More than 100 companies from the Fortune 500 list have chosen Ukraine as an IT services provider throughout the last year, meanwhile 20% of global software development leaders have already established their offices in Ukraine.
As the number of businesses interested in outsourcing to Ukraine continues to grow, we've decided to collect our insights on hiring developers in Ukraine and structure them into a comprehensive guide, which covers:
- Overview of the Ukrainian IT Talent Market
- 2 Practical Insights that Will Help You Attract Ukrainian Developers
- Hiring Ukrainian Programmers with Daxx
- Tips and Tricks on Recruitment of Remote Developers from Daxx clients
- Answers to Most Frequently Asked Questions About Cooperation with Daxx
Reasons Behind the Rapid Growth of the Ukrainian Tech Talent Market
Ukrainian programmers are known for their outstanding problem-solving skills and ingenuity. The high quality of Ukrainian tech talent in combination with reasonable costs for business establishment stimulated the advancement of the software development market.
It started out primarily with the establishment of outsourcing companies that develop software for American and European companies. As the software outsourcing industry kept growing, product companies, startups, and fully-fledged R&D centers of international corporations began to emerge on the market.
Ukrainian Software Development Market by the Numbers
Ukrainian Tech Market Overview
In recent years, Ukrainian software development market has been growing rapidly, making the country second by number of IT professionals in Eastern Europe. Ukraine ranks 24th in the rating of the top countries for software development. The industry ranked 2nd by the size of exports in 2018, bringing in $4.5 billion in revenue. Latest statistics estimate that there are currently 185K+ programmers in Ukraine, 750+ IT service companies, of which 245 retain 50+ employees.
Ukraine is the 6th fastest growing tech hub in Europe. The rapid growth of the IT market provokes competition for talent and at the same time increases the demand for high quality tech professionals. Multiple educational opportunities help keep the balance between the demand and availability of software developers in Ukraine – there are 40+ universities that offer Computer Science specializations and dozens of private IT schools that are producing 23K+ programmers annually.
Vivid IT Startup Scene in Ukraine
Ukraine boasts a vivid startup ecosystem – just in Kyiv alone there are currently 321 startups. Kyiv also ranks 34th on the list of global startup cities, which means the destination ensures a favorable business environment for the growing number of new companies.
If you decide to hire Ukrainian developers, you'll face competition with local startups that have now grown into large tech companies, these include Grammarly, MacPaw, Depositphotos, Petcube, etc. Your vacancy will also compete with both small and large project outsourcing companies. Ukrainian programmers enjoy the opportunity to cooperate with clients directly, so if you opt for an outstaffing model, you'll have an advantage over project outsourcing companies.
What Are the Top Ukrainian Cities for Hiring Programmers?
There are top 5 software development hubs in Ukraine – Kyiv, Kharkiv, Lviv, Dnipro, Odesa. These cities attract hundreds of international companies annually.
Largest Ukrainian Tech Hubs
Hiring Ukrainian programmers in Kyiv
The largest software development center in Ukraine – it collects 50% of the country's IT potential. The majority of large companies are located in Kyiv, which means the competition for talent is higher than in other Ukrainian tech hubs.
Finding Ukrainian developers in Kharkiv
Competition for tech talent is smaller, yet the IT market is sufficiently large. The city is famous for its abundance of universities with tech specializations.
Hiring Ukrainian software developers in Lviv
Lviv is a rapidly growing software development hub. Many software developers are eager to work in this city due to its geographical and cultural closeness to Europe.
Recruiting Ukrainian engineers in Dnipro
Similar to Kharkiv, competition for talent in Dnipro is less fierce than in Kyiv. The city boasts great people potential and a strong educational basis.
Hiring Ukrainian developers in Odesa
Apart from being a picturesque resort city, Odesa also boasts a developed IT industry. Odesa attracts developers from other Ukrainian cities to work in both IT outsourcing companies and local startups.
Why Choose Ukraine for Hiring Remote Developers?
The Ukrainian software development market attracts foreign businesses for several reasons: highly skilled developers; comfortable geographical location; a large talent pool, which ensures the accessibility of the tech stack you are looking for (in comparison to the American and Western European countries, it will take you less time to hire a team of developers in Ukraine). For example, in the Netherlands you may spend up to 2 years building a team of 5.
In case you're hesitant about whether Ukraine is the best option for you, these 4 facts will help you dot the i's and cross the t's:
- Ukraine is neither cheap nor expensive – quality price ratio in Ukraine is reasonable. The main benefit of the Ukrainian tech market isn't the price, but the flexibility to hire high quality talent that is absent locally. So if you're looking to cut costs, Ukraine is not the best option for you.
- Ukrainians have western mentality. Regardless of geographical distance, corporate cultures of Ukrainians and their Western counterparts are very similar. Though it's quite natural that your opinions will vary from time to time, you won't face major differences in the way programmers manage their work.
- Not all developers in Ukraine have a tech college education. They may use their math knowledge as a basis for further programming self-learning and become great programmers. Ukrainian developers start working at IT companies as trainees or find freelance jobs while they are still learning. This hands-on experience helps them become great professionals.
- Ukrainians aspire to work in IT. In Ukraine, IT is a very popular industry, so many people strive to work there. This means that Ukrainians are ready to push themselves to the limit in order to bring value to the customer and prove they’ve earned their place in the IT sphere.
Good developers are in high demand everywhere, and Ukraine is not an exception. Ukrainian software engineers receive around 10 offers per week, which means developers have the chance to consider each vacancy through the lens of their preferences.
So if you intend to win the attention of Ukrainian developers, you need to: 1. Study the main motivational drivers of Ukrainian developers; 2. Make a big impression on them starting from the first words in your job description.
Keep in Mind the Main Motivational Drivers of Ukrainian Tech Talent:
- Latest technologies
Experienced developers prefer new technologies, as these are usually more efficient to use.
- Greenfield software development
Outdated code and inappropriately documented programming can pose challenges. Ukrainian developers seek for so-called greenfield projects, which presuppose the absence of constraints enacted by the prior code.
- Working on a team
Ukrainian developers enjoy working on a team and are always eager to cooperate with other developers on a project.
- Well grounded projects
Ukrainian programmers value stability and the possibility to influence the process. They prefer using the latest techniques, methods, and tools to produce first-rate code, including automating the development process.
- Fair payment
Good developers need to be well-paid. Yet, a good salary isn't enough to keep a talented Ukrainian developer onboard – it's the combination of company image, team spirit, and ability to influence the development of a product that will help ensure a programmer is eager to stay in the company.
- General plan for development within the company
Discussing career growth in a written or spoken form is necessary to make sure the employee sees a big picture for their further professional development.
- Well-established communication with the client
Ukrainian developers value communication with the client and enjoy the opportunity to be on a similar scale with the local team. Call your remote developers regularly and invite them to team building events to ensure they feel like part of your in-house team.
An Effective Vacancy Description as the Key to Hiring Developers in Ukraine
Job and project descriptions set the foundation for your further cooperation with developers. So the better self-presentation of the company, the higher the level of the professionals that will be attracted. This is especially relevant if you want to hire Ukrainian programmers with a growth mindset – driven professionals who delve into the specifics of the product and only choose projects they are deeply interested in.
Your how-to list on compiling an effective vacancy description:
- Write down all of the requirements for the candidate (both soft and hard skills).
- Characterize responsibilities thoroughly.
- Provide information about the project and its objectives (this will help you find like-minded people who will eagerly follow your big vision).
- Don't forget to put information about the company (add a website address).
- If you want to go to even greater lengths and individualize your vacancy, create a welcoming video about the vacancy and company.
In order to manage the process more efficiently, you can cooperate with a tech partner, who will guide you throughout the entire recruitment process and augment your team with Ukrainian developers. You'll have more time to manage your business and at the same time you will enjoy the opportunity to manage your remote team similarly to your local employees.
Hiring developers in Ukraine with a tech partner like Daxx will help you manage the process both quickly and efficiently. Daxx has already helped 300+ clients extend their local teams with dedicated developers in Ukraine. Here's how it works:
How to Hire Developers in Ukraine?
- Tell us your requirements.
- Review candidates handpicked by our recruitment experts.
- Choose and hire the candidates you like.
- Manage your remote developers directly, while we take care of all organizational issues.
In order to describe our recruitment procedure in more detail, we'll answer the top 3 most frequently asked questions from current and potential clients about the Daxx recruitment process:
- Where Do You Find Candidates?
- What Is the Daxx Recruitment Process?
- How Do You Manage to Retain Developers?
Where Do We Find Candidates?
- Daxx has a well-established candidate database that we've been developing throughout 20+ years of commercial experience – 185K software engineers are accessible by Daxx.
- Our recruitment experts utilize top Ukrainian specialized staffing boards and apply specified software and tools.
- Daxx strives to stay at the heart of it all, so we never miss the opportunity to visit versatile tech and business conferences/events and enrich our database with fresh talent.
What Is the Daxx Recruitment Process?
Our recruitment approach is personalized, meaning we hire Ukrainian software developers according to the specific requirements of each customer. We don't have IT professionals working on multiple projects or just sitting on the bench, which ensures the full dedication of your developers and budget transparency (Daxx fee covers recruitment, administrative management, and daily support). Our recruitment experts find candidates that not only fit your requirements, but also are interested in contributing to the development of your big vision.
First of all, Daxx recruiters scan the candidates and mark down the ones that fit the requirements.
Recruitment professionals check candidates' motivation, salary expectations, their level of English, etc.
After recruiters have gathered enough information about each candidate, they summarize and organize the information to present it to you.
From this point on, you're free to conduct an interview the same way as you do it in your local office or opt for a different tactic – it's your call.
In our experience, we've noted that most client interviews on average have 2 stages:
1. Manager interview – includes questions about previous work experience, motivational questions;
2. Tech interview – evaluates hard skills.
In the case that you have a difficult choice between 2 or more candidates and cannot decide who's the best fit for your vacancy, you can hold an additional interview. For example, it may be organized in the form of an online/offline test.
Successful recruitment is not a final destination – to ensure successful long-lasting cooperation with your Ukrainian developers, we utilize 5 main retention tactics:
We ensure each developer has the opportunity to grow professionally by reviewing their activity within the company every 6 months. We provide our programmers with free regular English classes and qualification courses if a client needs to upgrade the knowledge of their developers.
We keep the salaries of our developers aligned with the market level or higher to ensure your employees receive competitive compensation. In case you or your team members want to review the salary level, Daxx HR/Client managers will help you communicate this question and reach a common understanding.
Direct Cooperation with the Client
Developers can make suggestions and influence your product’s further development, as they work directly with you and your local team. They feel like part of your in-house team and enjoy the opportunity to follow one goal together along with the rest of the team.
Daxx settles software development teams in offices located in the main development hubs (Kyiv, Kharkiv, Dnipro, and Lviv). We provide developers with fully-fledged workstations and all of the necessary facilities for work and rest.
Team Building Events
We organize theme parties and meetings in Daxx offices to ensure developers can improve their knowledge and share experiences with colleagues. Daxx teams also take part in versatile charity and community projects to do good things together. One of these was a Kharkiv International Marathon 2019, where Daxx developers ran 10, 21, and 42 km distances. To find out more about Daxx teams shared activities, visit our Facebook page.
Daxx runners' team at Kharkiv International Marathon 2019
"Use social media, employee advocacy, and Facebook groups to humanize the company’s image, and thereby, make the job offer more enticing."
"Your company’s specialization, work environment, and the technologies used in the process of software development are the main factors that will help you attract the right candidates."
"Make sure the candidates can see the whole picture and can stand in the customer’s shoes to see it from their point of view."
"I’d suggest that everyone who’s thinking of outsourcing works away from the rest of their team for a while. From home, for example. This will give them the idea of what working with a remote team is like."
- Where will my Ukrainian developers work?
Your developers will work in one of the Daxx offices located in one of the 4 major Ukrainian tech hubs – Kyiv, Kharkiv, Dnipro, or Lviv depending on your business needs and requirements.
- What is the difference between Kyiv and other locations?
Kyiv is the capital of Ukraine, so it collects the largest numbers of IT professionals, namely 50% of the country's IT potential. Yet, other hubs, like Kharkiv, Dnipro, and Lviv can boast vivid IT communities that graduate thousands of new tech professionals annually.
- Do you have an office in Amsterdam?
Yes, Daxx headquarters is located in the Netherlands, Amsterdam.
- Is it possible to meet in person with the developers?
Sure! You can visit your developers as often as you like. From our side, we'll provide you with the necessary facilities for you to have a productive and enjoyable experience while working face to face with your developers in a Daxx office. You can also invite your Ukrainian software engineers to your local office.
- Do you hire specialists other than software developers?
We hire IT professionals according to the specific requirements of each customer, you can hire either a senior front-end developer or a DevOps engineer – you are the one to decide.
- How long do employees stay with you?
It is rare for Daxx developers to leave during the first year of cooperation. We hire developers who are looking for a long-standing cooperation with great prospects for professional growth, so they stay usually for a minimum of 1.6 years, with many developers staying up to 8 years.
- Do your developers speak up when I'm mistaken and offer possible solutions on how to do things better?
Ukrainian software engineers are highly motivated and intend to develop great products. They won't be simply doing what they are told, and surely won't keep silent when something goes wrong. In this scenario, they'll be happy to introduce their solutions and will definitely value their influence on the project.
- What's your company size, experience, and past projects?
We have 400+ experts on board, 20+ years of commercial experience, and have already helped 300+ customers from 17 countries. Throughout the past 20 years we have helped clients from a wide range of business domains, to name a few healthcare, Fintech, eCommerce, travel, education, and many others.
To receive more information about hiring programmers in Ukraine with Daxx, contact us via the form below and our experts will get back to you shortly.