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Company Background

Name: Adam Bannon
Position: Acting Chief Executive Officer
Company: CodeClan

Can you give us a little background on your company please?

Backed by industry, CodeClan is an award winning digital skills academy on a mission to close Scotland’s digital skills gap.

We are the UK’s only accredited digital skills academy and provide a steady flow of new tech talent via our intensive and immersive 16-week programming course. We also provide a range of shorter, part-time courses for upskillers looking to expand their knowledge and get to grips with the fundamentals of digital.

As well as teaching the art of programming, we have established a vibrant, ever-growing employer community consisting of a range of start-ups, SMEs and major household names. Our employer community is a place for digital employers to learn more about CodeClan, Scotland’s tech sector as a whole and most importantly, seek out fresh, new digital talent.

Tell us about a business challenge you have faced (new product designed/client challenge/etc)?

In early 2016, we had 14 employers signed up with CodeClan, which was great but ultimately we needed more. Demand for the course was growing and we were already looking into ramping up course delivery, going from courses starting every 10-weeks to every six weeks.

It became vital for us to start focusing on ways that we could quickly scale the employer side of the business to ensure that those graduating from CodeClan had a wide range of choice and opportunity when seeking employment.

What was your solution?

After much discussion, it was decided that we needed to revise the employer model and shape it into something more flexible. To do this, we decided to do away with the red tape that employers were initially faced with when joining CodeClan and established what we now call our ‘employer community’. Rather than requiring a contract and membership fees, we created a free-to-join community that any company can easily become part of. Employers can not only seek top quality IT talent via this community but they can also support one another, have an active say in the curriculum that we teach, and find out more about Scotland’s tech industry in general.

Tell us about the benefits of your solution to the initial problem?

We have seen enormous benefits since revising our employer model. We now have over 120 organisations in our community and we are seeing it grow on average by about 10 employers per month.

The size of the community has provided many fantastic opportunities for our students and we have seen over 130 graduates secure jobs with our employer partners, which is very rewarding for us.

What we are keen to do now is make sure that we keep this momentum going and that we continue to listen to the needs of industry and to the feedback of our employer community so that we can keep delivering what tech employers want the most – highly skilled, job-ready digital talent.

Why did you join ScotlandIS?

We have a very close relationship with ScotlandIS as they were one of the driving forces behind the creation of CodeClan.

As a digital skills academy, it’s vital that we do all we can to position ourselves at the heart of Scotland’s tech industry and becoming a member of ScotlandIS helps us achieve this ambition.

What have you gained from being a ScotlandIS member?

For us, being a member of ScotlandIS has been hugely beneficial. Not only have we had a significant amount of support and advice from ScotlandIS to help make CodeClan a success, but we have also had the opportunity to grow our network and form close links with some of Scotland’s most innovative and forward-thinking companies.

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