- The Polish IT market has been rapidly growing for many years now. We cannot see any signs of this stopping anytime soon. Poland has a stable political and economic environment, modern infrastructure that is constantly undergoing further development and, what is most important, a plentiful supply of qualified professionals. If we add competitive labour costs into the equation, we will begin to understand why Poland is an attractive destination for new investors as well as companies that are already doing business here and wish to expand their operations. All of that has a direct impact on IT salaries. There is a definite shortage of candidates, and the financial expectations of professionals and managers are constantly growing. If we were to single out the hottest areas, such as software development, we would see that salaries of workers with 1 to 5 years of experience have grown by as much as 50%. The IT Services sector is picking up steam, partly due to the enormous 'information technology outsourcing' and 'research & development' centres employing anywhere from several dozen to several thousand professionals – says Aleksandra Kujawa, Business Unit Manager, Antal IT Services.
IT salaries are going full steam ahead
Data presented in Antal's 2017 Salary Report shows that the average gross monthly salary of Polish IT professionals and managers is PLN 12 600 and has increased by 16% from 2016. What is more, it is higher by almost PLN 1 000 than the average salary of professionals and managers in Poland (average of all sectors included in the survey), which is equal to PLN 11 662.
Antal representatives point out that financial expectations grow along with rising demand, and the demand for IT workers is the highest out of all occupations. Also, the report shows that professionals and managers received an average of 8 job offers throughout the year, whereas software engineers received 18 offers on average.
Experience pays off
IT companies screen candidates based on experience, i.e. the level of competence and the length of training in a given specialization. Those factors also have an impact on salaries. It is worth noting that professionals who seek change and wish to retrain should expect significantly lower earnings initially, but their choice may bring benefits in the future. The fastest salary increases were recorded among effective programmers specialising in the most popular technologies and testers, for whom demand is growing.
IT professionals with foreign language skills earn more
Working knowledge of English is required from programmers, testers, analysts and management support systems specialists. It is also crucial in managerial positions. Knowledge of an additional foreign language can be advantageous, but it is not the most important factor taken into consideration when making hiring decisions. Polish IT professionals have no problems finding jobs in other countries, however in some of them, for example Germany or Spain, knowledge of the local language may prove useful.
Choosing the right form of cooperation is key
IT companies make use of various types of employment contracts, including permanent employment contracts, contracts of commission and B2B contracts. The choice of contract has an impact on salary. On average, professionals with B2B contracts earn 20% more than their colleagues with permanent employment contracts. Even higher salaries are offered to employees working on fixed-time projects, partially because they have no paid vacation and sick leave and the higher salary is meant to compensate for that.
IT has spread across the country
The largest Polish IT centres include Kraków and Wrocław, which by now have earned the moniker of the Polish Silicon Valley, followed by Warsaw, Tri-City and Poznań. Other cities, however, are not giving up the fight. Lublin and Rzeszów are two aspiring IT hubs. As regards salaries, IT specialists continue to earn the most in Warsaw, but the gap is closing.
What awaits IT professionals and managers in 2018?
Salary growth in the IT sector will continue in the coming years. Poland continues drawing in large ITO centres and smaller branches of Scandinavian IT companies, which are transferring some of their operations to Poland. – It is increasingly often the case that companies introduce salary validation and decide to pass on the best candidates if their expectations exceed recruiting budgets. As a result, we predict that next year salaries in the IT sector will grow by about 8% in relation to 2017 – sums up Aleksandra Kujawa, Antal IT Services.