What a year it’s been so far. The past months have been really hard on all of us and we’re definitely not out of the woods. We’ve been thinking a lot about the impact COVID-19 has on the South African and global tech ecosystem and I know that you’ve been doing the same. Ultimately, I think that COVID-19 is a “fast forward” button for tech, rapidly accelerating existing trends like remote work, eCommerce and digitisation. In fact, we believe so much in the importance of software makers in the “new normal” that we are now expanding our operations to Amsterdam. Here’s why and how you can help us take OfferZen to Europe.
We’ve been working on our mission to help software makers unlock their potential for nearly five years now. We’re lucky in a sense, that our business model revolves around adding value to people in the community - at our core, we’re about matching top talent with exciting opportunities in tech. That means, the more software makers and tech companies win, the more we win.
This model has allowed us to invest heavily in the local tech ecosystem from the start. From connecting software makers through local tech meetups and conferences to sharing community-driven content, matching mentoring pairs and opening up banking systems to developers - our constant collaboration with the tech community helps us understand how to best support software makers when it’s time for them to look for new opportunities.
While the global pandemic is hitting our economy hard, it doesn’t change that there’s an insane amount of potential in tech communities like ours in South Africa. We are trying to do our part in making South Africa a better place to be in tech by helping the software community win - individuals, companies, and the ecosystem as a whole. We also think that we can do this for other tech communities and unlock even more potential in tech.
That’s why it’s time to expand our mission.
Next level: Europe
We’ve been exploring an overseas expansion of our operations for a number of months. Europe makes a lot of sense for us as a company - there are similar time zones, a lot of English being spoken, and great baked goods such as stroopwafels! :-) We’ve acquired the Amsterdam-based company Try Catch and are combining their local operational teams, experience and customer relationships with our community engagement and understanding of the developer community.
Despite the current economic downturn, the global pandemic has also highlighted the robustness of companies that are able to take their operations online, empower remote work and work across distributed teams - in other words: companies powered by tech. We are hoping that we can take our approach to supporting and connecting the community to other tech markets and unlock even more potential in the tech industry.
We’ve already launched our first batch of Amsterdam-based developers, and have a bunch of really cool Dutch companies on board, such as Backbase, Catawiki and Adyen. We’re still figuring out exact details, especially in light of lockdowns and travel restrictions, but the idea is to provide South African and European OfferZen companies with the option to hire local software makers from their region, remotely, or even support relocations between markets.
On the other side, we really believe that this move will allow us to unlock the potential of more software makers, and increase the investment we can make in the global tech community. As part of that, we’re already busy getting you insights from software makers and hiring managers at companies like WeTransfer, Bynder and Booking.com and are running events, handing out T-shirts, and generally OfferZen’ing with the Amsterdam tech community.
That said, we’re just getting started, and for us to really bring the full OfferZen experience to Amsterdam, we need your help!
We want to bring our swag, events, content and community to Amsterdam - and of course help software makers find awesome jobs. If you have friends, contacts or former colleagues in the area that should be part of the OfferZen community, please tell them to join us - even if it’s just to give us feedback! They can: