How to Find Software Developers in Latin America
In the era of the Great Resignation, many organizations across North America and Western Europe have noticed that it’s become more difficult and expensive to hire software developers locally. When the local pools of technology talent are tapped out, the power of globalization can save the day. That is why many IT decision-makers reach out to software development companies in Latin America to build their remote teams.
As a company that builds teams of software developers in Latin America, we can give you some advice as to how to access top talent in this region. Since 2008, we’ve harbored solid experience helping our clients scale their development teams and cope during times of tech talent shortage. Now we want to help you too.
Let’s start with a brief overview of the market in question.
Latin American software development: Overview
The IT sector in Latin America has expanded exponentially over the past few years, as a vast number of US companies started to uncover its potential. During this time, several hotspots of software emerged, including the following:
Let’s review the key reasons why Latin America has become such a lucrative destination for software development.
Solid background of engineers. Software development in Latin America relies on a word-class education system: Nearly a hundred out of the world’s 500 top universities are spread across Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Columbia, and Chile. STEM education in this region is also bolstered by a number of initiatives from the government aimed to nurture domestic tech talent. For example, Brazil alone generates 100K graduates specializing in one of the STEM fields, which makes the country especially attractive when it comes to sourcing software developers in Latin America.
Convenient time zone. If we were to name one benefit that lets Latin America have an upper hand over other outsourcing hotspots it would be a negligible time difference with the US. As such, North American teams can share common working hours with their Latin American counterparts, which reduces the effort that typically goes into arranging convoluted availability schedules between remote team members.
Talent. The number of software developers in Latin America is careening towards a 1 million milestone, according to the data provided by StackOverflow and LinkedIn. Some countries are true giants in terms of the number of software developers. Below is a breakdown by country:
- Brazil: 500K developers
- Mexico: 225K developers
- Argentina: 115K developers
- Columbia 62K developers
- Chile: 61K developers
Cost. According to a recent Accelerance report, a software developer’s salary in Latin America varies between $28-$105 per hour. Clutch, a firm aggregator, shows that software development in Latin America costs in the range of $25-$99 per hour, including the provider’s fees. Thus, Latin America is more affordable than the US where a typical rate is $70-$130 per hour of developer’s time.
Travel time. Undoubtedly, geographic proximity is one of the key factors that inspire US companies to seek software developers in Latin America as opposed to other outsourcing hotbeds. For example, if your remote team is located in Mexico, you can get there as fast as 4 hours from Los Angeles. You can also travel from New York to Bogota, Colombia, in under 6 hours. If the aspect of travel time is critical for you, these locations can be the optimum solution for you.
English proficiency. IT specialists in Latin America have a good grasp of the English language. According to Education First English Proficiency Index, the adult population in Argentina and Chile boast an advanced level (C1-C2 according to international language standards) of English proficiency, whereas the rest of the countries (Brazil, Mexico, Columbia) have an intermediate and upper-intermediate level of English (B1-B2).
How to find top software developers in Latin America
One of the most beneficial ways to dip your toe into software development in Latin America is by partnering with a provider specializing in sourcing technology talent in this region, for example, nCube. Below we’ll highlight the benefits and potential shortcomings of this approach.
Swiftness. A vendor of software development services in Latin America can help you add the skills you need quickly and skip the step of headhunting on a competitive local market.
A customized hiring process. Your vendor will handpick and pre-screen relevant developers for you based on your idea of what a perfect candidate should be like.
Budget optimization. When you source software developers in Latin America through a vendor like nCube, you will only pay for the hours your employee worked on your project, eliminating expenses associated with in-house resources.
Increased control. By hiring a provider of software development and services in Latin America, you will manage your remote unit directly, retaining control over the direction and execution of the software development process, which guarantees you predictability of the outcome.
Distance. While Latin America is considered to be a nearshore destination, in some cases team visits can be encumbered by long-distance flights. For instance, if you’re based in New York and would like to visit your team in Buenos Aires, your flight will take up to 12 hours. Thus, if team visits are crucial for you, it’s best to put in some deliberate consideration when choosing the destination.
Communication. English is the lingua franca of the IT world, but Latin America has an uneven distribution of English proficiency. Hiring someone in Brazil can be more beneficial as the likelihood of coming across developers with high proficiency is higher than in Mexico and Columbia.
Culture differences. Working with software developers in Latin America may require adjusting, given that this region belongs to high context cultures where communication is based on underlying context, meaning, and tone in the message, and not just the words themselves.
That being said, these challenges can be solved by proper management and experience in running hybrid teams. We at nCube always help our clients establish effective communication between their remote units and overcome potential challenges.
Steps to source top software developers in Latin America
In this section, we’ll review the steps you need to take during the process of team formation via a vendor of software developers in Latin America.
- Define the roles you need
Since you are here, we assume you have a scope of work on hand and are looking for resources to implement it. Whether you require only a few people or a full-scale software development team, you should document the lowdown of the roles your provider of software development in Latin America needs to fulfill.
- Review the roles together with your vendor
After you’ve defined the roles, go over them with your vendor so that they have a clear picture of the skillsets you need. Ideally, you should have a well-rounded portrait of your perfect candidate, including a description of their hard skills, soft skills, seniority, and experience level. Establishing a solid framework like this will let you access and work with top software developers in Latin America with ease.
- Interview candidates
This stage plays a great role in forming your perfect remote team. With that in mind, ensure that your vendor of software developers in Latin America has internal screening in place so you waste no time interviewing unsuitable candidates. nCube always tests if a candidate is a good fit for the role, skill- and culture-wise. During our internal screening, we pay attention to developers’ experience and motivation alike. We believe that hard skills matter, but it’s also important that none of your team members falls out of your company culture.
- Facilitate the work between your teams
If you have a local unit and are going to add remote staff, your task is to ensure that everything works like a well-oiled machine. To that end, it’s best to implement and stick to a common software development methodology. This is what your provider of Agile software development outsourcing in Latin America can help you with. We at nCube always help our clients with interweaving software developers into their operations and setting up a comfortable remote environment.
Latin America is a region where hiring a developer is a lot like hiring a developer in the US or Western Europe, since many software developers in Latin America have a solid tech background, speak English adequately, and are close to you in terms of geography and mentality.
When looking for software development companies in Latin America, you should make sure that you have a vision of the roles you require. In their turn, your selected partner should take care of sourcing relevant candidates and setting up a solid remote environment for your team.
The approach we follow at nCube can be a perfect solution because it allows you to access suitable developers fast and integrate them efficiently into your company. Contact us.