Are Junior Developers Best for Startups?

Original post by ITBusinessEDGE

It sounded pretty cool when I wrote last November about startup Pikimal, which was taking really smart folks in other majors — philosophy, political science — and letting them learn Ruby on Rails on the job.

In a post at OnStartups.com, Avi Flombaum, dean of The Flatiron School, argues that most startups don’t need to hire hire senior engineers. In fact, he says:

… for most products, seeking out rockstar senior engineers is like hiring Picasso to paint your apartment.

Flombaum, of course, has an agenda. The Flatiron School offers an intensive 12-week program to train developers in languages such as Ruby. It’s pricey: the course costs $5,500. He also recommends competitors  Dev Bootcamp in San Francisco and Code Academy in Chicago, though. There are others. Free online school Codecademy just added Python to its offerings.

Too often, companies don’t want to train people and don’t want to allow them time to grow into jobs. IT, though, can be a career that doesn’t require a college degree  —  in fact, itmight not even require a high school diploma. I’ve been concerned, though, when recruiters tell me that employers are looking for developers with five years or less of experience.

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