Does anyone else wonder what's going to happen when all these new coders (myself included) start flooding the market? Is this a bubble?

Hey everyone,

I want to preface this by saying I don’t want to spread FUD (fear, uncertainty, doubt) or do anything of the sort - FreeCodeCamp has been genuinely amazing and I am so thankful for its existence. I took the survey and noticed there are two other chemical engineers here. Thought that was interesting. Anyway, I know this field will always have better prospects than my major (24% growth over 10 years, literally millions of jobs) but I am starting to wonder: What’s going to happen when people like me really start flooding the market? If it’s really this easy to get a job, how long is this going to last? Is this a bubble? And if it is, how do I protect myself? Just be good?

Again, I want to state how thankful and excited I am to be a part of this community. It has literally changed my life. (I’m just getting started on the Front End section.) Just want to hear some people’s opinions on this.

The company I work for is about 14 years old. They started as a typical Rail’s web agency and did well for a while, but more and more competitors crowded the space.

They pivoted to being functional programming specialists for a while and that differentiated them from the competition a little.

Eventually, they started to carve out a niche as ML / AI consultants and product developers. That is really starting to take off now and because we’ve been doing it for a few years we are really well placed to continue doing it for a good while yet.

What Randall says above is the point of this example: the ability to learn new things and pivot when necessary is crucial.

The projections of the Bureau of Labor Statistics predict that the skill gap will continue to widen. Although more people are entering the job market with programming skills, jobs that require programming skills are growing faster.

I believe that in some geographical areas, there is great competition for certain types of software development jobs (even as there is constant demand for tech workers with the “right” skills). With every field there is a certain set of basic skills that everyone seems to have as they enter the job market and if you also have these (and only these), finding a job that pays well may be quite difficult in a world where people learn to code online. But software development is such a varied field that you could easily distinguish yourself by learning something that is a bit harder to master than basic programming skills (for eg. you could have some additional skill with networking that others lack, or a special affinity to a specific quirky, yet popular, operating system) and get ahead of the pack that way.

And of course, many younger people get jobs with just the basics under their belt and then develop valuable expertise after they’re hired (in whatever specific area they happen to work in). And that’s probably why I’ve rarely met two software developers who boast the exact same set of skills once they’re ‘out of school’ for a bit. And so even with many people learning to code outside of school, there is still lots of room for everyone given the variety of fields in which software developers work. Just try to figure out what else you can bring to the table other than the basics, whether it is a past life (a degree in accounting? health field? education? that can make you interesting to the right company developing solutions in that field) or specialized technical skills that are harder to find.

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It is a combination of skills that’s set you apart from the crowd. Soft skills, a foundation other than computer science. Today not even age play a role on the hiring process (although it is more difficult for older pals and gals to break into this industry), what really matters is how skillful you are and how do you keep yourself on top of the game.
I am 47 from various backgrounds, I am a 10 year career mining technician, who speaks three languages, was a self employed person for another 20 years developing the the outback of Brazil (where I was born) with my own ISP (internet via radio), in a time when internet was just an english word in the communities that I was working, internet was just a dream, and my company delivered more than 650.000 internet access over a 10 year period.
Now I am back in USA with my wife and my 5 year old for a fresh start, a fresh new life.
I am sure I will eventually become a Full Stack Web Dev. It is just a matter of time. And to be honest, who knows what the market will look like in a 20 year span? Just keep plowing, moving, learning, always on BETA.

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You know I do wonder about that too. I kinda had the same fear of it being a bubble but then I got into the market and I think we do not have to fear the bubble at all.

I’ve briefly taken CS courses in college and I remember CS students wondering the same thing about having a CS major since more and more people are getting into it every year compared to other majors.

I realized that the IT industry is going to respond pretty much the same way it always has. By filtering the people based on 2 criteria:

  1. Do you know your stuff (basic programming concepts, and the tech stack we’re using) and do you have practical experience (personal projects count).
  2. Are you passionate about your work and have a good personality?(i.e. are you a good team player?)

Accounting for the number of new learners who give up on continuing this path or find out they’re just not that into it (this includes CS majors as well as independent learners), the bubble is not as big as some would imagine. The matter of the fact is that the demand for (good) developers is still growing at a faster rate than the supply of developers.

And even if we hypothetically find ourselves in a bubble with a global market full of good developers, it still won’t be that bad. There will always be new areas in development to learn and specialize in, there will always be so many new and emerging technologies that companies try and find a lack of experienced devs in. And, it’s always going to be possible to become an entrepreneur with your own product as a developer if the labor market starts to get too competitive.

In all cases, it’s never going to be a relaxing and easy journey. Success as a developer in any scenario will require hard work and the ability to learn new things and adapt to changes quickly. That said, if you are passionate about it, the fruits of your labor and hard work will be oh-so-sweet.

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Yeah technology is growing at an exponential rate. If anything this bubble would do is increase that rate even further. There will never (not at least for a long time) be a bubble of this sort that can cause job shortages because we are at the age of innovation.

BUT, most of what I have been saying is for technology itself. For web development in particular, until we develop that glass screen on sci-fi movies, or something that is beyond today’s hardware, there will be job shortages. You can only have so many people who want and can afford websites for their companies and when that amount is fully satisfied, you will become a nuisance and wages will drop to nothing.

But this won’t happen for a long time. The market is still very ripe. What I recommend to you (as the others did above me) is to diversify and make yourself important so that when this actually happens, you’ll be out of the danger.

@Banhawy I’m referring to the author. I didn’t want to quote the whole thing you wrote.