South African software developers are in high demand, and they enjoy strong spending power in the country.
This is according to OfferZen, which told MyBroadband that demand for developers will continue to rise in 2020.
“We’ve seen a continued rise in the demand for tech talent from both tech companies and traditionally non-tech companies, as they compete for the unique skills needed to remain relevant and innovate,” said OfferZen.
Another strong trend, however, is that of skilled South Africans emigrating to pursue work and lifestyle opportunities abroad.
This includes software developers, but not in the volumes often portrayed, said OfferZen.
“Tech is an international game and we believe the narrative of specialists leaving the country is overhyped.”
“Yes, many developers are going abroad to places like Europe and the United States to gain exposure to international tech companies – but we’ve spoken to many developers who are abroad or planning on working abroad, and a large number of them don’t plan on leaving for good.”
“They’re learning new skills, gaining new experience, and then planning on bringing that back to SA.”
Through its developer survey, OfferZen said it gained insight into what it’s like being a developer in South Africa.
“Contrary to popular narrative, South Africa is a great place to be in tech.”
OfferZen added that:
- South Africa has an increasingly good ecosystem to foster great tech talent.
- Self-taught developers have similar earning trajectories as those with degrees.
- Developers feel like they have growth potential locally and that’s one of their most important concerns.
Additionally, South African developer salaries compared to international salaries and the cost of living locally versus overseas show that local developers have extremely strong spending power, said OfferZen.
“What’s interesting is that it’s not just our data that says this, but back in 2015, StackOverflow reached the same conclusion.”
“They found that when using the Big Mac Index, South African software developers ranked second highest in the world after Ukraine.”