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How Fast Can You Hire a Software Developer? Eastern European vs Western Europe

How Fast Can You Hire a Software Developer? Eastern European vs Western Europe


The landscape of software development in Europe is as diverse as the continent itself. With the ever-evolving tech industry, the focus has shifted to understanding the intricacies of recruiting talents across different regions. This article delves into a comparative analysis of the recruitment timelines for software developers in Eastern and Western Europe.

Overview of the Software Development Industry in Europe

Europe's software development industry showcases a dynamic interplay of innovation, tradition, and technological advancement. While Western Europe is often seen as the hub of tech giants and start-up culture, Eastern Europe is rapidly emerging as a powerhouse with a rich pool of tech talents. The distinction between these two regions extends beyond geography, encapsulating varying economic landscapes, educational strengths, and technological focuses.

Tech Recruitment in Western Europe

In Western Europe, the recruitment process for software developers is influenced by a competitive market with high demand for advanced skills. Companies often face longer recruitment cycles due to the high standards and specific skill sets required. Factors such as stringent labor laws, longer notice periods, and higher salary expectations play a significant role in extending the recruitment timeline.

In the case of Switzerland, for instance, it’s not rare to see recruitment processes that take several months, and even several trimesters. A similar situation is present in Germany.

Tech Recruitment in Eastern Europe

Conversely, Eastern Europe presents a different scenario. The region is known for its strong educational focus on STEM fields, leading to a substantial pool of skilled developers. The recruitment process here is often more streamlined and faster due to looser labor laws and a more competitive labor market. Additionally, government initiatives and tech-friendly policies in countries like Poland, Ukraine, and Romania have made it easier for companies to recruit talent quickly.

Everybody wants software developers from Eastern Europe, and companies is Western Europe often fall behind faster competitors to get the best talents. With notice periods of 2 weeks to one month, people move way faster than in Switzerland or Germany with 3 months notice.

Comparative Analysis

In assessing the recruitment timelines for software developers across Eastern and Western Europe, it's clear that Eastern Europe often leads in speed and efficiency. This quicker pace stems from a blend of factors like more flexible labor laws, a less competitive labor market, and economic dynamics that favor rapid hiring. However, this efficiency comes with its own set of challenges, particularly when it comes to finding candidates with highly specialized skill sets for advanced technological roles.

On the other hand, Western Europe, while facing longer recruitment processes due to high competition and stringent labor standards, benefits from a richly diverse and experienced talent pool. These varied conditions reflect not just market dynamics but also cultural influences that shape work ethics and professional expectations in each region. Thus, companies navigating these markets encounter a complex interplay of challenges and opportunities, shaped by the unique characteristics of each European region.

Case Study and Real-World Example

Various case studies highlight these differences. For instance, a tech startup in Berlin might spend several months to a year to fill a high-level developer role, considering the competitive market and high living costs. In contrast, a similar company in Krakow might complete its hiring process in a matter of weeks, benefiting from a large talent pool and lower cost of living.

Taking the example of a client of ours, the renown security technology provider Sicpa, we can illustrate the struggle in finding rapidly highly qualified software engineers. At the time, finding a senior security engineer experienced with the Rust programming language was a challenge in Switzerland. Facing months of research and huge recruitment costs, Sicpa’s team decided to try working with us. Our recruitment team was able to source 18 fresh profiles in Eastern Europe, and our engineering team interviewed 10 of them, before proposing 4 of the best profiles. All this, followed by the interviews from the client’s side, took only 5 weeks.

Future Trends

Looking forward, the recruitment landscape in Europe is likely to be shaped by factors like remote work trends, Artificial Intelligence, and geopolitical developments. Companies that stay attuned to these changes will be better positioned to make informed recruitment decisions in this diverse and dynamic market.


The recruitment timeline for software developers in Eastern and Western Europe reflects a blend of regional characteristics and market dynamics. Understanding these nuances is crucial for companies looking to tap into Europe's diverse talent pool.

In short, recruiting a tech profile:

  • takes months in Western Europe;
  • takes weeks in Eastern Europe;

Our Recruitment Process

Generally, when trying to fill a position, recruiters need to source candidates, assess the best profiles, communicate to candidates to interest them in their position, and then finally onboard them on the skill assessment procedure. As a professional recruitment and staff augmentation company, at 5w155 SA we constantly maintain an always flowing pool of candidates that we pre-assess. With tens of thousands of profiles, our team is able to provide results in hours to our clients. Adapting to our client’s pace, we are able to close position in as low as one week, having tech talents start to work as fast as in 24 hours.

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