Welcome to Ask a Career Coach, an advice-column where real bootcamp career coaches take a minute out of their busy days to answer a question from a Course Report reader. Today, Roger Huang from Springboard is answering a question about whether enrolling at a bootcamp is a good way for career changers to beat inflation. In his role as Director of Growth, Roger helps students find Springboard and ensure that Springboard is the best match for their learning style and career goals.
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And our question comes from an aspiring career changer, who writes:
“Dear Roger - I am considering a career change, but the recent talk about inflation has me worried. Is this the right time to enroll at a coding bootcamp like Springboard? Can I beat inflation by learning to code and landing a good-paying tech job?
Inflation affects career changers in a lot of ways. Increased wages help make jobs seem initially attractive, but if salary increases don’t keep pace with inflation, job-seekers see their earnings eroded and eventually, they’re not able to afford the same things for themselves and their families.
Since inflation also tends to trigger interest rate targeting increases from central banks, it may also lead to layoffs in certain sectors and unpredictable economic slowdowns/recessions that can massively impact the job market. This affects the salaries that are being offered, and even the types of jobs that people can find. Inflation can accelerate the pace of career changes and different industries rising or falling as a result.
A quick answer to this question is…
I think a bootcamp like Springboard can place you into the right career so that you can continue to develop inflation-beating skills.
In general, the way to beat inflation is to continually invest in yourself. You can always switch careers or jobs that increase the salary you earn. More forward-facing careers demand this change and also reinforce it. Dell released a report that concluded that 85% of jobs in 2030 haven’t been invented yet!
But wait — are all tech careers recession-proof and inflation-beating?
A career in tech isn’t a silver bullet. Different types of recessions and inflationary periods create different macroeconomic results.
One thing you can look at is how uniquely suited to technology a difficult COVID-induced recession was: job losses in the physical world and service sector were very high as work migrated online when physical spaces were shut. Yet it’s also true that as central bank interest rate targeting has risen, there seem to be anecdotal reports of layoffs in the tech sector itself.
I don’t see a tech career as recession-proof and inflation-beating just by itself. However, I think the mentality of looking towards cutting-edge jobs and getting the support you need to get there is something that can weather recessions, inflations, and massive economic changes – no matter where they come from.
Career Changing vs Upskilling
Whether you should upskill and add new tech skills to your toolbox or make a total career change into tech is really context-dependent on you. What’s most important is that people are not stuck in a situation that doesn’t help them grow. For some people, that might mean dedicating themselves to a tech career. For others, it might mean upskilling and adapting parts of their current life or job to different skills and learnings. This is a long way to say that it depends, but improving your skills is always a good thing!
Are Springboard students beating inflation by making career changes?
Springboard is in a prime position to help people switch their careers and get a baseline level of salary (in a relatively short order of time) that is higher than what they got before. Springboard can helps people both realize this change and spur further change: getting a return and having a higher salary is very tangible, but there’s also the intangible effect of interacting with our proven, human system of intervention — one which can help teach students not just skills, but a formula for getting into cutting-edge tech careers.
At Springboard, we offer a variety of career tracks, each with their own outcomes. We do see a high level of full-time roles that correlate with each career track. For example, for our Software Engineering Career Track, people are looking for developer or engineering jobs. We see that about 87% of people who got a job offer while taking the Software Engineering Career Track get those types of jobs, and about 93% of people get a full-time role (rather than a part-time job).
The average before and after salary numbers are something we’re proud of accelerating at Springboard: job-qualified individuals who take our career tracks increase their first-year salary by an average of $22,746! That figure can represent life-changing money, and the step-like level of growth in your salary that you’ll need to fight the erosion of yearly inflation that approaches 10%.
To recap: It all starts with you realizing you want to make a change to be resilient to future uncertainties and progress – the rest follows and you can make some things easier on yourself by using proven processes. Springboard’s process offers a human-based level of support for learners: industry experts that will mentor you 1:1 and that have worked in the industry firsthand, career coaches (some of whom have helped scale hiring for Fortune 500 companies and know what it takes to be a prime job candidate), student advisor teams that help you stay on pace when it comes to accountability and your own goals. This is not something that’s required to learn about an industry, but it works for a lot of people to get them into the right job so they can continue growing their skills and outpacing an economic force as fierce as inflation can be.
Jess is the Content Manager for Course Report as well as a writer and poet. As a lifelong learner, Jess is passionate about education, and loves learning and sharing content about tech bootcamps. Jess received a M.F.A. in Writing from the University of New Hampshire, and now lives in Brooklyn, NY.
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