“Jeszcze Polska nie zginęła”
Who contributed to this guide?
We have 350 brainfooders resident in Poland, 34 of whom contributed to this guide. We have contributions from 13 internal recruiters, 7 recruitment agents, 10 HR manager, 1 Recruitment Trainer and 1 Recruitment vendor. Contributors came from many different cities in Poland including Warsaw, Crackow, Poznan, Katowice and Wrocław.
What category best describes your work?
- Internal Recruiter
- Agency Recruiter
- Internal Recruiter
- Agency Recruiter
What city or town do you currently reside in?
What industry sectors do you have recruiting experience in?
- Customer service
- Customer support
- Life science
- Professional services
- Supply chain
- Customer service
- Customer support
- Life science
- Professional services
- Supply chain
Insights from Local Polish Recruiters
We asked all respondents to anonymously contribute their thoughts on working and recruiting in Poland. All but three of the contributors were Polish nationals and those who are not state that they currently live and work in Poland. Here is a summary of their best quotes, followed by advice to a non-native recruiter derived from that insight.
Easy Pickings for Tech Talent is Over
“Do not expect the big pool of tech candidates. Maybe true 10 years ago, but not anymore. It’s really challenging to find a strong candidate for reasonable money. For tech recruitment it is very competitive market and there is a real fight for candidates so – strong focus on employee and candidate experience needed. I would say that the challenges are now very similar to tech recruiting in Wester European markets. One caveat – polish coders do seem to prefer international projects, so bear this in mind when doing outreach to the market:”
Recruiter Tip: Set expectations with hiring managers accordingly
The Last Day of the Month
“In Poland, the notice period starts its execution on the last day of the month that the candidate hands written notice in – it’s not counted from the actual day the candidate formally hands notice.
For example, if you hand in your notice in March 14th, your actual notice period (however long it is, depending on type contract) starts from March 31st to say June 30th, if one month notice.
This has an impact on how resignations typically happen in Poland – it is at the end of the every month”
Recruiter Tip: The ‘one full month notice’ rule means a monthly rhythm of vacancies opening up – do your business development / relationship management in the last week of the month
3 Types of Employment Contracts
“We have 3 types of contracts: employment contracts, contracts of mandate and B2B (consultancy) contracts.
The main differences are based on how close a relationship you have with the employer, and the division of tax, insurance obligations between employee & employer.
B2B Consultancy contracts are very popular for engineering market – the candidates know their worth, pay less insurance, less tax and have greater flexibility. If you’re hiring for tech, you’re probably hiring B2B”
Recruiter Tip: Clearly establish employment contract type before accepting a requisition
English proficiency: regional, generational & sectoral
“Be aware that people around 40-50 do not speak English that much as they were learning Russian for almost whole their school-life. Young people from smaller cities have troubles too.
I would add that most candidates outside the IT/Tech industry will be reluctant to speak with a recruiter in a foreign language, regardless of whether it is English or Russian.
In recruiting – as the demand is most high in IT and in big cities – we can often forget this”
Recruiter Tip: Understand the metropolitan bubble exist and that it isn’t all there is
“Candidates from Poland may not be familiar with chitchatting, especially if they didn’t have previous international experience. They may be surprised if you ask them “how are you?” – some may even start telling you how they have a headache, how their cat was vomiting this morning etc and treat the ‘small talk’ like a genuine question.
We also like to complain. But this doesn’t mean there is something bad happening or that we are unhappy, or that we want to make some changes, or that we won’t do the job – it’s kind of like our version of small talk.
Polish people can also be formal in communication, especially written and especially in the beginning of a relationship. Don’t worry about this – it is because Polish language enforces rather formal communication with strangers and we tend to copy that into English”
Recruiter Tip: Rapport building is not based on small talk
“We Poles may be less responsive and have many doubts at the beginning but it’s only because we as a nation need as much information as we can before we fully engage in some topic.
Also Polish candidates are generally afraid to speak English, even if they have completed a lot of courses – usually the English level is quite good so this is a matter of confidence – please remember this when talking to a candidate!
As ever, patience, genuine care for the candidate, long term relationship building – will go a long way”
Recruiter Tip: Provide a lot of context before making requests for commitment
Visa for Ukraine & Belarus citizens
“As a member of the EU and Schengen area, Polish recruiters have no legal problem hiring any citizen from another EU (or in the Schengen area) country, though those workers will need to register in the local town hall within 3 months of arriving in the country. Poland also has special rules for Ukraine and Belarus – so called ‘Neighbouring Countries – in which you can hire citizens from there with little difficulty. For citizens of countries outside of EU, Ukraine or Belarus, things can get much more complicated – must wait up to 8 months for working visa in “Wojewódzki Urząd Pracy”
Recruiter Tip: Ukraine & Belarus likely to be strong labour markets for IT/Tech hiring
Mandatory Medical Examination
“Before you can be accepted for a job, you have to get a medical examination, This can surprise foreigners but is standard practice in Poland. I have never had a situation where someone was denied work due to a medical exam but I suppose it can happen
Also, you will need to retake your medical exam if you take a prolonged absence from work due to illness or injury. I believe it is 6 weeks, then you have to retake the medical exam”
Recruiter Tip: Don’t forget to brief non-Polish candidates on this mandatory procedure
Holidays allocated according to Seniority
“In Poland, how many holidays you get is calculated mainly through your experience i.e the more senior you are, the more days holiday you receive. Broadly, you will fall into two categories – under 10 years and over 10 years experience.
For example, if you have less than 10 years of experience (including studies), you will receive 20 days of holidays per year; more than 10 years experience, you will receive 26 days of holidays per year.
This allocation does not include mandatory public holidays like Easter, Christmas and so on”
Recruiter Tip: 10 year threshold might have some impact on candidate mindset
“It is more common that companies in Poland accepts “western” organization culture – more open, honest, global approach. I would say now that company culture in Poland is very similar to the culture in an average western company of a similar size
Also there is a sense that companies are in transition state – from hierarchical to flat, based on maturation of the business. Extensive internationalisation of the polish workforce, many international companies in Poland, large highly skilled diaspora, many now returning to Poland to set up businesses, is making this trend”
Recruiter Tip: Many company cultures will be analogous to those in Western Europe
The Catholic Church
“It’s important to understand the impact of the Catholic religion on the Polish society. It has become more powerful during the communist regime, when the Catholic church was home to the opposition. It has been entangled in the politics ever since, and has impact over legislation and social attitudes. You will undoubtedly feel it’s impact on the employment world as well if you’re recruiting in Poland.
A good example is the “no trade Sundays” law, which prohibits opening shops on Sundays, with a few exceptions every year. A lot of religious holidays are also national holidays, with businesses closed across the country”
Recruiter Tip: Respect the Sabbath. No one works on Sundays
Best sites, tools, communities, events & people
The purpose of these guides is collect information from local recruiters. As such, the following list(s) of services describes the responses of these recruiters when asked questions which usually began with the formula ‘what is the best X’. All services mentioned are listed, with the order determined by frequency of citation. It’s the verdict of the local recruiters with no editorialising from brainfood!
|Pracuj||Polish language general job board||16.78%|
|Just Join IT||Polish language engineering / IT job board||15.38%|
|Professional social network||9.09%|
|No Fluff Jobs||Software engineering jobs||9.09%|
|Social network (presumably fb targeted ads)||6.99%|
|OLX||Used mainly for blue collar jobs||5.59%|
|Facebook Groups||Free job postings within specific fb groups||3.50%|
|Infopraca||Polish language general job board||3.50%|
|Careers in Poland||Job board for immigrants into Poland||3.50%|
|Github||Open source collaboration service||2.80%|
|Indeed||Job board / aggregator||2.80%|
|profesja||Polish language, blue collar||2.80%|
|University job boards||See ‘Best Universities’ segment||2.80%|
|bulldogjobs||IT / Software engineering job board||2.80%|
|Praca||Polish language general job board||2.10%|
|skillshot||Polish language job board for game developers||2.10%|
|Company career site||Company career site||2.10%|
|rocketjobs||Digital, SEO, Marketing jobs||1.40%|
|Crossjob||Software engineering jobs||1.40%|
|Glassdoor||Review site with job board function||0.70%|
|GoldenLine||Job board, now looks merged with GazetaPraca.pl||0.70%|
|jober||Generalist job board, mainly blue collar||0.70%|
|karierawfinansach||Finance, banking, professiona services job board||0.70%|
|Stackoverflow||Q&A site for software engineers||0.70%|
|rubyonrails.pl||Local forum for ruby devs||0.70%|
|Professional social network||39.76%|
|GitHub||Open source collaboration software||16.87%|
|Stack Overflow||Q&A site for software engineers||13.25%|
|Goldenline||Polish language candidate database||8.43%|
|Meaning Google X-ray techniques||2.41%|
|AmazingHiring||People aggregagtor, focused on IT||1.20%|
|Recruitment Open Community (ROC)||Online FB group and offline events series, main community in Poland||62.22%|
|Webski HR||HR focused private networking group, organised on fb||11.11%|
|EB Masters||Employer branding commmunity||8.89%|
|#OMGkrk||Krakow Startup Community||2.22%|
|HR Inspirations & Networking Poland||N/A||2.22%|
|HR po godzinach||Facebook group for HR practitioners||2.22%|
|I LOVE HR||N/A||2.22%|
|IT Recruiters Poland||N/A||2.22%|
|Robota w EB||Employer branding fb group||2.22%|
|The Community Attract & Recruit||N/A||2.22%|
|The Hidden Heros||Meetup group for HR / Recruiter professionals||2.22%|
|ROC Days||Quarterly events organised by ROC, rotating around main cities in Poland||29.82%|
|EB Masters Events||Breakfast event series||17.54%|
|Webski HR||HR focused event series||12.28%|
|OpenCoffee||Not specific to recruitment||5.26%|
|Absolvent Talent Days||Career fair series||3.51%|
|CRASH Mondays||Interesting meetup concept, focused on learning topic in ‘crash cours’ style||3.51%|
|HR Camp||Long running Polish language annual conference focused on HR||3.51%|
|HR na deser||English translation ‘HR Embassy’||3.51%|
|#OMGKRK Events||For the startup community, but plenty of recruiter / hiring focus||1.75%|
|4Developers||Mulit-disciplinary event for developers||1.75%|
|Career Expo Poland||Large scale careers fair||1.75%|
|Confidence Poland||Long running international IT security conference||1.75%|
|Devoxx||For developers, by developers; international event series||1.75%|
|Enterprise Mondays||Krakow based meetup series for entreprenuers||1.75%|
|GeeCON||International event series, for developers||1.75%|
|Geek Girls Carrot||Global organisation focused on getting more girls into STEM; many Polish located events||1.75%|
|Brunch EB||Brunch meet up series||1.75%|
|PLNOG||Tech conference for network operators||1.75%|
|Person||Job title||%age cited|
|Kasia Tang||Recruiting & Sourcing Trainer||31.94%|
|Maja Gojitowska||Employer branding consultant||15.28%|
|Jacek Krajewski||Business Development Manager||9.72%|
|Maciej Stega||HR freelancer||4.17%|
|Piotr Prokopowicz||Co-founder of Freenovation||4.17%|
|Marta Dobrzańska||CEO of Great Digital||4.17%|
|Mateusz Macha||Founder of Humeo||2.78%|
|Paulina Basta||CHRO at TechLand||2.78%|
|Zyta Machnicka||CEO at Lightness||2.78%|
|Dominika Dudek||Culture & People Specialist at Tooploox||1.39%|
|Ekin Bayildiran||Talent Sourcing Partner||1.39%|
|Jagoda Czop||HR advisor||1.39%|
|Karolina Latus||Co-founder of HR Embassy||1.39%|
|Kasia Michalak||Business Development Manager||1.39%|
|Katarzyna Durak-Woś||HRBP at Vewd Software||1.39%|
|Katarzyna Sobótka||Recruitment Manager||1.39%|
|Lukasz Kolodziejczyk||Staffing Manager at GFT||1.39%|
|Maciej Mazurek||CEO at Bee Talents||1.39%|
|Maciej Michalewski||CEO at Element||1.39%|
|Sylwia Czajka-Jansen||CEO at SC Jansen||1.39%|
|Tomasz Drabik||IT Recruiter||1.39%|
|Uniwersytet Warszawski||University of Warsaw||87.50%|
|Uniwersytet Jagiellonski||aka University of Kraków||84.38%|
|AHG UST||aka Akademia Górniczo-Hutnicza University of Science and Technology||65.63%|
|Szkoła Główna Handlowa||SGH Warsaw School of Economics||40.75%|
|Politechnika Warszawska||Warsaw University of Technology||25.00%|
|Politechnika Wrocławska||Wroclaw University of Technology||18.75%|
|Koźmiński Business School (LKAEM)||Top ranked private business school||15.63%|
|Uniwersytet im. Adama Mickiewicza w Poznaniu||Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan||9.38%|
|Politechnika Poznańska||Poznan University of Technology||9.38%|
|Politechnika Gdańska||Gdańsk University of Technology||6.25%|
|Technical University of Warsaw||aka Warsaw University of Technology||6.25%|
|Uniwersytet Ekonomiczny w Krakowie||Cracow University of Economics||6.25%|
|University of Lodz||Public research University||6.25%|
|Uniwersytet Wrocławski||University of Wroclaw||6.25%|
|Uniwersytet Adama Mickiewicza||Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan||6.25%|
|Wroclaw University of Economics||One of 10 public universities in Wroclaw||6.25%|
|Politechnika Śląska||Silesian University of Technology||6.25%|
|Gdansk University of Technology||One of the oldest Universities in Poland||3.13%|
|Medical University in Warsaw||Medical University in Warsaw||3.13%|
|Nicolaus Copernicus University in Torun||Named after Nicolas Copernicus who was borned in Torun||3.13%|
|Wyższa Szkoła Zarządzania||Polish Open University||3.13%|
|Politechnika Krakowska||Tadeusz Kościuszko University of Technology||3.13%|
|Uniwersytet Gdański||University of Gdańsk||3.13%|
|Universytet Ekonomiczny Poznań||The Poznań University of Economics and Business||3.13%|
|Warsaw University of Life Sciences (SGGW)||aka SGGW||3.13%|
|Do not cooperate with agencies||4||7.02%|
|Eagle Eye Staffing||3||5.26%|
|Eagle Eye Staffing||1||4.17%|
|Toolbox 4 HR||1||4.17%|
|Just Join IT||1||3.13%|
How does Poland compare vs the Rest of the World?
The methodology is based frequency of citation / number of contributors to generate a percentage of the responder population which made the citation. This ‘frequency score’ is compared against other countries and against global averages.
Percentage of respondents who cited LinkedIn as a primary source for active sourcing
LinkedIn for posting jobs?
LinkedIn for active sourcing?
Email as preferred channel for candidate first contact
‘Not enough candidates’ as main problem in hiring
If I was hiring in Poland right now, I would…..
1. Join the Recruitment Open Community (ROC)
2. Make friends with Kasia Tang
3. Skinny up on employment contract types, especially for tech workers
4. Send re-engagement emails in the penultimate week of every month
5. Be prepared for low reactor reactions on first contact
6. Understand the regional, generational and cultural divisions in the country
7. Focus on Ukraine & Belarus as source sites for candidates, especially for IT skills
8. Monitor the vibrant online IT / Tech job posting / job board scene,
9. Candidate experience – especially for tech – is key
10. Respect the Sabbath
“Poland is not yet lost”