The flow of IT professionals leaving Ukraine is gradually starting to reverse, according to IT Ukraine Association head Dmytro Ovcharenko. Speaking in late December, Ovcharenko said that as many as 2,500 IT specialists have moved back to Ukraine in 2018, the largest inflow of returning IT talent since the brain drain phenomenon first rose to prominence in the Ukrainian tech sector amid the crisis conditions of 2014.
Meanwhile, fewer Ukrainian IT professionals are leaving the country. A recent study by the Better Regulation Delivery Office (BRDO) IT Association found that while 10% of Ukrainian IT sector workers left the country for employment abroad in 2015, the figure for 2017 was just under 4% and was continuing to fall.
One of the key factors helping to reduce the brain drain effect in the IT sector is increasing salary competitiveness, with Ukrainian IT salaries now up to 90% of the comparative pay levels on offer in neighboring countries such as Poland. Once the cheaper cost of living is factored in, this makes Ukraine a highly competitive employment option, even for those with a choice of international options.