In the dynamic field of software development, where real innovations know no boundaries, one fascinating destination became a significant place for businesses to rely on rich expertise and innovation - Bulgaria. Located at the crossroads of both technology and history, the country is growing its strength in the technology sector. Thanks to its thriving tech ecosystem of ICT companies, the Balkan country expanded its market nearly threefold in just seven years.
However, this process is not just numbers and statistics. It's about the professionals driving the growth - the software engineers. In this article, we will take a look at the advantages of working with the Bulgarian developers. From their technical skills, which are honed in an atmosphere of constant innovation, to the strategic advantages, that they bring to the country's business environment.
Be ready to find out why working with Bulgarian software engineers is a solution that can redefine how businesses can approach their growth and success. But first, let's give a brief overview of the Bulgarian IT Industry.
The IT industry in Bulgaria is increasingly becoming a key contributor to the country's economy, exerting a notable influence on the GDP and creating employment opportunities for nearly 85,000 professionals. Moreover, this positive trajectory is expected to continue.
Approximately 10,000 ICT companies are located in Bulgaria, with 70% of them solely exporting, making the country a leading ICT outsourcing hub. The latest trends show that the Bulgarian software market has been changing from being predominantly outsourcing-oriented to the establishment of partnership models between Bulgarian software companies and foreign clients focused on the development of their products.
It would not be possible for the industry to grow, without a good internal microenvironment that supports the expertise of many professionals. This is provided in four key cities in the country:
As the country's capital, Sofia is home to plenty of international companies that use local talent. The city's growing importance as an IT hub is quite impressive. Sofia ranked 20th out of 80 cities listed as “Tech Cities for the Future in 2020-21.”
About 50,000 specialists work in the ICT industry in and around Sofia district. An overview of IT job vacancies in Sofia shows that back-end experts are mostly in demand, followed by roles related to IT infrastructure and front-end development.
Plovdiv is the second-largest city in Bulgaria. In recent years, the town has become an attractive location for IT businesses, with over 140 companies currently operating in the city. The city has an impressive talent pool, thanks to trained professionals from local universities.
Situated right on the shore of the Black Sea, Varna is the third-largest city in Bulgaria and appears to be another attractive destination for business. More than 150 companies are operating in the city.
Varna is a magnet for highly qualified specialists in the whole of northeastern Bulgaria. The city has 6 universities and several elite high schools with an intensive study of mathematics and informatics. Quality assurance, DevOps and data science engineers are among the most desirable employees.
Burgas is located in the southeast part of Bulgaria and is home to a prospering tech ecosystem. As the sector grows over the years, the opportunities in the region are also increasing.
Burgas is at the heart of the ICT Cluster Burgas, which was established in 2016 and has grown to over 40 member organisations and institutions. One of the main goals of the cluster is to further develop the IT environment in Burgas, which employs over 2,000 professionals in more than 40 companies.
So, after we have looked at the main hubs of the technology sector, let's take a look at the advantages of working with Bulgarian software developers.
- Excellent education
Software engineers in Bulgaria can benefit from a well-developed educational system, that encourages young talent. The wide network of secondary schools places a strong focus on languages, mathematics and computer science. Nearly 35 of them in the country provide study programmes that are potentially suitable for the tech sector.
The Bulgarian education system has been traditionally supportive of science, technology, engineering and mathematics, providing students with many opportunities to broaden their experience in the STEM field outside the curriculum. Also, the country has excellent university programmes that contribute to a well-educated workforce, including highly skilled IT specialists and a large multi-lingual talent pool.
Every year, 55,000 people graduate from 53 universities and colleges in 14 cities. Around 6,500 of them receive diplomas that meet the industry requirements, making the Bulgarian education system highly compatible with IT enterprises.
- Outstanding tech expertise
The skills of the Bulgarian developers are also recognized in the “Where to find the best developers in 2021” report by SkillValue. Bulgaria ranks 12th in the global chart, and the capital city Sofia takes the 8th position in Europe. In the 2022 report, the capital city occupied the 6th position in the global ranking.
- Remarkable language skills
The proficiency in foreign languages is deep among the Bulgarian population and especially among software engineers, because 98% of all high school graduates study a foreign language, with English being the predominant choice and 73% choosing German, French, Spanish or Russian as their second foreign language.
About 60% of the working-age population aged 25-64 speaks fluently at least one foreign language. According to the 2022 EF English Proficiency Index, Bulgaria ranks #21 among 111 world countries, while the EF EPI score for Bulgaria’s capital – Sofia is even higher - #17.
Are you interested in learning more about the advantages of hiring Bulgarian software engineers for your business? Do not hesitate to contact us - we are ready to provide you with additional information.