In our most recent white paper, “A job in software development – where to start?” we look at the career change journey into software development. As part of the paper, we interviewed a selection of employers regarding their thoughts on career changers. In this interview, we spoke with Philippe Brodeur, CEO, Overcast.
Philippe Brodeur – Overcast
What non-technical skills does your company look for when hiring a new developer?
Philippe: For non-technical skills, we look for developers to be able to interact, communicate with other people, and work as a team. There’s an idea that a developer works on their own in a room tapping really fast and pumping out code. That’s not really the case. What’s really important is to be able to understand an architecture. Understand where you’re going to end up at the end of your day, not least your week or your month and be able to communicate that with the people around you.
I could tell you endless stories of people developing code and functions that are going off in completely different directions, and they don’t actually end up working together. So, actually being able to communicate that and be able to work with others is really important. I mean teamwork. I mean, it may sound like a completely over-cliched thing, but teamwork is really important for coding.
What do you think of career changers?
Philippe: I think career changers are the most ambitious of them all and the biggest risk-takers, and we really like career changers. You take the founders of our company. We changed careers to start the company. We took a risk. We went out on our own. We decided that we saw perhaps a honeypot, but actually, we saw a better way of working and a better way of doing things. So, we started Overcast with that in mind.
Whenever we get a career changer coming in to see us, it’s generally the same idea, anybody who wants to move job, move country, change what they’re doing on a really drastic level, it’s a really bold and courageous thing to do. And I think what’s really important too in this instance as well to remember is that a career changer actually brings a lot of experience which can be used in their new job. And it shouldn’t be forgotten that that experience, however many years, will stand them good going forward. Because a coder can’t just be somebody who codes, you know?
We’ve got sales engineers. We have product owners. We have scrum masters. We have lots of people who don’t actually spend all day coding. What they do is they communicate what is a better future or a better online system to other people, and they come from lots of different backgrounds. It could be HR. It could be mechanical engineering. It could be something completely different. So, you know, changing a career – no problem. Delighted to have people who change careers, in fact, we see it as a plus.
Download the paper
It was a pleasure talking to Phillipe Brodeur. If you are interested in hearing more from Overcast, you can follow this link. If you would like to download the full whitepaper, you can download it through the form at the bottom of this page.
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