By Joy Thakur
For many experienced IT professionals, 2014 is already shaping up to be a high octane year. From Big Data and Cloud Computing to Social, Mobile and Analytics, hiring demand is high and growing, especially in some countries you may not expect. While Silicon Valley has been the hotbed for the best tech jobs in the world, and it continues to remain so, there are emerging destinations all over the globe known for their startups, an innovative environment and a growing sentiment towards entrepreneurship.
While the world’s most successful technology companies, such as Apple, Google, Amazon and Facebook, all are based in the United States, companies in many emerging economies are grabbing the attention of the next generation of IT employees.
The four biggest and fastest growing emerging markets for IT professionals, according to industry recruiters, are the BRIC countries (Brazil, Russia, India and China). The term was coined by Jim O’Neil at Goldman Sachs, who continues to argue that BRICs are likely to remain the most promising investment destinations over the next decade.
In addition to BRICs, there is another group of countries known as MINT (Mexico, Indonesia, Nigeria and Turkey), which are viewed in the light of their favorable economic prospects for the future and IT demands. According to Jim O’Neil, “The BRIC and the MINT countries, if I'm right, over the next decade will shape the world economy's development."
Let's review the four countries that have the potential to become the world's most dominant new economies by the year 2050. When they do, the IT sector will be the most important factor driving their success.
A study released by Institute for Applied Economics Research (Ipea) in Brazil in 2013 suggests that the IT sector is responsible for the largest share of job market growth. According to the data provided by Brasscom, the official association of Brazil's information technology and communication firms, the Brazilian IT sector is world’s fourth largest, ahead of many developed economies in terms of revenue, which was $233 billion in 2012, making up 7% of the country’s GDP.
The country’s domestic IT market is very well developed and accounts for the lion’s share of its revenue. Large multinationals such as IBM, Johnson & Johnson and GE have evolved IT hiring into what it is today.
According to Sergio Pessoa, the marketing director at Brasscom, the country is looking to grow its IT market significantly in the next 10 years.
It also intends to increase its IT exports from $2.6 billion to $20 billion. Thus, there is a lot of hope for next generation white collar professionals to make a career in IT sector in Brazil in the coming years.
Did you know Russia actually has its own search engine named Yandex, which began a year before Google and currently has the largest share of Russia's search market at 60%?
According to a forecast by Morgan Stanley, Russian e-commerce will triple by the end of 2015, expanding to $36 billion. And although the country still has one of the lowest per capita spending on IT products and services, technology is starting to have a strong influence on Russian economic development.
Despite the challenges, Russia is an attractive destination for IT development, and a large number of jobs created by foreign investment gave Russia the second-highest level of IT-related employment in Europe in 2013. The country provides tax incentives and subsidies to foreign investors for establishing tech hubs, which is a primary reason behind greater interest of foreign investors in Russia’s technology sector.
The number of projects in the computer and software sectors experienced a sharp spike in 2012, with such major companies as eBay and IBM expanding their Russian presence by creating better and more opportunities for IT professionals.
India has virtually unlimited potential and is “the” player to watch out for in IT development, say industry recruiters. With an excellent IT educational system in place, and a rising entrepreneurial spirit among its youth, there is plenty of challenging professional opportunities for tech fanatics.
Bangalore has been the traditional IT hub of the country, with most of its IT employers headquartered there. Pune is another city which has emerged as a leader in such new technologies as mobile and cloud. There are a number of startup success stories as well, including Little Eye Labs, a Bangalore-based startup that was acquired by Facebook recently.
Other disruptive companies such as Redbus and Pune-based Druva, which provides enterprise backup and archiving, are proving that with appropriate resources at hand and the combination of open-source software and cloud computing, Indian entrepreneurs can be successful and become an instrument of job generation.
According to NASSCOM, the Indian IT regulatory body, IT exports are expected to rise by 15% through next year. The Indian IT industry is currently pegged at $118 billion, of which $86 billion is driven by IT exports. According to NASSCOM, the Indian IT industry will grow to about $300 billion in total revenue by 2020, creating wide-ranging job opportunities for tech and engineering professionals.
China surpassed Japan in IT spending in 2013 to become the world’s second largest IT market, behind the United States, and its IT spending is increasing by double digits annually, according to industry reports.
According to Frank Gens, the chief analyst at IDC, “China is the place you have to be if you are in the IT market.”
The country is home to 618 million internet users, 80% of which access the web through mobile phones.
Smartphones are at the heart of China's Internet revolution, which again shows how innovation in mobile technology is driving opportunities in emerging economies. In fact, technological innovation is providing equally great alternatives to Silicon Valley for finding employment in China and around the world.