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Moldova ICT Summit 2016

Updating the IT skills

John OSullivan
Igor Bercu

April 28, 2016

Chisinau, Moldova

The authors views expressed in this publication do not necessary reflect the views of the United States Agency for International Development or the United
States Government.

Whats it all about ?

A fresh view of the (alleged) IT skills gap
Updating earlier studies
Baseline for further projects by USAID and others
Methodology: Research + Interviews + Surveys
197 companies
211 students
78 graduates

Economic and political dramas

Banking, economic and political crises:

GDP down by 2.5%

Inflation up from 5 to 13%
Interest rates up from 3.5 to 19.5%
Military action and unrest in Ukraine

Six recent Governments

Impact on ICT is not clear

ICT sector in Moldova

Hundreds of companies, growing at about 20 per year

Four large, > 250 people: Allied Testing, Cedacri, Endava, Global Phoning
Six medium, 50-250: Amdaris, Arax-Impex, DAAC, Neuron, Pentalog, Tacit
Four telecoms: Moldcell, Moldtelecom, Orange, Starnet
Accurate statistics are not easy to obtain

Services and Markets

Full range of ICT services and

Outsourcing dominates
Government and Agriculture/Food
look low

Number of IT Jobs
National Bureau of Statistics reports 10,340 for 2014
+ Under recording
+ Freelancers
+ IT people in other sectors, eg banking
So total could be about 12,500
Highest paid sector in Moldova, double national average: 8,500
lei in January 2015

High productivity: 1.8% of workforce; 1.5% of GDP

Very high exports


Programming dominates
But lots of others too

Recruitment methods

Advertising and personal recommendation are favourites

But good people are difficult to find

Lack of skills
is the key

Sources of new entrants

UTM dominates
Lots of others

Platforms and languages needed

Wide variety of
No dominant technology

Even more variety

Testing skills needed too

All aspects of
testing are

Foreign language and personal skills


Some employer quotations

Struggling to maintain people.
Direct recruiting from universities has not been successful.
Main problem is quality of people.
Teaching staff are poor teachers should be certified.
The skills gap is growing.
Graduates lack product skills.
Everything is the same still disappointing.
Hours of practice must increase.
The problem is quality and organisation of practical work.
Students do not understand what a system is.
Typically six months to recruit.

72% of companies do not collaborate with education

But what do students think ?


Why IT

Which is best for IT ?

Why ?

Internship - How obtained ? How useful


Overall ratings

Continue your education ?

Young graduates

Overall satisfaction with education


More additional training needed

And even more additional training


Career progression
Overall career satisfaction
Why ?

Continuing your education

So, is there still a skills gap ?

Some recent improvements

Education Code
Curricula improvements
Labs updated
Many ICT start-ups
Government and political support
e-Government services
Law on IT parks
Communications infrastructure

But there is still a gap

Industry is still complaining
So are the universities
Its quality, not quantity

Improve industry - university engagement

Further improvements to curricula

Industry - University engagement

Participation on governing and management bodies
Advice on curricula
Provision of case studies, projects
Guest and visiting lecturers
Internships for lecturers
External examiners
Provision of equipment, software, and educational materials
Help with teacher training

Curricula improvements
More practical work, less theoretical
OO programming, Java, C# and C++
Linux, Mobile, Database, Applications
Personal skills
Foreign languages, especially English

Agenda for Action 2012





ce of


Good progress
Still lots to do
Keep up the good work
Good luck