Apple CEO Tim Cook has backed a major effort to convince state governors, government and educators to make computer science lessons available to all students in all schools. But it is not just philanthropy that is at stake.
We just can't get the staff
Offer and demand. In theory, when demand increases, supply rises to meet it. Except it doesn't always work that way, and as the world goes digital, the need for encoders is growing faster than the world can keep up.
The demand for coding skills is growing so rapidly that developers continue to explore ways to design configurable solutions that can be built without code (without code, essentially filling the void that Apple's shortcuts are becoming).
They know they have to because the demand for programming talent continues to rise internationally. It's a need that cuts across every market, from the United States to Singapore and everywhere in between. By 2030, the world is expected to have a shortage of about 82,5 million coders; already 87% of organizations are struggling to find the coding staff they need.
But some industries, especially those involving data analytics, manage to have high demand and a fast growth curve while desperately trying to find enough staff. Given the growing importance of AI, the lack of data analysis skills is already affecting many companies. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that by 2026, the engineering shortage in the United States will exceed 1,2 million.
All we say is give code a try
That's why more than 500 business, educational, and nonprofit leaders signed a call for "every student in every school to have the opportunity to learn computer science." The signatories, including Cook (and many of Apple's allies and competitors), know that we must invest in the next generation of encoders.
They warn that because computer science education is not universally available, many students never get a chance to learn. That's why only 5% of American high school students study computer science, and some communities, especially young women and students of color, are falling behind.
The employees know it too, of course. And while not everyone has the talent for it, a side effect of the Great Renunciation has been an increasing number of workers signing up for programming courses. They almost certainly hope to earn more money and work more remotely in the future. Workforce technology education platform Pluralsight notes that the four most popular courses it offers are related to coding. Courses on AI and cloud services are also popular. At the same time, the pandemic has fueled significant investments in digital technologies to support the emerging future of work, further exacerbating talent shortages.
Coding is one of the most valuable skills a person can acquire. It can open new doors, boost careers, and make big dreams seem like attainable goals. Everyone in the world should have the opportunity to learn programming. https://t.co/yWfNlmQwdz– Tim Cook (@tim_cook) July 12, 2022
Apple can expand its encryption research, but not everyone can
Apple has made no secret that it believes we need to develop more programming talent. It has built and continues to build new development centers around the world in order to find talent that is not available in the United States.
He leads coding workshops in retail stores and has developed academic courses to nurture future talent. Swift Playgrounds isn't just meant to be fun to use; It's also designed to teach the basics of coding to young people as the company works to nurture future talent.
But Apple's opportunity to participate in these types of programs is something only the largest companies can really access, and the coder Cupertino is creating today won't necessarily be coding for iPhones tomorrow, especially when their skills are in such high demand. It's also true that need, combined with scarcity, means that more than 50% of companies hire tech workers who don't have all the skills the job requires.
challenge the economy
However, the size of the bet poses a major challenge to economic growth and productivity, spawning a transnational race to secure talent.
In the United States, nearly two-thirds of highly-skilled immigration is for computer scientists. The United States alone has more than 700 open IT jobs, but produces only 000 IT graduates each year, and the demand for these skills will only increase as digitization continues to grow. Demand is also putting heavy pressure on existing hires. This additional work means that some say around 80% plan to change jobs in the next year. That in itself is a problem for employers: It costs up to €000 to identify and hire a full-time developer, according to data from CodeSubmit.
Any change in personnel represents additional costs, as well as increased pressure on existing workers and additional damage to project planning and overall productivity.
With all that in mind, it's no surprise that Cook and what sounds like a list of every major corporation in the United States are making this urgent code request. Your delicious bonuses probably depend on it.
Follow me on Twitter or join me at AppleHolic's bar & grill and Apple discussion groups on MeWe.
Copyright © 2022 IDG Communications, Inc.