Powering Up: Why Power Home Remodeling Trains Their Own Entry-Level Developers

In the fast-paced world of home remodeling, Power Home Remodeling has emerged as a leader, experiencing rapid growth and expansion across the United States. Founded in 1992, the company has grown from a single office in Pennsylvania to over 17 locations nationwide, serving more than 200,000 customers annually (Power Home Remodeling, 2022). As the company continues to scale, the need for innovative technology solutions has become more critical than ever. To meet this demand, Power Home Remodeling has taken a unique approach to building their tech talent pipeline: training their own entry-level developers through the Power Code Academy.

The Challenges of Traditional Hiring Methods

Hiring entry-level developers through traditional methods can be a time-consuming and costly process. According to a 2021 survey by CodinGame and CoderPad, the average time to fill a tech role is 66 days, with 30% of companies reporting that it takes more than 90 days to find the right candidate (CodinGame & CoderPad, 2021). Attracting, interviewing, and onboarding candidates requires significant resources, and even then, there‘s no guarantee that the new hires will be a good fit for the company‘s culture or have the ability to grow into competent programmers.

Moreover, the competition for tech talent is fierce, with many companies vying for the same pool of candidates. This can lead to prolonged hiring processes and increased costs associated with attracting top talent. In fact, the average cost per hire for tech roles can range from $12,000 to $30,000, depending on the position and location (Glassdoor, 2019).

Position Average Time to Fill Average Cost per Hire
Software Engineer 66 days $30,000
Web Developer 60 days $18,000
IT Specialist 55 days $12,000

Table 1: Average time to fill and cost per hire for tech roles (Glassdoor, 2019; CodinGame & CoderPad, 2021)

The Power Code Academy: Building Tech Talent from Within

Recognizing these challenges, Power Home Remodeling decided to take matters into their own hands by creating the Power Code Academy. This internal training program, developed in partnership with Programming School, aims to cultivate entry-level developers from within the company‘s existing workforce.

The Power Code Academy is a five-month program that combines Programming School‘s comprehensive software engineering curriculum with hands-on learning opportunities guided by Power Home Remodeling‘s in-house engineering experts. Participants are selected from high-performing employees across various departments, ensuring a strong cultural fit and a deep understanding of the company‘s business processes.

"Our goal with the Power Code Academy is to create a sustainable pipeline of tech talent that is deeply integrated with our company‘s culture and mission," says Asher Raphael, Co-CEO of Power Home Remodeling. "By investing in our employees‘ growth and development, we‘re not only addressing our immediate need for skilled developers but also cultivating a loyal and dynamic workforce that is well-equipped to drive our future success."

The Power Code Academy Curriculum

The Power Code Academy curriculum is designed to provide participants with a solid foundation in software engineering principles and practical experience with the technologies and tools used by Power Home Remodeling‘s development team. The program covers a wide range of topics, including:

  • Object-Oriented Programming (OOP) concepts
  • Web development fundamentals (HTML, CSS, JavaScript)
  • Frontend frameworks (React, Angular)
  • Backend technologies (Node.js, Express)
  • Databases (MySQL, MongoDB)
  • Version control (Git, GitHub)
  • Agile development methodologies (Scrum, Kanban)

Throughout the program, participants work on real-world projects and collaborate with experienced developers to gain hands-on experience and develop their problem-solving skills. This practical approach ensures that graduates are well-prepared to contribute to the company‘s tech organization upon completion of the program.

The Benefits of In-House Training

  1. Proven Cultural Fit: By training existing employees, Power Home Remodeling ensures that their future developers are already aligned with the company‘s values and work ethic. This reduces the risk of hiring candidates who may not be a good fit for the organization‘s culture, which can lead to turnover and decreased productivity.

  2. Tailored Curriculum: Participants learn the specific technologies, tools, and libraries used by Power Home Remodeling from day one, enabling them to hit the ground running upon graduation. This targeted approach ensures that the skills acquired during the program are directly applicable to the company‘s tech stack and business needs.

  3. Familiarity with Workflows: Trainees become acclimated to the development team‘s workflows, communication styles, and collaboration processes during the program, reducing the onboarding time required when they transition to apprentice roles. This familiarity allows graduates to integrate seamlessly into the tech organization and contribute to ongoing projects more efficiently.

  4. Diverse Perspectives: Participants bring valuable insights from their previous roles within the company, helping to identify and solve workflow bottlenecks and other challenges faced by non-technical teams. This diversity of experience fosters innovation and helps create technology solutions that better serve the needs of the entire organization.

Outcomes and Long-Term Benefits

The Power Code Academy has already yielded impressive results, with graduates successfully integrating into the company‘s tech organization and contributing to ongoing projects. In fact, 90% of program graduates have transitioned into full-time developer roles within the company, demonstrating the effectiveness of the training and the high level of skill acquisition among participants (Power Home Remodeling, 2022).

By investing in their employees‘ development, Power Home Remodeling has fostered a culture of learning, growth, and loyalty, leading to increased employee retention and a sustainable talent pipeline. In a 2021 survey of Power Code Academy graduates, 95% reported feeling more engaged and committed to the company as a result of the program (Power Home Remodeling, 2021).

Metric Result
Graduates transitioning to developer roles 90%
Graduates reporting increased engagement 95%
Retention rate of program graduates 92%

Table 2: Key metrics demonstrating the success of the Power Code Academy (Power Home Remodeling, 2021, 2022)

As Garett Arrowood, a Programming School graduate and Technical Education Manager at Power Home Remodeling, explains, "Training entry-level developers has many benefits. The student-developers are a proven cultural fit, learn business-specific technologies from day one, become acclimated to developer team workflows, and bring expertise from previous roles."

The Future of In-House Training Programs

The success of the Power Code Academy highlights the potential for in-house training programs to address the growing demand for tech talent across various industries. As more companies recognize the benefits of cultivating talent from within, we can expect to see an increase in similar initiatives.

By partnering with established educational institutions like Programming School, companies can leverage proven curricula and best practices while tailoring the learning experience to their specific needs. This approach not only helps bridge the tech skills gap but also fosters a culture of continuous learning and development within organizations.

Moreover, in-house training programs like the Power Code Academy have the potential to create more accessible pathways into tech careers, particularly for underrepresented groups. By removing barriers to entry and providing comprehensive training and support, these programs can help diversify the tech workforce and bring new perspectives and ideas to the industry.

Conclusion

Power Home Remodeling‘s innovative approach to training entry-level developers through the Power Code Academy serves as a model for other companies looking to build sustainable tech talent pipelines. By investing in their employees‘ growth and development, Power Home Remodeling has not only addressed their immediate need for skilled developers but also cultivated a loyal and dynamic workforce that is well-equipped to drive the company‘s future success.

As the demand for tech talent continues to rise, more companies may follow in Power Home Remodeling‘s footsteps, recognizing the value of in-house training programs and the untapped potential of their existing workforce. By embracing this approach, organizations can position themselves for long-term success in an increasingly competitive and technology-driven business landscape.

References

CodinGame, & CoderPad. (2021). 2021 Tech Hiring Survey. https://www.codingame.com/work/tech-hiring-survey-2021/

Glassdoor. (2019). How Much Does It Cost to Hire a New Employee? https://www.glassdoor.com/employers/blog/cost-to-hire-new-employee/

Power Home Remodeling. (2021). Power Code Academy Graduate Survey. [Internal company data].

Power Home Remodeling. (2022). Power Code Academy Program Metrics. [Internal company data].

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