Why Your Next Hire Should Be a Coding School Graduate
The future of work doesn't involve technology. The future of work is technology, but not in the way many predict. The common fear I've witnessed across multiple industries is that technology will take over human jobs. While at some level this is true (especially for industries like manufacturing), the question workers should be asking is not, "Will a robot take my job?" but rather, "How can I make myself indispensable for a tech-driven future?"
While not every company sells a technology product, most companies will be the product of technology in the next five years. That being said, the most indispensable "hard" skill for the jobs of the future is one that is underrepresented in classrooms nationwide.
According to HourofCode.org, despite the fact that computer science jobs are the top source of new wages in the U.S., only 40 percent of schools teach computer programming. For 21st-century students, this critical body of knowledge is missing from most curricula. Just as students learn how electricity or the digestive system works, so too should they understand computers and the internet as a fundamental element of the world we live in.
While many schools are implementing meaningful programs to better prepare students for technology jobs, widespread change takes years to complete. In the meantime, an unlikely "genre" of education has stepped in to help people make the jump into technology careers: coding schools.
Related: Why You Shouldn't Hire Your Friends
From startups to large corporations, hiring a coding school graduate offers many benefits:
1. Coding school grads bring diversity into your company.
Research has proven time and time again that companies with high employee diversity tend to perform better than those that do not. Coding schools attract people from all walks of life, gender and ethnicity aside. Stay-at-home moms looking to re-enter the workforce, 20-somethings who never finished school and adults looking to try a new career are common in coding school graduating classes. Diversity -- of background, thought and skills -- is fundamental to success for any business.
2. Coding school grads are eager to learn and take risks.
Students learning code essentially put their lives on hold for three to six months to learn an entirely new skill. When students emerge on the other side as graduates, they are hungry for projects that allow them to continue honing their skills. Thus, coding school grads are also quite teachable. Any business leader who has dealt with an unteachable person knows the value of an employee that takes feedback in stride.
In the same vein, coding school grads are willing to take risks. For businesses solving complex problems with technology, risk-takers are essential members of the team. Coding school grads' dogged pursuit of learning and proclivity for trying new things make them excellent employees.
3. Coding school grads will champion your company.
Many coding schools teach students the soft skills to succeed in business along with code. From handling networking events to answering interview questions, many coding school students emerge as polished professionals. Having learned to "walk the walk and talk the talk," grads will represent your business well to their networks.