Leave 250K TC to do coding camp? Plz advise

Walmart.com hellotc
Jan 17 29 Comments

Long time lurker first time poster so thanks for everyone’s input on this in advance. I’ll keep this short as this has been on my mind for some time.

Background: CS undergrad from top 15 university, master from top 3 bschool (non-mba)

Work: consulting 2 yrs and been in strategy and ops role over the past 7 yrs. currently at Walmart ecoom doing corporate strategy as Sr. Manager

Situation: not happy with current career trajectory and looking to switch to full time SWE role. What’s the best way to do this? I’m thinking quit my job and do a 3-month coding camp - is this a goof path? Basically I don’t care about my current TC since it’s not sustainable and the people around me are just so lazy and not ambitious. Walmart.com pays inflated TC but the culture is shit and engineering/tech culture is non-existent. It’s still a retail company controlled by the business no matter how hard they try to convince you it wants to be a tech company - not happening and LMAO.

Also it doesn’t help that prob 80% employees in Bay Area are contractor/vendors.

Goal: want to be full time SWE and so I can be intellectually simulated and the goal is to land at Tier 1 software firms.

How do I make the switch? Teach me masters!

TC: $250k, late 20s

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TOP 29 Comments
  • Microsoft zizizu
    Why not do the same kind of job in a better company?
    Jan 17 2
    • Walmart.com hellotc
      OP
      I just don’t see myself doing excel/ppt as a long term career path. I’d like to be location independent someday and have a hard skill set that’s transferable no matter where I go. Also it doesn’t hurt that TC is good
      Jan 17
    • Microsoft zizizu
      Just be aware that you're trading a good amount of TC for a most likely more demanding job. It depends on the person, but just make sure you have the mental fortitude to handle a shitty day at your new job. Other than that, good luck to you. You might even be able to land it w.o. having to go to coding camp.
      Jan 17
  • Facebook job-huntin
    Switch internally first, learn coding on your free time, pick a technology, web, mobile, data engineering and learn. Rely on online resources and talk to people from that area in your company. Take some pay cut if u have to make this switch. Then after some experience say 6 months to a year, start looking outside. Attend tech conferences, meetups, gain the market trend and perspective, leetcode and interview at multiple places. You will get a much bigger TC later. It will take some time and persistence, but it won’t be very hard. Speaking from personal experience.
    Jan 17 3
    • Walmart.com hellotc
      OP
      Thanks this is useful advice. Everything make sense except how to switch internally first? I have learned rails JavaScript ruby/python Postgres on the side and know how to deploy app on heroku. But everything was learned on the side by myself and I feel I might lack structured learning. I know I can do the job but how do I convince people I can go from excel/ppt to software engineering?
      Jan 17
    • Facebook job-huntin
      Talk to engineers and managers in the teams u are interested. Go for lunch or something. Talk to your hrbp and manager and simply apply. They would like to retain u rather than u going somewhere else.
      Jan 17
    • Facebook job-huntin
      U might be able to interview internally if u ask
      Jan 17
  • Microsoft Bpgp81
    I would kill to get 250K TC doing excel and ppt I love that shit
    Jan 17 1
    • Walmart.com hellotc
      OP
      If you want to cruise through life, then agreed
      Jan 17
  • New Mantel
    How do your hours look? Do you have energy to tackle some of this in parallel? The three months is one consideration. Finding a role that you have the liberty to be selective around would also come into play. Also - is there room to move internally?
    Jan 17 5
    • Walmart.com hellotc
      OP
      Very chill. I work prob 20-30 hours / week. I thought about LC my way out but how would I even land interviews when I have no SWE experience? The CS degree helps but I have no professional SWE experience hence I’m thinking doing coding camp to make the transition. I’ve completed Michael Hartl’s rails tutorial and I really enjoyed it.
      Jan 17
    • Walmart.com hellotc
      OP
      Well I’m trying to transition from non-tech role to tech so moving internally might not cut it.
      Jan 17
    • New Mantel
      LC is good polish around algorithms and particular interview problems. I would still couple that for practical experience (for when you hit the ground running on day-to-day). In your case a side project may be helpful outside of code camps. What type of development are you interested in?
      Jan 17
    • Walmart.com hellotc
      OP
      So you are saying I can land SWE interviews just by showing I’ve done some side projects coming from totally different background?
      Jan 17
    • New Mantel
      More about having the experience to write code on the job (LC tends to focus on solving interview problems vs. practical experience)
      Jan 18
  • PTC / IT
    noogler19

    PTC IT

    PRE
    Oracle, IBM
    BIO
    Sever side java dev, microservices, functional programming scala, distributed systems, IOT
    noogler19more
    Start with Python specialization on Coursera. Try it out in parallel to current job. If you like it.. do more rigorous courses online. If you already have Masters from top univ.. no one in top tier company cares if you have another CS degree... As long as you know everything that a CS guy is supposed to know.
    In my experience.. Coursera is better than coding boot camp.
    Jan 17 1
    • Walmart.com fiVn5$!Br
      I feel so optimistic to hear that! Which Coursera Python course did you try? I want to eventually contribute to Open Source and do my own projects on the side.
      Jan 18
  • Microsoft 4655434b
    This is your idea of ‘keeping it short’???
    Jan 17 1
    • Walmart.com hellotc
      OP
      Haha sry guess once the flood gate is open it’s hard to stop! How can I make the switch to full time SDE?
      Jan 17
  • Walmart.com rand.randm
    Try boot camps while employed. Also start with Coursera Algorithm and Data Structure course to refresh your basics. Also did you try Product Management outside Walmart ? You might find it interesting considering your background and in certain companies even intellectually stimulating.
    Jan 17 0
  • Or keep your cushy job at Walmart and do OMSCS in ML for 2 years. Then apply as an entry level ML eng? That way you keep your inflated salary while prepping for the tech transition. Much slower though. BTW, what is a Masters from a top 3 Bschool, when the Masters isn't MBA? So either Harvard, Stanford, UPenn, but it ain't CS. MSx from Stanford?
    Jan 17 3
    • Walmart.com hellotc
      OP
      Correct Sloan fellow from GSB. I generally like the idea of keeping the job while making the transition but in my case unfortunately I can’t last at Walmart for 2 yrs too many unknowns/politics and I just don’t see myself wasting another 2 yrs doing this.
      Jan 17
    • Can I pm you about your exp in the MSx program?
      Jan 17
    • Walmart.com hellotc
      OP
      Sure
      Jan 17
  • Microsoft xbythjgbn
    Are you in Bay Area?
    Jan 17 1
  • Bain & Company uqRH20
    What you work 20-30 / week making 250K and you want to switch !?

    I've also been thinking about switching, so I explored bootcamps too. But it seems like some employers still think of bootcamps being lower quality than actual CS undergrads or Master grads. So I think if you're set to switch might be safer to do a Masters in CS (could do one that's tailored for non-CS majors).

    But to be honest even if you're a SWE, you're not going to make 250K for a while cause you're going to start from the bottom. So if I were you I'd think twice. If you were younger then maybe switch, but where you are now I think your job is not bad.
    Jun 4 0
  • You have a top-15 CS degree. Right now that degree is white hot and you need like a 1550 SAT (2300 SAT) to even get admitted to such schools. I know because my son got rejected several times already this year. Get active on GitHub, join 2 meetups, and leetcode, and then write a long cover letter and apply for lower SWE roles. Your management experience might fast track you later as a Dev/mgr SWE. Alternately, negotiate to loan yourself out to a Walmart SWE team halftime in preparation for an internal ladder change.
    Jan 17 0
  • Oracle gandalf0
    I'm thinking you should be able to take up a job as a product manager in any tech company.
    Jan 17 0

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