The Best Places to Source Top Tech Talent

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Run-through

He is the CTO of Career Karma (YC W19), an online marketplace that matches career switchers with coding bootcamps. He is also the host of the Breaking Into Startups podcast, which features people with non-traditional backgrounds who broke into tech.

As technology continues to develop, the workforce is going to see widespread disruption. The skills and expertise to be demanded of employees will result in a drastic change within all industries, regardless of whether they are based on tech or not. A byproduct of this will be a change in how recruiting is performed.

For years, traditional colleges and universities have been the go-to source for companies. These are such trusted sources because there were previously no rivals in terms of educational preparedness for the work-world. However, recent years and current events have caused a fascinating change. NPR covered a report which shows how 250,000 fewer students were enrolled in college than a year ago. Some of these students, though, are relying on new and unique forms of education that specialize in tech and provide them with one-on-one training. These new sources are set to become the top spots of recruitment for tech talent.

Trade Schools

A large rival to traditional education that has emerged in the last few years is trade schools. Sometimes called vocational schools, this is a form of education that features a set number of courses in specific tech fields. After enrolling at a trade school for a specific career path, students receive industry mentorship and extensive experience in the field they chose to enter. Unlike traditional colleges or universities, trade schools are often more willing to defer tuition and some, such as App Academy, are even willing to defer tuition until students land a job as a software engineer earning over $50,000. This confidence in their education coupled with an array of payment plans has made trade schools an appealing option to students of all ages. Due to these reasons, among others, trade school attendance has risen according to the National Center for Education Statistics. In fact, the number of students pursuing this alternative form of education is beginning to rival that of traditional paths, which means there is almost an equal pool of qualified applicants that are going relatively unnoticed by most companies. Partnering with a trade school and recruiting directly can help you to discover top tech talent before anyone else.

Tech Bootcamps

Similar to trade schools, tech bootcamps have been on the rise and are also a form of specialized education. Prior to a few years ago, top-rated coding bootcamps were the only type that existed. This was due to the fact that coding and programming themselves only emerged as prominent skills within the last decade, despite being skills that can be self-taught. More and more people have begun to see the importance of bootcamps, however, as fields such as data science are now offering similar options. To that point, data science is a field that used to require a master’s degree to enter, but now some of the top data science bootcamps are making the field accessible to anyone. There are a number of tech-based bootcamps out in the world, ranging in complexity. As with trade schools, their attendance has begun to rise and partnering with them might be a worthwhile investment for any company looking for talented tech workers.

Colleges and Universities

While college and university attendance has seen a gentle decline in recent years, traditional education is still one of the most trusted ways to source top tech talent. The only problem with this form of education is, as alluded to, the lack of industry preparedness that students receive.

To that end, it is best to focus recruiting efforts on the fields that are likely to see massive growth over the next few years. These fields are having a higher emphasis placed on them and, oftentimes, students are given more preparedness for the field. Students pursuing fields such as full stack development will likely have a useful skillset already developed that will make them impactful at any company.

Regardless of the specific career college or university students pursue, extra training may be required when employees are sourced from this area. Despite this, traditional education will always be highly respected as a go-to source for new and talented employees.

Conclusion

When it comes to recruiting, there will certainly be a shift away from relying solely on traditional education as a source. Technology has changed education as it has with every industry, and has allowed students from all over the world to pursue a degree. This will open the pool of highly talented tech workers, but only if companies know where to look. Opening doors and connecting with students at intensive bootcamps and trade schools is a fantastic way to source top tech talent.

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