Jay Motwani has been a Tech Bootcamp mentor four times now. He shares his insights on what students can expect, the benefits they’ll get, and how to get the most from the Tech Bootcamp experience. Read his story. 

Looking back to my time as a uni student, I feel like university is great to learn fundamental skills and understand concepts from first principles but where it lacks is industry experience working with current industry tools such as Cloud (AWS, Azure, GCP), DevOps (ADO, Jenkins) etc. Since joining Accenture through the graduate program, starting in 2020, I can see how much I’ve learnt. I feel that being a mentor with Tech Bootcamp is a great way to help current students get a step ahead with the advice I wish I could go back in time and share with my younger self! 


Giving my husky, Odin a piggyback ride  

My current role is a cloud software engineer in the MyWizard team. We’re like a startup within Accenture, building our own products which the engagement teams can then use to help deliver value to clients. Over the past two years, I’ve had experience both in software development and scrum master roles, now purely focusing on software development.  

I was asked to become a Tech Bootcamp mentor in part because of my work in the MyWizard team. Accenture is always looking for different subject matter experts who can bring knowledge and experience to the bootcamps as mentors, and I am particularly able to help with the AWS and Elastic stack. In addition, because I’ve done both development and scrum master roles, this mix of experience means I can bring different perspectives to the team that I get assigned to. 

I love being a mentor for Tech Bootcamp as it helps me to see how far I’ve come, as well as refreshing my own skills. I love sharing advice with the students – not just technical advice related to their bootcamp project, but also general career advice. It’s also pretty encouraging to know that of the four bootcamps I’ve mentored on so far, my team has won three times! 

Winning Team Adelaide Bootcamp 2021v2
With the winning team from Adelaide bootcamp 

For example, recent bootcamp projects have included developing a COVID tracker application. This was early in the pandemic when the Government Health page didn’t have a map, just a list of suburbs. The team created a website that provided a map for users based on their location to be able to review case numbers and locations visually, which was a genuinely useful and relevant product. Another project was using automation and Internet of Things sensors to monitor a fish tank for optimal conditions. Using sensors, the team created a product where people could track fish tank conditions in real-time via a mobile phone app. 

Bootcamp teams are made up of around four to six students. We try to mix up the skills in each team, so a typical composition is two people who are technically focused like software developers, one who’s a graphic designer, and one person with more general IT skills for project management. This makes it a similar format to the kinds of teams we have at Accenture, with a mix of skills so everyone brings different strengths to the project. 

The format for our four-day bootcamps usually a standard structure. On day one, in the morning you’ll do introductions and get to know your team. You’ll be given a mentor and start scoping work figuring out what needs to be done, the tech features to work on, and how to best use the skills of each person. Over days two and three, you’ll be implementing your plan. I like to tell my teams to aim to have the technical development done by lunchtime on day three, so that in the afternoon, you can spend the second half of the day working on your presentation. Because then on day four, it’s your chance to show off what you’ve created, presenting your work to senior Accenture executives in the afternoon. You want to polish your work and presentation as much as possible, because there are prizes for winning! Then, for our face-to-face bootcamps, the mentors like to take you out for a celebration afterwards. 

Jayception
JAYCEPTION - Team 3 and team 1 recognising our team's hard work 

Apart from the time working in your groups, there’s also lunchtime workshops each day. These are usually information sessions from various Accenture experts, on topics like security or design. It’s a great way to get some additional learning through your bootcamp experience. 

Top tips for getting the most out of Tech Bootcamp 

  1. Ask lots of questions! This is a great chance to tap into the experience of your mentors. Alongside technical questions, your mentors are also happy to talk to you about your career direction and tips for getting the kind of job that you want. 
  2. Be enthusiastic. If you’re doing a virtual bootcamp, be sure to have your web cam on and really try to engage with everyone. 
  3. Embrace the opportunity. Come in with an open mind and be ready to learn. See it as a networking opportunity, not just with the mentors but also with your peers. It’s a great way to meet people from other universities. (Insider tip: The teams that are more open and social are usually the teams that win) 
  4. Be a team player. It’s more important to work effectively with your team members and find a way to use everyone’s strengths than to be a star individual contributor.   

Tech Bootcamp applications are open from 20 April to 23 May 2022. Upcoming bootcamps are in Melbourne (in-person) from 28 June to 1 July, and our first-ever New Zealand (virtual) bootcamp from 5-8 July. Apply now! 

 

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Jay Motwani

Senior Analyst, Accenture Technology, Cloud First ANZ

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