5 Ways Supporting Your Local Code School Grows Your Business

November 5th, 2019

Lauren Mabra

Marketing Coordinator @ Suncoast Developers Guild

The partnership [between PROforma and SDG] allowed for incoming candidates to receive detailed exposure to Proforma’s technology stack and receive real world experience that is hard to create in a classroom environment. This program was extremely successful for SDG, Proforma, the candidates and the Tampa Bay technology community at large. - PROforma

We're here to talk to you, a local business owner, about growth and landing talented, more dedicated employees. And here are five ways investing in your local code school can make that happen for you:

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1. Help People Upskill

By 2030, about 14% of the workforce will have to change careers due to automation and artificial intelligence. If people aren’t learning and upskilling, there’s a huge risk that there will be a chunk of the community that gets left behind which leaves millions of employees with limited career opportunities.

Why should employers care about this? For one, the skills gap that already exists (in the tech industry specifically) will only widen. Helping people learn new skills and develop their careers also ensures that our city remains relevant and on top of the technology industry.

If we want to continue the skyrocketing growth that we’ve been seeing, the next step is to nurture. It's vital for employers to support the rise of new skills and learning not just because it’s the right thing to do, but because it’s a must-do now.

Professionals of all ages know that they need to be continuously learning to be valued in the workforce. They often look to employers for training and support due to a lack of time or money to do so on their own outside of work. As an employer, you may not have internal programs to upskill employees. Companies of all sizes, such as PROforma all the way up to Amazon, have sent their workers to us to further their skills and career either through the full-time or part-time classes.

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2. Keep Up with The Growing Demand

AI and automation are blamed for widening the skills gap and making some jobs obsolete, but these technologies also serve as a solution. With new technology comes new jobs and opportunities.

With a job outlook of 21% (which is much faster than average) and 1,365,000 software developer jobs in the nation, it’s clear that the demand for this career is sky-high. And with 284,000 new projected jobs, there’s no sign of the demand slowing. The only way to cater to this growth is to train people who can step into these new jobs.

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3. Grow and Scale

Tampa is Florida’s largest tech hub and accounts for 25% of all tech jobs in the state. There’s a ton at stake if employers don’t invest in code schools and the community. Here’s why:

Businesses aren’t able to grow or develop the technologies they need to satisfy their business processes or clients if they don’t have talented employees. Fortunately, there are accelerated programs available to prepare people with the skills they need to help local businesses scale without demanding that they invest all of the time and money to go back to a traditional university. Upskilling can be done at a fraction of the price in just three months.

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4. Develop Invested Employees

According to Forbes, investing in your employees' development is “crucial for success”. This rings true, especially in the web development industry. Developers are hard to retain because of high demand. They’re able to bounce around from job to job. If one employer is offering better benefits or pay, there’s not much that holds them back from pursuing this new opportunity.

To retain developers, you need to have a competitive offering and invest in employees to create a strong culture that values learning, innovation, and success. This produces more engaged and dedicated employees.

Investing in other’s education boosts your reputation and shows you care as an employer. Always remember that employees arethe backbone of the entire company and happier employees mean happier customers.

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5. Increase Employee Retention

Not only do software programmers have the advantage in the job market, but every time they leave an employer, it leaves a lasting (and costly) mark. A Work Institute report states that it costs a company 33% of an employee’s annual salary (or $15,000) to hire a replacement.

Aside from the hard costs that come with losing an employee, being willing to invest in your employees creates a team that’s more invested and loyal to the business. It can lead to increased happiness and work satisfaction which means employees will be more likely to stay with you long term.

A direct example of local employers investing in their employees is when companies sponsor students through our full-time program. This attracts stellar candidates who value the employer. Although the program is fully paid for, it’s still the student’s decision to invest the time and energy into the boot camp. The candidates attracted to this kind of sponsorship are students with passion, drive, and grit to learn more and take new challenges head-on.

The bottom line

The most important aspects are to remember that we're facing a huge skills gap. Tons of employers, just like you, are in desperate need of more tech talent. This is the only way they can be successful and continue to grow. So what can you do?

Invest in people and help make upskilling accessible. We've had students from retail, marketing, entrepreneurship, hospitality, and any other kind of background you can imagine come into our full-time coding bootcamp. These students attended our program and three months later, left as full-stack junior developers. They then went on to work for some amazing companies and tackle some astonishing projects.

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