How Might We Make Tech Fleet Talent More Marketable?

Tech Fleet
2 min readMar 30, 2024

The problem

What makes “breaking into tech” so hard?

Tech roles can be some of the most convoluted for which to qualify. People need on-the-job experience and need cross-functional skills. They often learn, or re-learn, these skills by contributing on a real team.

This doesn’t help new graduates or career changers who can’t find jobs. Without the skills and experience, how does one master the skills and experience?

The answer: Tech Fleet.

The vision

Tech Fleet will push industry standards around “what it takes” to succeed in tech roles. So far, we have focused on experience building. From here, we will help others assess and prove their skills before and after Tech Fleet.

Contributors should be able to understand how far they have come and how far they have to go. Skills should be defined for individuals, roles, and Tech Fleet project phases. Tech Fleet will use skills measurements to match talent to training and paid work.

Tech industry hard skills

“Hard” skills, the skills you need for a specific role, vary across tech roles. People need to understand how they’d perform day-to-day. Some positions are more cross-functional and need training in other roles. For instance, product strategy roles requires UX, product owner, and product manager skills.

Examples of tech industry hard skills:

  • UI design
  • Design systems and components
  • Content writing
  • Research methods
  • Research analysis
  • Customer experience design
  • Backlog management
  • Prioritization and scope
  • Requirements gathering
  • Product-market fit analysis
  • Front-end development

Tech industry soft skills

Education offers the foundation of “hard” skills, while “soft” skills require experience. “Soft” skills are somewhat consistent between tech roles. These are the things that affect success in the role but have nothing to do with the role. For instance, UX designers need facilitation skills to run workshops and get feedback. Developers must manage their time and communicate their needs to others.

Examples of tech industry soft skills:

  • Agile
  • Time management
  • Facilitation
  • Stakeholder management
  • Persuasion and buy-in generation
  • Coaching
  • Interpersonal dynamics
  • Communication
  • Leadership

Measuring “marketability”

What makes a candidate more likely to get hired than the next? We seek to define this in clear terms across all tech roles Tech Fleet supports. This involves a mix of skills and experience, and depends on the role.

Some career paths need cross-functional experience to master the required skills. Some career paths have many levels of “mastery”. With this framework, Tech Fleet contributors can drive their own success.

Working with the industry

Other organizations have defined skill levels in different tech roles. Tech Fleet should not “re-invent the wheel”. We must garner interest and collaboration with the industry to ensure it’s accurate. Tech Fleet should review and assess its own frameworks with the industry continuously. Tech Fleet’s framework will be available “open source” for anyone to use or improve.

--

--

Tech Fleet

A place where UX'ers, product managers, and developers earn their wings in Tech through community education and team expereince. https://techfleet.org