Outsourcing software development to Poland
Just a couple of decades ago, tech experts associated offshore software development mainly with India or the Philippines. However, today, the offshore tech talent pool has extended a lot, embracing the countries of Eastern Europe.
According to data collected by Stack Overflow, the number of programmers in the Central and Eastern European region counts 1 million people. About a quarter of them lives and works in Poland (250,000). Next is Ukraine with 166,000 and is followed by Romania (118,000) and the Czech Republic (100,000). In the remaining countries, the number of specialists engaged in coding is less than 100,000.
In this article, we are going to find out why Poland is so attractive for tech startup founders and what are the best ways to build an offshore development team in Poland. Finally, we will shed light on the skills and personalities of Polish developers.
- Capital: Warsaw
- Official Language: Polish
- Currency: Polish zloty
- Population: 37.8 million
- Timezone: GMT+2
- Number of developers: 250,000+
- Business Climate: A2
- Risk Assessment: A4
- Political Stability (scale -2.5 to 2.5): 0.5
- Ease of doing business: 40/100
- Human Capital/Skills: 72.1/100
*Business climate risk ratings: A1 (very low), A2, A3, A4, B, C, D, and E (extreme)
*Country risk assessment: an estimate of the credit risk on business in the country. Ratings: A1 (very low risk), A2, A3, A4, B, C, D, and E (extreme).
IT Industry in Poland: Statistics and Facts
Every 4th programmer from Central and Eastern Europe lives in Poland. Isn’t it a valuable reason to outsource software development to Poland? Here are some proofs that this country is one of the constantly growing IT markets and the best countries for outsourcing:
- 25% of offshore programmer talent in Eastern and Central Europe is located in Poland.
- In Poland, 1.4 persons per 100 are software developers.
- Every year about 15,000 students specializing in information and communication technologies graduate from Polish universities. At the same time, about 80,000 students are currently studying to become software developers. It means that the country receives an ongoing, ever-rising tidal wave of tech talents on a yearly basis.
- Poland is ranked 14th among the top 20 digital nations according to the Tholons Globalization Index 2021. Additionally, the same index reports that Krakow belongs to the top 20 super cities in terms of digital innovation.
- Poland is featured in Gartner’s top 30 countries for offshore services.
- The Polish IT market is growing at a stable rate of 5 – 10 % a year.
- Poland features the greatest number of software developers – more than 250,000 – according to the developer population statistics in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) by Stack Overflow.
- Global IT giants such as Microsoft, Google, Oracle, Cisco, and Intel have their research and development centers (R&Ds) in Poland.
Software Developers in Poland: Personalities and Skills
Currently, 250,000 programmers work in Poland, accounting for as much as 25% of the entire developer community in the Central and Eastern European region.
As you can read from the Central & Eastern Europe Developer Landscape 2017 survey, in most countries of our region, there is a clear concentration of programmers in capital cities. Latvia ranks first in this ranking, as many as 93% of all software developers living in Latvia work in Latvia. For comparison, in Warsaw, this number is only 29% (over 74 thousand), which means the smallest degree of concentration in the whole region. Poland is dealing with several dynamically developing IT centers, which makes the country even more attractive to investors. Another largest offshore development center bringing together programmers is Kraków (32.5 thousand programmers), followed by Wrocław (24.3 thousand), Katowice (24.2 thousand), Poznań (22.4 thousand), Tri-City (16 thousand .), and Łódź (10.7 thousand). This gives Poland as many as 7 centers that can boast a population of more than 10,000 polish software developers.
According to ratings on Clutch, Polish software engineers are known as reliable, honest, and highly professional, with excellent communication skills and high business etiquette standards. Besides, they adhere to deadlines, provide innovative solutions to complex problems, and use only the latest technologies.
Polish Developers work mostly at international software development companies, which have their offices there, however, Poland provides also access to a relatively large talent pool of high-quality software developers to the greater marketplace.
According to OECD data, 43.5% of the population, aged 25-34 in Poland are educated to a tertiary level. There is a range of recognized universities, providing good education with a focus on science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) such as the University of Warsaw, AGH University of Science and Technology in Kraków, Poznan University of Technology, Wrocław University of Technology etc. The programming skills of the developers in Poland are top-notch, ranked 3rd on Hackerrank:
Why Build an Offshore Software Development Team in Poland?
The following reasons make Poland one of the world’s most attractive destinations for tech talent outsourcing:
- Competitive rates. The cost of living in Poland is lower than in neighboring Western European countries, so the salaries are 20 – 50 % lower than those in Western Europe or the United States. As for the developers, the average yearly salary of a software engineer in Poland is $ 25,800. This is almost three times lower than the same salary in the United States, according to PayScale. However, the quality of software development services remains the same as in the United States or Western Europe.
- Convenient location. Located in the heart of Europe, Poland is close to the major European financial centers such as London, Paris, and Frankfurt, with convenient flights to those and other destinations. Additionally, the timezones of Poland and most European countries are the same or differ up to 2 hours. The US time zone difference with Poland can be just 6 hours, depending on the city.
- Prospering IT market. The IT sector in Poland consists of three interrelated sub-segments: hardware, software and IT services. It is the IT services market that is growing fastest. The software sector is expected to grow at 7.4% per year. Poland has the largest IT specialists pool in the entire CEE region. Its broad ecosystem of startups, entrepreneurs, and enterprises, combined with robust digital infrastructure, inspired many global businesses to move their operations to Polish outsourcing hubs. Thanks to software development outsourcing to Poland, small towns, as well as big cities, got a development boost.
- EU membership. Poland is a member of the European Union, which makes collaboration with specialists including software development companies and software engineers from this country stable, reliable, and secure. The EU membership is especially beneficial for fintech startups because it is important for them that the offshore or nearshore country complies with the EU regulatory structure. Besides, like other EU members, Poland is currently subject to the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). It means that the client data will be safe in case of collaboration with Poland.
- Stable economy. Despite the hard times that Poland experienced during its struggle for independence, now the Polish economy is the most stable among the Eastern European countries. Additionally, as of 2018 Poland belongs to the top 10 countries in entire Europe that have the biggest GDP. Since 1990, the Polish GDP has increased by more than 7 times, which is the largest GDP growth in the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and in Europe.
- Similar cultural and business etiquette standards. Culturally speaking Polish people have quite a Western mindset, despite their communist past. There are no dramatic cultural differences between developers from Poland and the US or Europe as it would be with, for example, software engineers from India or China. There can be some minor differences that will not have a huge impact on the business development teams in Poland. Having been a part of the European Union for 14 years, Poland has absorbed the western mentality, and now it is ready to collaborate with clients from western cultures.
- Professional service and English-speaking developers. The Polish IT market is growing and outsourcing services are widely offered in software development companies. So, most Polish software developers are prepared to work with foreign clients and demonstrate an excellent knowledge of English, meaning that there will be no communication problems.
- Favorable tax conditions. Major Polish cities such as Krakow are special economic zones, which grant income tax exemptions to the interested investors. In such a way the government creates favorable conditions for the growth of the IT industry.
The Cost of Hiring Software Developers in Poland
The same as in all other outsourcing destinations, the cost of hiring software developers from Poland can differ due to many factors like the required technology stack, tech and soft skills, experience, location. Down below, you can find the stats of average software developers’ rates based on these factors.
Yearly Salary Rates For Junior, Middle, And Senior Software Engineers In Poland
The numbers below consist of the average developers’ rates, which mean what developers earn for their work. But it doesn’t include any additional expenses.
The average base salary for software developers in Poland is about $25,800 per year.
The average yearly salary for junior developers with less than a year of experience is around $12,450.
The salary for a middle developer with 1-4 years of experience is $24,265.
Senior software developers with 5-9 years of experience can earn around $31,608 per year.
Experienced developers with more than 10 years of work in IT earn an average salary of $38,870 per year. Such specialists usually work as team leads, managers and software architects.
Average Salary Rates In Poland Based On Technologies
The most popular software technologies and average hourly rates for each case are listed below. You can also see the comparison with the US rates and average rates of Polish developers on the YouTeam platform.
Two columns with the average rates of Polish and US developers include only the salary that the engineer earns. No additional bonuses, hiring costs, and expenses for the equipment/tools/software are not included. In the column of YouTeam rates, you can see the total price you will pay for an outsourced software developer. Any additional expenses won’t be required.
|Average Polish developer’s rate||Average rates in the US||Average rates on YouTeam platform|
Source: Erieri, SalaryExpert, PayScale, YouTeam
Hourly salary rates to hire senior developers from Poland
Most well-established businesses aim to hire Polish programmers with years of experience and solid knowledge and skills required for complex software projects. We have gathered data about the hourly salary rates for senior developers in Poland. Again, you can see the comparison with the US rates and the price for a polish software developer when you hire with YouTeam.
|Polish senior developer’s rate||US senior developer’s rates||Senior developer’s rates on YouTeam platform|
Source: SalaryExpert, Glassdoor, Indeed, YouTeam
Looking for Offshore Software Development Team in Poland: Hiring Options 2021
If you have decided to start IT outsourcing to Poland, we recommend that you consider several ways to hire offshore developers and choose the option that fits you best. Currently, the following options are available:
Consulting the Local Recruiters
You can contact a freelance or self-employed recruiter on, for example, LinkedIn, and ask them for help in finding a perfect development team in Poland for your project. Such recruiters collaborate with a wide range of software development companies in Poland, helping them to find clients like you and thus acting as an intermediary between you and the companies or software engineers. Basically, you will need to do the following:
- Send your project requirements and desired skill set to the recruiter.
- Wait until the recruiter looks for suitable candidates in outsourcing companies with which they collaborate or contact individual developers from their talent pool.
- Interview the shortlisted candidates.
- Hire the candidates that have passed the interview.
Though working with a recruiter can save you lots of time searching, you can actually spend more time waiting until the team is formed, all contracts are signed, and the project starts.
Collaborating with Software Companies in Poland
This is the most “traditional” way of building offshore development teams. You hire a team of developers who are employed at the Polish software development company and have the skillset and technology stack that suits your project. The process typically looks as follows:
- You contact the offshore development company in Poland to give information about the project, set the deadlines, and specify the skill set that is required for the successful completion of the project.
- The company’s internal talent acquisition specialist or recruiter interviews the shortlisted candidates.
- In some cases, you can personally interview the candidates as well.
- You hire candidates whose skills have been confirmed during the interview.
In the case of working with a local agency, you will often need to cover overhead expenses such as payroll, vacations, sick leaves, insurance, office space rent, etc. Additionally, you may not be able to scale the team in the course of the project. Finally, it can take you months before the company forms your team and allows you to kick off the project. Therefore, the traditional model of collaboration with offshore software companies in Poland is a bad practice for startups.
Remote Contracting Websites
You can post job offers on local job boards in Poland where developers can check your requirements and apply for your vacancy. Also, you can look for the CVs of the developers there and invite suitable candidates for the interviews.
Some remote employment websites and job boards in Poland are:
Searching Freelance Platforms
You can compile a team from scratch by looking up the profiles of Poland developers on freelance platforms such as Upwork or Guru. Here’s how it works:
- You sign up for an employer account at a freelance platform.
- You search for freelancers by either looking up their profiles and sending them invitations to an interview or publishing a project description and have the freelancers apply for this job.
- You schedule the interviews with the shortlisted candidates.
- After the interviews either via the platform or via Skype, you choose the most suitable candidate.
- You send a job offer to the developer(s) that has/have successfully passed the interview.
- The developer accepts the offer and the contract starts.
- You kick off the project with the newly hired freelancers or, if you are already at the MVP building stage, introduce a new team member to the others.
Freelancers are typically self-employed and do not work for any company. Your team members can even be distributed throughout the world, is based not only in Poland. Actually, it is quite difficult to manage such a team, so freelance platforms might be quite a problematic option when hiring a development team in Poland. Moreover, collaboration through the freelance portals is not that reliable, as the freelancers are “free” people, not bound by any official agreements. They can leave any time they want, and you have no refund guarantee, so this can harm your project, which is especially unacceptable for a startup.
Collaborating with Dev Shops via a Tech Talent Marketplace
YouTeam is a Ukrainian startup combining the reasonable rates that you would get on freelance portals with the reliability that you would get from collaboration with an offshore software agency. We offer a tech talent marketplace – an innovative way to connect the clients looking for an offshore development team with skilled developers from Poland and other leading offshore countries.
Why Choose YouTeam to Build an Offshore Development Team?
YouTeam can be compared with Amazon where you can buy software development services. Amazon cooperates with thousands of e-commerce shops that sell their products via its platform. Amazon customers use the platform for free because this e-commerce giant gets revenue from the shops that it collaborates with. Likewise, YouTeam collaborates with the dev shops that provide high-quality software development services. We feature the profiles of dev shop developers on our platform so you can look through those profiles and choose the talents that suit you best. Other benefits are as follows:
Strict Selection Criteria for Vendors
We evaluate the vendor dev shops that would like to join YouTeam according to the following criteria:
- Proven track record
- External ratings
- Technology stacks
- Legal documentation
- A successful personal visit to the company
- Internal multi-stage interviews with offshore developers at a webshop
Any discrepancies between the advertised skills and the actual performance of the developers are totally unacceptable for us. If this still happens, we block the account of the responsible vendor at the platform and give the client a refund for the recent invoicing period.
Dedicated and Scalable Teams
YouTeam does not collaborate with freelancers, though the vendor developers can work remotely. Each software engineer profile at YouTeam is related to a specific webshop that employs them on a full-time basis and completely legally. Each webshop is responsible for the featured developers.
The developers whom you hire through YouTeam will dedicate all of their time to your project. You can find only the upper-middle and senior developer profiles on YouTeam. It means that in most cases they will deliver work of exceptional quality. Finally, you can scale the team whenever a need arises – just notify us within a two-week period so we can quickly help you extend the team.
As we have already mentioned, traditional models of hiring an offshore development team in Poland may take months of your time but this is not the case with YouTeam.
- When using the traditional outsourcing model, you will have to wait for a week until the teams are shortlisted. With YouTeam, it will take you less than 48 hours to find and hire the best offshore developers.
- Under the traditional model, it may take you weeks to sign a contract. With YouTeam, it will take you one day.
- The traditional model allows you to kick off the project within several months. With YouTeam, it will take you a couple of weeks.
The annual rate of a developer in Poland hired via YouTeam is usually lower than the annual median salary for the same job in the United States. At the same time, we guarantee almost the exceptional quality of the tech talent we offer to our clients.
The Bottom Line
Poland belongs to the world’s top 3 countries with the best developers and attracts tech startup founders because of the following reasons:
- A great number of IT and communication students graduates from Polish universities each year.
- Poland belongs to the top 50 digital nations according to Tholons Globalization Index 2018 and is featured in Gartner’s top 30 countries for offshore services.
- The Polish IT market is growing at a stable rate of 5 – 10 % a year.
- Global IT giants have their R & D centers in Poland.
- Polish software engineers excel both in personal and tech skills. They have a western mentality and know business ethics. Polish developers also demonstrate advanced knowledge of English.
- Developers in Poland offer affordable rates because of the relatively low cost of living.
- Poland is located in the heart of Europe and is close to the major European financial centers.
- Poland is a member of the European Union.
- The Polish economy is the most stable as compared with the other Eastern European countries.
- The Polish government provides favorable tax conditions for the IT sector.
There are several ways to hire an offshore development team in Poland, such as collaboration with local recruiters, traditional software development Poland agencies, freelance portals, and tech talent marketplaces. YouTeam is a unique tech talent marketplace that gives its clients access to a large pool of programmers.
- We collaborate with the best software development shops and feature the profiles of dev shop developers on our platform so you can choose the talents that suit you best.
- Each and every webshop that joins YouTeam is subject to a strict vetting procedure, during which we shortlist the best vendors.
- It will take you only a couple of weeks to shortlist, interview, and hire the software engineers as well as kick off your project.
YouTeam is probably the best alternative to other offshore team hiring methods. This is because we combined the reliability of traditional software agencies with the flexibility and pricing of freelance portals. So if you’ve got not that much time to show your first MVP to investors, consider YouTeam as an option to collaborate with offshore software developers. Contact us today and we will gladly answer all of your questions.