The U.S. economy has been facing a number of challenges recently, from inflation to job market uncertainty. It has left American workers feeling anxious about future prospects.
But there is one industry that always requires new talent: tech. This makes software development one of the safest career options. Even juniors and novice developers have pretty high chances of finding gainful employment. In this article, we’ll explain what contributes to their prospects.
Are you considering a career change? Or maybe just starting out in the workforce? Read on to discover four reasons that a career in tech could be your ticket to long-term job security.
Reason 1: High demand for tech talent
You might be thinking, “Everybody wants to be a software engineer! There are hundreds of candidates for every single position.”
Indeed, the situation in the tech labor market is alarming… but in the exact opposite way! There aren’t enough developers — and the talent pool keeps shrinking.
Market intelligence firm IDC estimates that there will be a global shortage of four million developers by 2025. Further data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics supports these predictions. From 2021 to 2031 the demand for software developers and other ICT specialists is expected to grow by 25%. If the current trend continues, the U.S. alone could face a shortage of over 1.2 million software engineers by 2026.
According to the sixth annual global survey by CodinGame and CoderPad, developers are constantly on the lookout for new job opportunities. Over half (52%) indicated that they plan on leaving their current employment within the next year. This factor, as well as hiring freezes and layoffs, has started a new trend. Among surveyed companies, 42% revealed that retaining developers is their primary investment focus for 2023. (Still worried about staying unemployed?)
Reason 2: Aging workforce and generational change
This factor also poses a great challenge to American tech. Companies need to address the issue quickly by recruiting novice professionals and training them for positions of future retirees. If they fail to do so, they risk losing their competitive edge in the fast-paced industry.
The Great Retirement of Baby Boomers
There’s phenomenon that has a significant impact on the U.S. population and workforce. It’s called "The Great Retirement" — and it will soon transform the market.
The results of the 2019 Census showed that about 73 million Americans belong to the Baby Boomer generation. This is around 22% of the U.S. population estimated at 328 million in 2019, or every one in five people. And they are quickly reaching retirement age, with 10,000 retiring each day. According to PEW Research Center:
- Nearly 29 million Baby Boomers retired in 2020 — three million more than in 2019.
- 75 million are expected to retire by 2030, creating an unprecedented workforce gap.
Note: PEW Research Center estimates the size of the stratum using a different method than the United States Census Bureau, hence the two million discrepancy.
The COVID-19 pandemic has only accelerated this trend. Its consequences will shake many industries, including tech. As Baby Boomers retire, they will leave a significant number of job openings for other professionals to fill. Companies will need to find replacements for their departing staff members, so they are starting to recognize the strategic importance of investing in junior talent.
Q: So there’s no point in trying to get into tech if you are over 40?
A: There is no age limit when it comes to getting into tech. In fact, many successful tech leaders started their careers later in life.
As for Baby Boomers — they retire not because they are over 40, but because they’ve already had a fulfilling career. It leaves room for new professionals of any age to enter the industry.
The recruitment of novice professionals guarantees that the business is well-equipped to face future tech challenges. It provides brands with much-needed stability as they work towards long-term goals. Hiring juniors helps them ensure that they have enough skills, knowledge, and capacity at all times.
Most software engineers retire at the age of 45–65
It’s not uncommon for software engineers to retire early, between the ages of 45 and 65. Developer Pitstop reports that more than 90% of software engineers retire before the age of 65, with only 1% continuing to work past 65.
There are several reasons behind it.
- Financial stability. After decades of building their careers, software engineers typically have enough resources to retire comfortably. Many choose to retire early to enjoy their accumulated wealth, travel, or pursue hobbies.
- Desire for more family time. The demanding nature of tech jobs often leaves little space for family life. So many software engineers resign to spend more time with their loved ones.
- Constant need to retrain for new skills. It can take a toll on older professionals. Some may prefer to leave the stress of career advancement behind.
Ultimately, senior developers are less motivated to stay in the game. Being out of a job simply doesn’t compromise their quality of life. That’s why the retirement age in the industry is relatively low ― and junior developers can use this to advance their careers.
Reason 3: Constantly evolving technology
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of positions in the ICT sector grows faster than the average for all occupations. The key driver of such growth is the emergence of new technologies that require skilled developers to serve them.
The pace of technological progress accelerates with each decade. The reason behind this is the cumulative effect of previous innovations.
Each innovation builds on top of those that came before it. However, it also lays the foundation for the next tier of exciting new things. It creates a feedback loop where progress increases at an accelerating rate.
Progress always equates to economic growth. This leads to more jobs and the emergence of new technology-based industries.
According to the IDC, worldwide spending on digital transformation technologies is expected to reach $3.4 trillion in 2026. In our increasingly digitized world, investing in progress is the only way for companies to stay ahead of the competition. Therefore, they need skilled developers who can design, create, and implement innovations for business purposes.
New technologies have the potential to expand the labor market, for example:
- Artificial intelligence (AI)
- Internet of Things (IoT)
- Augmented and/or virtual reality (AR, VR)
These are emerging industries. So they have yet to set any established rules. This creates an opportunity for newcomers to enter the market and grow with the technology.
Reason 4: Remote work and flexible hours
The global crisis caused by COVID-19 has forced companies to rethink their traditional work settings, leading to many employees working from home. According to a 2022 survey by social media management company Buffer, 72% of companies want to permanently allow some form of remote work — a significant increase from 46% in 2021.
And it’s not just the likes of Facebook, Microsoft, and Apple ― smaller startups and younger companies have found remote work to be an advantage as well: it helps them cut down on office costs and expand their hiring pool without limitations. Moreover, this allows startups to source highly talented individuals from around the world.
Remote work allows American job seekers to expand the geography of their job search. For example, a junior developer can apply for a remote position with a company located abroad — say, in Germany, Italy, or France. It provides tech workers with a wider range of employment opportunities.
However, there’s always that one concern: language barrier. Right? Not really! Most companies that hire international workers for remote roles use English for communication. Besides, programming languages are also international. They are designed to be used by developers all over the world, regardless of their native language or cultural background.
Common myths about obstacles to juniors’ hiring success
The prospects for IT are enticing. Still, there are many fears that aspiring software engineers might have about entering the tech industry.
Myth 1. Machines can do the job
The reality is quite different. While some tasks and processes might no longer need humans, emerging technologies create new jobs in heaps. So while automation abolishes some professions, it compensates for them by generating much more open positions.
If you want to read more about this, check this article: Why AI Is Your Friend Not Foe.
Myth 2. There is fierce competition
With so many developers looking for employment, it’s only natural to feel overwhelmed. But this should not discourage you from pursuing your career in tech! With a combination of quality training and a strong portfolio, you can set yourself apart from the rest.
It’s important to invest in education that covers not only theoretical knowledge, but practice as well — for example, TripleTen’s Bootcamp, which provides real-world, hands-on experience in the industry. It prioritizes practical application, so that, after graduation, students are fully prepared to work in tech.
The program is designed to help beginners master the full skill set needed to succeed as a junior developer. Guided by mentors, you’ll build projects that will later form the basis of your portfolio. So by the time you hit the labor market, you will have enough material to show to your potential employers.
If you want to secure a job in tech, joining the Software Engineering Bootcamp is your first step towards that!
The best thing to do for your future? Become a junior developer
- There’s exceptionally high demand for tech specialists in the U.S. and around the world. This creates security in employment.
- Retiring Baby Boomers are leaving their jobs. This opens up new possibilities for junior specialists.
- Emerging technologies require new workers and create thousands of unfilled positions.
- There’s a global trend for remote work and flexible hours. This allows junior programmers to work for any company in the world.
People might have various concerns about changing careers. But a strong, practice-oriented education is guaranteed to boost your employment chances. So don’t wait any longer to start your tech journey. Sign up for the Software Engineering Bootcamp and transform your life!