Ride the Tiger? The State of Estonian Job Market for Tech Roles in 2020

Ride the Tiger? The State of Estonian Job Market for Tech Roles in 2020

Having a reputation for punching above its weight when it comes to things digital and tech, the Estonian tech sector has been experiencing a solid-paced rise during the last five years.

But how does that affect the local job market?

Here are some of the takeaway facts we found out about Estonia’s job market:  

  • The country has risen to the 20th position in Europe in terms of the total investment into startups while having the second smallest population after Luxembourg
  • With its 123 million worth of investments into deep tech in 2014-2019, Estonia ranks 18th in Europe, placing it on the second place among Eastern European countries, right behind Poland that has 29 times bigger population
  • The country is strongly supporting startups, injecting nearly €200 million to boost it
  • Software engineers and IT talent are currently among the most in-demand workers with the lowest level of competition
  • Salaries of Estonia’s tech jobs are behind the European average but way above the national average

Estonia’s tech sector in numbers

Estonian job market in 2020

The tiger reference 🐯 in the title of this article is not a literary gimmick (not totally at least), as it’s referencing to the Tiger Leap project – one of the revolutionary initiatives launched by the Estonian government in 1990’s and 2000’s that paved way digital information technology. These programs played a fundamental role in the buildup of state information infrastructure and education.

It is also most likely one of the factors that have led to the considerable success of Estonia’s tech sector, that is currently growing at a fast pace and attracted a strong € 250 million worth of investments in 2019. The country is proud of its 4 unicorns, having currently more per capita than any other country in the world: Skype, Playtech, Transferwise and Bolt.

All this makes for good country promotion material, but what’s actually happening at the work market?

Top 6 jobs Estonian tech companies are hiring for

tops jobs in Estonian job market

As with the rest of Europe, software engineering job offers are currently at the top in Estonia with 49% of the job offers. The share of applications submitted for software engineering jobs is significantly lower – 37% – meaning that the applicants enjoy a low competition rate. And are in high demand!

IT & System administrators are the second-highest in need and also with a low ratio of applicant numbers. Creative fields like design and marketing & PR are among the last in the top 6, with a negative ratio of the share of applications, indicating high competition.

Competitiveness for the top 6 roles

top jobs in Estonia

Among the six jobs with the highest share of offers in MeetFrank, creative and performance-oriented fields like design, sales & business development, marketing & PR & media see the biggest competition for the job offers in Estonia.

On average 26 people apply for design job offers published in MeetFrank, which is the highest in Estonia but far behind the European average of the same field – 41. Also similarly to the European average, IT fields are lower in terms of competition as, software engineering has 10, Data & Analytics has 9 and IT & Sysadmin has 7 candidates per offer.

What are the salaries for tech jobs in the Estonian job market?

Salaries in Estonian in 2020
Although slightly behind the European average, it can be said that salaries offered in the tech sector in Estonia are relatively higher than those of the rest of the country.

Also, the payment is slightly more egalitarian in Estonia between the average payments in different fields as the tech/IT jobs are not that far ahead of the others than the European average is. IT & System administrators are the most well-paid among the most popular jobs, followed closely by project management, sales & business development and software engineering, while creative fields like design and marketing are earning about a fifth less.

As you scroll up, you will see that high demand creates high salaries: As software engineers are one of the most sought-after experts in Estonia, it also reflects in their salary level.

It’s a fairly common knowledge that Estonian tech companies are also looking towards other European markets when it comes to finding top talent.

How popular is relocation among Estonian tech companies and job-seekers?

Are companies and job-seekers open to relocating?

Estonian job market overview in 2020
It turns out workers currently based in Estonia are, on average slightly less interested in relocation than the European average. This is the case for software engineering and sales & business development job seekers. 

A curious case is IT & system administration, that has the highest % of interest for relocation (25%) while the field has the highest salaries of all top jobs in Estonia and the lowest level of competition. This is over 4 times higher than the European average (6%) for the role.

Sales & business development and data & analytics people are the most content in Estonia, with only 11% and 12%, respectively, interested in relocating.

Top 5 countries with applications to relocate to work in Estonia

relocation jobs in Estonia

We know that around 25% of Estonian job-seekers are open to relocation.

But what about the other way around? Do people from other countries want to relocate to Estonia? The job-seekers in the MeetFrank platform seem to be willing enough.

Although Lithuania has an emerging tech scene of its own and the average payment is close to Estonia, it is surprisingly the country with the highest rate of readiness to relocate to Estonia. That is most likely due to geographic proximity.

Estonia’s northern neighbor Finland follows second and Ukraine, currently the country with the biggest migration to Estonia in general, comes third.


Top skills required in tech-related roles

top job skills needed in Estonia

Let’s take a look at which skills make you most likely to get hired in the Estonian job market. At least in the MeetFrank app!

With software engineering being the most in-demand profession at the moment it shouldn’t come as too big a surprise that the top sought-after skills are regarding that field. Full-stack, backend and frontend development and most common development languages HTML & CSS, SQL and Javascript are what’s expected of engineers these days.

Business development, project management, sales management, English and also Estonian are expected from sales & business development managers, while English is also the highest sought-after skill for customer support.

IT & Sysadmin candidates are currently most valued for their system administration and DevOps skills, while content marketing is the top skill expected from marketing & PR candidates. The most in-demand skill for designers is UI & visual design.

Top 10 Estonian companies, voted by job-seekers

TOP Estonian tech companies

In the MeetFrank app, the most applied-to companies are the tech unicorns.

Out of the four unicorns ever be been nurtured in Estonia, two are hiring at MeetFrank being they are the country’s most popular companies. These are the low-cost money transfer service Transferwise and the ride-hailing platform Bolt (formerly known as Taxify).

The third is the mobile banking app Monese and fourth Veriff, offering safer face recognition service – one of the features that are vital for Estonia’s E-Residency project. Starship, founded by Ahti Heinla (one of the founders of the mythical Skype) is now working on packaging robots with Starship that is also currently hiring across people in Estonia and several locations in the US.

MeetFrank is also regularly used by non-startups and /-tech companies, as indicated by the presence of two Swedish companies: the packaging, biomaterials, wooden constructions, and paper production giant Stora Enso and commercial bank SEB.

In a nut-shell

Estonia’s tech labour market, although comparatively small, is experiencing fast growth and offers a bunch of interesting companies to work for.

Several of them have recently grown to become international success stories such as Transferwise and Bolt, with many others boasting the potential to become the country’s next unicorns. 

The average payment in the tech sector is slightly below the European average, but so are the prices in the country’s capital Tallinn, where most of the companies are hiring. The city embraces several tech hubs, a thriving startup community, having made it to the league of Europe’s top cities in terms of tech development and financing.

Want more? Read a similar overview of the European tech job marketing in 2020.

Hospitality Jobs Opportunities in Europe 2020

Hospitality Jobs Opportunities in Europe 2020

The fuss of the restaurant is like the background melody that never stops. The soft clanking of cutlery, the warm buzz of conversation, champagne bottles going pop. Waiters skilfully sneak around the tables. Barista grinds and brews the best drink ever existing in the world – coffee, and the smell drifts away. Bussers hastily carry away wiped clean plates without a notice. A hostess cheers new guests and walks them to the available table with the best view. A manager lurks and passionately observes how things are going. The kitchen has its romance. The chef is polishing up his masterpiece, while cooks follow the recipes with pinpoint accuracy.  

Good news. Hospitality jobs are on their way. Each one of these and many other positions will appear in the MeetFrank app. We are growing non-stop so do employment opportunities. The time has come, so please welcome a new Hospitality industry many of our users have been waiting for. Europe strongly holds its position as the top tourist destination. It means more jobs in the Hospitality industry than ever before.

Now I`ll throw some numbers that explain why MeetFrank takes this industry onboard and why you should care. 

Hospitality jobs in Finland


The figures show that Hospitality is one of Finland’s most dynamic industries. 

Helsinki Times reports that the turnover generated by this industry amounts to €15 billion and contributes to 2.6 % of Finland’s GDP. The revenue comes mainly from foreign visitors, the number of which keeps rising and is 8.3 million.

The number of nights spent by tourists has increased by 1.3 %, reaching an impressive figure of 6.8 million. The travel industry in Finland is steadily growing, and we see positive growth potential in the long run. 

The Hospitality industry currently employs around 150,000 people but is always craving for more. The Finnish Hospitality industry is facing a major deficit of talent, and companies experience difficulties in finding employees with matching skills. It slows down the growth of the industry. 


Hospitality jobs in Estonia


More than 5.2% positive change in foreign visitors arrivals shows that more tourists are coming and stay for longer. 

The number of nights spent by tourists has increased by 4.4 % compared to 2018, reaching 4.9 million

The Bank of Estonia estimates the proportion of expenses made by foreign visitors in the export of travel services to be almost 1.2 billion euros.

These numbers suggest that foreign visitors are a great opportunity for the Estonian market to boost the Hospitality Industry even more.


Hospitality jobs in Latvia


In Latvia, the hospitality industry is a fast-growing sector of the economy. Geographic location, rich cultural and historical heritage, as well as growth-oriented workforce, facilitate the growth. Those, who have been there, know what I am talking about. 

In 2018 foreign travelers checked in this beautiful country 7.8 million times, which is 0.6 % more than the year before. Tourists keep spending more and more € on their trips. Last year expenditures amounted to €750 million, which is more than a year ago. In 2018, 2.81 million visitors were hosted at tourist accommodation establishments of Latvia – 9.0 % more than the year before.

The hospitality industry in Latvia is expanding quickly by opening new hotels and restaurants. Due to accelerated development, the hospitality industry provided almost 75 000 jobs and accounted for 8.5% to total employment in Latvia. 


Hospitality jobs in Lithuania


2018 was the most successful year for Lithuania with regards to tourist inflow. The number reached 3.6 m tourists that visited Lithuania. 

The hospitality industry has its focus on the most successful foreign markets that bring the € in. Lithuania experienced rapid growth in the number of tourists coming from Germany and Japan. 

The interest of Lithuanians in their country keeps growing. The Lithuanian tourism market is divided in half. Lithuanians who traveled within the country and stayed in hotels cover 51.8% of the market, while foreigners make up the rest 48.2 % of the Lithuanian tourism market.

The successful 2019 raises great expectations for 2020. The goal in the hospitality industry will try to support and maintain the increasing inflows of tourists.


What`s in it for you? 

Opportunities, of course.

The hospitality industry sustains 16,6 million jobs in Europe, which means 1 in every 13 jobs. No more numbers, I promise. The markets experience a high demand for talents due to the upward trend in the Hospitality Industry. There is a positive correlation between the inflow of tourists and the growth trend in the Hospitality industry. The more days tourists spend in the country, the more work has to be done to provide them a service. At the same time, companies are unable to find the best talent fit and need extra hands. 

MeetFrank is here to ease it up with the new relocation feature that aims at filling the gap in companies when finding the best match employees. You as a skilled talent being in high demand will be able to see opportunities abroad and connect directly with companies in the Hospitality industry and not only. We believe that talent is borderless. In today’s age, it doesn’t always matter where you are based. You are free to choose your best career path based on aspirations, not location. And even better, in many cases, jobs can be completely remote.

Check how it works here

Give yourself a head start on the Hospitality job market with MeetFrank daily digest that you can find in the app. 

Jobs in Estonia – Most In-Demand Professions in 2019

Jobs in Estonia – Most In-Demand Professions in 2019

Estonia. Small, agile, techy and entrepreneurial. It’s also deceptively spacious.

It has given us tech giants like Skype, Transferwise, Bolt and many others. Most of the population vote online and have been doing so for more than a decade. Company perks such as remote work, free meals and company retreats are the norm to attract talent.

The air is clean, there is plenty of space for everyone and crime rates are low. Sounds like the perfect place to live and work, right?

The only downside is the winters that can get rather nippy.

According to Statistics Estonia, the unemployment rate in Estonia is the lowest it has been since 2008, currently at 4.7%. The year-on-year growth of the gross domestic product was 4.5% in the first quarter of 2019.

As one of the leading talent acquisition platforms in the Baltics, MeetFrank is uniquely placed to share some insights on the job market in this part of the world.

So, share insights we shall.


Top 5 talent employers seek in Estonia


I’ve looked at the data from job offers on MeetFrank and turned it into a nifty infographic.

What positions where in most demand of being filled?  Also, what range of salaries employers are willing to pay? How much are they willing to offer over your expected salary? And lastly – what are the highest offered salaries for positions on MeetFrank?

If you’re a senior software developer, you’re in luck. Employers will be fighting over you.

most in demand jobs in estonia

How much are employers willing to pay?


Data gathered from all employers recruiting in Estonia in 2019 on MeetFrank varies quite a bit depending on the field they are looking for.

Considering the lack of developers, rather unsurprisingly, software development is the highest paid track on MeetFrank. Average maximum salary offers though in software development and IT & sysadmin are pretty close.Same goes for sales & business development and product management.

Highest ever salary offers are the same in business development and IT & sysadmin. All time high offer in customer service on MeetFrank has been €5000 which considering the average salary in this field is rather high.

I need to point out though that the highest offers are generally for executive roles.

salaries in estonia

Most popular search on MeetFrank in Estonia is for for software engineers which considering the booming Manufacturing and IT sectors (contributing 1.5% and 0.6% to the overall growth of GDP in Q1 2019) this does not come as much of a surprise.

Furthermore, these are consequently also the highest paying jobs in Estonia.


Economy overview


Since the restoration of its independence in 1991, Estonia has been one of the fastest growing economies in the region. It is fast to make reforms and has created a digital society where pretty much all of the government services can be done online (except getting married, divorced and buying a property). Estonians save 5 working days per year per working age adult just thanks to the digital signature

facts about estonia

Positions in various indices:

  • 1st – OECD Tax Competitiveness Index 2017
  • 1st – Entrepreneurial Activity, World Economic Forum 2017
  • 1st – Internet Freedom, Freedom House 2016 (sharing 1st place with Iceland)
  • 7th – Index of Economic Freedom 2018, The Heritage Foundation
  • 9th – Digital Economy and Society Index 2017, European Commission
  • 12th – Ease of Doing Business 2016, The World Bank


Estonia has some of the highest international credit ratings in the region:

  • Standard & Poor’s: AA-
  • Moody’s: A1
  • Fitch IBCA: A+


According to Statistics Estonia, in Q1 2019 the average monthly gross wages and salaries reached €1,341. Data also indicates that salaries rose across all sectors.

The highest paying sectors were financial and insurance activities, energy, information and communication tech paying on average over €2,400, €2,260 and €2195.

Currently the number of available positions in Estonia remains over 10 000. Unsurprisingly, the rate of job vacancies was highest in information and communication (3.7%) and in financial and insurance industries (3.0%) 

Estonia also has a very competitive tax system with pretty much non existent bureaucracy for the employees. Definitely an attractive country to work and live in.


Projected highest demand for jobs in Estonia


According to a labour needs survey conducted by the Estonian Unemployment Insurance Fund (EUIF) the Estonian labour market will be most in need of programmers, cooks and lorry drivers in the coming years.

So if you’re looking for jobs in Estonia in these areas, you’re in luck.

Furthermore, taking a look at the occupational barometer map, it too indicates a large labour shortage when it comes to software developers. They have also pointed out that the current workforce lacks sufficient qualifications. In addition to software developers there’s also a need for systems admins, web designers and application programmers.

To tackle this the Estonian Government has started a project called “Choose IT”. The goal is to train 500 software developers by 2020. The training is free, if you meet the requirements and lasts approximately 3.5 months. By the end of it you will have basic knowledge and practical skills in software development.

The project seems to be doing well and most students will be offered a job at the company they did an internship with. To qualify you need to have finished at least 50% of your academic studies program if not already obtained a degree. This definitely is a great push by the government to tackle the lack of software engineers in Estonia.


Startup jobs in Estonia

startup jobs in estonia

What is interesting is that even though in most other fields the supply and demand for managerial positions is in balance, apart from information technology. Confirming the data that the most in demand jobs in Estonia are in the IT sector and not necessarily only for developers. 

Why might that be?

Simply lack of talent in this area or the fact that Estonia has a very high amount of startups per capita? Startups per capita in Estonia is 6x higher than the average in Europe. Estonia also has the highest amount of unicorns per capita. That said we need to keep in mind that there’s only 1.3M people living over here.

Considering the size of the country and economy it seems that startups is all Estonia does. And why not, right ? 

Currently, 3,700 Estonian ICT companies are hiring. So if you’re after jobs in Estonia and are skilled in this area, this may be a dream come true.

Have a look at what some of these companies have to offer and how much they are willing to pay for your talent on MeetFrank!


jobs in estonia