SourceSeek co-founder Dave Hecker: “Finding an ideal software vendor is like looking for a spouse – a partner with the right personality”

SourceSeek finds and engages developers in a variety of technologies: PHP, Node, Javascript, Python, Ruby, embedded, Java, .Net, Meteor, and more. The agency matches international clients with software vendors from Ukraine, Argentina, Vietnam, China, Philippines and West Africa. Agency co-founder Dave Hecker shares his analysis of the global IT outsourcing market and Ukraine’s attractiveness.

This interview is an excerpt from “IT Ukraine From A to Z,” a research study on the Ukrainian IT outsourcing and software R&D industries published by Ukraine Digital News.

What trends do you see in the global outsourcing world? How is the landscape shifting?

We see a few emerging popular destinations like Vietnam and West Africa, Ghana in particular. While those places are usually very cheap, they still lack one or more of the three essentials for outsourcing business: 1. good currency exchange; 2. solid education system; 3. non-interfering government. Although these newer destinations have potential, it will be a while until they produce the senior IT managers necessary for complex projects.

In that way Ukraine stands out – it is relatively cheap and has plenty of senior management talent that moved to agile development some time ago. Hence Ukraine is by far the favorite destination for our European clients.

Another big trend that we see is one in clients’ attitude toward outsourcing. If before they treated outsourcing like cleaning a suit, now they understand the necessity of building relationships with the development teams, that sending a code specification is not enough to receive the product you want. Outsourcing is rather like a marriage: it requires dialogue and the development of a long-term bond. This fundamental shift in attitude is likely to result in higher product quality and client satisfaction.

How do you think Ukrainian developers stand out in comparison with other countries?

Ukraine has a number of attractive characteristics. First, the country has a very good educational system and people that are good at math, analysis and science. Second, we hear from clients that Ukrainians take their jobs very seriously, treating the smallest task like a space launch. Third, we have seen that people in Eastern Europe, including Ukraine, find it very easy to speak up and express their opinion. This is great because communication and good teamwork are often required for finding the best technical solution.

Finally, I think Ukrainian IT companies have done a very good job of raising the level of English proficiency among their engineers. They spend substantial money on teaching their developers English.

What advice would you give to companies hiring tech talent abroad?

I usually tell clients not to look for a roadmap or a magic formula since there isn’t one. Finding an ideal software vendor is like looking for a spouse. Every company is different – not in skills and expertise, but rather in their work processes, operations and even personalities. So do not look for the skill, look for the company with the right personality.

How does SourceSeek distinguish itself from recruiting agencies? What is your expertise?

This organic process of successfully matching personalities is actually our secret source. As I said before, we believe that outsourcing works like a marriage: unless the vendor and the client are compatible and ready for long-term commitment, the partnership is not going to last.

Topics: Analysis & opinion, International, IT services, Labor & HR issues
Scroll to Top
Everything you ever wanted to know about Ukraine's digital industries
Conveniently delivered to your mailbox, every week
  • Latest industry news
  • Information on startups in Ukraine
  • Market data and reports
  • Interviews with key players
  • Upcoming events
  • Recommended services
* we never share your details with third parties.