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Should the Average Small Business Send Its Employees to Coding Bootcamp?

The average small business employer doesn’t think of paying to upskill their employees unless it’s for a specific reason, a new technology or machine that the company must work with, for example. Businesses often do not even upgrade their computers to the newest version of Windows, Linux or OS X. Doing so can be expensive, and it can lower productivity until everyone is up to speed. Is there any reason, then, that businesses should begin to think of sending their employees to coding bootcamps?

The answer is that there are many good reasons why coding skills are valuable. They come with observable benefits, even for businesses whose employees have never had to code in their work. If you run a business, these are the most logical reasons why you should consider signing every employee up to a coding bootcamp.

Coding teaches people to use their heads

In a well-known quote by Steve Jobs, the Apple founder encourages everyone, no matter what walk of life they may come from, to learn to program a computer simply because it is an excellent way to learn a logical thought process. To create a program, you think hard about the aim of the exercise, plan for the software components, and apply computational and logical thought in order to work out complex problems. Coding, in short, teaches efficient thinking, creativity and problem-solving.

Coding teaches innovation

When people learn to code, it expands the reach of their thought process and helps them consider things that they would have never considered possible. With the exposure to innovative problem-solving that coding lessons bring, it can be hard for employees to not constantly look for new ways to approach problems that the company faces. To have an entire team of such skilled and motivated problem solvers at the company can possibly spur innovation.

Your employees can automate their own tasks

Whether yours is an auditing firm, a tax preparation business, a law firm or anything else, there are probably plenty of mundane tasks that every employee has to deal with. There may be no ready-made software tools available that help the team look for specific kinds of information. With coding skills, however, employees may be able to build little scraping bots or other tools that help them get work done quickly.

It may help to consider another example. There is an abundance of productivity software out there. Unfortunately, a simple lack of comfort with these tools may keep employees and many businesses from exploiting them well. If they do use them, they may do so only in the most basic ways. Employees in sales, for instance, if they knew how to code, could use any one of various productivity tools to connect to Facebook Advertising Manager, and have Facebook generate leads for them. They might also think to hook up HR management tools directly to the resumes that company receives. The possibilities are endless when one is truly comfortable with the way software works.

Your company will simply be safer

Small businesses are routinely targeted with malicious software. According to Verizon’s statistics, two out of three malware attacks are aimed at small businesses. Small businesses tend to be poorly protected, choosing to stay focused on their business rather than on things like cybersecurity that they consider exotic and irrelevant to their lives.

In an environment filled with computer threats, it makes sense to do more than to simply train your employees in the use of computers; they need to keep up with creators of malware. It’s practical, training them to be programmers.

Finally, it goes without saying that employees who are upskilled tend to report better job satisfaction. They feel better cared for and gain greater hope for their future. It can be hard to put a price on such a feeling.