In recent years the tech industry has met with some global scrutiny and raised eyebrows for its seemingly overwhelming young, white, male aesthetic.
Silicon Valley’s nickname came to symbolize a darker element attached to Ivy League, big-money privilege that has damaged many companies.
LinkedIn has found an innovative and practical approach to combat these stereotypes and make for itself a truly diverse employee ecosystem.
For those of us born back in a time when cell phones were merely the cinematic sci-fi accessory of Gordon Gecko, the idea of getting a job in the internecine world of technology may have once seemed as far-fetched as that phone did. LinkedIn has made the possibility, and the process, inviting and inspiring through its three highly unique apprenticeship programs.
The Reach initiative is a multi-year pursuit designed to train coders. Ramp incubates for nine months those folks who wish to join the recruiting side of the tech labyrinth and Unlock strives to train people for the sales component in 8 weeks.
Engineering apprenticeship programs have become de rigeur at all major tech companies, including Microsoft, Twitter, and Amazon. Aimed at filling the hundreds of thousands of open tech jobs in the United States, these programs actively recruit former homemakers, women, minorities, and someone who has had a career background in something other than coding.
LinkedIn courts diversity in filling tech roles
LinkedIn’s position on variant backgrounds is an intelligent and progressive one. The company not only welcomes but aggressively seeks out employees that come from totally divergent fields of tech. The belief is that the influence of these other specialized backgrounds will not only help them understand their customers better but immeasurably improve the workplace via making it as diversiform as possible.
Pointedly, strength in difference also happens to be the implied connective ethos behind nearly every “unicorn company” ever to emerge from Silicon Valley. The idea is to own the market by bringing it something it has never seen before and can’t get anyplace else.
LinkedIn’s approach to hiring outside the traditional tech background landscape showcases an understanding that filling the critical need areas in the current tech talent gap is going to require more insightful methods of talent acquisition.
Having hired nearly every participant that has graduated from its growing apprenticeship programs except those who chose work elsewhere, LinkedIn has situated itself as the go-to location not just for posting your resume now, but likewise monumentally adding to it.