White House Launches TechHire for Tech Pros

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Back in March, the White House announced its “TechHire initiative,” designed to fill a wide variety of tech-industry jobs. Plans included a $100 million H-1B grant competition, private-public partnerships between cities and private employers to place eligible candidates in tech jobs, and free online training and boot camps.

The U.S. Department of Labor has now opened the initiative to applications, which can be found on Grants.gov (warning: it’s not the most intuitive interface). Those interested in finding opportunities can also take a look at the White House’s dedicated Webpage for the initiative, which includes an interactive map showing open tech jobs in the participating “TechHire communities.”

“Today there are over half a million unfilled jobs in information technology across all sectors of the economy,” reads a note on the White House’s page. “These IT jobs make up ~12 [percent] of the approximately 5 million job openings making IT the largest occupational category for open jobs right now.”

Recent data from Course Report suggests that 66 percent of participants in tech boot camps eventually land full-time jobs as programmers. While that’s an encouraging statistic, some within the tech industry have exhibited some skepticism about TechHire’s chances of success. For example, Jason Polancich, CEO of SurfWatch Labs, told The Wall Street Journal in March that he didn’t think two months of boot camp could prepare candidates “for identifying serious problems and overcoming them.”

Nonetheless, the initiative seems dedicated to providing basic programming skills that don’t require a four-year degree or extensive time in the tech industry in order to pick up; in theory, the participation of local governments will help widen the pipeline of candidates to suitable tech jobs. But it may take some time to fully ascertain the results of all this work.

Image Credit: TZIDO SUN/Shutterstock.com

Comments

3 Responses to “White House Launches TechHire for Tech Pros”

November 19, 2015 at 11:33 am, Steve said:

A noble undertaking on the surface, but I think the program needs to cut any and all ties and affiliations with the H-1B and any other applicable visa programs.

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November 19, 2015 at 2:08 pm, RobS said:

The H1B program was once a wonderful program and just like the welfare program went from being useful to being abused. There are probably hundreds of thousands of Americans who are willing and able to fill those jobs but they need some minor re-training. Maybe that program will help but typically govt programs are not designed for this type of help since they are trying to fill an undefined private sector need.

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November 20, 2015 at 8:20 pm, Claudebabe said:

My American caucasian born husband with 30 years of IT experienced has been outsourced/laid off over 20 times since 1999 when the H1B visa was started….now they are handing out visas like lolipops! He just got laid off and is trying to find a full time job…all he can find is a contract job at half the money he used to make….he has a BA in Accounting, BA in IT, Masters in CS and an MBA from a prestigious technical institute…..and I can tell you it has taken teams of H1B visa holders to replace just him…..wake up America manufacturing, construction and now IT….would you like some fries with that? Course my husband doesn’t get to play golf with the head of Accenture the biggest outsourcing company in the world based in India like President Obama does

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