AI in Software Engineering: How to Stay Ahead of the Curve

Jess Feldman

Written By Jess Feldman

Last updated on May 11, 2023

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We’re just a few months into 2023 and there is seemingly a new generative AI tool launching every other day! How do you stay ahead of the AI curve — especially if you were hoping to make a career change into tech this year? Evan Shy, CEO of Coding Temple, digs into how Coding Temple is iterating to meet the demands of today’s tech workforce, and how AI may change the types of jobs that bootcamp students are hired for in 2023.

Course Report · How to Stay Ahead Of AI Curve

Evan, you’re somewhat new to Coding Temple, so introduce yourself to Course Report readers – what are you working on as CEO and how are you supporting Coding Temple students?

Hey there!  I’m Evan Shy. I’ve been a life-long entrepreneur based in Chicago after relocating from SoCal. I’ve spent my career developing software products and services within the skill development space, with a primary focus on Digital Health and Professional Development. Years ago, I was consistently hiring graduates from Coding Temple. Always impressed by the caliber of their students, I began serving as an advisor to the company from its early days. After spending a year at Penny Pritzker's P33 Chicago, I gained a new appreciation for the scope of challenges and opportunities within the tech talent landscape. For example, in Chicago alone there were between 20-30k more entry-level technical job postings than there were relevant graduates to fill them. Not only could traditional 4-year universities not fill that need due to a limited capacity, but relying exclusively on 4-year universities exacerbates the inequities that already prevent certain communities from participating in the tech ecosystem. I knew I had to be part of the long term solution. The most viable one was right in front of me. Accelerated training pathways represented a model that was faster, more effective, and produced a higher return on investment for students than its conventional equivalent (Here’s a recent analysis on this subject). 

Fortuitously, the team at Coding Temple asked me to come onboard. As CEO, my primary objective is to amplify our investments in the student experience to drive world-class outcomes.  We’re doubling down on enhancing the level of personalized one-on-one coaching students experience throughout the program, a characteristic that has always distinguished us, thanks to our cap on class sizes. We’ll do that through investments in both expert coaches and new technology. Additionally, I intend on amplifying our investments in enterprise partnerships and services creating constant bi-directional alignment between employer requirements and our programming.

What kinds of impacts do you see AI making on tech over the course of the next few years?

The World Economic Forum predicts that tech advancements, from automation, artificial intelligence, to robotics, will displace 85 million jobs by 2025. However, this same technology will also create 97 million new jobs in areas like data analysis, software development, and cybersecurity. Ultimately it’ll depend on how you prepare for these inevitable changes

Over the next few years, artificial intelligence (AI) is poised to bring about significant transformations, some specific areas include:

  1. Automation: AI will continue to streamline and automate various tasks, particularly those that are repetitive and time-consuming. This will lead to increased efficiency and productivity across multiple industries, allowing professionals to focus on more creative and strategic aspects of their work.
  2. Enhanced Data Analysis: AI-powered data analytics tools will enable businesses to process vast amounts of information more effectively. These tools will facilitate deeper insights, leading to improved decision-making and more targeted strategies in fields such as marketing, finance, and healthcare.
  3. Personalization: AI will play a crucial role in delivering personalized experiences to consumers. From tailored product recommendations to customized content (e.g. learning experiences), the use of AI will help businesses better understand and cater to the unique needs and preferences of their customers.
  4. Workforce Transformation: As AI continues to evolve, it will inevitably reshape the job market. New roles will emerge, while others may become obsolete. Professionals will need to adapt by acquiring new skills and staying abreast of technological advancements.

Overall, the impact of AI on the technology landscape will be multifaceted, revolutionizing the way we live and work. As these changes unfold, it will be crucial for businesses and individuals to adapt and leverage AI-driven innovations to remain competitive and future-proof.

Generative AI is ramping up fast in 2023, but AI is not new — Are their examples where AI has already been integrated into the tech workplace?

It certainly isn’t new. It’s been integrated into the workplace for years. Here are a few examples:

  1. Customer Support: You know, it's really interesting how AI has reshaped customer service with chatbots and virtual assistants. Take Ada, for example. It's an AI-powered platform that creates customizable chatbots, helping businesses like Zoom and Shopify scale their customer support efforts. Isn't it amazing how these chatbots manage tasks from answering FAQs to tracking orders, all while keeping customers happy and response times low?  We’re about to see an entirely different caliber of chatbots in the coming months and years. 
  2. Human Resources: So, when it comes to recruitment, AI is turning the tables in a big way. There's this platform called Pymetrics, which uses neuroscience games and machine learning to assess candidates' cognitive and emotional traits. This way, it matches them with suitable job opportunities while removing any unconscious biases. You can imagine the value for companies like Unilever and LinkedIn, who've already used Pymetrics to streamline talent acquisition and create a more inclusive workforce.
  3. Data Analytics: AI has been essential in data analysis for a decade.  Take Tableau, for example. This data visualization and analytics platform has AI and machine learning baked right in! With features like "Ask Data" and "Explain Data," users can explore their data using natural language queries and automatically uncover insights. It's fascinating how companies like Netflix and Verizon are leveraging Tableau to gain a better understanding of their data and make smarter decisions.

These are just a few examples that demonstrate how AI has already had a profound impact in our working experiences. What’s crazy is that these examples and use cases will appear rudimentary in the years to come.

In your opinion, how do technologists stay ahead of the curve with AI? 

Oh, that's a great question! As AI keeps evolving, it's crucial for technologists to stay ahead of the curve. Here are a few tips:

  1. Keep Learning: You know how the saying goes, "Knowledge is power!" The best Technologists are always curious and eager to learn. They can enroll in online courses, attend workshops, or pursue certifications in AI and machine learning. By constantly updating their skills and knowledge, they'll be better equipped to adapt to new AI advancements.
  2. Join the Conversation: How about diving into the world of AI communities? Technologists can participate in online forums, attend conferences, or follow AI thought leaders on social media. This way, they'll stay informed about the latest trends and discoveries, while also exchanging ideas and insights with like-minded peers.
  3. Experiment and Innovate: Nothing beats hands-on experience! Technologists should take the initiative to experiment with AI technologies and explore their potential applications. By working on personal or professional projects, they'll gain valuable experience and insights that can help them stay ahead of the game.
  4. Embrace Collaboration: Two heads are better than one, right? As AI continues to grow, interdisciplinary collaboration will become increasingly important. Technologists should be open to working with professionals from diverse fields, such as data science, neuroscience, and ethics. By pooling their knowledge and expertise, they'll be better equipped to tackle the challenges and opportunities AI presents.

So, there you have it – a few tips to help technologists stay ahead. By constantly learning, engaging in the AI community, experimenting, and embracing collaboration, they'll not only stay ahead of the curve but also make some pretty cool discoveries along the way!

Is that the same advice that you would give to a total newbie or someone who is just considering a career change into tech? 

Some aspects of the advice remain the same. However, there are a few nuances to consider based on one's level of experience. Let's break it down:

For Newcomers to Tech:

  1. Build a Solid Foundation: Newbies should focus on learning the fundamentals of AI, programming languages, and data manipulation. They can start with beginner-friendly resources and gradually progress to more advanced materials as they gain confidence.
  2. Find a Mentor: Having someone to guide you along the way can be invaluable. Newcomers should seek out mentors in the field of AI, who can offer advice, share experiences, and help them navigate their tech journey more effectively.
  3. Embrace Networking: It's never too early to start networking! Attending events, joining online groups, or participating in hackathons can help newcomers establish connections in the tech community, which may lead to exciting opportunities and collaborations.

For Experienced Technologists:

  1. Keep an Open Mind: Even with a wealth of experience, it's essential to approach AI with an open mind. Experienced technologists should be willing to reevaluate their assumptions, explore new techniques, and embrace the constantly changing landscape of AI.
  2. Share Your Knowledge: Experienced professionals can contribute to the growth of the AI community by sharing their expertise through mentorship, blog posts, or speaking engagements. In doing so, they can help nurture the next generation of AI experts while staying up to date of new advancements in the field.
  3. Focus on Specialization (at the right layer): As AI continues to advance, it will become increasingly important for experienced technologists to specialize in specific areas, such as natural language processing or computer vision. By honing their expertise in a niche that is generally applicable, they can position themselves as leaders in that domain and stay ahead of the curve.

So, while the core advice remains similar for both newcomers and experienced technologists, the emphasis shifts depending on their background. Ultimately, staying ahead in the AI game requires continuous learning, curiosity, and adaptability – no matter where you are in your tech journey!

You mentioned that AI would produce 97 million new jobs by 2025 – what do you think those jobs will look like? 

Oh, absolutely! The internet era is a great example of how technological advancements can create new jobs. Just as the internet paved the way for positions like web developers, digital marketers, and e-commerce specialists, we can expect AI to give rise to new tech roles in the coming years. Here are a few possibilities:

  1. AI Ethics Officer: With AI becoming more entwined in our daily lives, ethical concerns are bound to arise. An AI Ethics Officer would be responsible for ensuring that AI applications are developed and deployed responsibly, addressing issues like data privacy, fairness, and transparency. They would work closely with AI developers and decision-makers to establish ethical guidelines and standards.
  2. AI Data Curator: High-quality data is the lifeblood of AI systems. AI Data Curators would be responsible for sourcing, preparing, and maintaining datasets that fuel AI algorithms. They would collaborate with data scientists and AI engineers to ensure the data is accurate, diverse, and representative of real-world scenarios, ultimately improving the performance of AI models.
  3. AI Trainer: As AI systems become more sophisticated, they require more human guidance to learn effectively. AI Trainers would specialize in "teaching" AI models by providing them with feedback, refining their outputs, and ensuring they meet performance goals. They might work with AI-powered chatbots, virtual assistants, or even autonomous vehicles, depending on the industry and application.
  4. AI Integration Specialist: As organizations increasingly adopt AI solutions, there's a growing need for professionals who can seamlessly integrate these technologies into existing systems and processes. AI Integration Specialists would possess expertise in AI, as well as a deep understanding of the organization's infrastructure, to ensure successful AI adoption and maximize its benefits.

Of course, these are just a few examples of the exciting new roles we might see in the near future. As AI continues to evolve and permeate various industries, it's likely that even more unique and specialized positions will emerge. And who knows? Some of them might be roles we haven't even dreamt of yet!

As a coding bootcamp, you now have the duty to prepare your students for these new demands of AI in the very near future – how is Coding Temple tackling this?

We have many things in the works, but a few key strategies we're using to ensure our students are ready to tackle the challenges and opportunities that AI presents:

  • Nurturing a strong foundation in programming and data analysis: To excel in the AI domain, our students need a solid grounding in programming languages and data manipulation techniques. By providing a comprehensive curriculum, we're equipping our students with the essential skills and knowledge required to dive into AI and machine learning projects.
  • Integrating AI-focused coursework and hands-on projects: To ensure our students are well-versed in AI applications, we are starting to incorporate AI-focused coursework and projects into our curriculum. This hands-on approach allows students to explore AI concepts, tools, and techniques in a practical setting, developing the skills needed to thrive in the ever-evolving AI landscape.
  • Encouraging lifelong learning and curiosity: In the fast-paced world of AI, staying ahead of the curve requires a commitment to continuous learning. At Coding Temple, we foster an environment that encourages curiosity and ongoing professional development. By exposing our students to the latest AI trends, research, and tools, we help them cultivate a growth mindset and an appetite for innovation.
  • Building a network of AI professionals and mentors: Networking is crucial for success in the AI field, and we support our students in connecting with like-minded individuals, industry professionals, and mentors. Through events, guest lectures, and partnerships, we create opportunities for students to expand their networks and gain insights from AI experts.   We’ve formed Leadership and Technical Advisory boards of industry leaders who help inform programming strategies.

By focusing on these strategies, Coding Temple is dedicated to preparing its students for the new demands of AI in the present and very near future workplace. Our aim is to empower students with the skills, knowledge, and connections necessary to excel in the rapidly evolving world of AI.

Are you finding employers in your network are interested in students that understand AI tools?

Absolutely! In fact, there's a growing demand for professionals with AI expertise, particularly those with experience in ChatGPT. A recent survey conducted by found that 92% of business leaders surveyed (1,187) are currently hiring, and 91% of them are specifically looking for workers with ChatGPT experience. This demonstrates a strong interest in AI skills across various industries.

Moreover, 66% of these business leaders believe that hiring employees with ChatGPT experience will give their company a competitive edge. They are particularly keen to hire AI experts in areas such as software engineering, customer service, human resources, and marketing. It's worth noting that this demand for ChatGPT knowledge spans across different job levels, from entry-level to executive positions.

Given this increasing interest in AI and ChatGPT expertise, it's clear that students with such knowledge will be highly sought after by employers. As a result, having AI experience in your skillset is likely to open up exciting job opportunities and help you stand out in the job market.

How is AI being integrated into the Coding Temple curriculum and classroom? Will you be incorporating new AI projects and/or tools into the program?

We envision generative AI supporting our dedicated instructors while maintaining that essential human touch. Here are a few examples:

  • Building a harmonious partnership between instructors and AI: At Coding Temple, we see generative AI as a helpful sidekick to our instructors. By taking on routine tasks, AI allows our teachers to concentrate on the unique challenges each student faces, providing that personalized guidance we all crave.
  • Amplifying lesson content with AI-generated examples and explanations: Generative AI can lend a hand to our instructors, helping them create diverse and engaging lesson content. By offering extra examples, explanations, and context, students can more easily wrap their heads around complex concepts and flex their critical thinking muscles.
  • Lending real-time support for students during independent practice: Picture this – as students tackle coding projects or exercises, generative AI acts as a trusty assistant, providing instant feedback and answering questions. This kind of support can help students surmount obstacles faster and boost their confidence in their coding skills.
  • Empowering instructors to focus on personalized coaching and mentorship: With AI carrying some of the load, instructors can devote more time to mentoring students, catering to their individual needs, and nurturing a growth mindset. This holistic approach can pave the way for a more supportive and effective learning environment. At Coding Temple, we're eager to delve into the potential of generative AI, creating a dynamic synergy between cutting-edge technology and good old-fashioned human expertise.

Will your bootcamp alumni be able to access new learning materials from Coding Temple about AI?

Absolutely! At Coding Temple, we take great pride in supporting our alumni throughout their careers, and that includes providing access to new learning materials about AI. We understand that the tech landscape is always evolving, and we're committed to helping our alumni stay up-to-date with the latest developments.

To achieve this, we offer various resources and opportunities for our alumni:

  1. Access to Updated Course Content: As we update our curriculum to incorporate new AI topics and techniques, we ensure that our alumni can access these materials. This allows them to continuously expand their knowledge and stay informed about the latest advancements in AI.
  2. Alumni Workshops and Webinars: We regularly organize workshops and webinars focused on emerging technologies, including AI. These events are open to our alumni, providing them with opportunities to learn from industry experts and fellow professionals in the field.
  3. Networking and Community Events: By participating in our networking events and community gatherings (e.g. Coding Temple After Dark), alumni can connect with peers and professionals who share their interest in AI. These events can foster knowledge exchange, inspire new ideas, and even lead to potential collaborations.
  4. Online Resources: We curate a collection of online resources, articles, and tutorials related to AI and share them with our alumni. These resources can help our graduates deepen their understanding of AI and explore new applications and techniques.

At Coding Temple we are dedicated to empowering alumni with access to new learning materials about AI, as well as fostering a community that supports continuous learning and professional growth. We believe that by providing these resources and opportunities, our alumni will be well-equipped to excel in the ever-evolving world of AI and technology.

In the face of AI and a seemingly turbulent tech job market, why do you think now is a good time to make a career change into tech?

Despite the rapid advancements in AI and a seemingly turbulent tech job market, now is an excellent time to make a career change into tech, and here's why:

  • High Demand for Tech Skills: The demand for technical skills continues to grow, driving a need for skilled professionals in various fields, including AI, data science, and software development. Companies across industries are seeking qualified candidates to help them innovate and stay competitive.
  • Versatility and Adaptability: Tech skills are transferable across sectors, making professionals more versatile and adaptable. By learning these skills, you increase your value in the job market and open up a range of career opportunities.
  • Continuous Learning Opportunities: The dynamic nature of technology encourages continuous learning and professional growth. This can lead to a fulfilling career with ample opportunities to develop expertise and explore new areas.
  • Competitive Salaries and Benefits: Tech careers often offer competitive salaries and benefits, making them an attractive choice for those seeking financial stability and career satisfaction.

In short, a career change into tech offers high demand for skills, versatility, continuous learning opportunities, and competitive rewards, making it an excellent choice in today's job market.

Find out more and read Coding Temple reviews on Course Report. This article was produced by the Course Report team in partnership with Coding Temple.

About The Author

Jess Feldman

Jess Feldman

Jess Feldman is an accomplished writer and the Content Manager at Course Report, the leading platform for career changers who are exploring coding bootcamps. With a background in writing, teaching, and social media management, Jess plays a pivotal role in helping Course Report readers make informed decisions about their educational journey.

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