The rise of the Digital Apprentices.
Internship is so last year. It’s all about getting an apprenticeship, what’s the difference you say? Have a Master/Mentor that looks that looks at your growth is the difference. Here’s why VLT Labs does apprenticeship programme for the designers and developers.
Becoming a sushi chef takes time, the chef’s will often take in an apprentice or two to be their understudy. They will invest ample of time and effort in teaching these apprentice the ropes and at the same time, get them to serve time. Apprentice will have various background and they come with a strong commitment to master a skill set.
There is no internship for achieving the highest form craft,there is only apprenticeship. -anonymous
Design and Development is a career path that is based on crafting skills. There is a growing number of unskilled graduates out there, even if they have gone through internships they are still un equipped for the fast paced and demanding need of the real world.
VLT Labs recently partnered with the likes of MaGIC to run the Accelerated Learning Programme or ALPs (because ALP doesn’t sound cool so we added the letter “S”), The programme runs for 6 months and the apprentice will graduate with a 2 project build and launch that will catapult them into the market.
As an Apprentice
I have a mentor that helps me with my growth.
The apprentice that joins ALPs would at least gone through a dev bootcamp for developers and a basic design understanding for designers. They are then paired with Senior Developers and senior designers respectively, the seniors will then assess and help build a growth path that the apprentice will need to achieve in 6 months.
We’ve had apprentices from various background such as a General Practitioner (Doctor), Consultant, Construction Worker and a Road stall cook (seriously).
I pair Programme/Design
The apprentice will be working very closely with a senior developer/designer. Imagine working day in and day out with someone that has a lot to offer, the learning growth will be exponential. Not only do they learn about their skill sets but the apprentice will pick up a little project management, client management, learning about conflict resolution on top of the product development,development and design processes.
I learn to articulate my thinking to clients
Not all are built to face the clients but having to sit in meetings and understanding the clients need, it will increase the soft skill of the apprentice. In todays world, being able to articulate your thinking process is as important as executing it.
I build and launch real projects
How often have we gone to the market to look for reliable and skilful Designers and Developers only to be saddened by the state that the graduates are in? We can sit and talk about how the Universities aren’t preparing them for working environment,but I prefer to do something about it.
The apprentice that we bring in will have launched at least 1 large project and 1 small project at the end of their 6 months programme.
I work in a team environment
They are a lot of good freelancers out there but not many strong teams of designers and developers. The apprentice are put in a high collaborative environment with Product Managers, Founders and some times the start-up’s on team of designers and developers.
Here are some of the work that was launched from ALPs
is an app that certifies, tracks and reminds of loans between friends, serving as a black-and-white loan cert between the two parties.
GoGet.my is a community platform which helps busy people or businesses outsource their to-do lists, errands and deliveries to a “GoGetter”.
Interns vs Apprentice
Having apprentices is a lot more work, but these guys are coming into the company with a mindset to be better and to grow into respective craftsmen. No disrespect towards the interns, we still need them in the ecosystem but for us (a venture builder) knowing when and who to invest in is crucial.