By Cameron Mcfarlane
You never really understand coding until you get your hands dirty…
Admittedly, before I came into recruitment, I didn’t know much about coding. I heard a few horror stories about people having a negative experience with recruiters so I had a long think about how I could perhaps make a positive impact on the lives of the people that chose to work with me. I came up with the idea to learn as much about my market as I possibly could, and this happened to include learning how to code.
So, for the past 12 months, I have immersed myself in the software space, not only in recruitment but also in the code. I wanted to write this article to share my journey with anyone else thinking about following the same path, whether that be as a recruiter or as someone who has a keen interest in what goes on behind the machines we so often take for granted.
Taking the first steps….
Most programmers will tell you when trying to pick up coding the best place to start is HTML. Out of all the languages that I have been trying to learn HTML has been by far the easiest to understand and for anyone that doesn’t know about HTML it is basically the language we use to create the basic structure of web pages. As you can imagine (if you are a professional coder), it is easy to get to grips with HTML and think this programming business is easy… The boy was I wrong!
From there I decided to move onto Back-end programming. This is where I started to scratch my head. I started learning Ruby on an online learning platform called Codecademy and in all honesty, I felt a little out of my comfort zone. I couldn’t seem to wrap my head around it, so I stopped trying to learn.
Back on track
A couple of months passed and I spoke to a software developer that I have become good friends with. I told him about my situation, and he told me something that gave me some hope “You never really understand coding until you get your hands dirty” so I decided to get back into it but this time change my approach to learning. I decided to start from the very beginning to give me a deeper understanding so I enrolled onto pluralsight.com and picked up the course “What is programming” this was great for me. The course gave me an excellent understanding of how computers and programs work. I can even say I know what machine code is and what the 1’s and 0’s in binary mean!
I have now started to create my own ASP.Net project using visual studio and TFS.
My advice for anyone who is unsure where to start I would suggest either using pluralsight.com or speaking to a representative of a company that provides guided learning like the guys at Coder Academy: https://www.coderacademy.edu.au/
I am looking forward to seeing where my progress takes me in the next 12 months and ultimately if it supports me in becoming a more effective recruiter. I would love to hear people’s views.