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COMPUTERWORLD | Articles | Market Analysis
15 Apr

Recognition and compensation top ICT staff engagement list


Recognition and compensation were the most important factors in employee engagement in the ICT sector in Bulgaria in 2012, according to the TOP ICT Employer 2012 survey carried out by Computerworld Bulgaria and JobTiger under the methodology of HR audit company Audit Advice Associates (AAA). Leadership and client-focused quality of products and services came out to be the other ICT employee engagement factors of highest value.

The results of the research were presented by Jasmina Tal, General Manager of ААА, at a roundtable in October 2012. The event was hosted by ICT Media, which Computerworld Bulgaria is part of, and JobTiger.

The event and the survey were two of three parts of a larger project also called TOP ICT Employer. The third element was a contest which ranked the best ICT employers in the country (read further to see who the winners were).

The whole initiative was executed with the cooperation of the Bulgarian Ministry of Labour and Social Policy, the American Chamber of Commerce in Bulgaria (AmCham), the Bulgarian Association of Information Technologies (BAIT), the Bulgarian Human Resources Management and Development Association (BHRMDA), and the Confederation of the Employers and Industrialist in Bulgaria (KRIB). The initiative took place with the support of UniCredit Bulbank, SAP Labs Bulgaria, StangaOne1, Experian, Generali Insurance, BORICA-BANKSERVICE, and AAA.

The companies participated in four categories: software development (38% of all polled organizations), system integration (20%), IT services (33%), and software, hardware and communication equipment sales (9%).

The survey covered employees, HR specialists and general managers

from 26 companies in the Bulgarian ICT sector. The respondents list included Adastra Bulgaria, Asbis Bulgaria, Astea Solutions, Bianor, BORICA-BANKSERVICE, Crytek Black Sea, eCommera, Enetpulse, Ericsson Telecommunications Bulgaria, Fadata, Information Services, Intelligent Systems Bulgaria, Kontrax, M B Bulgaria (Skrill), Matrix IT Global Services Bulgaria, MentorMate Bulgaria, Omega Soft, Playtech Bulgaria, Proxiad Bulgaria, Rila Solutions, SafeCharge Bulgaria, Seeburger Informatik, Sirma Business Consulting, StangaOne1, Teletec Electronics, and Voodootech.

A total of 1771 employees in these companies were polled about which engagement factors mean the most to them, 26 HR specialists and managers filled out an HR questionnaire, and 24 GMs were asked about the results of their firms.

Of the employee respondents,

62% were male, which, at least partly, busted the myth that the ICT sector in Bulgaria is a man's world. The participants at the round table shared the opinion that, unlike Western Europe and the USA, women are equal to men in the world of technology in Bulgaria. Moreover, women in Bulgaria often have specific qualities that make them more suitable for some ICT professions and activities than men.

Another interesting aspect of the research results is that employees in the ICT sector in Bulgaria are usually university graduates. In fact, most of the respondents (47%) already held a master degree at the time of the poll. Another 32% were bachelors, and only 12% did not have any university degree.

As for age, the poll showed that 52% of the covered employees were 26-35, which is a clear sign that a lot of the people in the sector are fairly young.

It is known that often ICT specialists in Bulgaria start their professional career as early as their years at university. This was proven by the results of the survey which showed that 38% of the covered employees had over 10 years of total working experience.

The GMs

who took part in the survey mostly said that 2011 was good for their businesses. 76% noted there was a positive change in their annual revenues compared to 2010.


As for the HR respondents' answers,

the poll showed that the 26 covered companies had a total of 489 vacancies and hired 444 employees in 2011.

Only 2% of the surveyed employees said they had been laid off in the past year, which does not imply any crisis at all in the ICT sector in Bulgaria.

The most wanted specialists by those 26 companies were developers, followed by quality assurance staff.

93% of the companies already had developed employee appraisal systems. However, only 22% of the polled businesses said they had career path systems, and 41% of the firms noted they maintained documented annual planing regarding HR activities.

The TOP ICT Employer of 2012

project finished with a special award ceremony, which took place on 10 October, 2012 at Sheraton Sofia Hotel Balkan, right after the roundtable. There were four awards for each of the aforementioned sectors: software development, system integration, IT services, and software, hardware and communication equipment sales. On top of that there was the big award – TOP ICT Employer of 2012, which was given to the company that achieved the highest results among all 24 participants.

The big award went to Sirma Business Consulting, which was announced the best ICT employer for 2012. The company, which is part of Sirma Group Holding, was set up as a standalone firm in 2007 with the aim to address the IT consulting and system integration needs of banks.

In the software development sector the first place was occupied by Seeburger Informatik, which is part of German company Seeburger AG. The Bulgarian branch has development centers in Sofia and Plovdiv.

The top employer award in the software, hardware and communication equipment sales sector went to Ericsson Telecommunications Bulgaria. The Bulgarian office of the international company is a key player in the sphere of mobile technologies, TV/IPTV solutions, media applications, system integration, and IP equipment.

In the IT services sector StangaOne1 took the best employer award. The Bulgarian office of the international company has software development centers in Sofia and Plovdiv and is currently setting up a regional center in Nish, Serbia.

In the system integration category the prize was awarded to Sirma Business Consulting.

The TOP ICT Employer of 2012 contest had 24 participants out of the 26 companies which were covered by the survey because two of the firms did not meet the minimum participation criteria. Eligibility required at least 50 permanent employees during the start fo the research, as well as a certain minimum percentage of people who filled in the employee engagement questionnaire.

Employee engagement answers had the largest (50%) influence over the final results. HR policies and practices and business results had 25% importance each.

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