Besides all that, Ukrainian software engineers are sought-after internationally, due to their skills, qualifications, and experience.
A history of Ukraine's tech industry
Ukraine's reputation as a science and technology leader has its roots in the 19th and 20th centuries and is based on three major pillars — Kyiv Mohyla Academy (established in 1615), the University of Kyiv (established in 1834), and the University of Kharkiv (established in 1804).
Another prominent event was the foundation of the main research institution in Ukraine in 1918 — the Ukrainian National Academy of Sciences, which consisted of a whopping 81,000 employees (of whom 14,000 were scientists). One of them was a prominent pioneer of tech development in Ukraine —Victor Glushkov, who founded a research institute in the informatics department in 1962, and was one of the founding fathers of contemporary tech education in Ukraine.
Tech education in Ukraine now
Those bright tech minds channeled their experience and knowledge into their scientific efforts, which brought a strong basis for tech education all around Ukraine. Now, there are nearly 800 higher education institutions, among which almost 200 are universities in Ukraine. 30 of them are purely technical, while the majority of others offer tech faculties among other specialties.
The main tech hubs in Ukraine, where you can build a remote engineering team, are Lviv and Kyiv. Kharkiv, Dnipro, and Odessa are also major cities with excellent tech talent. There are 136 higher education institutions in the Kyiv region, and 69 institutions in the Lviv region.
According to Dou, a trusted Ukrainian resource for software developers in Ukraine, 69% of Ukrainian programmers that study or have studied in the specialty would recommend Ukrainian universities for future students.
Ukrainian students have multiple opportunities to get experience of studying and working in global companies, via exchange programs such as Erasmus+ and AIESEC.
Other than international programs, many Ukrainian tech students decide to start working as early as possible by applying for internships in large Ukrainian tech companies. There, they get the first experience of working with international clients, meaning that by the time they graduate, they already have 4-5 years of experience, making them perfect candidates for a remote development team.
Ukrainian tech market facts
According to the StartupBlink Ecosystem Rankings, Kyiv is the 34th best place for startups, among 1,028 other destinations, outpacing such tech hubs as Melbourne, Helsinki, Munich, and Washington. The position not only depends on the number of startup projects but also the general environment for the further development of a business.
Ukraine's startup ecosystem keeps growing, and some of the startups based there have become globally known products, among them Ajax Systems, Allset, Attendify, Competera, Depositphotos, Grammarly, Invisible.io, MacPaw, People.ai, Petcube, Preply, Readdle, Restream, YayPay, and YouScan.
The levels of investment in startups show positive signs. In 2013, startups, all in all, received $97m of investments, while in 2018, investment in Ukrainian startups grew to $290m.
Apart from the vibrant tech startup scene, Ukraine is one of the top IT outsourcing and nearshoring destinations in the Central and Eastern Europe region, while also housing rapidly increasing numbers of remote development teams. 100 of the Fortune 500 companies have teams in Ukraine. There are over 4,000 tech companies and over 110 R&D centers in the country.
Ukraine ranks as the 24th best country in the world for software development. There are over 50 coworking spaces in Ukraine, and over 1000 IT-related events in the country’s major cities annually.
Revenue from the IT industry in Ukraine amounted to $5 billion in 2019, so the government has been making attempts to foster further industry development. One of the latest initiatives is the IT Creative Fund, which aims to create new campuses for tech students, also providing scholarships and grants to motivate young tech professionals.
Why build a remote engineering team in Lviv?
Lviv is one of the most appealing tech hubs in Ukraine for international business owners for several reasons:
- The city is close to most major European capitals – airlines are opening new flight connections every month. Airlines flying to and from Lviv include Lufthansa, LOT Polish Airlines, Turkish Airlines, Ryanair, and Austrian Airlines.
- Lviv is a compact city, meaning employees don't have to spend hours getting to work, improving the quality of life, mood, and productivity of teams.
- There are over 25,000 tech professionals, and 461 IT companies, in the city, making for a deep talent pool for any companies wishing to recruit there.
- There were thought to be over 70,000 tech jobs in Lviv in 2019.
Besides all this, the city government continuously fosters the development of the industry — for example, with the highly anticipated first IT Park in Lviv, expected to cover 10 hectares of land, and feature office space for over 10,000 IT professionals. The IT Park is a multifunctional complex with all necessary support for office buildings, coworking office spaces, technical labs, libraries, and more.
There are more than a dozen coworking spaces in Lviv, where developers can be productive, but also meet like-minded people and take part in insightful events. Among the most popular spaces are Futura Hub, Sova Space, iHub Lviv, Startup Depot, CoMMuna, and ITEA Hub.
Lviv developers also have the opportunity to visit hundreds of tech events, hackathons, and meet-ups in the city,the major ones including IT ARENA, Lviv Outsourcing Forum, JDayLviv, GDG DevFest Ukraine, IT Weekend, Lviv Freelance Forum, Lviv Euro DrupalCamp, etc. Base B organizes frequent events in its hubs to promote employee development, teambuilding, and workplace wellness.
The key takeout
Ukraine is a thriving IT destination that keeps developing and expanding, with Kyiv and Lviv two cities offering everything needed for a successful remote development team.
Here are key facts that you should know about Ukraine when you’re choosing a destination for your remote team:
If you're looking to build a remote engineering team in Ukraine, don't hesitate to contact our experts for a detailed consultation.