If you mention outsourcing to an American or a UK company owner, they would immediately think of some distant Asian country. In reality, there is a region much closer to home, teeming with tech-savvy individuals where they can outsource their IT departments.
Like all the countries of former Yugoslavia, Serbia is presently experiencing its very own IT renaissance. Companies which employ young skillful workforce spring up across the country. The list of reasons why they are the ideal to outsource IT is quite long, but we’ve compiled a list naming the top ten advantages of Serbian IT sector:
A London based firm would hardly feel the +1 GMT hour difference in the time zone. American companies on the other hand, would experience an increase of workhours that coincide with Serbian time. These hours span more than half the US working hours. In addition, Serbian companies have night shifts which guarantee an around the clock service. The money they invest in overnight work is less than the salary bonuses US companies pay their own staff.
Like we mentioned earlier, IT industry is on the rise in Serbia. The two hotspots are the national capital Belgrade, and the regional capital Novi Sad. Other cities such as Niš and Kragujevac are joining the club of Serbian IT hubs. Not only are the local IT clusters receiving new members nearly every month, but the structure of the companies is convenient as well. They are highly versatile, ranging from shipping companies to online learning platforms. One can end up multi-outsourcing to Serbia.
Thanks to its socialist background, Serbian children receive excellent primary and secondary education. In technical sciences this culminates at university level. Both University of Belgrade and University of Novi Sad are ranked high in the Shanghai Ranking. This serves as proof that students receive excellent education at Serbian technical faculties. In addition, the school system is under a trailblazing reform and it is now mandatory for schoolchildren to grasp the basics of programming early on. Children as young as nine years old get introduced to programming languages such as Python. This ensures that (outsourcing) Serbian IT companies will have enough skilled programmers in the decades to come.
The afore mentioned school system has one more ace up the sleeve. English is taught straight from the first grade and the age of seven. Many parents, aware of the importance of language skills, enroll their children into English classes in kindergarten and pre-school. The result is a population in which nearly everyone can speak English, and to a high level as well. This is especially true in the case of programmers who all speak English fluently. The language barrier is virtually non-existent in Serbia. What is more, a large number of people speak a third language in addition to their mother tongue and English.
Outsourcing in Serbia might not be that much “out” culture-wise. Namely, Serbia is a modern European country and its culture is similar to other continental cultures. This implies that work ethics are considerably high and more than acceptable for any Western franchise. In short, this would be the m.o. of Serbian IT companies: deals are struck easily, quality does not suffer and deadlines are met.
If you choose to outsource in Serbia, we are sorry to say, your companies wouldn’t be the first. Many international companies have discovered this business oasis and have located their regional headquarters or R&D centers here. To name just a few: Microsoft, Continental, Ubisoft, Sitel etc. All these multinational companies deemed Serbia as an excellent place to make their profit.
The whole reason behind outsourcing is to cut the operational costs. In this sense, Serbian IT sector acts as a best buy option. All the advantages listed above and below can be acquired at a reasonable cost. It is definitely cheaper to outsource here that pay thousands of dollars, pounds or euros more than necessary in the country of origin.
The country still hasn’t formally entered the European Union, but the process is nearly over. This implies that the legislation is for the most part in accordance with EU laws. Those who outsource to Serbia need not worry about the safety of their data. They are as protected by the local laws as they would be secure back home.
At some point, you will maybe have to physically visit the outsourcing company. A moment feared by most will soon turn into a surprise of a life time. Serbs are an outgoing people and they will gladly show you the fun side of their county. There are literally communes of foreigners who visited the country once, fell in love with it and stayed permanently. The outsourcing choice provided them with a chance to change their lives for the best. And isn’t it sweet to use your work as an excuse for pleasure.
Despite all the advantages, many Eastern European countries do have troublesome pasts, respectively. Serbia is no exception, but the county has definitely moved on. The safety of the outsourcing project is guaranteed by the countries relatively stable economy.
To sum it all up, Serbia is a real force on the outsourcing map of Europe and definitely worth the consideration. A highly skilled workforce employed by companies who offer affordable projects is a win-win situation for any company coming from the West.