Looking Beyond the Discovered Tech Horizons: Outsourcing to Ukraine vs Poland

Looking Beyond the Discovered Tech Horizons:
Outsourcing to Ukraine vs Poland

Ukraine and Poland are two popular outsourcing destination with a common culture and historic background and dissimilar tech landscapes. While we can see a strong presence of numerous big international tech companies on the tech market in Poland, the big tech corporations are only starting to open R&D offices in Ukraine. Nevertheless, the Ukrainian IT sector has been growing rapidly in recent years and opens a lot of opportunities for companies that want to outsource in Ukraine. It’s projected to rise to $8.4 billion by 2025. Currently, IT is the 2nd largest export service industry in Ukraine. 

With a greater share of companies providing outsourcing services, Ukraine has a comparatively homogeneous market in contrast to Poland, and, therefore, offers deeper expertise in providing software development services to foreign businesses accumulated in the last two decades.

Number of Programmers and Tech Specialists

A.T.Kearney, World Bank, and Gartner list Ukraine and Poland among the strongest tech nations in CEE. Ukraine has always been the center for software development, technology solutions for data analysis and processing. An important role here is played by the level of technical education that has been developing in our country for decades. We are expecting to reach a high mark of 200 000 tech specialists in Ukraine by the end of 2020 with around 30 000 more junior tech specialists graduating from technical universities in 2021.

The State of European Tech reports that there are 4 tech specialists per 1000 people in Ukraine. Nonetheless, we see considerably higher density in big tech cities — Kyiv has 11.7 developers per 1K citizens, Kharkiv — 9.7, Lviv — 7.6, and Dnipro — 4.8.

The largest numbers of tech specialists are seen in the following cities:

  • Kyiv — 37%
  • Lviv — 15%
  • Kharkiv — 14%
  • Dnipro — 8%
  • Odesa — 5%

Tech businesses hire software developers from tech companies providing software development outsourcing services such as Intellias, SoftServe, Daxx, and Epam. The software for infotainment systems in world-class vehicles (such as Mercedes and BMW) is developed by Ukrainian IT companies (Luxoft, Globallogic, and Intellias).

In 2019, the Polish tech talent market counted 295 300 tech experts predominantly located in Kraków, Warsaw, Wrocław, Tricity, Łódź, Poznań, and Katowice. There are 1.4 developers per 100 workers in Poland and only 20% of them are occupied in software outsourcing companies with the rest working for FMCG and related industries.

The competition on the tech talent market in Poland is fueled by the presence of tech giants such as Google, IBM, Motorola, ABB, SABRE, Delphi, and Fujitsu. The corporations offer competitive remuneration and benefits raising the bar for middle and small software development outsourcing companies that struggle in attracting talents.

Comparison of Prevailing Technologies Used by Developers

LinkedIn-based research on the number of software developers in the world shows that 8000 Ukrainian programmers indicate JavaScript, 3000 — Python, 9000 — PHP, 8000 —  Java as their major technology. In the last two years, such technologies as C, C++, TypeScript, Kotlin, and Go have been fast adopted by Ukrainian programmers. Statistics match the global trends and make Ukraine a fruitful resource with specialists that use trending technologies.

With a small deviation, Poland’s most popular technologies are similar to the ones in Ukraine. Python and JavaScript accompanied by C# and Java are the trending technologies. Unlike in Ukraine, PHP and RoR have dropped in use. Nonetheless, just like in the rest of the world, Poland offers developers with knowledge of mobile stack with Elixir, Kotlin, and React Native stack.

Ease of Doing Business

After signing the Treaty of Accession and joining the European Union in 2004, Poland achieved additional stimuli – free trade with the developed countries. Having no benefits available for the EU residents, many Ukrainian businesses simplified collaboration with the international tech businesses by expanding their presence and establishing legal entities in major European tech hubs. On its way to European integration, Ukraine is implementing many reforms to simplify business processes and attract investments. With its reduced labor taxes and mandatory contributions, the taxation policy in Ukraine has become more favorable for the development of IT.  Ukraine has greatly improved its positions in Ease of Doing Business Index, jumping from the 96th in 2013 to 64th place in 2020. 


During a short history of the development of the tech industry in Ukraine and Poland, the two, at first sight, similar countries took different paths. Ukrainian tech industry organized itself around providing software development solutions through small and middle-sized companies that accumulate deep knowledge and expertise. Meanwhile, the tech industry in Poland has been penetrated by big international corporations and divided between development service providers and product companies.

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