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Interview

Go West... No, Go East

Published October 14, 2021

In addition to being a well-known song, "Go West" as a concept is an old term for where to look to find solutions and success. But in today's world, it should be called Go East. And that may be the solution to the IT resource crisis the business community is already in the middle of, says Stefan Pedersen from WaveAccess.

IT Outsourcing in Eastern Europe

In the world of sports, people often talk about go home or go big. If you have to transfer that to the IT world, it could soon mean: Get your IT-ressources, or close your business. But the problem does not stop there. For the IT employees who are in the market, are pushing wages up to a level where they themselves are starting to put pressure on companies' finances. So it's a vicious circle.

But am I pointing out the obvious or is there a way out of the problems? In relation to the situation that everyone in the business world knows and the market I operate in, the answer is yes to both points.

The following should therefore not be construed as an advertisement. But it is a fact that if we do not have the resources in the country, we will have to look elsewhere. This in itself is nothing new. It's called outsourcing, and we've known it for decades. Now the interest is just greater for the area nearshoring. But that's another talk.

It is estimated that we in Denmark will be short of more than 20,000 IT specialists already in 2030. It is only in nine years! And as was pointed out in a post by Jacques Soelberg from Salesforce, there are already 7,600 specialists missing in the IT industry alone. Qualified resources of that magnitude cannot be drummed up off the ground in an instant. But… after all, there is no reason to panic more than that in the short run.

But it is a challenge that the number of applicants for IT educations is falling, and if we are to mix gender quotas into the challenge, there are still far too few women in IT. This makes the challenge far greater, forcing both companies and politicians to devise a joint plan to make it interesting for the good young minds to throw their skills and talent into the IT field. It cannot be ignored, it is of national interest.

Another challenge with the current situation, as well as the more long-term one, is that the entire growth base of start-ups, tech and fintech is simply falling apart if they cannot find the right resources. This means that it pays better to be a start-up company abroad than in Denmark. So now we are potentially also moving jobs out of the country because we lack IT resources.

But before we paint the devil on the wall, I would like to call for peace and order and positive thinking. Currently, after all, there is access to highly qualified specialists if you are ready to turn your gaze to other coasts. Not even that far away. Poland, Ukraine, Bulgaria and Russia have extremely well-trained IT people, developers and programmers. In fact, they are already up to speed, have experience and can provide solutions that neither ruin start-ups nor drain the well-established companies and industries - without compromising on quality.

So while we find new resources and train the next generation of IT specialists, it might be a solution, not just thinking out of the box, but out of the country.

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