Andrew Jensen of Coder Foundry answers one of their most frequently asked questions: Why Should I Learn .NET?
A question that we get asked a LOT at Coder Foundry is: “Why do you choose to teach .NET when it seems like everyone else is teaching Ruby on Rails?”
What is .NET?
Microsoft .NET is the platform that drives the business technology of many of the top corporations in the United States, including Chase, 3M, Starbucks, and match.com. It is the predominant technology used to drive enterprise-scale business technology. Companies have chosen .NET because for its proven scalability, reliability, and support.
.NET is a framework rather than a language. The .NET language of choice to learn is C#, as it is among the most widely used languages today. It’s a general purpose programming language that can handle almost any problem, from desktop to mobile to dynamic web applications.
As such, there is a high demand across the United States (and certainly in the Southeast) for .NET developers in a variety of industries (computer systems design, electronic product manufacturing, finance, etc.), so that means that more jobs are available for candidates with a foundation built upon .NET technologies.
.Net can be used to build virtually any type of application: games, commercial software, mobile and web applications, personal websites. If you can imagine it, you can probably build it.
.NET Job Market
For us, the main point of learning .NET is helping to launch students into their next career opportunity.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects a whopping 22.8 percent employment growth for software developers between 2012 and 2022, which is much faster than average for all occupations. In that period, an estimated 139,900 jobs will open up, which is great news for people looking to change paths or move up the ladder into a more senior position (as is the case with a lot of our students).
The job market for .NET is wide open, and in nearly every industry. In fact, there has never been a better time to learn .NET. These days, every company has an IT department. Everyone needs a website or in-house software. You can run a job search right now no matter where you are in the country and find hundreds of jobs for .NET developers.
The chart below from Indeed.com further illustrates how the boom in the .NET job market is a trend that is not going away any time soon. Between 2006 and 2014, the number of .NET job postings have far and away surpassed the number of job openings for any other specific coding language, with especially impressive spikes beginning around 2012 showing no signs of slowing down. Basically, we are training our students to be well-outfitted for the current job market, and we are providing a wonderful resource for employers seeking qualified .NET talent.
And that’s another great benefit for our students; we have working job placement relationships with hundreds of regional corporations that specifically hire .NET developers.
.NET Coding Bootcamp Graduates
Our graduates get jobs in all types and sizes of companies. Our job placement office works full time to nurture these relationships, which results in organizations often turning to us first before releasing job openings publically, or choosing to interview batches of our students at the end of each bootcamp, knowing that our students have the skills that they are looking for.
Getting a job is great, but getting a great-paying job is even better. The Labor Department reported that the national average salary for .NET Developers was at $92,660 for 2013, with salaries ranging from $72,660 to the top 10% earning $143,000. This range absolutely resonates as typical of what we see in North Carolina.
The Coder Foundry job placement office is a great resource for our students to connect with these companies and get the interviews and job offers that they might have been overlooked for had they not come to bootcamp.
In short, we really feel like there is a needs-gap in the .NET developer job market right now. There are tons of great positions with well-known, reputable companies, but there aren’t a lot of job seekers that trained in a way that will allow them to succeed in these jobs. Our mission is two-fold: to fill the market’s void, providing individuals with sought-after, marketable skills that will land them a well-paid job, and also to be a resource for employers that are seeking prospective hires that possess the talents they are looking for.
The .NET community is very large and well-established. It’s been around a long time. Pretty much every major company that has an IT department uses .NET. It is extremely widespread. It is used for commercial products to internal line of the business applications.
Microsoft officials say there are more than 6 million developers using .Net today, and that there are 1.8 billion installs of .Net across various devices. You could say that’s pretty widespread.
People say that because .NET has never been “open-source.” All that means is that Microsoft has not made all of their .NET source code publicly available to the average consumer. This is absolutely not a concern. For those who are very pro-“open-source,” Microsoft recently announced their plans to make significant portions of the .NET framework available to the open-source community at large.
Resources to Learn .NET
We typically shy away from recommending or endorsing most books, primarily because books of a technological nature are frequently outdated almost by the time they’re published. We stick to online Q&A resources like Stack Overflow when we need to find answers, and of course, the MSDN documentation is always helpful. As for learning .NET, we’d highly recommend coming to Coder Foundry. That’s your best place to get started.