A photo of Bogota, where outsourcing offers a solution to hiring needs in Colombia

Outsourcing in Bogota: Tech & IT Hiring in Colombia

Since the turn of the century, Colombia has emerged as a major hub of innovation in Latin America, with capital city Bogota hosting a number of major tech companies, while second-largest city Medellin has been heralded as a new “Silicon Valley” in the region.  For anyone interested in hiring in Colombia, a provider of outsourcing in Bogota will be able to quickly find the right people, hire them, and manage their payroll on your behalf.

Bogota, the capital city of Colombia. Outsourcing in Bogota: Tech & IT Hiring in Colombia

While Medellin’s profile as an innovation hub is today arguably higher than that of Bogota, the reality is that with a population almost three times larger and producing significantly more graduates in tech-related disciplines, the capital has a great deal to offer in terms of talent and facilities. 

That makes Bogota a great source of tech talent for anyone looking to establish a startup, or who simply wishes to hire local workers at competitive rates to contribute to a project based elsewhere.

In the case that all you need is a small number of tech workers, or a team for a short-term project, outsourcing in Bogota is a good option. Such outsourcing will be offered by a professional employer organization (PEO), which can also be known as an employer of record (EOR). 

When hiring through a PEO in Colombia, those employees are officially contracted by the PEO firm’s locally incorporated entity, but they answer to you and you retain full control over their workloads and schedules. 

Essentially, when you choose this model for hiring in Colombia, you can recruit local talent without having to go through company formation and subsequent liquidation. 

The PEO firm will also take responsibility for managing the payroll and other aspects of administering those employees, removing a time-consuming task and avoiding the need to hire staff for that purpose.

By avoiding the need to go through company formation, you can have staff working for you in only the time it takes to find them — which could be weeks or even just days, depending on the profile you are looking for.

A PEO in Colombia will be able to assist with the recruitment process, using its established recruitment network and expert knowledge of the best educational courses and institutions to find suitable candidates.

Hiring in Colombia: Bogota is a major hub for tech talent

While Medellin’s innovation sector has received a great deal of press over recent years, Bogota boasts an enormous and growing tech scene, and has a ready supply of skilled workers available. 

The city is well-known as the headquarters for delivery app Rappi — one of Latin America’s most famous unicorns — and also hosts a number of other big names, including online supermarket Merqueo, payment platform PayU, and delivery app RobinFood.

Those four are among some of the tech companies and startups in Bogota that have raised hundreds of millions of dollars in funding in recent years.

The city government is also well-known for the support it provides to startups and tech firms, this year announcing a $2.3 million fund to back companies developing blockchain technology. 

According to Invest in Bogota, a public-private investment promotion body set up by the Bogota Chamber of Commerce and the Bogota City Government, 55% of the country’s digital animation and video game companies are based in the capital, and the city government is prioritizing the IT industry for investment.

The capital already hosts a range of annual events to promote innovation and entrepreneurship, such as Startup Weekend Bogota and GoFest. It is also home to a number of startup incubators and accelerators, including a branch of the world renowned Founder Institute. 

Meanwhile, the city produces a large number of skilled workers, being home to 10 of the top 25 universities in Colombia — including the top two. It also boasts some of the highest English proficiency in the country.

Among the tech workers that you can hire via outsourcing in Bogota are the likes of:

  • Frontend developers
  • Backend developers
  • Full stack engineers
  • Data scientists
  • Data analysts
  • Artificial intelligence engineers
  • Blockchain developers
  • Software engineers
  • Web developers
  • Database developers

All of this adds up to mean that the Colombian capital is a prime destination for seeking tech, who can be easily hired through a PEO firm offering outsourcing in Bogota.  

To get an idea of how much hiring staff in Colombia costs, and to compare those costs to other countries in the region, the Biz Latin Hub Payroll Calculator offers a useful indication, based on an expected base salary.

Outsourcing in Bogota: advantages of working with a PEO firm

Working with a PEO firm to hire tech workers via outsourcing in Bogota comes with a number of advantages, including but not limited to:

Rapid entry: Working with a PEO firm means getting to work in the market as soon as you can find the right people. That also means that you can depart from the market in only the time it takes for those staff to complete statutory notice periods, should your business plans change.

Cost effectiveness: While you incur PEO fees, usually on a per-employee basis, when hiring in Colombia via an outsourcing arrangement, it can often cost less than entity formation, employment of legal and accounting staff, and subsequent liquidation of the company and employees.

Reduced commitment: The quick entry and easy departure means that your commitment is significantly limited when you hire via outsourcing in Bogota. Yet if you work with a PEO that offers a broad portfolio of back-office services, it will be able to assist you should you decide to deepen your commitment through company formation.

Legal assistance: The PEO that provides you with outsourcing in Bogota will have employment and labor law experts on staff to provide ongoing advice and guidance, while also guaranteeing compliance with local laws as part of the service agreement you sign with them.

Developed networks: When you outsource in Bogota through a PEO, you tap into the firm’s well-developed networks, not only for recruitment, but also within the wider business community, which can be extremely useful to you later down the line.

Common FAQs when attracting and hiring talent in Colombia

Based on our extensive experience these are the common questions and doubts of our clients when looking to hire in the local market.

1. Why hire talent in Colombia?

Investors aiming for a competitive edge in the global market should consider Colombia as a prime talent hub. Situated at the nexus of North and South America, Colombia provides excellent access to diverse markets. Its robust economy, averaging a steady 3.3% annual GDP growth, is reinforced by progressive business reforms and a thriving technology-to-agriculture industry spectrum, promising numerous opportunities. Boasting a population exceeding 50 million, Colombia offers a substantial talent pool. With nearly 300,000 higher education graduates annually, the country’s workforce is both well-educated and bilingual in Spanish and English. This, combined with cost-effective labor and a rapidly growing tech sector, creates an environment conducive to business success. As Colombia’s infrastructure advances and security improves, it emerges as a compelling destination for investors. In addition, the fusion of rich cultural heritage, welcoming atmosphere, and pleasant climate ensures a pleasant quality of life for employees.

2. Can I hire top tech talent in Colombia?  

Yes, Colombia offers a flourishing tech talent landscape. The tech sector has surged recently posting a 220% increase in IT companies, producing around 16,000 computer science graduates annually. Cities like Bogotá, Medellín, and Cali are tech hubs, housing a significant portion of this talent with circa 24% of the workforce involved in STEM fields.

3. What is the level of English for professionals in Colombia?

The level of English proficiency among professionals in Colombia is high and substantiated by statistics. According to the EF English Proficiency Index, Colombia has consistently shown improvement in English proficiency, ranking 49th out of 100 countries assessed in its latest report. In particular, the growing tech sector showcases a solid commitment to bilingualism, with many professionals possessing proficient English skills. Research by the Colombian Ministry of Education indicates that around 40% of university students have a good or advanced level of English proficiency, with this percentage being higher in STEM fields.

4. How many software developers are there in Colombia?

Colombia’s technology sector is experiencing notable growth, with cities such as Bogotá, Medellín, and Cali emerging as prominent tech hubs. In Bogotá alone, there are over 1,500 technology companies, spanning both startups and established firms and the picture is the same in Medellín and Cali, which have also fostered substantial tech communities. In terms of software developers, it is estimated that Colombia is home to circa 130,000 to 150,000 professionals.

Biz Latin Hub provides outsourcing in Bogota and can help you with hiring in Colombia

At Biz Latin Hub, we have a strong track record of helping clients with hiring in Colombia and providing local employees via outsourcing in Bogota.

Our comprehensive portfolio of corporate support solutions includes hiring & PEO, as well as the likes of accounting & taxation, company formation, legal services, and visa processing, meaning that we can provide a tailored package of back-office services to suit every need, and can assist outsourcing clients if they choose to deepen their commitment to the market.

We also have teams in place in 15 other markets around Latin America and the Caribbean, specializing in multi-jurisdiction market entry and operations.

Contact us today to discuss how we can support you.

Or read about our team and expert authors.

Key services offered by BLH including legal services, accounting & taxation, hiring & PEO, due diligence, tax advisory, and visa processing
Key services offered by Biz Latin Hub

The information provided here within should not be construed as formal guidance or advice. Please consult a professional for your specific situation. Information provided is for informative purposes only and may not capture all pertinent laws, standards, and best practices. The regulatory landscape is continually evolving; information mentioned may be outdated and/or could undergo changes. The interpretations presented are not official. Some sections are based on the interpretations or views of relevant authorities, but we cannot ensure that these perspectives will be supported in all professional settings.
Legal Team Colombia

Legal Team Colombia

Legal Team Colombia is the Biz Latin Hub leading experts on doing business in Colombia The Team writes on the news, doing business, law, and changing regulations. The team are experts in corporate law, Administrative law, Employment law, Immigration law and legal advisory services. Read more about them here. You can contact Legal Team Colombia via our "contact us page".

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