How do the skills match up between the U.S. (a high income country) versus Russia (middle income), and the Philippines (a lower income country)? The results might be surprising to some of you!
First, how different are pay rates between these countries?
You can hire a Philippines based web developer for example for a salary of anywhere from $3 per hour to $14 per hour. (Around $5,000 to $25,000 per year). The equivalent “range” in the U.S. would be $50,000 – $150,000 per year. For Russia, it would be $20,000 to $60,000.
The range varies widely depending on experience and the city the person lives in. However, this doesn’t tell you very much as you need to compare the skill level of the people you are hiring.
Ideally you want to compare people with similar skill levels. Check this out:
Are skills of US developers higher than those in Russia and the Philippines?
On average, yes, but you don’t want to look for an average person! You will want to find the sweet spot, an area of overlap where salary offsets skill level. In our chart, that would be a high level person in the Philippines. You have to pay more than the Philippines average, yes (for example $15-20,000 per year instead of $5-10,000 per year) — but the increased experience more than makes up for the increased cost, and this also means less time managing this person.
What the Ideal Team Composition would be…
You might want a team leader based in the U.S. and working with 2 – 4 people in Russia or the Philippines. This way you combine the benefits of a highly skilled technical team lead with a reliable but lower cost supporting structure to accelerate development speed.
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