Coding bootcamps can be a great way for professionals to advance their careers. They may also appeal to individuals who are new to programming but want to join the lucrative tech industry. Professionals already employed in tech can gain specialized knowledge and skills from a coding bootcamp, which can increase their earning potential. For those without tech experience, bootcamps may be a great way to start out, as they typically do not require applicants to hold a college degree or have any prior familiarity with coding.
Candidates without previous training or a college degree stand to significantly increase their salary after graduating from a coding bootcamp. Read on to learn about your potential salary after a coding bootcamp, as well as the various factors that can impact your wages.
Salary Trends for Bootcamp Graduates
Since organizations often seek highly skilled and experienced coders, bootcamp graduates enter a competitive job market where a worker's educational background and previous professional experience can greatly influence their earning potential. However, the employment rate for bootcamp graduates within six months of finishing their program is high for many bootcamps -- and so are the salaries that graduates can earn.
75% of 2019 online web development bootcamp graduates were employed in the field within 180 days of graduating, earning a median salary of $62,400.
For instance, Bloc reported that 75% of its 2019 online web development bootcamp graduates were employed in the field within 180 days of graduating, earning a median salary of $62,400. Hack Reactor's 2019 online software engineering bootcamp had a nearly 73% employment rate among its graduates after 180 days, with professionals earning a median salary of $80,000. Thinkful's 2019 online engineering bootcamp graduates boasted an employment rate of nearly 86%, with a median salary of $60,000.
Factors That Affect Salary Potential
By completing a coding bootcamp, students can distinguish themselves from self-taught coders, which may give them an advantage when applying for entry-level positions. Additionally, candidates with prior professional coding experience and/or a formal education can sometimes negotiate higher salaries. Multiple factors influence how much bootcamp graduates may be able to earn.
Geographic location can greatly influence a bootcamp graduate's salary level, as salaries often reflect the cost of living in the area where the job is located. For instance, graduates from Epicodus' 2019 web development bootcamp in Portland reported a median income of $60,000 after finishing their bootcamp, while graduates from the Seattle bootcamp earned $75,000.
The salaries earned by graduates of Hack Reactor's 2019 software engineering bootcamp also varied according to location, with Austin graduates earning median wages of almost $85,000 and San Francisco graduates earning $110,000.
- College Degree
A bachelor's program in computer science or a related field can provide more breadth beyond the subjects covered in a coding bootcamp. Therefore, graduates who hold a bachelor's degree in addition to completing a coding program often have a competitive edge in the job market; they may earn higher salaries than those without a college degree.
While organizations can save money upfront by hiring beginners, investing in employee training can end up costing a company more in the long run than simply hiring an experienced candidate. Plus, candidates with professional experience often possess valuable soft skills that can make them stand out from other applicants.
A worker's level of experience usually has a big impact on their earning potential. For example, PayScale reports that entry-level web developers earn an average salary of $50,530, while midcareer professionals earn $66,630 annually.
Salary levels also vary according to your technical specialization. Coding bootcamps can focus on a variety of technical disciplines, including cybersecurity, data science, user experience design, web development, and software engineering. Each of these specializations features its own typical salary. For instance, according to PayScale, web developers earn an average salary of $59,830, while UX designers earn $74,220 and data scientists earn $96,160.
How to Increase Your Chances of a Higher Salary After a Bootcamp
Organizations view coders as an asset, which means they want talent that adds value to their company. Recent coding bootcamp graduates can stand out among their peers in the job market as their training often takes advantage of cutting-edge techniques and technology.
Graduates who wish to maintain a competitive advantage should continue their professional development, actively seeking new learning opportunities and staying abreast of emerging trends in their field. Graduates should spend time reading about current areas of need in the field, as well as recent initiatives of the organizations they want to work for. This can help a bootcamp graduate identify ways that they can add value in a future position.
Graduates should also continue to build their professional portfolio to share with potential employers, and continue to engage in networking opportunities.
Future Salary Potential
While coders at the beginning of their career spend their time mastering the basics, seasoned professionals can direct their efforts toward mastering niche specialties and strengthening key business skills. As such, a bootcamp graduate's earning potential increases as they gain experience and add professional credentials.
Salaries earned by late-career tech professionals can often be tens of thousands of dollars higher than the salaries earned by professionals early in their career. For web developers, software engineers, and UX designers, average salaries after 20 years in the industry are $25,000-$35,000 more than the average starting salaries for those positions. For some tech roles, that number can be even higher. For instance, according to PayScale, late-career data scientists make over $50,000 more on average than those just starting out in the field.