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Discussion on: The Tech Industry is Failing Junior Devs

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Mike Overby

The premise that junior developers are a cost center for the company is bad, tbh.

Every developer needs onboarding time. Every developer asks for help and has communication needs. It is not the case that senior developers clam up and cost the team less in some abstract way. Or else, it should not be. That's a bit of a red flag, to say the least. Not to mention that, as you allude to, a bad senior developer can do things that make the workplace less welcoming to juniors. That's a massive material cost exacted against the company's (and the industry's) future. The only reason that cost is invisible is that the person actively causing harm holds a position of more power than a junior, which is often allowed to shield them.

Like, to be real, the only reason we talk about junior developers this way is to condition them to accept workplace abuse (of whatever kind). If they think they are "lucky" or "fortunate" to have a job, or that the company is doing them a "favor," then they'll be less likely to advocate for better working conditions.