Uruguay is a top software development destination in Latin America

6 reasons for outsourcing software development to Uruguay in 2021

Home to the delicious gnocchi and among the top 5 producers of wine in all of South America, Uruguay is now also known to churn out excellent software developers, as the Uruguayan IT sector continues to experience rapid growth and transformation. This is fantastic news for those companies abroad, particularly the US, that are looking to hire software developers from Uruguay. Uruguay is an excellent choice to seek outsourcing from because of several factors such as the presence of highly skilled developers, growing infrastructure, low cost of hiring, less difference in time zones, and other attractive benefits.

Benefits of outsourcing software development to Uruguay

🔸 High literacy rate and focus on education of tech talent in Uruguay

A country’s focus on education often determines how skilled and able the future generation will be later in professional fields, since education is the foundation of further learning, essentially. Uruguay’s adult literacy rate in 2016 was calculated to be around 98.36%, an incredible number indeed, and the country ranked 1st in South America and 33rd globally for this same stat. Aside from making primary education compulsory, the Uruguayan education system offers free education at all levels of learning, and the government has initiated the provision of free Wi-Fi and a laptop to each student countrywide.

The country’s large public university in Montevideo, the University of Montevideo, is known for producing highly talented professionals, including software developers who then join the main workforce either in research or as developers for the myriad software and IT companies in Uruguay. Therefore for companies looking for offshore software development in Uruguay, you can rest assured that the developer talent in Uruguay is incredible, and you will find nothing but the best in this field of software development from Uruguay.

There’s also a Project Management Institute in Montevideo — an international association founded in 1969 — that helps to increase the project management skills of Uruguayans.

🔸 The growing infrastructural capacity of Uruguay

With over 700 tech companies thriving in Uruguay’s IT sector, it is no surprise that highly talented software developers can be found in this country. The growth of the software sector in Uruguay is further fuelled by the presence of several tech parks, such as the Pando Science and Technology Park (PCTP), which continually aims to marry business with science and technology to create innovative solutions and products.

In terms of software export, Uruguay is among the top development centers in South America to export software development services. Moreover, the National Agency for Investigation and Innovation is a governmental body that supports and funds innovative ventures of different kinds and encourages research and development. Another factor that encourages the growth of IT companies is that these firms are exempt from paying income tax for the money they earn via export or outsourcing of IT services and development work. Thus, US companies should be aware that Uruguayan developers, highly skilled and encouraged from all sides in the IT sector, are a valuable resource and that outsourcing software development to Uruguay is a smart choice.

🔸 The low difference in a time zone with the United States

The main difference between offshore and nearshore software development is that the partner companies from the last are located in the same time zone or with a minimal difference. And countries like Uruguay have a major advantage when it comes to time zone differences with the United States, as compared to countries in Eastern Europe or even Asia, which have a 10-12 hour time gap with the US and are hence not preferable. Uruguay, however, is only one hour ahead of the US, which ensures that when a US company chooses to hire overseas programmers from Uruguay, most of the communication can happen in real-time.

Real-time communication allows more collaboration between the developer team from Uruguay and the US client, so the response time is greatly reduced, and the project can be completed on time due to prompt communication. The likelihood of the developers working around the same time as the US company is high, so little to no time is wasted in getting back on queries and fixes.

🔸 A one-team experience common for Uruguayan outsourcing companies

Since the software development sector is thriving in Uruguay, most developers are fairly content with their jobs and teams and are less likely to shift from team to team frequently. This high retention of developers spells good news for US companies that want offshore software development from Uruguay. It ensures that the companies get to work with the same team of developers from the start of the project to its end; hence a one-team experience can be expected.

The one-team experience is also really beneficial for the company because the same team throughout the entire project means that there is no disruption in work that would occur otherwise if developers kept leaving. Also, there is a smooth flow in the work process, and the project is delivered within the deadline because of the seamless experience. No matter do you need product development services, web development, create mobile applications, or even custom software — working with the same team from start to finish is always a benefit that helps your team to save time and money.

🔸 Professional services of software outsourcing in Uruguay 

Many US companies worry about the quality of work they will receive if they seek outsourced development, but with Uruguay, that is simply not going to be a problem. Software developers from Uruguay are very focused on their work because education and learning are very important to Uruguay’s culture, and the developers have a keen interest in learning through their work. Uruguay as a software exporter is actually known globally for the proficiency in its IT sector shows in quality testing and assurance. So US companies can rest easy knowing that their development work will be in good hands and they will get quality software if they decide to hire remote development teams from Uruguay. Uruguay’s work culture and practices are also quite similar to the US’s, which makes working with Uruguayan developers much easier and hassle-free.

A major concern US companies have regarding outsourcing services is that the developers may not be able to speak English, and thus, there will be miscommunication and language issues. However, if you are looking to hire software developers from Uruguay, you need not worry about this. Developers from Uruguay are decently skilled in speaking English and scored 54.08 on the English Proficiency Index in 2019, ranking 3rd in English speaking in entire Latin America. Since the developers from Uruguay can speak English well, you will be able to communicate easily with them, and there won’t be any confusion or misunderstanding due to language during the project. An added advantage of hiring the Uruguayan developer team via YouTeam is that during the process, you have the liberty to choose the team you wish to work with, and can properly analyze if the team will be the perfect fit for your needs, before hiring.

🔸 Low cost of hiring software development company from Uruguay

There is no dearth of skilled developers in the US as well, but US companies often do not prefer to hire them because of the high cost of hiring and often the uncertainty of the work quality. This problem is eliminated if the company wants to hire software developers from Uruguay, as there is a significant cost advantage to doing so. The average salary a developer in the US earns annually is about USD 74532, while an Uruguayan software developer earns around USD 35819 annually, which is considerably much lower. This means that US companies that choose to hire Uruguayan developers will have to pay much lower a hiring cost than they would have to if they went for US developers instead.

Currently, since the Uruguayan market is still growing, it is not very competitive, so companies can enjoy the lower cost of hiring Uruguayan developers for the time being at least. What’s best here is that although you pay a lower price to hire these developers from Uruguay, the high quality of work they provide is at par with any developer you could hire within the US. Thus, an excellent cost-benefit makes Uruguay a great choice to seek developers from.

What to watch out for when outsourcing development process to Uruguay

When you are looking to hire overseas programmers from Uruguay, you can be assured that it is a trustworthy destination to seek outsourcing from, and you will receive high-quality work. However, there are still a few points you should definitely keep in mind whenever you go for remote outsourcing. It is important to keep these pointers in mind before and during the project so that your project is completed successfully without any hindrance.

  • Since it is a remote project and all communication will hence happen remotely, be sure to brief the development team right from the beginning regarding timelines, expected delivery dates for the phases of the project, and by when you hope to achieve certain milestones. Discussing these things before starting the project will give the development team an accurate idea of the dates they need to adhere to and will prevent unforeseen delays and miscommunications.
  • The value of having a technical expert on your side to review the developer’s tasks cannot be stressed upon enough. Do ensure that you have a technical person on your team who will be able to oversee the technical parts of the project and will inform if there are any errors or queries. This will save you loads of time, effort, and money, and will also ensure that the timelines you fixed earlier are adhered to, and there is no loss in any way to the project.
  • Do take the time out to review and assess the developer’s work profile thoroughly. Don’t be shy to ask for client reviews of their work, and assess carefully whether this developer has the skills you are looking for and will gel well with your team for the project or not. Based on that understanding, you can go ahead and hire the developer if you liked the profile.

Now that you have proceeded through the above steps, it is still necessary that you keep certain tips in mind during the project that will help you going forward and will avoid any misunderstanding between you and the developer team.

  • You will need your technical expert to be present throughout the project as well, just like they were before the project. You cannot ask a non-technical person to perform the task of overseeing and guiding the development team, because that might result in irreparable errors due to lack of technical know-how. Only the technical expert will be able to help here by working closely with the developers.
  • Whether you hire software developers from Uruguay or anywhere else, one thing you should be clear on from the start is that if there is any unexpected delay in the project timeline, the respective side should inform the other side immediately. If you give this as a clear instruction from the beginning, there will be very little loss of time and effort as the developers will keep you updated, and as a result, the project will proceed smoothly.
  • Be sure to maintain constant communication with the developer team so that both sides have a clear idea of where the project is going, what is expected next, and will be able to ask for information/data as needed. Regular communication will ensure that crucial queries are resolved quickly, problems are solved in collaboration, and the project timelines are met.

Although Uruguay itself is a reliable destination to choose when seeking outsourced development, it is a good practice to follow the above-mentioned tips whenever you hire outsourced IT professionals from another country. This is because remote outsourcing has many advantages, but it has a few disadvantages as well, which you should be aware of before actually hiring the outsourced teams. Similarly, there are a few drawbacks to outsourcing from Uruguay as well, as discussed below.

Disadvantages of IT outsourcing to Uruguay

In the early years of outsourcing, Asian countries like India and China had the maximum popularity; the US and every other country seeking outsourced work wanted it from these nations. While still in the list, countries from Asia are not as much in demand anymore due to the vast time zone difference and other issues such as IT scams in the case of India, and dubious quality of development work in the case of China. As such, countries like Uruguay from South America have gained popularity as a top outsourcing destination. There are many factors that make it wise to hire software developers from Uruguay, but there are possible difficulties and disadvantages too.

One possible problem US companies can run into is legal issues regarding employment if the company is not careful enough. Uruguayan employment laws are very different from those set in the United States, and thus the US company will have to classify the job description correctly in order to avoid legal trouble.

This problem is significant for companies that want to hire developers in-house. But if you find an outsourcing partner in Uruguay — a software company that already hired developers, designers, and QA engineers in its talent pool — you sign a contract with this company and don’t need to worry about all the employment aspects. Your development partner will take care of everything.

And hiring software engineers from Uruguay via the YouTeam platform makes the whole process even safer because YouTeam works only with trusted service providers. And because the platform facilitates all questions related to legal aspects, payment, and communication between partners. So that the clients can concentrate on their development project.

Another issue that can arise is that although Uruguay’s IT sector is growing in leaps and bounds, there are still some shortcomings with reference to the tech infrastructure and R&D facilities, which, while noteworthy, may still not be at par with US standards. This could cause some difficulties in the project process and may lead to a delay in completion.

A final, but minor issue is related to political unrest and instability. Although Uruguay is a considerably peaceful nation, the social and civic environment is not free of turmoil, and this might cause some problems potentially for US companies seeking to hire developers from there. However, this is not very likely to occur, as Uruguay has fairly good relations with the US, and major political instability hasn’t occurred in Uruguay in several years.

Key Takeaways

Uruguay is currently one of the best options to seek outsourced development. Among the many reasons why it is wise to seek offshore software development in Uruguay, are certain factors such as the highly advanced and forward-looking education sector of Uruguay, the great focus on innovation and R&D, English-speaking developers, and high professionalism. To conclude, these are the main takeaways as to why Uruguay has made it to the list of top countries to hire outsourced developers from.

Developed education sector: Uruguay’s education sector is doing very well currently with high literacy rates and constant encouragement to students for learning and studying further. The opportunities provided by the universities and facilities like free Wi-Fi enable students to perform well and pave the way for potential software developers.

High infrastructural capacity: Uruguay has more than 700 tech companies now and well-known tech parks that drive the innovation in the IT sector of the country while providing new chances of learning and development to young professional developers.

Reduced time difference: Being only an hour ahead of the US, Uruguayan developers can work in real-time in collaboration with US companies. Thus the company can be assured that timelines are met, and there is no miscommunication or delay in response.

One-team experience: Uruguayan software developers tend to stay with one job, and due to this high retention in the IT sector, US companies can expect the same developer team to work with throughout the project.

Superior quality services: Uruguayan developers, with their high focus on innovation and delivering quality work, will put in the same high-quality work one would get in the US as well. Moreover, most Uruguayan developers speak English fluently, so there will be no barrier to communication.

Cost-benefit: The average salary of an Uruguayan developer is much lower than that of a US-based developer. So hiring a developer from Uruguay means you have to pay less for the same high quality of services you would have had to pay a lot more to get in the US. That is one of the most convincing benefits for software development outsourcing to LATAM in general, and to Uruguay in particular.

Want to outsource your software development to Latin American countries? Read our other articles about such outsourcing destinations as MexicoBrazilArgentina, Colombia, Costa Rica, and Chile.

Written by
Svetlana Shevchuk

Digital Marketing Specialist at YouTeam, a Y Combinator-backed marketplace for building remote dev teams.

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