The turmoil Serbia has been through with conflict, political and economic disasters, the IT industry has also suffered the consequences, being left far behind the rest of Europe. One of the solutions to rising out of its darkness was to get on the technology train! Today it is one of the leaders in IT development, and heading today’s being the world’s next hotspot regarding tech talent.
The IT sector in Serbia has a value of a little over 2 billion euros, 1 billion of that is accounted for in technology exports. The country has been ranked as 5th in the world for development. IT is the fastest growing area of Serbia’s economy, and a lot of the thanks goes to the government for investing money into business and education.
Incentives for Businesses
The Ministerial Council for IT, Innovation and Entrepreneurship was set up to encourage development. This is just one of the examples that have been established. Approximately 70 million euros has been invested in technology and its infrastructures, which was necessary to foster start-ups. These included ideas like free workspaces for new businesses.
Foreign investors can enjoy low wages of up to 10,000 euros per employee. There are also grants and tariff-free imports of equipment. Microsoft is one of the companies that have taken advantage, setting up the Microsoft Development Center Serbia in 2005.
Education and Maintaining A Flow of Talent
Since the improvement of the IT curriculum in both primary and secondary schools, Serbia has been able to develop a large talent pool. Technology has a strong place in primary schools, secondary schools, and universities. There has been a significant investment in universities.
Children learn software programming in primary schools as a compulsory subject. From a young age, children already have a strong grasp of the fundamentals. Once in secondary school, students have the option to continue these studies. The number of tech-related places in universities has been increased with the objective of raising the number of qualified IT workers from 1,500 per year to 5,000. 13% of Serbian students studied in mathematics, IT, and computing sectors in 2017, while in the UK, this figure was just 10%.
Benefits at Home and Abroad
Those who choose to relocate to Serbia are offered many incentives and enjoy fairly low costs, unlike many other European countries. Offshoring is an exciting choice for those who don’t want to relocate.
The 2019 Global Software Outsourcing rates Serbia as the cheapest country for offshoring prices. There are benefits to the culture too, making it more straightforward than in other countries, for example in Asia, which shares similarities in low wages.
Becoming the next Silicon Valley
Serbia is now well set up for IT education, nurturing young talent and investments. The government has laid the path for a booming tech industry in Serbia. Salaries for those who are entering this sector are highly attractive, three times higher than the national average. The office culture also has its advantages with various benefits including chill-out zones.
The costs are low for employers, while incentives are high. It is now time for the country that introduced the world to Tesla, to regain its reputation for mathematical education.