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Discussion on: Become a mature developer, not a senior developer

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Zane Milakovic

Well written, but a lot to unpack here. I think what you are saying is a real issue.

  1. It should be about technical experience. And we should recognize people that come from other industries. I have a PhD that did a career change via boot camp and now works for me. From a technical standpoint he is still junior. But those other skills come through in bug filing, his ability to test, and problem solve.

  2. Boot camps give these young developers a false sense of ability. It is not always realized though. If the developer gets a job at a large enterprise that has a mediocre development team, they may fit in. If they get a job at a small shop where tech is not primary, same. But having hired 4 now, and interviewed dozens more, I can say there are for sure universal gaps that get filled with experience. And that is hard to adapt too. That and that they often don’t get to create projects from scratch, or even get proper ownership given the scale of a app a lot of the time. I am lucky that I can offer both, but others teams can’t.

  3. I feel the titles are BS. Titles were designed to convey skill and experience between companies as a way to normalize hiring to some degree. Think about this from a blue color job, like HVAC, where there are certifications and things that have to be passed, including years of experience. Then someone gets the title “master such and such”. It works great for tradesman.

In the tech world it fails. It does convey some years of experience, even if we only slightly align too it. But I can say for sure, my peers high more junior people in higher level roles. For example, one person with 10 years in the field, was a higher level. When I finally worked with him, I would not of thought he was beyond a Intern. So we are not even normalized around title in my same division, let alone the whole company, or the industry.

  1. We look to big tech for how to hire, use titles, etc. But there are more developers outside of VC startups and big tech, than there are within. The problem is they are in not tech industry. Auto, Healthcare, Oil and Gas, etc. and a lot of time, the barrier to entry is lower.

I love the mature developer, as it really hits at what we should be looking for, striving to be.

d_ir profile image
Daniel Irvine 🏳️‍🌈 Author

Thank you for this insightful post. Especially on point 2, I think it’s important that we start taking more about the hiring of boot camp grads, because in my experience hiring managers often have little idea about what they’re getting.