While Easter European developers are known for their ability to think outside of a box and make decisions it comes at a price. They are absolutely not able to follow directions. Managing a team of developers there is a challenge because you always struggle to keep them on the right path. Running an enterprise requires a combination of new invention and mundane support of legacy code. An engineering team that is not able and willing to do both will not be successful.
They are smart. That’s a good thing. They know it. That’s not so good. Many Eastern European developers can be too full of themselves. They may have little respect for others and if they do that respect is earned through some hard labor.
IT market in Eastern Europe is still too new. Twenty years ago it didn’t exist at all. As the result the vast majority of high tech workers are very young. It creates a tremendous opportunity as this workforce gets more experience and grows. At the same the current employees are not as mature and there is a void of qualified mentors to take them to the next level.
IT industry being so new still doesn’t have established salary rates. With new employees growing rapidly their compensation expectations growth accordingly. The result salary growth is out of control. If this trend continues the Eastern European community will price themselves out of the market. Even today there is vertically no financial advantage of building a team in Russian capital Moscow. Prices are simply too expensive.
While Eastern Europe outsourcing positions its differentiator as quality it’s a tough sell. Quality is a theoretical gain that still needs to be proven; while cost is a hard number that executive management pays a lot of attention to.
Russia and Ukraine are still developing countries. Despite what you may read or hear their banking systems, infrastructure, and even legal systems are not well developed yet. While this creates a great savings opportunity for us as customers it also creates an environment where money and power are still not distributed. Without a well established legal system and law enforcement contract enforcement is difficult. Without an enforced taxation system companies are forced to participate in creative games instead of focusing on growing their business.
Eastern European developers have a very high level of dedication when it comes to getting things done. Under a hard deadline they will work 24/7 to get it finished. Unfortunately on a flip side they are slow to show any progress when projects proceed at a normal speed. Management is dependent on receiving constant results and this attitude is viewed as an absence of progress.