Start Your Software Development Career through Apprenticeship

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Ever thought about a career in software development but didn’t know where to start? Eager to test your skills and immerse yourself in a holistic training program?

At 8th Light, we provide mentorship-driven training through our Modern Apprenticeship Program to help bring new people into the software industry.

Applications

Applications are currently closed. We anticipate opening applications for our 2023 cohorts around November 2022.

We would like to share our plans for our Apprenticeship Program through 2023. As we approach the end of 2022, we will provide additional details on our next recruitment and cohort schedule.

To be notified of future apprenticeship updates, be sure to sign up for our talent community! In the meantime, curious where you can get started? Check out our advice for early-career developers.

Generally, we have 3 apprenticeship cohorts per year. Through the end of 2023, our tentative schedule is to start cohorts:

  • August 2022: all spots filled
  • Approximately February 2023
  • Approximately May 2023
  • Approximately August 2023

For those of you currently in a bootcamp, this is the perfect opportunity to see if the cohorts align with your schedule.

About the 8th Light Apprenticeship

Since 2006, our apprenticeship program has been the engine of our success. This program allows us to prioritize curiosity and creativity over credentials. Because of that, we hire people who are wired for collaboration, ingenuity and are destined to be our future leaders.

Each apprentice’s curriculum is tailored to their needs, pulling from a matrix of concepts, frameworks, and skills we’ve identified as integral to a successful software development career. Self-study projects, pair programming, and joining client teams are all part of a program aimed to provide a holistic understanding of delivering complex software systems.

Apprentices are hired in small groups (or cohorts) to build strong connections and offer a collaborative learning environment at all levels of your employment.

Stay in Touch

If you’d like to receive the latest on our Apprenticeship Program, sign up for our Apprentice Talent Community. We’ll periodically send updates, information, and event opportunities for you to connect with us.

Sign Up for our Talent Community

FAQs

What can you expect from the 8th Light Interview Process?

At 8th Light, we strive to create an interview process where everyone feels excited, welcomed, and encouraged to share their ideas and past experiences with the team.

Our hiring process is an integral part of our culture. It is also reflective of our core values — education, humanity, and ownership. We have a proud tradition of hiring talented colleagues regardless of their experience at previous companies or degrees they’ve earned.

We recognize that creating a truly diverse, equitable, and inclusive organization begins with a fair and transparent hiring process. Here is what candidates have experienced in our previous hiring rounds:

Virtual Video Screening

The Virtual Video Screening includes a 30 minute conversation with an 8th Light Recruiter. This stage provides an opportunity for you to share your past professional experiences in addition to your motivations for pursuing a career within software development.

Have questions about the types of projects we work on, clients we serve, or perks of being an 8th Light? Don’t be afraid to ask!

Take Home Technical Assessment

Our Take Home Technical Assessment is a chance to demonstrate your abilities through building a small program in a language of your choosing. This assessment component will also require you to review a piece of source code to identify potential issues.

Pairing Technical Interview

The Pairing Technical Interview will present you with an opportunity to code incrementally with an 8th Light Crafter. It’s okay if you’ve never pair programmed before. Check out these helpful tips and insights on Pairing.

Throughout the pairing exercise, do not be afraid to ask questions and seek out help from your pair if you face any blocks or challenges.

Non-Technical Consulting Interview

During the Consulting Interview, we’ll be asking you to draw from your personal experiences to tell us about a time when you exhibited a particular behavior — describing the situation, actions you took, and the outcome. The focus will be on interpersonal and consulting skills.

You also will have the opportunity to ask questions toward the end of the Consulting Interview.

When is the next cohort?

We hope to reopen applications toward the end of 2022. In the coming months, we will make updates on our recruitment timeline, cohort schedules, and the selection process.

How do I apply? Who can apply?

We hire apprentices in cohorts and we open applications at several points throughout the year. Our most recent cohort began in early February 2022. These are full-time paid positions.

Certainly, anyone can apply. Our program tends to be a great fit for people early in their software careers. Many applicants attended a code school or took programming courses elsewhere. Some studied Computer Science in college, while many are career changers. Some are self-taught and others took a formal route.

How is the apprenticeship structured?

The apprenticeship can last up to 8 months. That said, we start by aiming for 5-7 months, which is how long most apprenticeships last. You are matched with a primary mentor and support mentors who you'll work with throughout the duration of your apprenticeship. You spend the first several months building skills through mentor guided self-study, small team projects, pairing, and workshops. You’ll then spend 5-7 weeks working on a client team as an apprentice before being evaluated for promotion to Crafter. The vast majority (98%+) of our apprentices are promoted to Crafter.

What are the benefits like?

Please see a list of our benefits here.

What is the PTO policy?

In the US

  • 4 weeks PTO to use however you would like
  • 3 Wellness Days
  • 9 company holidays
  • 1 Day of Service

In the UK

  • 28 days of annual leave for full-time employees (inclusive of bank holidays)
  • 1 Day of Service
  • 3-day closure between Christmas and New Year for full-time employees
  • Enhanced sick leave: 15 Business Days

Will this role be virtual/remote?

In the US, we have a remote-friendly setup and location (within the continental US) will not be a disqualifier.

For the UK, we have a remote-friendly setup. Currently, We are only hiring apprentices located within commutable distance to London.

Who are some of 8Ls clients?

We have worked with LegalZoom, Ticketmaster, Groupon, Grubhub, Cars.com, Shure, and more. We’re in many industries including Fintech, Healthcare, Ecommerce, Logistics, and Inventory Management.

What kind of languages do you use?

We're "language agnostic," which means we are generalists who are comfortable jumping in and delivering idiomatic solutions in any tech stack. We work on Macs (or occasionally Linux) and typically deploy to the cloud, browser, or mobile devices. The top languages in use by our teams and clients are: JavaScript/TypeScript, Ruby, Java, Python, Elixir, C#, Swift, Kotlin, Go, Clojure, and Scala.

What kind of projects do you work on?

Our teams often work alongside existing tech teams, mentoring client developers explicitly or implicitly, and for some clients we are the entire tech team. We work across all kinds of platforms: cloud APIs, native mobile, microservices, web front-end, and more.

How does project assignment work?

We have a staffing specialist that works to match skills and client needs. The staffing specialist works to align with your interests and goals to the best of their ability.

What does the process of advancing from apprentice to crafter look like?

You will be supported through mentorship, coaching, guidance and technical learning on key competencies in our Learning Outcomes Matrix. Once you have sufficiently covered a base line of those key learning outcomes you will be evaluated as ready to be placed on a client engagement as a crafter. The expectation is that learning will continue on the job (during client engagements) but that you will have the foundational/ corner stones in place through the Apprenticeship to thrive.

I'd love to hear a bit about growth beyond the apprenticeship and what that transition looks like.

Growth beyond the apprenticeship is still somewhat guided on the Learning Outcome Matrix, but our Career Grid will also allow you to deepen your technical prowess and demonstrate more technically as well as your increasing organizational/ client influence and decision making capabilities.

Does every apprentice advance onto a crafter?

Yes, this is virtually always the case (of course there can inevitably be a range of unforeseen events in any employment arrangement). We are deeply tied to a long history of successfully hiring, retaining and growing apprentices into future leaders within the organization. Our desire is to use a customizable approach to ensure all hires reach their potential.

Is there a resource that outlines a recommended knowledge base going into the application process? If not, could you share a bit about expectations?

No, no such knowledge base exists, since we are amendable to hiring people who are self taught, or boot camp trained. What we’re really looking for at the end of the day is how a person can actively demonstrate a dedication and commitment to pursuing software as a career path and the proactive and preparatory steps they are taking to support that endeavor. In addition, research and a clear idea of how 8th can support them in turning their technical and consultative passions and interests into a career path.

I'd love to assess whether or not I am ready to apply to this cohort or next accounting for the skill set I currently have.

You can always apply this year or next year or both — we do not turn away applicants that have applied in previous years.

8th Light, Software is our Craft

8th Light is a software consultancy with offices in Chicago, London, Los Angeles, New York, Madison, and Austin. You can follow upcoming 8th Light University events on our Meetup page.

Interested in 8th Light's services? Let's talk.

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