If you want a faster, more affordable way to start a career in technology than a traditional college degree, you may be wondering: “are coding bootcamps worth it?” A coding bootcamp will help you achieve the tech skills you need in a fraction of the time it would take other students to earn a computer science degree from a college or university.
Do Coding Bootcamps Work?
The best way to determine if coding bootcamps are worth it is to evaluate the return investment you can expect from completing a bootcamp. Can you expect to get more out of the experience than you put in?
These three factors will help prospective coding bootcamp students to determine if enrollment is worth it:
- Ability to Secure a Job in Desired Field
- Increased Income
- Job Satisfaction
Job Placement for Coding Bootcamp Grads
The best bootcamps equip students with the knowledge they need in the job search. More hiring managers are taking bootcamp attendees seriously. Even companies like Google, Amazon, and Spotify are looking to bootcamps to fill open jobs in tech and software.
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Bootcamp students have proven their worth in the real world, from small startups to large software companies. According to Indeed, 4 out of 5 US companies have hired a bootcamp graduate, and nearly HR managers would do it again.
Surveys show that 80% of coding bootcamp graduates were employed in jobs using skills they learned in bootcamps. Those graduates saw an average salary increase of over 50%.
What Do Tech Companies Think of Coding Bootcamp Grads?
Many businesses rely on code. A software developer could work at a hospital, Apple, or an automotive factory. In short, software engineering is needed in every industry. In 2015, seven million jobs that required coding skills opened, and web development jobs overall are growing 12% faster than the market average.
What’s more, you don’t have to worry about restricting your work to one industry. Half of all programming openings are in industries outside of technology. Those areas include finance, manufacturing, health care, fashion, and more.
So, are coding bootcamps worth it? Tech companies seem to think so!
Earning Potential for Coding Bootcamp Grads
Coding bootcamp graduates report an average income of over $70,000. The average graduate sees their salary increase by over 50% within two years. Additionally, most bootcamp grads find a job within 120 days.
Furthermore, coding bootcamp graduates’ salaries continue to rise after they graduate. On average, they see their salary increase by $10,000 with every new job!
Job and Career Satisfaction for Bootcamp Grads
Now, this one’s a bit trickier–after all, everyone’s different and has varying goals and values. However, if software engineering, web development, and data science interest you, odds are you will be much more satisfied in a tech career.
Indeed, if you’ve read this far, you probably already know that you have an interest in tech. If that’s what’s driving you, then making a career in the tech world is bound to be fulfilling.
Now, can a coding bootcamp guarantee job satisfaction? Certainly not. But, if you love this kind of work, a coding bootcamp is the fastest and most effective way for you to get started.
Choosing a Program: Not All Bootcamps Are the Same
With the rise in popularity of bootcamps, there are a number of programs to choose from. The truth is that not all coding bootcamps are worth it. Picking the right one can mean the difference between finding a job quickly and struggling to get a company to hire you.
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The key is finding a bootcamp that has a proven track record. You want to read coding bootcamp reviews and talk to other graduates to learn what their experience was like.
At the end of the day, you want a coding bootcamp that will help you create a strong portfolio.
Your potential employers are going to want to see what you are capable of. If you already have a strong portfolio coming out of your bootcamp, it can save you a lot of time.
So, are coding bootcamps worth it? If they help you to build a strong portfolio, they absolutely are!
Paying for Your Bootcamp
The average cost of a coding bootcamp is $12,000. This price can seem pretty steep, but as we’ve seen, coding bootcamps are worth the investment. That doesn’t make it any easier to pay for it, however. Fortunately, coding bootcamps are aware of how valuable their programs are to students and make payment options available.
In order to determine if a coding bootcamp education is worth it, consider asking yourself the following questions:
Are you willing to work hard, learning and practicing as much as you can to develop a strong portfolio?
Are you going to be motivated enough to fight for a good full-time job once you graduate?
Many coding bootcamp graduates attributed their job success to their soft skills just as much as their coding skills. If you are willing to work hard, constantly learn, and stay on top of the latest trends and techniques, a coding bootcamp will definitely be a worthwhile investment.
How to Ensure Your Coding Bootcamp Experience is Worth It
Undoubtedly, bootcamps are hard.
It’s hard work but that’s how you learn so much. During the bootcamp, you can expect to feel lost, frustrated, stressed, or overwhelmed. You might feel like you’re not learning fast enough or like other people are learning faster than you. You might even question if you made the right decision.
You’ll make your bootcamp experience easier if you prepare a bit before. It’s not required, but it’ll make your time in the classroom (online or in person) much more valuable. If you know more when you arrive, you’ll be better able to build on your knowledge. So look for some intro to coding resources, like Codecademy and Fullstack Academy, before you walk into your first day.
Do your homework. It sounds silly, but you’d be surprised how many people do nothing in the course they’ve paid for. You signed up and paid tuition to work hard; doing all the work you’re assigned and practicing the skills you learn will help you learn much faster. Coding bootcamps teach through active learning: you’ll learn better by practicing rather than by listening.
And last but not least, don’t compare yourself to others. You may be discouraged, but keep in mind that the point of the bootcamp is to leave with more opportunities than you arrived with. As long as you keep that mindset, you’ll be able to kick-start your career with a bootcamp. Ultimately, if you’re wondering whether coding bootcamps are worth it, just remember that whatever you put into them, you’ll receive tenfold.
About us: Career Karma is a platform designed to help job seekers find, research, and connect with job training programs to advance their careers. Learn about the CK publication.