Software developers in Belarus rank among the top specialists in TopCoder and SkillValue rankings. They have a great technical background and moderate-to-strong command of English.
In one of our articles, we have compared Belarus and Ukraine in terms of software development outsourcing. This article covers some of the most important aspects of hiring developers in Belarus, including:
- Size of the tech talent pool;
- Tech and industry expertise;
- Average rates;
- Tech education and talent inflow.
We will also address some recent issues like the political crisis and changes in the country's legislation.
Tech talent pool in Belarus: Overview
IT outsourcing has played a significant role in the Belarusian economic development for the past two decades. IT accounts for nearly 6% of the country's GDP and employs 2.2% of the total workforce. As of the end of 2019, the country had almost 56,000 IT specialists (compared to 40,000+ in 2015).
Research  shows that product firms employ only 39.5% of developers in Belarus, and 60.5% work for IT outsourcing companies. The country has very few startups due to the economic and political situation.
Industry and tech expertise of software developers in Belarus
Studies show  that tech experts in Belarus have strong domain expertise in financial services, healthcare, and education. The country is also known for its strong gaming expertise (i.e., Wargaming was founded and has its primary operations in Belarus). Clutch suggests that the business and financial services account for 21.4% of the industries that outsource IT operations to Belarus. Other industries with significant share are e-commerce, IT, healthcare, and education.
When concerns technical expertise, developers in Belarus work with some of the world's most in-demand tech stacks. JS, Java, and Python are the most popular programming languages here.
We can also see that Belarus follows the cloud adoption trend, and offers a significant number of experts. There are over 3,500 AWS experts, 2,300 Azure specialists, and only 600 people with GCP expertise.
We should also note that Belarus has 3,000+ DevOps experts and a little over 2,200 Big Data experts. When it comes to embedded software development, Belarus falls behind other Eastern European countries, with only 1,100 experts (compared to 12,000 in Poland and 6,000 in Ukraine).
If you are interested in hiring mobile or web app developers in Belarus, there should be no problems. There are 8,000 Android and 6,000+ iOS developers. There are also around 3,000 web app experts.
LinkedIn search suggests that there are 16,000 PMs, 13,000 QAs, and over 6,500 BAs. The same search shows that there are 2,700 Scrum masters and a little over 1,500 product owners working in Belarus.
Major IT outsourcing hubs in Belarus
Belarus is home to over 56,000 IT specialists . Minsk gathered the highest number of IT specialists - 85%. Gomel houses nearly 9.4%, and Grodno and Brest account for 2.7% and 2.9% of the tech talent respectively.
Moreover, Minsk was recognized as one of the top 10 fastest-growing hubs in Europe by the YoY growth rate of active members in tech-related Meetups . There are up to 450 IT-related events happening in the capital every year.
Rates of developers in Belarus
Eastern Europe offers lower software development rates than the US, the UK, Western Europe, or even Australia. Depending on the tech stack and experience, the average rates can be 15% to 50% lower than in the US or the UK.
On top of that, this region has a considerably lower cost of living and taxes. That is why Belarus, similar to other countries in the EE region, can offer moderate prices without compromising the quality.
Tech education and knowledge of English
There are a little over 60 universities and educational establishments that provide CS programs and ICT-related courses. Two universities were included in the top 1000 QS Global World Ranking in 2021 (Belarusian National University and Belarusian National Technical University). Here are some of the most popular universities based on the employment of their graduates in IT outsourcing companies in Belarus.
We should also note that the Belarusian tech talent pool is growing by 4,000 ICT graduates annually. There are also additional 19,000 STEM grads that can join the workforce. Many IT outsourcing companies in Belarus actively collaborate with universities and schools all over the country. Besides, some software development companies in Belarus provide training courses to people who want to join the tech community.
As for the knowledge of English, Belarus has moderate English proficiency (some other countries in the ‘moderate group’ are Italy, Cuba, and Hong Kong). However, Belarusian IT outsourcing companies hire experts with a good level of English and take a variety of measures to improve their knowledge (e.g., many companies have in-house teachers or classes).
Is it safe to hire software developers in Belarus in 2021?
In 2020, Belarus was heavily criticized. First, for the lack of proper response to Covid-19. For the first few months, the government seemed to ignore the pandemic, and only in summer, they introduced some measures to help the economy survive. Next, Belarus was the center of media attention for the escalation of the political situation due to the presidential election. Some companies report searches and raids authorized by the Belarusian government. Meanwhile, other IT firms considered the situation and decided to close their offices or move their operations to other countries (e.g., Godel Technologies moved their office to Kyiv and offered relocation to its employees) . Also, Belarus has raised the income tax for the members of Hi-Tech Park. Several large companies have already shared their concerns about these changes [7,8]. All these factors affected the country’s attractiveness in terms of investments and IT outsourcing.
Belarus has a large pool of software developers but cooperation with them may entail some risks. To mitigate them, consider partnering with an IT outsourcing company that has access to a large tech talent pool in Eastern Europe and development offices in many locations, including Belarus, Ukraine, and Poland.
Why choose N-iX to hire top developers in Eastern Europe?
- N-iX has over 1,200 experts, and we have development centers in Ukraine and Poland.
- We have almost 20 years of experience in the IT market and focus on building long-term and strategic partnerships with our clients.
- The company has extensive technical and industry expertise. Our company offers custom software development, cloud solutions, DevOps, Machine Learning & AI, Big Data, Data Science, BI, and other services to companies in telecom, manufacturing, retail, fintech, healthcare, and other industries.
- We’ve been recognized by many industry rankings, such as Inc. 5000 Europe, Software 500, top 100 Global Outsourcing Companies by IAOP, GSA, Clutch, and many others.;
- N-iX Information security management system is certified to meet ISO 27001:2013, PCI DSS, ISO 9001:2015, GDPR, and HIPAA. The company undergoes annual external security audits and internal audits two times a year to ensure maximum security.
- 2019 State of European Tech
- Software Development in Ukraine, Poland, Belarus and Romania
- Global Software Marketplace Insights: Eastern Europe by SourceSeek
- TOP CS universities in Belarus
- Belarus business sector sounds alarm over devastating economic effects of state repression by emerging-europe.com
- Income tax for HTP members and industrial parks increased in Belarus by tech.onliner.by
- "The reputation of the market may be undermined." IT companies on raising income up to 13% by tech.onliner.by
- IT in Belarus. Why Minsk has become an interesting relocation destination by Minsk.page
- Belarus, Once a Startups Magnet, Faces a Tech Exodus by the Wall Street Journal