There’s been plenty of discussion around tech jobs and the role of women in the sector ahead of this week’s federal government Jobs and Skills Summit summit.
Melbourne tech company Envato is looking to address both issues by doubling the size of its Developer Apprentice Program, which provides an entry-level pathway for aspiring female engineers.
The program provides an entry-level pathway for aspiring female engineers to get into the tech sector offering a full-time role alongside a dedicated mentor working who works with the apprentice recruit for up to 12 months before they take on a junior engineer role.
Envato is expanding the program from two to four role, with two annual intakes; the existing one in June and a new second round in September.
Apprentices are embedded in delivery teams and are involved in all aspects of the business, where they build, deploy and support software solutions for the whole of Envato. The program aims to provide a dedicated and alternative means for female engineers to commence a career in the tech sector, regardless of their experience level.
Since it kicked off in 2018, nine apprentices have graduated from the program since 2018 and six are still employed in various roles in the engineering team at Envato. The backgrounds of the women involved are as diverse as winemaker and editor before they turned to engineering.
Junior engineer Faith Sylvia is one of them and sings the praises of the program describing it as “the holy grail of first jobs as a developer”.
“I was supported entirely in the all-important transition from boot camp to junior developer and could take the time to learn foundational principles properly,” she said.
“This apprenticeship has allowed me to lay a strong foundation in fundamental principles relevant to day-to-day software engineering. But most importantly, I’ve learned how to solve problems and think through my work. One of the key takeaways of the program – if not the key takeaway – is to hone your communication skills and learn how to work effectively as a team to solve a problem.”
Envato Chief Technology Officer Anthony Burgon said the time was right to expand the already popular program.
“Demand has always exceeded what we could support, and that’s only increased in the last 12 months,” he said.
“We’ve always wanted to expand to provide more opportunities for women wanting to start a career in tech and we’re very glad we can now do more to help.”