Could a tech Bootcamp help you to change your career?



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The pandemic changed a lot of things for a lot of people, but one aspect of our lives that has undoubtedly undergone the most seismic of shifts, especially for office workers, has been the way we work.

Many people took a step back and took a long hard look at their jobs, assessing whether they were really serving them – or not. In the U.S. this manifested as what became known as The Great Resignation, where millions of workers quit their jobs. It is still going on: in May of this year, 4.3 million people left their employment according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

In Europe, the picture looked a little different. EU governments offered support to workers to help them retain their jobs, which mitigated the losses experienced elsewhere, but in Germany, according to Eurofound, inward migration fell by around 25% in 2020, which gave rise to labour shortages across multiple sectors.

Elsewhere, workers switched sectors entirely: In Ireland, for example, available information suggests that as much as 30% of the workforce in hospitality has moved to another sector. 


As the dust settles on the new work mix (remote, hybrid or that perfect solution, fully flexible) plenty of European workers are still finding themselves in self-assessment mode, and finding their jobs wanting. In fact, a recent Microsoft survey found that 40% of the global workforce is considering leaving their employer this year.

But switching jobs, companies or even sectors is easier said than done, particularly for those who may be coming from an industry or role where there are few transferable skills. And the available advice often misses out the crucial “how” part of the equation, too. 

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If you do want to switch into the tech sector from a non-technical background, how can you go about it? No amount of mentoring or networking sessions are going to teach you those essential hard skills you’ll need to know. 

The solution could lie in a bootcamp.  

Anna Brailsford, who is the CEO of CodeFirstGirls, the largest provider of free coding courses for women in the UK, is helping to move the dial for those looking to make a career change.

Free training

Speaking at the Women in Business and Tech Conference, held recently in London, Brailsford explained that CodeFirstGirls is the largest community of women coders in the UK, and increasingly across the whole of Europe. The company’s mission is to train women for free.

“We train them to be full stack software engineers, data engineers and data scientists. And then we place them in aligned roles and jobs with roughly 100 companies,” she says.

Initially, CodeFirstGirls’ main demographic was women at university or fresh graduates. “Increasingly, the second group of women that we deal with are career switchers. This group of women has become increasingly more popular,” Brailsford says. 

“There’s been a huge swathe of women who, during the pandemic said, ‘you know, what, I’m going to change career, and I’m going to have an absolutely fantastic job in technology, and a lot of money in the process’.”

CodeFirstGirls is just one of the many free and paid bootcamps career switchers can avail of. Joann Egunjobi, a data engineer at Currency Cloud, also spoke at the Women in Business and Tech Conference.

Switching from marketing into tech during the pandemic after she lost her job, “I am a graduate from bootcamp – it’s not a traditional tech route, and I did data science,” she says.

Egunjobi did the free Generation bootcamp, but there are plenty of others to avail of, including freeCodeCamp and W3 Schools. On the paid side, General Assembly coding bootcamps and the 16-week Makers coding courses are also available.

If you’re ready now to make a career change, there are three roles below that are worth checking out, as well as plenty more to discover on The Silicon Canals Job Board.

Technical Cloud Specialist, Cygnific, Amsterdam

The Technical Cloud Specialist is responsible for the implementation and management of Microsoft Cloud infrastructure and will ensure that the organisation is aware of the innovations within cloud technology, optimising the cloud platform within Cygnific. Find out more here.

Engineering Manager,, Brussels

As Engineering Manager you will develop an engineering team, in line with organisational objectives and direction. You will be responsible for timely delivery of new features and with good quality, and confer with leaders and key stakeholders to determine engineering feasibility, cost effectiveness, scalability and time-to-market for new and existing products. Get the full job spec.

Technical Solutions Consultant, Cloud Data, Google Shopping Solutions, Google, Berlin

The Technical Solutions Consultant will connect the dots across multiple functions and manage end-to-end development. You will use leadership skills, business acumen and technical expertise to take ownership of our existing Cloud BI/API setup and develop it further. Interested? Find out more.

Secure your future by browsing hundreds of available roles on the Silicon Canals Job Board


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