4 Issues Surrounding Workforce Development for Technology Companies

The Arizona Technology Council released a report from a survey that the University of Phoenix and the Technology Councils of North America recently did on Software Development Competencies to better understand workforce development issues in software development occupations. Asking the following Questions. (Three Roles: Mobile, Application and Web Developer)

1. What is the primary reason for the reported talent shortage in the software development sector (quantity or quality)?
83% of respondents indicated there is clearly a talent shortage.
51% stated the most significant cause is the local market does not have an adequate supply of available works entering the field (quantity).
27% stated the most significant cause is available workers do not have adequate skills and education to occupy the roles (quality).

www technologycouncils org site publisher files UOPX TECNA Software Development Survey Results for Distribution pdf e1408933416197 4 Issues Surrounding Workforce Development for Technology Companies

2. What 3 to 5 most critical skills must individuals have to perform effectively in there high-demand software development roles in the next 2 to 4 years?
The majority of respondents saw User Interface Design, Architecture and Java as key skills in the next 2 to 4 years.
Programming, Web Design and Data Warehousing were seen as necessary skills for all roles.
88% of the respondents felt “Soft Skills” were equally or more important than technical skills.

3. What education and certifications will be required by individuals in the next 2 to 4 years to preform successfully in three high-demand software roles?
45% felt less than a bachelor’s degree was necessary for web/mobile development.
Only 7% felt greater than a bachelor’s degree was necessary.
Less than 30% felt industry certifications were valuable.

4. What are employers doing to cope with future anticipated skill gaps in three high-demand software development roles?
Only 69% of employers are doing something about it.
68% plan on conducting internal training
64% plan on offering internships
53% plan on retraining employees
51% plan on network building

Report summary: UOPX-TECNA Software Development Survey Results.

City of Mesa Open Data Road Show

The City of Mesa and Code for America are hosting an Open Data regional event on September 4th. The benefits of Open Data range from enhancing government performance to increasing public participation. Show up and explore the process and outcomes of implementing data driven initiatives.

Code for America Summit 2013 Flickr   Photo Sharing  City of Mesa Open Data Road Show

In Attendance:

  • City officials who have adopted open data policies (Phoenix, Tucson)
  • Start-ups/entrepreneurs who use open data, creating new job opportunities.
  • Community groups actively developing projects that affect the city and it’s residents (eg: transit, health, park apps).
  • ASU faculty and staff researchers who benefit by and contribute to open data sets (eg: budget, water usage).
  • Citizens!

At past events people walked away energized and committed to implement new practices, host hackathons and develop community partnerships. It is an opportunity to share, ask questions and learn from other departments, partner cities, start-ups and community members.

“I thought the open data roadshow was very informative and inspirational! I thoroughly enjoyed it ” -Tony Heinrichs, Deputy Chief Operating Officer, Infrastructure/Public Works, City of San Diego

Goals:

  • Bringing the best of open data practices, policies and experiences to cities.
  • Educating a government audience to the concept, values, and opportunities of open data.
  • Consulting and troubleshooting how government staff can pursue open data within their own agencies.
  • Sharing resources and best practices to support governments interested in implementing open data.

The Logistics:
Open Data Roadshow: Mesa
Thursday September 4th 8:30am – 1:00pm
Mesa Arts Center – 1 E Main St, Mesa, AZ 85201
Free of Charge with breakfast and lunch provided!

RSVP Here:
https://www.eventbrite.com/e/open-data-roadshow-mesa-tickets-12361508605

More info here:
http://opendataroadshow.com/

Get Your Sewing On at Gangplank Avondale

Gangplank Labs just got an industrial sewing machine. Rated at 1/3 horsepower, this 1950’s era machine can sew through leather, canvas, and probably thin plywood. Some assembly required – look for future updates to see when it’s time to bring your tough sewing projects to Hack Night. (Hack night happens every Tuesday from 7-9PM. It’s free, and everyone’s invited!)
 Get Your Sewing On at Gangplank Avondale
Chris is interested in using the machine  to sew a finished edge onto some rugs, Elia is interested making her own super slim leather wallet, and Heather wants to make custom fit leather sandals. What will YOU make?

Avondale Labs Planning a Summer of Electronics

On Tuesday, April 8th, 2014 Gangplank Avondale’s makers gathered to brainstorm how to amp up the Avondale Labs Initiative. After a burst of ideas, we narrowed it to a “Summer of Electronics”. We are meeting again next Tuesday the 15th at 7pm to further plan this electrifying summer.

For those interested in seeing the crazy list of future ideas the group came up with, here they are:

Set up a soldering station
Meet once a month on a Saturday (maybe a youth event once a month)
Paper electronics for kids
Install fest – help those with less tech knowledge install Linux
Reach out to local neighborhood
Tear down day
Etsy Craft Party
Pinterest Party
Quad Copter night (or break that up into multiple projects and advertise each separately)
Metal work class
Amateur Radio
Furniture refinishing
HAM site
Big group projects
Simon says arduino
rockets
Movie projector – Theater night
Gunsmithing
welding
Metal milling
Cold Metal forming
metal working
Tig Welding
Jewelry Making
Brewing/distilling apparatus
Catapults
Concrete work (shaping)
Glass work
DIY Astronomy (homebuilt telescopes)
Tesla coil
Arduino/ Raspberry pi/ single board computers
Home automation
LEGO
Jacobs Ladder
Videography
Hacking
Nixie Tube
Vacuum tube amp
Aerial Photography
Drones
Technology as art
3D Printing
3d Printer mentoring
Textiles (sewing, embroidery)
woodworking
car computer
pyro
Fire
Learn to code (coding classes)
Rasberry Pi car ecc
Yoga class
Going from prototype to production
CAD Meetup
Painting class
Life Drawing
Screen printing
Upcycyling
Info dispersion
Secure communication
Networks
Traditional casting methods
Mento fountains
outreach event
community building events
robots
inventors club
Theremin
laser cutter/ engraver
Make a thon

Summer Outreach and Communication Internships Available

Gangplank Outreach and Communication Intern

Gangplank is seeking energetic, fun, and creative Outreach and Communication interns to help share the Gangplank story and engage local residents. Gangplank is committed to providing excellent educational opportunities. This unpaid position will provide interns with experience in outreach and communications for a global nonprofit while supporting the creation of vibrant communities. Interns will have opportunities to learn and use a variety of skills including event planning, social media marketing, writing press releases, photography, and video. Summer internships begins June 5, 2014.

As part of telling Gangplank’s story, interns will also have opportunities to explore 3D printing, electronics, entrepreneurship, design, software development, community development, and economic development.

This position supports all of Gangplank’s Phoenix Metro locations. Currently we have locations in Chandler and Avondale. Interns can choose to be based out of either location. Travel to events throughout the Phoenix Metro area is required.

Job Responsibilities:

• Organize, attend, and or participate in events related to Gangplank initiatives.

• Create fun and interactive displays for outreach tables.

• Create, update, and respond to social media and blog posts.

• Create videos and other multimedia communications

• Craft and distribute press releases as needed.

• Performs related duties as needed.

Qualifications: 

• Must have a strong desire to learn.

• Excellent communication skills.

• Energetic and creative individuals who are capable of making decisions on their own.

To apply please submit your resume  to Trish@gangplankhq.com no later than May 15, 2014.

RockIT Bootcamp – Launch Your IT Career

 

rockIT logo@2x RockIT Bootcamp   Launch Your IT Career

 

This is great opportunity at an inaugural run of a new program.  The first cohort will have all tuition costs waived.  If you have thought about becoming an Web Developer, this is your chance.

Inaugural Class Begins April 2014 [ Apply Now ]

What is IT?

RockIT is an immersive, 12-week bootcamp in web development. The full-time program focuses on building hands-on skills using real world examples and projects. RockIT teaches the skills that entry level web development professionals need to succeed in a career in one of today’s technology jobs.

Learn from experienced instructors – web developers who are working closely with local employers – so that RockIT can help meet the growing demand for front end web developers in the Metro Phoenix area.

Learn:

  • HTML5
  • JavaScript
  • CSS3
  • jQuery
  • PHP
  • MySQL

CURRICULUM

You will learn something new every day. You will write code every day. Everything that is included in the curriculum is relevant and important to starting a career in web development. Industry experts have created an integrated curriculum that leads you through the theory but more importantly the practice. You will work individually, in pairs and in small teams to solve problems, crack the code and build real world web applications. You will work much harder and for much longer than you think.

COMPLETION

Everything you have learned comes together in final phase of the bootcamp as you demonstrate proficiency in web development skills through an individual project and a team project. What you have learned prepares you for the first step in a career including confidence, skills and knowledge. The applications you have created build a portfolio of work that you will be proud of and able to take with you.

CAREERS

Embedded throughout the program are a series of career exploration related activities. The curriculum includes networking events, peer level meetups, job searching skills, resume writing and interview techniques to add to the body of web development work you have completed. A career fair as part of the final phase of the bootcamp enables you to meet with local web development agencies and employers.

Social Media Boot Camp November 2, 2013

To learn more, please visit http://www.meetup.com/Gangplank-Avondale/events/145437152/

“Social Media Bootcamp” is an immersive experience in learning and improving all areas of your social media marketing . There will be classes ranging from Intro to Twitter, G+, Linkedin, Facebook, and Youtube to classes that help you to create better content. We will also have mentors to help critique your current social media accounts and a photographer to provide head shots.

When you are not in a workshop, enjoy our drop in collaborative workspace. Bring your laptop and work on creating social media accounts, get expert feedback and critiques from fellow social media users, and develop content for your social media or just work on a project while sharing the fun collaborative atmosphere.

Please note that for the weekend, our drop-in space will be on our second floor which is unfortunately not ADA accessible.

To learn more, please visit http://www.meetup.com/Gangplank-Avondale/events/145437152/

What is Next?

Gangplank has been wildly successful on a number of fronts, but we always push for more. It is in our DNA. Recently Gangplank Chandler has been struggling with defining what an anchor is, what social obligations exist and how to operate without an appointed leader. These are things all locations have or will struggle with at some point. It was time for a retrospective of sorts. We asked for help from Kim Kressaty of Future Pull Consulting (and a Gangplank Board Member) to facilitate a discussion on What is next?

The full report can be found at Gangplank Report.

The TL;DR version.

Top Priorities

  1. Show the world how a shared leadership model can work at scale.
  2. Live the Gangplank manifesto in every Gangplank community.
  3. Message the Gangplank manifesto.
  4. Build the Gangplank Network out with an emphasis that Gangplanker’s work together regardless of location.
  5. Leverage the Gangplank community for optimum effectiveness both locally and globally.
  6. Be Dangerous. Really. For Real.
  7. Emphasis on youth programs to break the cycle and restore creativity.

 

Five Day Plan

  1. Finalize details necessary to kick off the Community Builders Program.
  2. Push out plan for newly implement Google Groups strategy to facilitate communication.
  3. Start a migration path to remove the concept of anchors and define something much more powerful.

 

Thirty Day Plan
Community Builders. Let’s build it together.

Ninety Day Plan
Community Builders. Let’s build it together.

We should all be asking ourselves, “How can we drive towards these priorities?”. As a first step towards starting to message the manifesto we have started the Dangercast. Where we will be talking about the manifesto and culture that makes Gangplank work. We expect community participation in it. The first episode is available (and transcribed) at “Dangercast #1 : Collaboration over Competition“. It is also available on iTunes at “Dangercast“.

So if you love Gangplank and want to go deeper let us know you are interested in becoming a Gangplank Community Builder.

Yes, I am interested!

Be Dangerous. Be Excellent.

The Manifesto Project in Avondale

As mentioned in this post, Gangplank Avondale also hosted an event as part of the Manifesto Project. The Manifesto Project is intended to gather the voice of a generation. Manifesto Project events took place all over the State of Arizona in over 50 cities and towns. On August 21st, we gathered at Ganglank Avondale for a fun night with young leaders from the West Valley visioning for the future of the Arizona.

In the last month, Gangplank Avondale regulars have been working hard to update the look of their space. In the hours before this event, an awesome group of young leaders rallied together to serve their community in assembling the furniture for our upstairs space. Here is a sneak peek at how the space looked before the event:

photo 17 The Manifesto Project in Avondale

We started out the night with tasty burritos from Cabelleros Grill and sharing stories. In fact, we decided that we don’t spend enough time just having fun together so watch for more social events in the future!

photo 15 The Manifesto Project in Avondale

After socializing, we dove into the visioning part of the event.
photo 81 1024x768 The Manifesto Project in Avondale

So what do the West Valley’s young leaders want to see for Arizona?

-Public transportation connecting all major cities.
-More connection between people/ more engaged residents.
-A thriving entrepreneurial community.
-Continued progressive cross city development and more technology.
-An awesome music scene.
-More cutting edge businesses. More innovation and invention.
-Better food culture.
-More cultural areas.

We concluded the night with personal expressions of how we will lead the change. Avondale’s young leaders declared that they will lead the change they want to see by:

-being present
-creating opportunity
-encouraging people to take action and stop finding excuses
-casting my vote each day with every action I do and don’t do
-jumping at every opportunity presented to me, networking, and staying social

The SNAP Experience : National Hunger Awareness Month

September is National Hunger Awareness Month. From September 3-9, Arizona Community Action Association (ACAA) is sponsoring the SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) Experience, a week long real-life experience living on just $29 for food, the same as a typical SNAP participant. This experience helps provide a slim view into what it is like to live in poverty. Helping people change their circumstance starts with local community awareness and support.  Help change your community by participating to raise your own awareness.

In Arizona, 1 in 5 people struggle with hunger every day and 1 in 4 children live in food insecure households. SNAP, the federal Food Stamp Program, is our nation’s first line of defense against hunger, helping put healthy foods on the table when Arizonans would otherwise go hungry. SNAP is a critical bridge to help individuals and families establish financial stability so they can move out of or away from poverty.

SNAP is intended to supplement the monthly food budget, although we know that many households rely solely on SNAP to purchase food.   We also know that SNAP can only reasonably cover about 70% of monthly food costs and average food consumption per person.

SNAP Experience participants are encouraged to use only $29 to pay for all food costs for the week.  However, you can supplement the $29 budget with a maximum of $12 more for food purchases not typically permitted on SNAP (hot and prepared meals or alcohol products, for example). SNAP Experience participants who choose this option are asked to not exceed $41 in total weekly expenses, and to track how the additional $12 is spent.

The SNAP Experience goal is to increase awareness about poverty and hunger in Arizona through a meaningful personal experience and to draw media attention to the hardships faced by those living in poverty. While this experience cannot give us a true sense of living in deep or prolonged poverty, it can provide insight into some of the challenges families confront.

For more information about the SNAP Experience, please contact  Angela Schultz at aschultz@azcaa.org or by phone at 602-604-0640.  To participate in the SNAP Experience, please register online . Please register for one or all SNAP Experience options that interest you. 1) only the SNAP Experience, 2) the SNAP Experience and the additional $12 supplement; 3) SNAP Experience media events, and 4) ACAA’s SNAP Experience social media (blogs, Facebook, Twitter, etc.).

Help to elevate the issue of hunger into the public discourse, whether by participating yourself in the SNAP Experience, being aware of the information ACAA provides about others participating in the SNAP Experience, or spreading the word to those you know about this opportunity.