Many local and national governments invest in funding to help people develop professional skills that can grow local business and improve their residents' lives. But the West Midlands region of the United Kingdom has become the first region in the world to turn to no-code technology like Bubble as an affordable, scalable solution to drive economic growth and innovation.
This year, a cross-sector partnership called Supertech, funded by the Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership (GBSLEP) launched a free program teaching business professionals how to build web apps without code, using Bubble's no-code web app builder. What started out as a pilot program of 30 people is now expanding to a hundred more opportunities, including a potential university student cohort from the area.
According to Jof Walters of Million Labs, who helps spearhead the UK Bubble bootcamps' education curriculum, the West Midlands already had in-place a development bootcamp where people spend 16-weeks full-time learning how to code. Though they have seen good results from that program, it cost the government around £8,000 per person to train someone into a junior developer.
The new no-code Bubble bootcamp from the Supertech campaign aims to drive similar successful results far quicker and more affordably. As a comparison, Bubble's no-code bootcamps, on which the UK program is based, usually cost around $800 USD per person and run for 8 weeks part-time. That's less than half the time and a fraction of the cost.
The UK program runs for 6 weeks and features lessons on the Lean Startup Method for validating a business idea, as well as how to build a no-code Bubble application. At the end of the program, West Midland residents will have built and launched a fully functioning prototype of a tool or web application using Bubble's no-code web app builder and hosting platform. They can then use those skills to innovate at their existing place of employment or turn the app into a new business for themselves. The bootcamp is open to both employed and unemployed business professionals of the West Midlands, which includes Birmingham, the second-largest city in the UK. The program's later weeks are designed to help guide those who wish to build startups, teaching people how to acquire their first 100 customers and the basics of raising investment.
“The quality of the skills that a Bubble bootcamp teaches, and the potential that a no-code empowered business person has to deliver something meaningful versus a junior developer is substantial," says Jof. He notes that students who complete his Bubble bootcamps have essentially built an app that they can manage themselves as a new enterprise, whereas a talented junior developer is still early on in their tech-learning journey and still needs to find employment.
"If I wanted to create tech skills and jobs, I'd rather have a no-coder than a coder." - Jof Walters, Bubble expert, Million Labs
At Bubble, we are extremely proud to support local organizations who want to help their residents improve their skills and business prospects in meaningful, impactful ways. We've always believed that no-code tools offer a more affordable and accessible path to building a business or fostering digital transformation.
This past year, no-code has attracted major investment from tech giants like Amazon, Google, and Microsoft who believe that no-code is the future. The West Midlands Supertech program and GBSLEP funding serve as further validation that no-code is here to stay, and that tools like Bubble can offer a more scalable and sustainable path to technological participation compared to traditional programming.
You can register for the UK West Midlands program through their online application.
Bubble is a leader in the no-code movement. Bubble offers a powerful point-and-click web editor and cloud hosting platform that allows users to build fully customizable web applications and workflows, ranging from simple prototypes to complex marketplaces, SaaS products, and more. Over 800,000 users are building and launching businesses on Bubble - many have gone on to participate in top accelerator programs, such as Y Combinator, or raise $365M in venture funding. Bubble is more than just a product. We are a strong community of builders and entrepreneurs that are united by the belief that everyone should be able to create technology.