With a mixed package of talks, including those on data engineering, coding for humans not just machines, encouraging diversity within the tech industry and games development, there really is something for everyone at this year’s conference. Speakers come from across the country to present at the event and all are specialists in their field. This is an opportunity for the over 300 attendees to learn, socialise and consider options for the future.
Tech skills shortage
There is a tech skills shortage across the whole country, not just the east, and the conference hopes to help remedy this by inviting students to join it. In 2022Tech Monitor revealed an increase of 191% in job vacancies compared with 2020. And the industry paper Computer Weekly has highlighted that the situation is still dire, with, James Hallam, director of Hays recruitment saying, “we continue to see fewer young people engaging in tech careers each year.”
Bucking the trend
In recognition of the skills shortage, the conference organiser, Alex Scotton, has reached out to Norfolk educational establishments to encourage young people to join the event. In two cases teachers contacted Alex directly to ask if their students could attend the conference.
nor(DEV):con differs from many other conferences in that monies raised by sponsorship are ploughed back into the following year’s conference and into Norwich’s vibrant tech community. Norfolk Developers is a not-for-profit company. As a result of this, the conference has offered 40 free tickets to schools in a bid to encourage students to attend.
Sir Isaac Newton school, Thorpe St Andrew school, Access Creative college and Norwich University of the Arts (NUA), have taken 40 student scholarship tickets. The conference has also allocated 35 tickets to those on a low wage or on benefits.
One of the students attending has said “I’m really looking forward to coming as it provides a unique opportunity to talk to professionals and get an idea of how the industry really works.”
With many recruiters also attending, the conference is an ideal venue for young people to have a chat with them and most importantly, they’ll be able to engage with programmers and developers and plan their futures.
Looking to the future
Thanks to the help of nor(DEV):con, Norwich’s gaming community is receiving support and the newly formed Women in Tech is also flourishing. Software development is a crucial part of the economy, and the current skills shortages endangers all sectors of the economy.
Despite the news that the government has pulled funding from Tech Nation, and the not for profit will cease operating from March, conferences such as nor(DEV):con can be seen as the way forward in encouraging young blood to enter the tech industry. Tickets for the conference are sold out but you can always follow their banter and discourse on the Norfolk Developers’ Discord channel throughout the year and check out forthcoming events.
More from East Anglia Bylines
We need your help!
The press in our country is dominated by billionaire-owned media, many offshore and avoiding paying tax. We are a citizen journalism publication but still have significant costs.
If you believe in what we do, please consider subscribing to the Bylines Gazette from as little as £2 a month 🙏