Insight Into… Amul Batra, North Coders M.D.
With the second series of our networking event within touching distance we wanted to take the opportunity to introduce one of our panelists and Northern tech advocate, Amul Batra.
Here is a short introduction to Amul which gives you some Insight to what he plans to bring to the table on Thursday and some of the excellent work he is doing for ambitious individuals entering the world of Digital.
1) Tell us more about you – your current role within Northcoders and background?
I spent 20 years in the music industry, running labels and managing bands. Despite some great success (including a Number 1 record) I decided that I was getting too old for that malarkey and decided to get involved in tech. I had a couple of ideas for startups and a friend suggested learning to code. I randomly met one of the Northcoders Co-Founders and he talked me into joining the first cohort. The rest they say is history. I loved what Northcoders was about. Not just the learning to code part, but also the values and the ambition. We are a diverse and fully inclusive school and we want to be at the heart of solving the Digitial Skills crisis in the North.
I invested personal money into Northcoders and I now support our incredibly talented Northcoders graduates and help them find Software Developer roles at companies across the North.
I sometimes say that, instead of looking after musicians these days, I now manage the rock stars of the future!
2) You have had quite a unique journey into the Tech industry – what do you enjoy about working with people in Tech?
The tech industry reminds me of the music industry when I started my career in the late 90’s – but with fewer egos, more money and a lot less partying(!). There is a real tangible buzz and hunger for talent, whilst at the same time a real sense of collaboration. I love that things like Stack Overflow exists and that crowd sourcing is at the heart of making Software Development such a fast moving beast.
3) You’ve lived and worked in in both London and more recently Manchester – what do you see as the main differences up North?
It is so much easier to get things done and create and grow incredible ideas and businesses in Manchester. There are just so many barriers to entry and so much negative competition in London – both in business and in life – that for me just felt so stifling. I also think that people are just generally nicer so that collaboration is much more possible up here.
4) What advice would you give to anybody trying to get in/get ahead in the Industry?
Never stop learning and never stop being humble. Those Devs who believe they know everything stop being ‘good’ devs.
5) You’ve worked with a lot of different tech companies in the North – what do you think makes a difference in terms of attracting and retaining talent?
Those companies that are prepared to change their ways of thinking about hiring talent are the ones that seem to be reaping the rewards. For example, some Northcoders partners who have hired multiple Northcoders have found that they have had to hire fewer more Senior Devs to manage them. There are 2 of our grads at one company we work with that are already leading teams after 12 months of being there.
6) What’s your relationship/experience with Insight?
Met them at their last event and spoken to a couple of their candidates. They seem like the good guys of recruitment 😉
7) When you’re not working, what do you enjoy doing?
Spending time with my two young kids, going to gigs, watching football, cooking, travelling and of course drinking great beer, whiskey and wine!
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