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Newy Dev Update: March 2020

15 Apr, 2020 | 05 mins 01 secs

Our Dev Update for March 2020 is here – learn about what’s hot in the market and how to make lemonade out of the COVID-19 pandemic, including what skills you should be picking up in the next six months.

Click here to find the February Jobs Update.

Resources mentioned:

We hope you are all doing well and most importantly staying safe!

Watch the Episode


Liam Potter:

Hey everyone this is Liam Potter with the Newy Dev Update your source of information on the Newcastle software development market.

In this episode, we’ll be covering what happened in March, and what we expect is going to happen in April and what you should be doing to stay fresh.

We’ve also got a bit of an update on how we at Newy Tech people are handling the current situation. So lets start with a bit of a background on 2020 so far. So, January’s honestly always a bit slow due to everyone’s New Years hangovers. February was the busiest month we’ve had in a long time in the Newcastle Dev space. So I’d really recommend you watch James McDonald’s video to get a bit of an update on the February that was I’ll chuck the link in the description for you.

Now because of the February that was there was always going to be a drop in March by comparison. Obviously, that drop has been exasperated by conditions that we don’t need to rehash on linked in for the millionth time, but we’ve still seen a decent number of vacancies in a variety of industries using a variety of different languages and frameworks that are definitely worth exploring. So looking forward, April is going to be fairly down when compared to this time last year as you’d expect. Of course the next 6 months or more really come with a level of uncertainty, which means there’s a lot of organisations that have frozen hiring but there are a lot of companies out there that haven’t been affected as much as you might think.

The organisation’s still hiring at the moment, are organisations with good remote working policies and strong revenue. Companies that have the ability to hire in conditions like these are, generally speaking, quite well run and have sufficient runway to be able to weather the next 6 to 12 months. So if you are the sort of person who’s maybe a bit mindful of the long term stability of where you’re working currently, I’d urge you to keep an eye out on who’s still hiring at the moment.

As for demand for specific skill sets, there’s been good demand for full stack developers, especially ones with exposure to the Microsoft stack, and increasingly Node JS. It definitely doesn’t hurt to have some exposure to Python as well, though we’re seeing that more as a nice to have rather than a set requirement in the market.

We’ve also seen solid demand for front end developers. And as we’ve talked about before on this series, one of the easiest ways to get into a dev role is to pick up HTML, CSS, JavaScript, as well as the contemporary framework such as React. Angular and Vue are also fine, but expect to have to pick up React eventually.

There’s also an increasing number of companies looking to build solid native mobile apps, so doing a few side projects using something like React Native, Java, or Swift could be a good use of your time. Now, I’ve just spent a good couple of minutes telling you what you need to be learning to stay ahead of the competition, and let’s not avoid the fact that a lot of the best roles in Newcastle are often quite competitive. And you’re probably thinking, “where should I go to learn?” and I’m glad you’ve asked.

In response to the corona virus pandemic, a bunch of great platforms have opened up access to their courses. One I’ve been using is Code Academy, who are giving away subscriptions for high school and college age students. Skill share is also offering 3 months free, courtesy of Bombay Saphire of all companies. You’ve also got the usual suspects such as Khan Academy, and Free Code Camp. Links in the description for all of those platforms if you want to have a look.

Considering we’re all housebound for the next while, this is absolutely the best possible time to be investing in yourself. If you’re not learning, relative to everyone else, you’re going backwards so do not stop learning. There’s no worse situation to be in as a Dev than spending a bunch of time in a role, getting a bit too comfortable, and realizing after 5 or 10 years that your skill set is pretty well obsolete. So do not make the mistake of letting that happen.

If you’re looking for a bit more information on what to be picking up or are concerned that you might need to upskill to stay competitive in the dev market please reach out to me on any of these channels. I work with the best companies, hiring the best talent day in day out. So I know what you need to find your dream role. I’m happy to share this information, you just have to reach out and ask.

Lastly, we at Newy Tech People haven’t put out too much information on how we’re being affected by this crisis on any of our channels, and considering a few people have been asking, I thought I’d take the time to give everyone a bit of an update. The wider recruitment industry has taken a beating already and we’ve heard of a lot of organisations within Newcastle and beyond cutting staff entirely, cutting pays and cutting hours.

We’re fortunate enough to not be at that level, and really this is down to us running a pretty tight ship and working with a diverse set of organisations doing great things who we’re incredibly proud of having strong relationships with. We’ve trimmed some fat in terms of spend on some nice to haves, but we’re confident that we can weather the storm. We’re obviously working from home and have been for about 3 weeks and all interviews have been done using video conferencing.

On behalf of the wider team, I’d like to thank all the people that have reached out to see how we’re tracking. It really is testament to how good of a community we have here in the Newy Tech scene.

Thanks for watching another installment of the Newy Dev update. Bye for now.

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