Counties Investigation and Surveillance

Manchester United Football Club who purchased two courses for their merchandising department. They found the course to be “very beneficial in helping their investigators to deal with product counterfeiting”.

“I write to congratulate yourselves on the best home study course available to those who wish to embark on a career as a private investigator. The reason why I know this is because I have done two previous home study courses on the same subject and none has given the same in depth knowledge of the law that you have given.

Though at times quite hard the course content was well put/structured and thought out. The explanation of various topics was also very easy to understand. On that note, recently when colleagues mentioned to me that they did not have a clue about the law and ‘bugging’, I was able to provide information that they were very impressed with and a surprise to myself how easily the information I had read was so easily retained.

I will have no problem in recommending the course to others interested in this aspect of the security industry.”

Mr Muhammad Salim Nazeer
Hornsey
London