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Top Performing Coding Bootcamps

It used to be that companies mainly look for developers from top universities, like Stanford, MIT, UC Berkeley. Now, things are changing. Computer science education is more accessible online. We’re standardizing technical skill assessment.
Many companies are hiring people who learned their coding skills through ‘untraditional’ means. VMware, JP Morgan Chase and Puppet…to name a few. By ‘untraditional,’ we mean:
  • Bootcamps
  • Junior colleges (or acceleration programs at universities)
  • Online resources (Self-taught)
By 2024, there will be 1.4 million new developer jobs with only 400 thousand CS grads. This mismatch means employers must look at elsewhere to fill the skills gap.
One big hesitation from employers has been: How do you know if these folks actually have the right skills?


At HackerRank, we help companies find the right developer based on their skills. Not pedigree. Using practical coding challenges, employers can standardize the way the measure skills. This is the evolution toward skills-based hiring.


The White House launched the ‘TechHire Initiative’ in 2015 to promote skills-based hiring as a solution to the skills gap in America. They partnered with us last year to host a nationwide online hackathon. ‘Untraditional’ developers from underrepresented cities solved coding challenges. Employers included Jaguar, Agile, WebMD among many others.


The beauty of standardized skill assessments is that you get an apples-to-apples comparison. We were curious: Which bootcamps performed the strongest on HackerRank coding challenges?
TechHire, which is powered by the Opportunity@Work nonprofit, targeted developer communities in 9 states. Fifteen bootcamps participated, and The Software Guild stood out with the most participants. And they had the strongest performers too.


We looked at bootcamps with the most developers who made it to the 70th percentile. Dozens of employers sponsored the event in kind, and we sent them contact info of the 70th percentile.

Which Languages Were Most Popular in the TechHire Hackathon?

It turns out, bootcamps focused on Javascript more so than traditional colleges. Javascript’s popularity has been skyrocketing. Because it’s — well — everywhere. It’s used by 94% of all websites.
“Bootcamps have a limited amount of time to teach, and Javascript is a more practical skill in the industry,” says Dr. Heraldo Memelli, the lead content curator at HackerRank. “Javascript has increasingly become of the one of the most sought after skills. It’s a tool that new developers can use to build things fast.”

The Bottom Line

Strong programming skills can come from anywhere, from unlikely towns and unlikely backgrounds. It’s hard to measure someone’s skills based on a certificate of completion. Standardized skill assessment is expanding the talent pool for companies. It uncovers untraditional talent.
Untraditional developers may not look as good on paper. But they could have the drive, ability and skills to do the job. All you have to do is give them the opportunity to prove their skills to you first.

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