Your Guide to Offshore Software Development Rates by Country

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Published: 09 Jul 2019


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Offshoring development is having a moment. This is a way to save costs and access talent with varied skillsets – and CEOs and CTOs worldwide are jumping on this opportunity. 

If you are considering offshoring software development at your company, you can either tap into the freelance workforce or find a virtual team partner, which is typically a more convenient way to handle offshore engagements. 

So how much does it cost to hire offshore developers? Well, that depends. In most cases, it comes down to location. In this article, we take a look at software development rates in the most popular offshoring destinations. 

Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) 


If your aim is not only to reduce the cost of development but also to engage highly qualified software engineers, this region offers a great solution.

CEE boasts over 1 million software engineers, which makes it an attractive offshoring destination. With the growing number of IT professionals, the countries in this region have taken significant steps to foster the development of their IT markets. 

Generally, IT professionals based in CEE are deemed to offer a higher quality of work than their Asian counterparts. This can be explained by having access to the strong, Europe-quality academic education.

Poland takes the lead with roughly 225,000 professionals involved in IT. Ukraine is ranked second with 185,000 IT specialists. Both countries are well-positioned to be a major powerhouse of IT talent and offer competitive rates, an average of $15 per hour according to PayScale. 

Asia software development hourly rates


Asia is the most diversified region in terms of software development hourly rates. Geographically, the region spans both cost-effective and expensive offshore destinations.

India, one of the most cost-effective offshoring options, where one can hire a software developer under $20 per hour. But much to the chagrin of cost-conscious companies, the cost savings often comes at a price of low quality.

China offers moderate rates (quite similar to Eastern Europe) and a vast talent pool of qualified IT professionals. Despite the quite affordable offshoring rates of $25–$40 per hour, China’s weak IP protection, however, poses a barrier for making the most of offshoring opportunities in this country. The Chinese government supports the IT industry by providing economic incentives and investing in technology parks where software experts are nurtured. 

Countries such as Vietnam, Indonesia, and Malaysia can become a happy medium in terms of quality to cost ratio. Programmers in Japan only earn on average $20 per hour, despite the fact that the country is rightfully considered to be the cradle of cutting-edge technologies. Senior engineers in the above-mentioned countries usually charge $30–$40 per hour.  

Asia’s peculiarity is that you can come across good specialists as easily as semi-skilled ones. Moderate hourly rates combined with high-quality software solutions is a rare occurrence. An offshore software company that has entered the global IT market will be likely to charge as high as $30-$60 for a full-time software developer. As such, if you are not willing to roll the dice, it’s best to consider other regions. 

Latin America software development hourly rates

Latin America is well-positioned to be the preferred offshoring region for US-based companies due to the time zone that enables the teams to synchronize the workflow and communicate in real-time. In addition, the continent offers cultural and social affinity, including high English proficiency. 

The ease of travel is another reason why North American companies decide to opt in for IT offshoring to this region. The geographical proximity allows visiting the offshore development team on a regular basis, which is harder to do with Eastern European teams.  

Although software development rates in most of the Latin American countries are higher than in Asia or Eastern Europe, offshoring still remains a viable way to develop software as compared to hiring domestic resources. 

The hot spots for software offshoring are Brazil, Argentina, and Mexico where the hourly rates vary between $30–$50. The cheaper options include countries like Chile, Panama, Costa Rica, and Peru where the cost of a full-time developer can be $15–$25. 

Africa software development hourly rates


Africa is a new entrant on the software offshoring market. At the moment, the IT job market in Africa is far from being the offshoring hot spot like Eastern Europe or Asia. 

According to Accelerance, South Africa, Egypt, Morocco, Tunisia, Kenya, and Nigeria are the most promising nations that drive the IT industry on the whole continent. Morocco, Egypt and Kenya offer the average offshore programming rate of $20. 

Software development rates are higher in Nigeria and South Africa, since the job market in those countries is less saturated, which makes it hard to find highly qualified developers at moderate rates. Tunisia and Morocco are preferred destinations for French-speaking clients, whereas the rest of the continent offers a vast pool of Arabic- and English-speaking talent.

Final thoughts: Software development offshoring with NCube

The cost of offshore development depends on where you are hiring a team but can vary between $15-$50 per hour. 

What you should consider when hiring an offshore developer? The rates are affected by a programmer’s experience, seniority, and tech stack. Needless to say that the more experience a developer has, the more they will charge. 

The countries of Latin America lead the way in terms of the hourly rates for a software developer. Eastern Europe offers a vast pool of qualified talent at moderate prices, whereas the Asian and African IT job market is filled with semi-skilled job seekers at lower rates, so choosing them may save you the money but not guarantee a high-quality end product. 

We at NCube have been building development teams of Ukrainian developers for over a decade. Lots of our Clients from Western Europe and North America comment on strong tech skills and problem-solving mindset of Ukrainian developers. We can set up a team around your tech stack! 


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