In today’s world, having the skills to find information is beneficial, but all the more so if you have a go-to location where all the info you seek is already gathered. Quite often, founders struggle in sourcing and recruiting the best engineers.
Despite being home to some of the best tech talents in the world (Europe counts nearly 3 million engineers alone), one of the reasons for such sourcing difficulties, and a growing trend, is geographic diversity, as talent is widely, but not equally distributed. Factor in remote working models and cost-of-living considerations and it's easy to see how and why these factors are accelerating this trend.
Looking to help companies in their search for a talented workforce, VC firm Sequoia has launched Sequoia Atlas, an interactive tool that provides a unique insight into engineering and other tech talents across Europe.
But let’s go one by one!
In order to provide valuable and useful input on today’s tech workforce environment, Sequoia conducted comprehensive research about the current tech talent landscape.
- Six out of ten companies have permanent distributed teams and nearly two-thirds expect to have more remote employees in the coming years (this is particularly relevant for engineering teams).
- 78% of those that operate with distributed teams stated that their engineers work in a distributed manner.
- The location of talent still matters as around 75% of recruiters say that accessing specialist skills in other cities is a driving factor in going remote (particularly with sought-after front-end and DevOps specialists).
- Companies are increasingly setting up remote hubs for specialist engineers. The benefits of these initiatives are doubled, for gaining top talent and the opportunity for teams to work together in person.
- Founders interviewed for this project state that the UK’s withdrawal from the European Union appears to have had no visible impact on these trends.
- High-caliber engineers can command similar fees, regardless of where they live (almost 75% of respondents think that pay differentials are dropping between countries, while 80% think it’s also the situation within countries).
- Less than 45% stated that saving on compensation is a reason for recruiting remotely, while 74% are looking for specialist skills in other locations.
So, what is Sequoia Atlas, and how it can help?
This tool has been developed with one aim – to gather information on tech talents across Europe, from different specialisations, and thus help founders building in Europe to navigate the various ecosystems and figure out where to focus their recruitment efforts.
To provide these comprehensive data, Sequoia developed a methodology in order to identify local density spikes for 14 different specialisations, and found 24 cities with a high concentration of specialist skills.
Atlas is also a guide to local specialisation hubs, as well as to the total talent distribution across Europe. The data provided are useful whether it’s about hiring a remote employer, building an engineering hub, or considering where to base a company. It also explores evolving trends in areas such as hybrid work, compensation, and AI.
Using this tool, some of the conclusions that arise are:
- Germany is a hot spot for Robotics, Drones & Autonomous Vehicles, with Stuttgart and Munich each boasting at least double the proportion of local talent focused on this category than most cities across Europe.
- Gothenburg, Sweden is an outlier for Systems engineers, with a local talent concentration for that skill over double that of many European cities.
- For Gaming & Graphics, Helsinki has the top outlier talent concentration, followed by Vilnius.
"After more than a decade in venture, I know the difference hiring the right tech talent makes to founders. Europe is an amazing environment for talent across various hubs and navigating these increasingly rich ecosystems can be difficult," commented Sequoia Capital Partner Luciana Lixandru. "We created Atlas to help outlier founders as they search for the talent they need to build the next enduring companies."