Should I learn to Code? Facts about a growing Career
In our world learning to code is no longer a question. It’s a fact; we must know how to code. However, not everybody is ready to keep learning. We are not a bunch of 14 years old students sucking in all the knowledge surrounding us. Learning to code from scratch might sound challenging and not really necessary if you already have something going on. But think about coding not only as a new career but as something that must belong to your life.
26% of the world population is 14 or younger. The vast majority (+50% ) is between 25 and 65 (working/productive age). So we still have to deal with that question, not only because the future belongs to tech, or because learning to code teaches how to think (S. Jobs acclaimed quoted); we need to think about it because we need to understand what’s the real benefit that you can get out of it.
Let’s face the short answer right away: YES. You should learn to code. While I’m writing this post I thought about how funny it would be just to say NO: don’t learn to code. It’ll be funny but it’ll be a lie also. Plus, it’s not that hard and it will enhance your career. It’s time then to start addressing the why’s?
You can make more money if you know how to code; It will give you the opportunity to create and build stuff; You could get a promotion; You can build your own apps and websites; You could become a Tech Entrepreneur; You can be part of a team that is building something great and also be part of a great place to work; Everything is tech or code related, so more job opportunities are out there for those who know how to code. You can always work remote, work from home and take your work with you at any time;
Money and Job Opportunities: If you are reading this post it's because you have probably heard someone saying that there are several job openings all over the country and money (wage) is really good. It’s true but it’s not unconditional. You really need to perform as a software developer (get the skills and work super hard) in order to get a chance in the industry (faster than expected).
There are over 1 million 400 thousand job opportunities just in the US for software developers. That will keep growing in the next few years (22% increase). A web developer median salary is $73k average. A junior developer can make 62k per year in Florida. There is a report made by Indeed highlighting a few different ways to see this topic. Here the most important facts:
According to our own Data, graduates of 4Geeks make 22% more money than what they were making before jumping into the program. That’s just after the program, equals --> first job. Then you will start making even more within an industry that values skills over everything. I haven’t met a singular talented/skillful developer without job offerings.
After completing a bootcamp you should stay building projects. If so, you get more skills, you get greener in Github and you get ready for the challenge. In the meanwhile, you need to start applying to any of the +1million job openings right now in the US. That’s the Bureau of Labor Statistics speaking.
If you make a quick search over different platforms, you will find hundreds of open positions. From Google listings, to Linkedin, to Dice, Indeed, Glassdoor, etc. even for us it’s incredible to see some times that it never stops growing. I mean, it’s not like Bitcoin in that regard. It doesn't go down sometimes!
Is it hard? That's a nice question. And yes, it’s a little bit hard. You are learning to code and becoming a full-stack software developer. If you are just making a crash course to grasp some basic skills, then it’s not hard at all. But if you are switching positions and getting into tech for real, then becoming a strong and skilful developer will be harder sometimes.
Not every time, not all the time. But sometimes learning React from zero is hard. Sometimes building data models using python and flask, and integrate that to an Angular app, could be harder at some point. But it’s fine. What’s the deal about not facing that something is actually a little bit hard?
You just need to commit more. It’s like if you are trying to lose 50 or a 100 pounds. Is it easy? No, of course not. Losing just the first 5 could be easy, but then losing the rest gets trickier and harder. But it’s fine, you will be healthy, probably live longer and have a better quality of life at the end.
What’s the secret?
None. No secret. Sorry. Nothing.
Now, if the question is, What does it require? Then the conversation could get to a better point. I’d say that following my experience, there is a combination of soft skills that will give you a solid pack of hard skills. Therefore, you’ll need: Time, hard work, hours of practice, dealing with frustration, a good therapist or a partner that can support you throughout the process and a really stable connection to the internet.
How to do it?
Join 4Geeks! Right? That’s the kind of answer that I want to give you, but in total honesty, you should try many things at the same time.
Computer science degrees remain as the most common option for software developers when they tell how they learned to code. 46% out of the total software developers earned a computer science degree. Around 20% are self taught. Only 13% come from a coding Bootcamp.
I get angry when I see those facts, but I’m able to understand why. The reality is that Coding Schools have been around for over 10 years only. 4Geeks was founded in 2016, and it’s pretty hard to graduate thousands of developers in a short period of time. Over time, Bootcamps will perform as an active and more solid player when talking about how to become a developer. My point is that those numbers will change in the next 10 years. I’m sure about it.
Why? Over 76% of bootcamp graduates say that going through a Bootcamp helped them get a job afterwards.
There are plenty of reasons behind why non-traditional education will become a major character in a few years:
We are focused on skills and not in knowledge; Practice over reading. Projects over PDF; Immersive and shorter; Cheaper and efficient; Flexible and possible.
What after learning?
There is nothing like real-life hands-on experience. You need that for your career and you must try to chase that dream. Learning to code without getting a job in Coding is like being a Master Chef and eat McDonalds every day.
You shall focus on getting your first job. Even if you are thinking about launching a startup, go and get some experience in the meantime, because you will need to understand how a team works, what a sprint smells like and how to deal with client expectations, and the nightmare that represents figuring out what an idea looks like in someones head and then put that into a software app.
There are many tips that you must consider when you are facing the question about how to land your first job:
Get an Internship: We have created a process where Internships become a must in the life of a newly graduated developer. Check it out here; Build and engage with open source projects. Getting experience and building a bigger network is tremendously important; Apply to hundreds of jobs and don’t stop until you start receiving calls and interviews; Take and complete some crash courses: Angular, React Native, NodeJS, etc. Attend events and be part of the conversation; Share and post everything that you are doing. Behave like an open Book and let everyone know about your journey. Use Twitter, Linkedin and Youtube. You are not an influencer, but you are your own process.
It should normally take a 100 days for someone with a background in tech, IT, digital marketing to get a Job as a developer. It could take up to 180 days for someone who has no experience whatsoever. It could always take less but get ready for a long run because nobody said this was a sprint.