Earlywork is now scaling up to include other roles in its program, and has raised a $1.5 million seed funding round led by private investment firm No Brand – the investment vehicle of Ari and Lucy Klinger – with support from Jelix Ventures, Archangel Ventures, Ultraviolet Ventures, former Atlassian president Jay Simons and Monsido executive Sam Rahmanian, among others.
Earlywork has an overall stated goal of becoming one of the world’s leading business schools for the tech industry, and in August expanded its program to Singapore.
“Over time, we want to build a fast-track business for the tech industry globally,” Brockwell says.
Earlywork’s sales bootcamp is part of a broader shift away from traditional degrees, with many students instead keen to take on micro-courses that take just weeks. Tech companies including Google and LinkedIn have offered such programs for years, in what they see as a win-win to help with talent recruitment.
The Albanese government in December meanwhile launched a pilot program, dubbed MicroCred Seeker, featuring 425 microcredential courses from 56 registered providers.
Universities are also getting in on the action, in some cases supplanting their traditional qualifications with microcredential offerings.
A Coursera study last year surveyed 5000 students, and 90 per cent said that if universities included industry based microcredentials as part of an academic course, they would be likely to enrol.
Earlywork investor Rahmanian said economic opportunities lie in bridging the talent gap. He cited a recent workforce report from the Tech Council of Australia that revealed the tech sector is growing at 8 per cent per year, double the growth of other sectors.
Despite a wave of high-profile technology redundancies in the past 12 months, the local technology sector is adding more than 10,000 jobs per quarter.
“The tech industry is ripe with opportunities, and it’s only gaining momentum,” Rahmanian said.
“However, the challenge lies in the fact that many aspiring candidates lack proper guidance on how to break into the tech sector. Traditional educational institutions like universities haven’t adapted quickly enough to bridge this gap.”
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