Alex Staff Agency

How to look for a job in the IT-industry

Career: tips and trends

This year we have seen unprecedented activity on the part of both companies that need employees and job seekers. Over the year, salaries in IT have already grown by 20-30% on average, and in some areas by 40-50%. This fact has convinced even those professionals who have been with the same company for several years and are generally happy with their current position to start considering open job offers. After all, there are now better opportunities for the job seeker to find an engaging project and reach a new level of income.

Where to find the best candidates from Russia and Ukraine today, where to place vacancies for employers from Europe and the United States, and what is happening in the IT-industry, we tell in this new article.

The industry today: talent shortage and the wage gap

We see high activity in the global IT market in 2021. The largest technology corporations are often also served by the largest outsourcing companies. Most of them were staffed by developers from China and India. After the pandemic began, many of them were unable to continue working: the low standard of living in these countries meant that many had no Internet at home and no equipment, and offices were closed.

Companies from the U.S. and Europe have turned to developers from Russia, Ukraine and Belarus. These countries have been of interest to the West before, saving money and attracting additional hands. But now it has grown many times over.

If we talk about the Russian market, there is a record shortage of personnel. It has been observed since the mid-2000s. Now there is a significant increase in the demand of foreign companies for employees with good technical skills from many regions, but primarily from the central regions, where there is less of a time zone gap. Such companies offer high salaries that many domestic companies cannot compete with.

However, a serious problem for many Russian programmers is a low level of English. On average, only 15-20% of candidates are able to get an interview and work effectively in an English-speaking company. And this is where specialists from Ukraine come in. The local market has a number of factors that are convenient for foreign companies:

  • About 80-85% of IT professionals speak English here
  • Time proximity to Europe: large (4+ hours) time difference means additional difficulties in business processes and communication
  • Ukraine's IT industry has long been oriented toward the West, Europe and, to a large extent, the United States. They already know how to work with the foreign market. Even very expensive outsourcing will cost foreign companies cheaper than hiring local staff
  • Quality of training: the higher education system here has already been reoriented to produce a large number of developers (unlike, for example, Russian universities)

Ukraine's economic security also speaks for it. While companies face bureaucratic difficulties when transferring money to Russia, and often they cannot send money at all, in Ukraine there are no difficulties. The country has also overtaken Belarus in this indicator. This country is uncomfortable for Western countries after the political events of 2020: they worry that local employees may fall under new sanctions.

According to our co-founder, Alexei Sukhorukov, "There is a redistribution of the market in Russia, Ukraine, and the CIS countries. As a result, Western companies will get IT specialists who speak the language and pay them Western salaries. And internal, primarily Russian, companies will hire those who don’t speak the language. And they will pay them considerably less. This is how the balance of the market will adjust in the coming months and years."

Job search platforms: people choose

At the beginning of November, we conducted a survey of our subscribers in social media, in which 857 people took part. We also analyzed the sources where candidates come to us (4,900 applicants in 2021). And we studied a detailed analysis of the survey conducted by the DOU among Ukrainian specialists (3,584 respondents).

All this data allows us to single out the most popular platforms where real people from the IT industry are looking for a job. It is worth mentioning that three resources have a huge lead over all others - LinkedIn, for Russia, and Djinni in Ukraine.

Our candidates find us:

  • 45% on LinkedIn
  • 31% on
  • 5% on Djinni (with only 20% of applicants in the selection from Ukraine)
  • 4% in groups/channels with vacancies in Telegram and Facebook

That said, some of our candidates who follow us on social media talk about slightly different data:

  • 67% on LinkedIn
  • 23% on
  • 7% in groups/channels with vacancies in Telegram and Facebook

It should be noted that only 6% of those who voted in social networks were from Ukraine, so Djinni predictably did not make it to the top.

LinkedIn and Djinni are consolidating their positions in Ukraine. According to the survey, the first place in popularity for the recommendations — 23% of respondents found their current place of work that way. But if 3 years ago 36% of respondents found a job this way, then every year the share decreases. LinkedIn came in second place and helped 20% of respondents find a job (versus 14% last year). And Djinni was named by 19% of candidates (15% in 2020).

If we highlight only those who changed companies this year, the most frequent places where they found a job:

  • 26% LinkedIn
  • 24% Djinni
  • 19% thanks to recommendations (It's interesting that in Russia, recommendations are named as a means of job search by only 2-3%, despite active referral programs for employees of IT departments, which have all the technical giants of the country)

All of the following platforms go with a solid gap:

  • 9% for DOU
  • 5% for
  • 3% for

When respondents were asked which resources they considered most effective, the leaders were:

  • Djinni (68%)
  • LinkedIn (63%)
  • recommendations of colleagues and friends (49%)
  • DOU (42%)

This is a predictable result — in the first two cases, recruiters respond quickly, there is direct contact with the person, not the company profile. In the case of recommendations, the level of personal contact is higher. We can conclude that job seekers choose those sites where it is easier to establish personal acquaintance and get a quicker response on their candidacy.

It is also interesting that Djinni is trusted and popular with IT professionals at all levels, while LinkedIn is chosen mostly by experienced job seekers with 2-3 years of experience in development.

It is worth mentioning that LinkedIn is the most convenient platform for the whole market of Russia, Ukraine, and the CIS countries, if you are looking for a remote job in a Western company or with a relocation to Europe or the States. In these regions, LinkedIn has been in demand for a long time, which means that these employers will start their search in new markets with resources they are familiar with.

It is also helpful to contact a recruitment agency. We have exclusive contracts with companies that don’t look for employees directly. And we can show your CV to multiple companies at once, help correct it, prepare you for the interview, and accompany you all the way from the interview to the end of the probationary period.

Job search platforms: companies choose

Let's look at where foreign companies most actively search for employees and place vacancies.

If you are a developer and are looking for a job with a company in the United States or the European Union, we recommend using LinkedIn in the first place. Both we and our clients, as well as other agencies, look for employees here most actively. This social media is convenient in its focus, people come there to look for jobs and build business contacts, which means that in principle they are open to suggestions. With the help of recruiting services is easy to find interesting candidates, of which there really are many. It is worth noting that the cost of using services and Premium accounts allows you to do without a large investment and is available to freelance recruiters and small companies with limited budgets. It is no exaggeration to say that there is literally everything here and you can find a job and a project for every taste.

The largest job portals for each country, like for Russia and Djinni for Ukraine, also deserve your attention. These resources pay serious money so that even a recruiter who knows nothing about the country's staffing market can easily find them. However, foreign companies rarely enroll at themselves. Most of the foreign job openings here are from agencies. But in Djinni, there are both internal companies and Western companies.

These sites have large candidate bases, which also attracts the attention of employers. Now the market is active and no large company or agency works only on incoming responses — recruiters will look for candidates themselves. They select suitable profiles or resumes from the database and contact programmers offering open positions. And the more challenging the position, the more important it is to have a large candidate site base. Of the disadvantages of these resources is the fairly high cost, so small companies, startups, and private agents are not always able to afford them. If you are looking for work in large and highly profitable projects, then this is exactly your option.

Groups/channels in social media such as Facebook and Telegram are also an interesting way to look for jobs in Western companies. Here you can find unique job ads that are not posted anywhere else. This is often where small and "conceptual" projects look for employees. You can also find offers from major companies and agencies there. For example, we have a list of more than 300 groups of different fields in which we publish certain jobs. There are many opportunities for free placement in social media, which also makes the resource available and demanded by all who are limited in the budget for one reason or another. But it's also a great chance for recruiters to reach an audience that doesn't like LinkedIn. Telegram is also a good way to contact those who do not want to be seen by their current employer. If you want to be part of a team and not just an employee, there may be interesting options.

Today the market needs you more than you need it. Obviously. The growth of the it-industry, the widespread penetration of technology into everyone's life has created a huge number of jobs. More and more money every day has provided the IT-sector of the economy with high salaries. Nevertheless, you don't become an experienced developer with deep technical knowledge in a couple of months. There is a shortage of staff, and for a while this gap will still be relevant.

The coming months to a year is a great time to look for a job. Especially interesting options are now waiting for professionals who, in addition to classical programming and writing code, are versed in any narrow areas, whether it be economics or technology. If you know how to achieve a business goal with your code and analyze user requirements for the software your company creates, it is a significant advantage and a reason to raise your price.

Also note that not all companies this year have kept up with rising salary expectations. Many of them create a budget in advance and are not always able to adjust it during the year. But for 2022, we can safely expect a higher salary range.

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