This online coding program guarantees its graduates jobs—or their money back

But hopefully it won’t come to that.
But hopefully it won’t come to that.
Image: AP Photo/Amy Sancetta
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It’s easy to see why so many people are lured by the tech industry. The demand for software engineers is higher than ever, the salaries—even for entry-level jobs—are typically in the six figures, and a degree isn’t even a prerequisite.

But being a programmer does require the ability to code, which is why so many coding bootcamps have cropped up in recent years. The Course Report, which tracks the learn-to-code industry, estimates 16,000 people in the US will complete a coding bootcamp program this year, up from 6,740 in 2014—and that doesn’t include online learning programs.

While many programs tout high job placement rates, very few actually assure their students will end up with jobs after all is said and done.

But Flatiron School in New York City is making a bold promise as it launches its first online course: Put in 600 to 800 hours of work, and you’ll be guaranteed a job within six months—or your money back. The guarantee will also extend to students currently enrolled in its immersive bootcamp program.

Of course, at $1,000 per month, the costs for Flatiron’s new Learn-Verified Web Developer Program are much steeper than its online competitors, such as Code School ($29 a month), Treehouse ($25-$49 a month), and Codecademy (free).

“We want students to take this very seriously,” Flatiron CEO Adam Enbar tells Quartz. “If you just wanted to dip your toe in the water, you just want to learn a little about programing, don’t take this. It’s very difficult, very complex. It requires a huge amount of commitment.”

To prove his point, Enbar says interested parties have to go through 30 hours of work, which they won’t be charged for, before they can even apply. The application will also assess their passion for becoming a developer.

It remains to be seen the types of salaries students of its online program will be able to command, but Enbar said he expects “they will leave with the same caliber of skills” as its bootcamp graduates. To date, about 750 people have completed its immersive bootcamps, and 99% of them have found jobs with salaries averaging $74,000.