South Africa has great tech talent. Not only are South African software engineers in high demand locally and overseas – some international companies are even drawn to South Africa to start local tech teams. Here’s why OfferZen partner, digital consulting firm Mobiquity, expanded to South Africa and what opportunities they bring for local software engineers.
Mobiquity is a global digital consulting firm that has offices in the US, Australia, India and the Netherlands. With the help of OfferZen, they are now building a local tech team in South Africa. We spoke to Gwen Kolader, VP of People & Culture at Mobiquity, about their expansion, what excites them about the local tech market, and what software engineers can look forward to.
Tell us about Mobiquity’s mission. What problem in the tech space are you solving?
I think we’ve all heard buzzwords related to ‘digital transformation’ and wondered what that means. At Mobiquity, we define that as actually creating transformative digital products for our clients. That means taking an agile approach to innovation. We want to help clients move away from legacy tech and old ways of working, so they can give their customers a truly compelling digital experience. We hire the best people to help us deliver a complete product, we’re there to support clients from idea inception to strategy, design, and implementation.
We started out in 2011 with a focus on mobile technology solutions. Over the years, we’ve adapted clients across nine different geographical locations. We are currently mainly focused on digital banking, but also do work in healthcare and retail.
The tech our team work with include:
- Kotlin, Flutter, React, ReactNative, Python, Angular, Node.js, Swift, Java, Azure, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Google Cloud Platform (GCP)
Among our clients are:
- Rabobank, ila Bank, Innohub, Vanguard, Philips, Bayer, SGS, D&G, ManpowerGroup
Some of our partners are:
Why have you expanded into South Africa, and what about the local tech market excites you?
We’re currently growing rapidly as a company. We have clients all over the world — it makes sense to have global teams closer to them, and be prepared as our client base grows further. Additionally, we were eager to expand the pool of tech talent within our teams. We have some fantastic South African employees already working for us in Amsterdam, and that got us curious about the tech talent available in South Africa.
We’ve found that South Africa has a lot of software engineers with a wide variety of skills, especially a lot of full-stack software engineers who are innovative and eager to learn. And then there’s the soft skills:
In our experience, South Africans are self-made, extra hard-working and determined to make something out of their careers.
Perhaps that’s because of the country’s context and history, where a job isn’t guaranteed or always easy to get.
That entrepreneurship and determination is very appealing to us. In addition, South Africa has a similar time zone to the Netherlands and a lot of Europe, so that was a big plus to easily integrate with our teams.
What are your ambitions in South Africa?
In the short-term, we want to build a dedicated delivery team in South Africa from scratch. We’re hiring between 15 and 20 people this year, and want to double that number next year.
Our priority is to get a couple of seniors hired, to make sure that the base of the team is set up well. We’re also hiring for roles within DevOps, back-end and front-end software engineers, solution architects, technical architects, UX designers and business analysts.
We have a lot of people in the pipeline already with the help of OfferZen! Our South African team will work side by side with the European team. In the long-term, we want to expand our footprint in Africa. I can imagine that with the fast growth we have, building our brand in South Africa will help us attract local clients as well.
Why are you partnering with OfferZen?
From the start, OfferZen has been a true partner by providing us with support and guidance on the local market, on talent numbers and on the whole digital environment in South Africa.
They provided us with a lot of support even before there was an official contract in place. That told me a lot about a potential partnership that we could build with OfferZen.
Can you give us a case study of a recent project Mobiquity’s software engineers worked on?
Here’s an example of the type of projects local software engineers will be working on: We’ve recently partnered with Standard Bank to create a cloud native mobile banking application built on top of a modern architecture. This allows customers to use a digital verification process, through facial and document identification, as a modern way to create and validate a profile.
After accessing the app using biometrics, it provides the end-users with an overview of all their businesses and banking products. This was an end-to-end DevOps solution that provided 24/7 availability of services for Standard Bank customers.
If I was a South African software engineer interested in joining you, what can I look forward to?
I think it’s a really exciting and adventurous time to join our team in South Africa: You will be part of building our base team here.
That also means advising our leadership on how to build up our business in Africa. Your skills and your experience will be highly valued.
You will also be working on projects from many different clients, mainly in digital banking. We have such cool ongoing initiatives to transform the way banks function and make sure their digital products and services are top-notch.
Career enablement is key for us: What are your ambitions? What do you want to learn? That’s something we focus on a lot, next to the fact that you will work with the latest tech. You will be challenged and supported in everything that you do.
Mobiquity has people from almost 50 different nationalities, and we value a strong company culture. So you’ll gain experience with many different teams across the globe — and feel comfortable to be yourself.