Coding, which was once an outlier, is now one of the most sought-after skills in the job marketplace.
Between now and 2030, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects about 9,700 new job openings each year for computer programmers as others retire or change occupations. As these workers leave the industry, who’s going to replace them?
Here’s the good news: you don’t need a computer science degree to become a programmer and learn coding languages. You can join other self-taught learners and develop a skill set that improves your access to new job opportunities.
Want to learn more about why you should learn coding and the benefits of coding?
Learning to code comes with several benefits. First, you’ll sharpen your problem-solving skills and learn how to depend on yourself. That’s not all. You’ll also become part of a massive and helpful community that will help you cope during tough times and grow.
Coding also improves your earning potential and increases your career flexibility, making it easy for you to work anywhere.
Let’s go over why you should learn coding in more detail.
1. Learning To Code Teaches You Problem-Solving Skills
Steve Jobs once mused that everyone should learn how to program a computer. Why? “It teaches you how to think,” he said.
He couldn’t have been more right.
Learning programming skills will teach you to approach your work more creatively, solve problems, and practice critical thinking.
Coding involves giving a computer tasks while following specific rules and guidelines at a basic level. Once you break down a complex problem into a collection of tiny tasks, you can solve massive global challenges. This approach is called reductionism.
Reductionism doesn’t just work in coding. You can apply it in your life as well. Using a systematic approach can help you become a better planner and time manager.
It also teaches you to pay close attention to detail and avoid careless mistakes in the real world. After all, one misplaced colon, period, or comma in your code can break your program. Have you ever heard of bugs in programs? They definitely aren’t creepy-crawlies.
Are you looking to earn more for your work? That’s another reason you should learn how to code. Here’s why.
The BLS Occupational Outlook Handbook shows that in 2020, the median yearly salary for a computer programmer was $89,190. That’s more than twice the median annual salary for all workers ($41,950).
As the demand for programmers and web developers grows, your ability to earn more increases.
That’s not all.
If you’re a business owner, basic coding skills can help you get started on website projects and reduce the cost of hiring a web developer to build your software or apps from scratch.
It doesn’t matter which programming language you prefer to learn. Whether front-end or back-end, all frameworks and languages have huge communities backing them. There’s always someone to welcome you aboard.
That also means there’s always someone to hold your hand through your tough coding days and help you with your sticking points.
You’ll find massive communities of software engineers on Twitter, LinkedIn, Stack Overflow, and other platforms. Coders have fun, open communities and bootcamps to explore other interests and hobbies.
Beyond that, these communities will also improve your relations with coworkers. You’ll become better at communicating your ideas, listening to other people’s perspectives, and working in teams. They’ll also make you a better leader.
Do you want to work in a remote or hybrid environment? Learning to code can give you exactly that. Do you want to make a part-time income writing Python code on the side? Learning software development will also give you that.
Coding opens up opportunities for you to work under different schedules, locations, or even time zones. That means you can travel the world as a freelancer and work from your laptop. It also exposes you to diverse people and cultures.
Besides that, coding will take you across different industries. It doesn’t matter whether you’re an architect or a humanitarian aid worker. You can use your coding skill to improve the lives of other people.
Here’s another neat reason why you should learn coding: you can pivot from an architectural job to a humanitarian one and still code. You can even use your skill to create machine learning and artificial intelligence models that could eventually cure cancer. Who knows?
If you work in a busy office with multiple projects running simultaneously, learning to code can teach you to be self-sufficient. For instance, let’s say you need the help of the company UI/UX developer to make your website’s landing page more responsive.
If they’re occupied, why not do it yourself?
What if you work in the customer service department and a user asks you a technical question? Instead of making them wait as you patch them through to a tech expert, you can quickly help them resolve any website upgrade issue they’re facing.
Coding teaches you to invent, innovate and improvise where necessary to solve problems. That can help you build and create anything you think of, even in your startup or business.
Before you run off to that popular online coding course you saw your brother doing, here are some tips to keep in mind:
- Write down your goals and create a plan on how to achieve them.
- Learn and understand the fundamentals before you move to the more complex (and fun) stuff.
- Take a hands-on approach to coding. Write actual code — don’t memorize it.
- You’ll run into challenges and sticking points. It’s OK to ask for help.
- You’ll make mistakes. Learn from them.
- Be patient. It takes years of experience and practice to learn important skills.
Whether you want to enter the tech industry, become a freelance developer, or learn a new skill set, you can’t go wrong with computer programming. Learning how to code will do more than that. It will also improve your critical thinking, leadership, and collaboration skills.
Still new to web development? Get hands-on experience in design with Bluehost’s website builder and learn how to create attractive websites the easy way.