What’s in the report?

Recessionary storms and supply chain disruptions rage, fueled by major conflicts in Asia and Europe. Yet one imperative rises above the chaos – the unrelenting demand for skilled engineering and digital talent. This talent stands as the last line of defense, helping companies create a defensible moat against external disruptions. The Global Capability Center (GCC) model has emerged as the go-to strategy, allowing companies to tap into under-tapped talent pools.

But where do these talent pools lie? Beyond traditional borders are promising new frontiers – Argentina, Chile, India, Costa Rica, and Taiwan. These locations aren’t just home to large talent pools of engineers and tech professionals, but also offer a relatively stable and welcoming environment for global firms to set up GCCs. As geopolitical tensions reshape immigration landscapes, a fierce contest plays out across Europe, Asia, Latin America, and North America for the prize of human capital.

Moreover, these emerging talent hotspots provide access to fresh global talent, proving pivotal as companies pursue transformational digital journeys, catalyze innovation, and unleash the potential of Generative AI. The rising tide of AI and machine learning adoption, particularly in Fintech, Healthcare, and e-Commerce, has ignited a frenzy for AI/ML professionals. This feverish demand has concentrated top AI/ML talent in North America (35%) and Asia-Pacific (38%), rendering them irresistible talent magnets.

In this dynamic landscape, leaders must chart their course wisely – pinpointing AI/ML talent clusters, identifying locations brimming with scalable talent pools, and zeroing in on ecosystems primed for setting up global centers. This comprehensive study maps out the global talent hotspots, arming leaders with the knowledge to establish full, scalable software product engineering and IT teams at competitive costs while driving rapid business growth and innovation.

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Key Insights from the Study

  • Global talent hotspots where companies can build scalable and full Software Product Engineering teams, have a mature technology ecosystem with a higher ease of doing business, and enable building teams at affordable costs.
  • Global trends such as increased adoption of AI/ML across verticals, geopolitical tensions in Asia and Europe that have prompted talent migration, and salary normalization in the wake of post-COVID rightsizing are forcing companies to explore newer talent hotspots.
  • To minimize risks and ensure business continuity in the face of external disruptions, companies should adopt a multi-hub strategy that enables skills-based hiring at affordable costs.
  • India (3.3Mn) and China (3.36Mn) are neck and neck in software engineering talent, with the US ranking a distant third at 1.6Mn software engineering professionals.
  • APAC has witnessed a 13% increase in its talent pool over the last year, driven primarily by several global companies from Europe, North America, and the Middle East setting up GCCs in countries like India, the Philippines, Vietnam, and Malaysia.
  • Although the global AI/ML engineering talent pool across the identified hotspots stands at 3Mn, the bulk of it is concentrated in North America (35%) and APAC (38%).
  • A comparative analysis of a 100-member Software Product Engineering team that houses key roles in each of the identified 23 countries, relative to costs in the US, provides a comprehensive view of countries where teams can be scaled easily.
  • Strong ecosystem collaboration between existing GCCs, and with local start-ups (including unicorns), Service Providers, and academia, make for a compelling case for global companies to continue to leverage these global talent hotspots.
  • This in-depth analysis of the 23 identified countries across North America, Latin America, Eastern Europe, and Asia Pacific evaluated across key parameters, empowers CXOs and decision makers to build full, scalable, high-performing teams within new GCCs.

Global Software Engineering Talent availability and cost

Center Of Excellence Hotspots Global Map

Why download this report?

Get insights on top locations to build world class GCCs where you can:

  • Build scalable, full Software Product Engineering and IT teams
  • Leverage a mature ecosystem of dynamic start-ups, Technology Service Providers, and universities
  • Benefit from high ease of doing business
  • Build teams at affordable costs

To get access to the full report, please drop us a note at info@zinnov.com

Zinnov evaluated the 23 identified countries across the following 4 parameters:

  • Talent Availability
  • Software Engineering Ecosystem Maturity
  • Ease of Doing Business
  • Cost Analysis

While all 23 countries in this analysis have proven software engineering capability, in terms of building scalable GCCs, India, Canada, China, Mexico, and Poland are the Top 5 Talent Hotspots of the World, for the fourth year in a row.

Center Of Excellence Hotspots - Mexico
Center Of Excellence Hotspots - Argentina

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Center Of Excellence Hotspots - Belarus

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Center Of Excellence Hotspots - Brazil

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Center Of Excellence Hotspots - Bulgaria

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Center Of Excellence Hotspots - Canada

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Center Of Excellence Hotspots - Chile

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Center Of Excellence Hotspots - China

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Center Of Excellence Hotspots - Colombia

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Center Of Excellence Hotspots - Costa Rica

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Center Of Excellence Hotspots - Czechia

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Center Of Excellence Hotspots - Estonia

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Center Of Excellence Hotspots - India

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Center Of Excellence Hotspots - Indonesia

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Center Of Excellence Hotspots - Latvia

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Center Of Excellence Hotspots - Lithuania

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Center Of Excellence Hotspots - Malaysia

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Center Of Excellence Hotspots - Philippines

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Center Of Excellence Hotspots - Poland

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Center Of Excellence Hotspots - Romania

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Center Of Excellence Hotspots - Serbia

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Center Of Excellence Hotspots - Taiwan

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Center Of Excellence Hotspots - Vietnam

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Country Ranking based on their potential to house fully scalable Software Engineering teams

Country Ranking based on their potential to house fully scalable Software Engineering teams

To accelerate your organization’s growth and innovation journey, while bringing in higher efficiencies and productivity, you need access to the best global talent. We can help you establish high-performing Global Capability Centers with top-notch infrastructure, high impact HR policies, and a partner ecosystem that is conducive for innovation.

For more details about working with us, drop us a note at info@zinnov.com and we will get in touch with you.

Report Authors and Contributors

Nilesh Thakker

Nilesh Thakker

President
Amita Goyal

Amita Goyal

Partner & Head of GCC Business
Ankit Mishra

Ankit Mishra

Engagement Manager
Aditya Raj

Aditya Raj

Project Lead
Prajwal Shankar

Prajwal Shankar

Consultant

FAQs

FREQUENTLY
ASKED QUESTIONS

A Center of Excellence (COE) is defined as a body in an organization that has leading-edge knowledge and competency in a particular area and is comprised of highly skilled individuals and experts.

Zinnov evaluated 23 countries across North America, Latin America, Eastern Europe, and Asia Pacific to narrow down the COE hotspots of the world. The identified locations were benchmarked against developed countries like the US, the UK, and Japan.

The insights and analyses from this comprehensive study will benefit key stakeholders and decision makers such as CXOs, Strategy, Operations, and HR leaders from global MNCs; Operating Partners at Private Equity firms.

We have selected the 23 countries because of their high potential to house full software engineering teams. Zinnov’s extensive experience of working with global technology organizations, PE firms, and Technology Service Providers, uniquely positions us to evaluate key aspects such as the presence of significant talent pools, ecosystem maturity, affordable costs, and ease of doing business in terms of geopolitical stability, English proficiency, and IP and Data Privacy – that make certain countries global talent hotspots.

Organizations set up global COEs or GCCs to –

  • De-risk business
  • Initiate transformative change in the organization in a scalable and sustainable manner
  • Provide visibility, focus, and establish commitment to innovation
  • Provide flexibility to innovate fast and fail fast

An organization can measure the success of its COE by measuring –

  • The expertise showcased by a COE – Relevant, Deep, and Unique (IP worthy, POC generated).
  • The ability to impact the organization by shaping its business vision and technology roadmap and/or by helping the organization fill the skill gap/market gap to achieve the outlined broader organizational vision.
  • The ability to generate economic value for HQ and drive product ownership and technology leadership.

Here are the top key levers to build successful Centers of Excellence –

  • A well-defined vision with strong executive sponsorship
  • The selection of the right location with a strong external ecosystem
  • Skill availability at scale
  • Creating an organizational structure that empowers the COE to take up ownership and hence sets it up for success
  • Building a strong talent strategy
  • Well-defined governance and operating model
  • Prioritizing the right use cases and problems to solve for
  • Fostering meaningful partnerships with start-ups, academia, and other companies in the ecosystem.

An effective COE must have the following attributes in order to drive high-impact value and ROI –

  • High engineering maturity
  • Clearly defined center persona
  • Top-notch talent attraction and retention strategy
  • Strong partnerships with the external ecosystem
  • Visionary leader to drive innovation

Speak to our consultants for more details

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