A large part of Slocombe’s tech clients are beginning to work remotely with developers.
“I would say it’s more the cutting-edge technology companies that are working with remote developers. It’s an advantage for companies that come to Cyprus and establish a headquarters here to enjoy low taxes and incentives, but then outsource software development abroad to control costs.
“This is a trend that started before the pandemic, largely because of the scarcity of developers. With a project underway, and a tight deadline, finding qualified developers abroad became necessary to some tech companies.
Perhaps they fly them in once a month for a meeting, but they can work at home the rest of the time.
“Now, since the pandemic, with many workers besides developers working at home at least part of the time, many of the administrative issues that arose have been worked out. So many companies have no difficulty at all integrating developers from abroad,” Slocombe explains.
Does this help Cyprus companies to grow?
“Of course. Getting access to the developers companies need means that they complete more projects, and that the quality of their work improves. This goes right to these companies’ bottom line, and they grow, and they hire more Cypriots as their organisation gets bigger. “And, often once a relationship is built with a remote developer, it’s possible to convince that person to come work in Cyprus. “So developers working remotely are good for Cyprus tech.”
Some companies say that issues arise in managing remote workers.
“Engagement and retention can be an issue. It’s important to create some team spirit with some activities that are not related to work. When developers work remotely, they can be alienated by lack of attention, or failure to include them in teamwork. It’s good for companies working remotely to have a forum in which they can exchange ideas easily with remote workers. “For example, in our remote teams, on Friday mornings, the first thing people do is to log on and take a quiz. There’s a riddle you have to solve at the start, and then there are 20 questions, sometimes humorous, sometimes a bitrisqué, and the workers give their answers at the end. It’s something we all look forward to.”
Are Your clients sometimes workingwith offices all over the world?
“Yes, I have one client who lives in London, but has his company based in Cyprus, and he has a number of different software developers in different parts of Europe and Israel. So he travels from one place to another, and essentially runs his company remotely. “Perhaps not every company can make the transition to this kind of management. But more and more companies will undoubtedly mix remote work with developers on site in the near future,” Slocombe concludes.