21 Interesting Facts About Outsourcing to Ukraine

For centuries, the hunt for treasure has led people to new and alluring lands, and you could say that IT entrepreneurs are the pioneers of the twenty-first century. If you, like Marco Polo and James Cook, have decided to go overseas for new business opportunities and the path has led you to Ukraine, read our guide – knowing these facts will stop you getting lost in the country's IT jungle, making your experience much more enjoyable than that of those two famous travelers.

1. Ukraine – Klondike of IT experts

Fact number one. This year 13 Ukrainian IT companies are to be found among the TOP-100 outsourcing companies in the world, according to the 2017 Global Outsourcing 100. The entire market of IT talent in our country is made up of more than 110,000 people, taking the first place in Europe.

2. Talent and knowledge

Ukrainian developers often compare themselves with developers in other countries and consider themselves to be by far the best. This may seem a little over-confident, but we do have evidence to support the belief that Ukrainian programmers are highly skilled, creative and have great logical reasoning. For example, Ukraine takes the eleventh place out of 50 countries in the HackerRank list of the most talented developers. According to HackerRank, an HR website for developers and tech companies, Ukraine is in the top 5 countries for such disciplines as IT security (1st position), mathematics, and distributed systems. The Ukrainian Team from Kyiv Mohyla Academy has recently won the Google Global Competition, where the task was to build an app and monetize it. Being ambitious is a driving force in any industry; these guys have the passion and the purpose for further development and are already achieving great results.

Ukrainian developers: talent and knowledge

3. The IT sector and the economy

The economic situation in Ukraine is far from ideal right now, and widespread corruption gets in the way of growth and development in some sectors. It’s not all bad for the IT sector, however, because in Ukraine, everybody knows that IT careers can bring large salaries, so many people are looking to get into this industry. This attracts a lively crowd of new professional staff with a strong motivation to develop their skills. The IT sector has now become the «healthiest» in our country; IT companies are characterized by an expert level of management, and in fact, are helping to rebuild the country's economy, forging a new Ukraine. IT companies unite into professional unions, like the IT cluster we have in Kharkiv, to achieve common goals and to make positive changes to the IT ecosystem.

4. Ukrainian IT education

In Ukraine, we recognize the need to keep up with technological innovations and we understand that to have a bright future in technology we have to start today. That’s why there are plenty of educational programs for children and young people, like Kharkiv IT Unicorns and Kids2IT. So it’s safe to say that the future of IT is in capable hands.

Ukrainian IT education

5. Room for improvement in IT education

Although technical universities and students are abundant in Ukraine, there is a lack of corresponding improvements to the curriculum in this area and a lack of interesting IT projects for students. We would welcome new ideas in this area, such as the creation of a new research and development center.

Improvement in IT education

6. Shared values of the outsourcing team

The present generation of managers and developers has grown up enjoying Western tv shows, movies and video games. This means that they share and understand Western values and ways of thinking which reduces cultural barriers and the risk of misunderstanding. Ukrainians tend to think highly of many things that come from abroad, and a lot of Western art, culture and entertainment becomes as familiar as our Ukrainian equivalents: we watch Marvel movies, follow the adventures of Sherlock, and children read about Karlsson-on-the-Roof and Cinderella. We laugh and shed tears at the same things most people in the West do. Because of this, you can be confident that members of a Ukrainian outsourcing team would be proud to take part in an international project and they would be dedicated to the product, which is the key to great success.

Read about experience with a dedicated development team from Ukraine

7. Tremendous magnitude of thought in technology

In Ukraine it is in our blood to think big. Ukraine has designed and built the world’s largest airplane “Antonov An-225 Mriya”. They say it has a wingspan twice the width of a football field, so if you have a massive project measurable in football fields that needs completing, you know where to come.

Ukraine has designed and built the world’s largest airplane

8. Technical potential

The same applies if you’re aiming for the stars. Ukraine has full cycle rocket manufacturing capability, from the production of rocket fuel to rocket launchers to spacecraft. The Makarov industrial association’s Southern Machine-Building Plant (Yuzhmash) is a manufacturer of space technologies and other research-intensive products. The world renowned Zenit and Cyclone launchers are made there. Launchers developed in Ukraine have sent more than 400 artificial satellites into orbit , among which are Sich-1, Sich-1M, Sich-2 for monitoring environmental and atmospheric conditions on Earth and its atmosphere, and 148 Ukrainian rockets have been launched from different space platforms. Ukraine’s technical potential should not be underestimated.

Ukraine’s technical potential

9. Sporting spirit and transformation

Ukrainians are fond of sport, the most popular being football, of course, with boxing being another favourite. Ukraine has given the world such champions as Oleksandr Usyk, Vasyl Lomachenko and Oleksandr Gvozdyk. Also, the famous boxing champion, Vitali Klitschko, lives here and has had something of a career change in becoming the mayor of Kiev. As you can tell, Ukraine is a country of possibilities and enormous transformations. Programmers like playing football, but there are far fewer boxers among them. Maybe this is why we don’t yet have an ex-programmer mayor in Ukraine. This situation calls for change! As Kharkiv is a large center for IT technologies, why not be the first?

10. Contribution of the IT industry to GDP

The IT industry in Ukraine means business. Today it is the third most important contributor to the country’s GDP, accounting for 3.3% of its total amount. In the last four years, this industry’s contribution to Ukraine’s GDP has grown from 1.1 to 2.7 billion USD and it is envisioned that this figure will reach 4.5% by 2020, giving a push to further development and growth.

Contribution of the IT industry to GDP

11. Food for IT thought and innovation

You can be sure you won’t starve in Ukraine - our national food is well-known for its great diversity and amazing flavors. Make sure you try potato varenyky and borsch with pampushkas. If you find it too exotic for your stomach, you can always find a restaurant with another type of European cuisine just around the corner. It’s believed that our food contains special nutrients that make our developers so talented. It is proven that the food in Ukraine contains vitamins A, B, C, C#, C++, NET, JS, GO, and many others :)

Food for IT thought and innovation

12. The place of health and fitness in a Ukrainian programmer’s life

According to DOU IT community, 75% of IT pros in Ukraine play sports more or less regularly, with business analysts being the sportiest, and system administrators along with designers being the least active. IT companies eagerly take part in numerous marathons, triathlons, cycling and other races. So if you are a firm advocate of a healthy way of life, come visit Ukraine and our developers will gladly join you for a morning jog, unless there was an urgent bug-fix or teambuilding session the day before.

13. Psychological portrait of Ukrainian IT experts

In numerous surveys conducted by online IT communities, among the things that motivated them, most Ukrainian programmers named interest in technology, salary (who could doubt that one), opportunities for professional growth, flexible working hours, and an open-minded team. So the average personal profile is comparable with those of representatives of this domain in other countries.

14. The timely work of developers

Even the sun has its dark spots - Ukrainian developers are sometimes said to be reluctant to report problems and issues in the process of work as soon as they spot them. The underlying reason is their strong belief in their ability to cope with everything on time. The way to avoid this drawback is firstly to acknowledge it and then to build efficient communication and management processes. All managers in well-established outsourcing IT companies know about possible issues and are perfectly capable of handling them.

15. Communication

A great deal of effort is being expended by companies providing outsourcing services to build efficient communication with partners. As the most general measure for erasing barriers, Ukrainians devote a lot of attention to learning foreign languages. As an example, Ukraine’s president Petro Poroshenko declared 2016 the Year of English Language. As a part of this initiative, complex programs and free-of-charge language courses have been established. Today our country occupies a dignified place in the global rank of countries according to knowledge of English.

Read about enabling self-governing teams by building relationships

16. Mood boosting coding

Ukraine has favorable conditions for IT engineers – the income-expenditure ratio allows them to be happy with their lives and with their job in particular. Your remote developers are very likely to be fresh and cheerful, and happy teams work more effectively, it’s a fact.

17. Clear skies for outsourcing

Reading the weather forecasts, it’s easy to see that Ukraine has a good climate. Seriously, members of your offshore development team won’t be late for work because of a volcanic eruption, earthquake or avalanche. In general, punctuality ranks highly among our personal features.

18. Nature and sightseeing

Among other beneficial factors for outsourcing, Ukraine can boast of its natural environment. Every manager in the IT sphere knows that it’s a bad idea to neglect a remote team, so paying a visit from time to time is standard practice. Taking a short ride out of the city, you get to see beautiful sights like the sun setting above fields of golden wheat and trees with stork nests, which will help bring more life to your world of bug reports and preparations for releases.

Ukraine can boast of its natural environment

19. Positive changes

Ukraine is undergoing significant modernization and reforms in line with efforts to meet the requirements of the IMF and EU. Progressive legislation on corruption prevention is one such reform that is being successfully implemented. Another positive change is that information from several governmental databases of social significance is now available: data on public procurement, the state register of legal entities and individual entrepreneurs indicating the final beneficiary, urban planning documentation. These changes are certainly helping to create a more favorable environment for cooperation between Ukraine and other countries.

20. Location diversity

There are five main outsourcing centers in Ukraine: Kyiv – the capital, Kharkiv – a scientific, industrial, and educational center, Lviv – the city that is closest to Europe, Dnipro - traditionally a military-industrial and space technologies center, Odessa – a sea port city with a long history of international trading. Also worth mentioning are smaller locations specializing in software development and innovation, such as Kherson, Zhitomir, Mykolaiv and others. In other words there is no single major center of IT technologies like Silicon Valley, but instead what we have could be named Silicon Country.

21. Getting closer to Europe

One more fact also adds to Ukraine’s attractions as a location for outsourcing – we are one step away from a visa-free regime with the EU. This date which Ukrainians are anxiously awaiting has been postponed several times, but now it looks like this June, visa-free travel will finally become a reality. Needless to say, such simplification of movement for people will have a positive impact on communications between companies in Europe and remote IT engineers in Ukraine.

Ukraine is getting closer to Europe

Now you can see that you need two hands and a foot to count the reasons why Ukraine would be a great choice for a company searching for international cooperation. The time of trading salt, like the Chumaks did, belongs to the far past, and now you can find something even more valuable in Ukraine – reliable partners and bright technical minds.

Written by Mira Gordijenko

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