Firmly established as one of Central and Eastern Europe’s most important technology centers, Krakow’s technology and business scene continues to go from strength to strength, demonstrating its resilience and appeal despite the global economic and societal disruption caused by the pandemic.
The Krakow IT market has a fair portion of big players, with the 18 largest companies employing roughly 17 000 engineers in Krakow out of the 50 000 IT professionals’ talent pool. A great majority of these companies are foreign businesses, with eight being American companies.
Instead of going straight to the list, let’s first have a look at three ways of how the big companies influence the local talent pool.Check out also: Krakow IT Market Report 2022
Growth and demand
To say that the presence of the large players influences the job market significantly is not enough. In fact, it has created the IT job market in Krakow, in the first place. Back in the early 2000’s there weren’t really any large firms here (except for Comarch) and there was only a handful of foreign companies in Krakow. And then things started changing. The high demand for engineers motivated universities to open more C.S. courses (now there are over 15 of them in the city); it encouraged the engineers from other fields to try working as programmers, it helped persuade people from other Polish cities to come to Krakow, other businesses to open their offices here, etc.
Now, the demand is so significant, it seems any number of engineers can be hired by employers. As highlighted by our partner inhire.io and featured in our Krakow IT Market Report 2022, there are over 3 000 IT job postings in Krakow per quarter published on the four main IT job boards in Poland, including for developers, testers, consultants etc. Just these 18 companies, having an average annual growth of a modest 5%, generate the demand for 850 engineers a year.
Large foreign companies come to Krakow attracted by the large IT talent pool. With more than 50 000 IT professionals, Krakow is the second largest pool in Poland, after Warsaw and before Wroclaw. Check out our Krakow IT Market Report 2022 to learn more about Krakow talent pool characteristics, salaries and hiring practices.
Foreign technology companies also come here for the possibility of building a larger team thanks to reduced operational and labor costs. Even if Polish developers are not as affordable as they used to be 10 years ago, the financial gain achieved with offshoring or nearshoring to Krakow is still significant. If you combine it with the low risk of setting up an office in the EU, it’s a bargain. By creating a software lab of 500 people here in Krakow, a company can save tens of millions of dollars per year in comparison to building a similar team back home. This tells us that the big, foreign companies are here to stay and grow.
Big Brothers’ benefits and downsides
For many engineers, particularly the young ones, joining a large organization carries a number of advantages. But it is more than that. Ultimately the benefits and gains for individuals, convert to the capacity of the entire talent pool of the city. Large companies have the power to influence the skills and experience of large groups of specialists and they often offer options not available at smaller organizations such as:
- unique perspective of working for large international brands,
- valuable international exposure,
- ability to move horizontally within the organization to learn different areas of operations,
- opportunities for a temporary or even a permanent relocation abroad,
- focus on the employee’s growth and development in comparison to smaller organizations where budgets might be more tight and training less engraved in the organization’s DNA,
- learning how large, global business works from within,
- experiencing the culture of a global company.
This, however, works both ways. Certain disadvantages of working for big organizations can propagate and influence the city’s talent pool. No doubt, these weaknesses of large corporations are controversial, and do not apply to all organizations, but we simply want to draw a more complete picture. Consider the following:
- rigidity of organizational processes and the role of hierarchy tends to impact individual creativity,
- often times employees have a very limited understanding of the bigger picture or anything that is outside their narrow field of focus,
- limited or no influence on the decisions made can trigger a passive attitude and some kind of a “learned helplessness” as a conviction that nothing can be changed,
- certain companies offshore primarily older software products that use outdated technologies,
- systematic, goal-based employee assessment can trigger risk aversion with employees committing only to the initiatives they are certain they will succeed in.
Krakow Largest Software and IT Companies
Okay, so without further ado, here are the top 18 largest software and IT companies companies in Krakow, ranked by number of engineers/IT professionals. The criteria for the list of the biggest was to have over 300 engineers/IT specialists employed in Krakow. If we missed a name, or got the data about the current size of the team wrong, please let us know, we’ll fix it.
Comarch is the only Polish company on the list. Established in 1993, it has grown to become one of the largest Polish software firms. Comarch employs over 3 500 people in Krakow with at least 2 500 of them in technical roles.
Aptiv is one of the oldest foreign IT companies operating in Krakow. The Krakow office was established in 2000 and now employs around 2 000 engineers/IT specialists.
#3 Motorola Solutions
Motorola Solutions is yet another network infrastructure company that employs over 1 700 engineers/IT specialists. Established here in 1998, it was the first large multinational company to come to Krakow.
#4 EPAM Systems
EPAM Systems came to Krakow in 2011 and employs over 1 500 engineers/IT specialists providing services to large corporations.
#5 Sabre Corporation
Sabre Corporation, with its 1 200 engineers/IT specialists was one of the first companies to set up its development center in Krakow. Since 2000 it has grown to become one of the largest Sabre offices in the world.
#6 HCL Technologies
HCL Technologies, an Indian consulting company, was setup in Krakow in 2007 and initially focused primarily on help desk projects. Now with its 1 200 engineers/IT specialists it serves international customers in 20+ countries around the globe.
Cisco opened its Krakow campus in 2012. The company is well-known for its network infrastructure solutions and now employs 2 200 people in Krakow, including 1 000 engineers/IT specialists.
ABB, expanded significantly in the last 5 years and now employs over 800 engineers/IT specialists in Krakow. The Krakow office was established in 1997.
IBM came to Krakow in 2005 and and now employs 3 000 people, including 700 engineers/IT specialists.
#10 SII Group
SII Group, a French technology consulting company, employs over 700 engineers/IT specialists in Krakow. The Krakow office was established in 2011.
Capgemini is the second French company on the list. Capgemini is really large in Krakow, but most of its crew of over 3 000 employees work in non-IT roles, with close to 650 IT specialists. These are primarily non-development positions. Capgemini is a global professional services company and currently one of the biggest employers in Krakow.
#12 Nokia Networks
Nokia Networks, a Finish network infrastructure provider, employs 600 engineers/IT specialists in its Krakow location. The team here works on embedded systems and network applications, generating demand for C/C++ programmers, Linux and networking specialists.
Luxoft, with its 500 engineers/IT specialists, provides software services to financial institutions. Luxoft has contributed to the increasing pool of IT experts in Krakow by relocating some of its engineers from Ukraine to Krakow already before the war,
Ericsson, formerly functioning as the independent company Ericpol acquired by Ericsson in 2016. The Swedish telco infrastructure manufacturer employs close to 500 engineers/IT specialists in Krakow.
#15 Akamai Technologies
Akamai Technologies, a US-based network infrastructure provider now employs over 400 engineers/IT specialists in its Krakow service center. Established in 2011, it primarily hires engineers with Java programming skills.
#16 Grand Parade
Grand Parade, part of the online bookmaker William Hill, employs over 400 engineers/IT specialists in its Krakow location, established in 2011.
Pegasystems, established its Krakow office in 2005 and employs 320 engineers/IT specialists.
Ocado, a UK-based online grocery retailer, employs 350 people in Krakow including 300 engineers/IT specialists.
Non-IT Companies Hiring Engineers in Krakow
Not only software and IT companies hire engineers here. Krakow being a major business services hub in Europe, many companies started by employing non-IT personnel and then expanded to hire technology specialists. These non-IT companies are primarily financial institutions, such as HSBC (United Kingdom) which employs over 2 000 engineers/IT specialists and is de facto the 2nd largest employer of IT talent in Krakow.
Learn more about the non-IT companies hiring engineers in Krakow by downloading our Krakow IT Market Report 2022.
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If you are looking for more information about setting up your presence in Poland, download our Krakow IT Market Report 2022.
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