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National Coding Week: Women lead the way in closing the coding skills gap

Submitted by Katherine on Tue, 20/09/2022 - 09:23
National Coding Week: Women lead the way in closing the coding skills gap

What is National Coding Week?

The 19th of September 2022 marks the start of National Coding Week 2022, a week dedicated to encouraging both adults and children to learn a new digital skill. The week was founded by Richard Rolfe in 2014, with the aim to inspire people to learn how to code and for communities to share their knowledge, giving people the opportunities and confidence to step into a career in IT.

The IT and tech industry is rapidly growing, and whilst there are many job opportunities available, there is also currently a skills gap. This means there are not enough employees and candidates that have the knowledge and capability to work with new tech innovations, including AI and Machine Learning. Some skills needed to understand these technologies include coding.

How can we encourage women into tech to help tackle the tech skills gap?

To tackle these skills gaps it is important to attract and retain a diverse talent pool, this includes creating opportunities and representation for minority groups who may not have considered a career in tech. Women make up only 21% of the U.K.’s tech industry and black women make up less than 3%, making them the minority, meaning they are underrepresented.  In order to address this gap, there are a number of companies and communities that are helping to make coding readily available to women.

Code First Girls

One company determined to eliminate this gap is Code First Girls. Code First Girls is a UK business, founded by Anna Brailsford in 2012 that aims to support women in coding by providing free courses and resources to help give women more opportunities to learn new skills and pursue a career in tech. Code First Girls recently secured £4.5 million in Series A funding from leading investment firm Active Partners, as well as a number of notable female tech leaders.  The investment will allow Code First Girls to expand its platform increase its resources and encourage women to enter the tech industry.

Some of the investors include investment firm Active Partners, and CEO of notonthehighstreet.com Claire Davenport. Davenport is passionate about giving women more routes into the tech industry. She believes “Code First Girls is providing a way of rebalancing that inequality, as well as boosting social mobility and giving women from every background the chance to get into a brilliant career.”

Another one of the investors is CEO & Founder of Peanut, Michelle Kennedy, who acknowledged the importance of the Code First Girls vision to “train more women in order to secure roles in engineering and tech more broadly, but as importantly, to create a funnel to meet the demand from employers for world-class talent.”

‘Women currently hold 25% of coding jobs and earn 30% less money than men.’ - SheCodes


SheCodes is another company dedicated to bridging the gender gap in the tech programming industry. The company was founded by Matt Delac in 2017 when he originally only planned to teach a coding workshop to 10 women. However, the workshops became increasingly popular, to the point where they are now all accessible on an online platform making them available to an even wider audience. According to SheCodes women currently hold 25% of coding jobs and earn 30% less money than men. Making these workshops readily available to women it gives them the opportunity and confidence to upskill and apply for tech roles.

Many women who have taken these workshops have gone on to become Web Developers, QA Testers, and even Software Developers. Before attending a SheCodes workshop Maura was a Sales Associate, who was interested in learning to code so she could have more control over the company website. She said that the knowledge she gained from SheCodes is what gave her the confidence to swap careers. She was able to use her final project as a portfolio and use it to apply for jobs. She is now a Software Developer for a practice management company, where she is able to have job flexibility, higher pay, and greater creative input.

Why now is the time to learn to code

National Coding Week isn’t just about getting women into coding it’s about helping close the digital skills gap and encouraging everyone to consider learning the skills that are encompassing future careers. In 2030 50% of employees will be in roles requiring high-level programming, coding, and software design skills. Therefore, now is the time to look into the coding courses that are available to you.

The Learning People offer a range of coding courses, where you are able to learn all the key skills that will open you up to a career in coding, including the ability to design, create and maintain computer software, applications, and websites. The courses that The Learning People provide will help you gain professional credibility from both your peers and your employer, enabling you to develop your skills and build confidence.

What jobs can you get with coding skills?

Learning to code can open you up to a number of careers in tech. If you start off in an entry-level position, then gradually you can develop your skills to grow your tech career and work in a senior tech role.

Entry-level coding jobs

Mid-level coding jobs

Senior-level coding jobs

Learning to code in today’s job market may help you get a job, a promotion, or a raise - and may help with job security in the future. Even if you don’t want to get an IT job, just knowing the basics of how to read and understand code will be beneficial to you within any field as it means you will be able to better communicate with developers.

Find out more about coding and developer training courses here