Open source: Report on employment in Europe

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The recently published Dice/Linux Foundation report on employment in the world of open source software yields two major conclusions: demand for open source skill sets is on the rise, and European companies are struggling to hire experienced professionals.

Published by Dice in cooperation with the Linux Foundation, the 2016 Open Source Jobs Report aims to “examine trends in open source recruiting and job seeking”. The report focuses specifically on the position of European open source software compared to other geographic areas.


The results of the annual Open Source Jobs Report are based on surveys of more than 4,500 open source professionals worldwide, including 1,082 in Europe. The complete 2016 annual report is available for download free of charge.

Key results

Dynamic hiring in Europe

Europeans have more trust in the open sector jobs market than their counterparts abroad. Out of nearly 100 respondents, 60% felt it would be easy to find a new job within the year, 10% more than the global average. In practice, 50% of Europeans reported that they had received more than 10 calls from recruiters in the last six months. Over that same period, just 22% of respondents around the world received that level of interest. This trend was confirmed by those reporting the least contact from recruiters: overall, less than 27% received no calls, a figure that stood at a mere 5% amongst Europeans.

European app development running full steam ahead

23% of open source professionals indicated that the most sought-after skill sets relate to app development. Elsewhere, this figure stood at just 11% of respondents, and those skills were even in second position after DevOps skill sets. DevOps also rates highly in Europe with 13% of respondents considering the associated skills to be among those most in demand.

European employers protecting themselves from employee turnover

In Europe, employers are looking to stabilize their staffs. They offer a large number of incentives to retain their personnel. For example, 40% of European open source professionals reported they had received a pay rise over the course of the past year. But salary was not the only incentive: 27% of respondents found they had a better balance between their work and home lives, and 24% also noted they now enjoy more flexible work hours. By comparison, 31% of respondents from the rest of the world reported pay rises and 20% improved work-life balance and flexibility.

Professional choices continue to hinge on passion for the business

Open source professionals are very attached to their sense of personal commitment. In fact, 34% of Europeans (31% for the rest of the world) stated they were happy to be working in open source solutions. Around the world, open source professionals still want to work on cutting-edge technologies (18%) and contribute to a global community (17%). Pay and fringe benefits were ranked amongst the least important reasons for job satisfaction, at 5% in Europe (2% worldwide).

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