Globalization will not solve the shortage of software engineers

The shortage of developers continues to cause headaches for companies struggling to tackle tasks such as modernizing applications or sufficient software testing.

Looking to the global market can help fill niche software engineering positions that require a high degree of skill and can also result in team diversification or slight cost savings. However, it is not a silver bullet to solve the talent shortage problem, experts say.

“In the market we find ourselves in for technical talent, there are no developers hiding under rocks,” said Adam Glaser, senior vice president of engineering at Appian, a low-tech business process company. -code based in McLean, Virginia. “You can find them, but everyone is chasing them.”

While large companies with brand recognition, such as Facebook or Google, have less difficulty attracting talent, it can be more difficult for medium-sized companies to fill positions due to the shortage of talent. said Duri Chitayat, CTO at Safeguard Global, a workforce management platform in Austin, Texas.

“Most companies like Safeguard just don’t have that brand recognition,” Chitayat said. “The competition is incredibly hot.”

Where to find Global Team Members

While globalization won’t solve the general shortage of developers, a global talent search can benefit companies looking for highly skilled talent, Chitayat said.

“Compete for a PhD in machine learning takes a bit of work, but if you go to a country like Turkey, there’s a great education system and really smart, hard-working people — they know their stuff,” he said.

Businesses can also look to the many small Nigerian startups that are producing quality talent, Chitayat said.

“You can have really experienced, quality engineers who haven’t worked for a multinational [company] and who are excited to work with people from Turkey, the UK, the US, Albania and Poland,” he said.

Whereas Appian hiring in the United States, it has expanded its search for developers in Germany, Israel and India, Glaser said.

“The Indian talent we’ve encountered is fantastic – on par with, or in some cases above, the United States,” he said. “It makes us rethink preconceived notions about how knowledge is distributed around the world.”

Tracey Zimmerman, president and CEO of Robots and Pencils – a consulting firm in Calgary, Canada – pointed to Eastern Europe as another location rich in developer talent. The Russian-Ukrainian conflict has reduced outsourcing in those regions, but there are still developers in China, she said.

Challenges of Geo-Global Teams

While a multinational search has resulted in filling open developer positions, adopting a geo-global team has its challenges, Glaser said.

In the market we are in for technical talent, there are no developers hiding under the rocks.

Adam GlazerSenior Vice President of Engineering, Appian

“Results take a bit of time to cook because there’s a whole process of maturing a new center of development and expansions from your team,” he said.

Some of the challenges businesses face with a global workforce — such as language barriers and dialect differences — can be alleviated by local line management, he said.

Collaboration can also be a challenge, given the different time zones, Zimmerman said, but companies can turn it into a positive with the right guidance.

“They’re starting to be like, ‘OK, let’s get better at documenting, better use Slack, better have a written culture,'” she said.

Cost is not a factor

While globalization can help find talent, the cost savings associated with hiring from the foreign developer market are negligible due to the increased supply and demand for talent across the world, a said Zimmerman.

So Appian’s global talent search takes more than cost into consideration, Glaser said.

“The cost savings aren’t as dramatic as you might imagine, because it’s still highly skilled human resources that are in high demand,” he said. “It’s about talent diversification as much as economic benefits.”

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