The entry-level role that demands a concoction of university degrees and an inordinate amount of industry experience is a cliché that needs to die.
While quality experience is achievable (Mission Ready accelerators include ten weeks of expert mentored industry experience) the privileging of an educational system that’s no longer relevant to an industry that moves as quickly as tech is a mistake tech companies shouldn’t be making.
Junior tech talent—whether Gen Z high school leavers or career changers—possess significant lived experience and the transferable skills that come with it. While the status quo is to wait until these people have gone through three plus years of university studies, junior tech talent fresh from short courses are the more valuable hire, and companies who adopt this mindset earlier rather than later stand to gain considerably.
Gen Z employees will bolster your team for the better
Making up the largest generation in the world (35% of the global population), Gen Z are the definition of agile-minded. Ready to go above and beyond for organisations they care about while demanding dated workplace cultures evolve, like, yesterday, the first ever digital native generation has huge potential to be an asset to any tech organisation.
And how could they not be? Spending their teenage years adjusting to lockdowns, remote study and all the other far-flung consequences of the pandemic, they’ve been forced to develop a keen resilience and flexibility that rivals earlier generations. What’s more, many of these young creatives can code in their sleep and have side hustles run entirely through Instagram. In the short time they’ve been on this planet, they’ve proven themselves to be innovation incarnate across every aspect of life.
Hiring Gen Z, and keeping them, proves your tech company is future-ready.
Career changers diversify teams
Switching industries is much more accepted than it was thirty years ago but it’s still perceived to be a massive risk. Career changers feel the fear and do it anyway, motivated by drive, self-determination, and initiative. They won’t have the same background and experience as people who’ve followed more traditional career paths and that’s exactly why you should hire them.
The perils of echo chambers are well-known (we’re looking at you, Twitter) so to avoid your company stagnating it makes sense to hire outside of the usual tech talent pools to tap into the diverse thinking that career changers bring to the table. The fact more diverse teams are known to boost financial margins, makes hiring career changers the most financially-savvy option, too.
The way forward
Does tech look the same as it did three years ago? No. Hiring somebody who’s spent three years with their head in the books whose learning is now outdated is going to immediately put strain on your resources. The bottom line? Not hiring short course-educated junior tech talent is bad for business.
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📸: Cottononbro Studio