PD Coach Guide

This guides the PD Coaches and trainees in understanding their roles and responsibilities in the meetings. This is group work, so you have 1 coach with approximately 4-5 trainees with 1 hour meetings.

Before you start

There are a couple of things that you should do before you start:

  • Read the Code of Conduct carefully and ensure that you understand and agree with it

  • Read the Safeguarding presentation thoroughly

  • Read the Coach guidelines carefully and ensure you understand and agree with them. The guidelines should be followed throughout your volunteering experience

After completing the steps above, you will be assigned to a group during the JS1 module.


What Trainees are expected to do during the coaching programme?

  • Inform your group if you are not available for a meeting

  • Decide what you want to discuss in the next meeting

  • Reflect on what has been discussed and take actions

  • Ask questions

  • Update your career development plan before the meeting. This should include a maximum of 3 actions: focus on Professional Development

  • Do your competencies review before the meeting

  • Always think: “Would I hire my fellow trainee?” If not, give them a clear example of why

  • DO NOT use these meetings for coursework questions - that’s what your cohort slack is for

What’s your responsibility as a PD Coach?

  • Inform your group if you are not available for a meeting

  • Support and encourage initiative for trainees to discuss first

  • Ask open questions to support reflection, not rhetorical or yes/no questions

  • Follow up, e.g. send any documents or links you promised

  • Always think: “Would I hire this trainee?” If not, give them a clear example of why

  • Always guide the conversation about career and professional development. If there are any other questions, guide the trainee to discuss them with the cohort volunteers or trainees

  • Any safeguarding concerns should be raised with the staff (cs@codeyourfuture.io)

  • If faced with a topic you can't/shouldn't help with use this Signposting tool

Meeting topics

1 hour meetings every other week. Make sure to prepare for the meetings.

Meeting topics



Sign up requesting a PD Coach

Let us know your availability using this spreadsheet

Identify trainees with suitable availability, form the group and send the first invite

First meeting - Introduction and setting the scene

- Introduce yourself (overview of career, location, hobby, fun fact)

- Explain why you want a coach

- 1 trainee to send the recurring invitations to the group every 2 weeks

- Introduce yourself (overview of career, location, hobby, fun fact)

- Explain why you want to coach

- Discuss confidentiality vs. privacy (the content of your meetings is private; trainees control how any of their information is shared)

- Agree on how to inform if someone isn’t available

- Agree for trainees to bring an updated Career Development Plan

- Agree for trainees to do their Competencies reflection

- Agree on a meeting slot (every 2 weeks)

Trainees: who are you and what do you want to be?

- Mention a win or loss of the week

- Share your achievements so far and how to build on them, including previous/current employment or experiences relevant to the tech career

- Be clear about the role you want to pursue (Software Developer, QA, PO, DevOps, etc.) and why

- Present your career development plan

- Mention a win or loss of the week. Support trainees with their answers, explain to them what a win/loss can be and encourage them to ‘brag’ a bit if possible

- Support and discuss the transferable skills

- Be curious and give feedback - follow SMART goals approach

Management plans

- Show your time management plan and your goals/priorities

- Give feedback on the plan and goals/priorities

Trainees: competencies auto-evaluation

- Mention a win or loss of the week

- Present your competencies reflection and your reflection on it

- Mention a win or loss of the week

- Guide the discussion to focus on self-awareness


- Mention a win or loss of the week

- Present the research about roles, company and salary you did as a group in session

- Mention a win or loss of the week

- Talk about realistic expectations

- Talk about the market and some KPIs

Blockers + Career plan

- Discuss your main blockers to achieving your career and your actions. Also, explain why these are your blockers

- Give feedback and suggestions

Open theme

- Present your updated Career Development plan, considering your blockers. Help yourself by using the GROW model

Assist trainees, if needed, with a practical understanding of the GROW model

Reflection and guidence

- Bring up a theme/reflection you want support/guidance with

- Ensure you encourage them to ask for support and how to do it. Ask open questions to help them identify these


- Exchange CV info with another trainee and write their CV - compare how harsh/strict you are with yourself vs others

- Support/comment on the differences

- If you have experience, share how you decide on how a CV is good enough for getting someone into an interview

Understanding job descriptions

- Look for possible suitable jobs on several platforms (1 or 2 per person) and make sure you understand the description 100%. Help each other and work as a team

- Ask if they understood the roles and what they didn’t understand. Help with understanding it.

- Ask the trainees to give feedback on the findings (were they suitable/unsuitable jobs, what could be done differently next time, any tips to share, etc.)

- Suggest how far a candidate can stretch to apply for jobs where they don’t meet all the criteria

Reasons for (not) getting hired

- Research the most common reasons someone gets hired/doesn’t get hired—something common for many jobs, not just tech. It can be CV, cover letter, job interview or general-wise

- Share your experience of how you decided not to hire someone if you have done it

- Share your experience of your recruitment journey, including feedback on why you weren’t hired and lack of feedback

Last meeting

- Share what were your main learnings from these sessions

- Thank each other and the coach

- Share what were your main learnings from these sessions

- Thank everyone

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