A software engineer at work

Whether you are about to start your career as a software engineer or are an experienced professional looking for a change with better pay and perks, San Francisco in the U.S. is perhaps the first city you will think of. However, due to long work hours, expensive healthcare, and less-than-generous PTO (paid time off), more and more American software engineers and other tech workers have started considering opportunities abroad.

If you too belong to this league or prefer to work in European cities owing to some other reasons, there are a few cities that could offer you ample opportunities to work and grow. Here’s a list of the top three European cities you can consider to kick-start your career as a software engineer or get a fatter pay packet along with more flexibility, facilities, and perks.  

1.     Berlin

Berlin has emerged as one of the powerhouse cities in Europe with respect to the technology scene. Berlin receives more than 70% of Germany’s national start-up investment. The city is a centre of innovation, and is often called the Silicon Allee (Europe’s Silicon Valley) or the start-up king.

In 2022, as more start-ups choose Berlin as their base, there will be several open positions for software engineers, making this city the land of opportunity for these professionals.

If you are still unsure why Berlin is a good choice, here are the reasons that make this city great for your career:

  • Above-average salary (average base pay for a software engineer in Berlin is €64,216 annually)
  • High priority is given to work-life balance and excellent holiday allowances on offer
  • Fantastic benefit packages
  • A collaborative work environment
  • Amazing workspaces with great working conditions
  • Good quality of life with a lot to do and see in your free time

2.     Oslo

Oslo is one of the fastest-growing European capitals. When you hear the name of this Norwegian city, the first images that come to your mind could be of mountains and fjords. However, this city plays host to a bustling start-up scene, thanks to technological innovations driven by government programs to offer adequate funding and support to the start-ups.

Additionally, Oslo plays home to innovators and a wide variety of ambitious and exciting new businesses, entrepreneurial programs, accelerators, and global companies. With a growing need for tech experts like platform engineers, DevOps test engineers, cloud engineers, reliability engineers, and more, Oslo has emerged as a land of multiple opportunities that software engineers can explore and leverage.

If you are wondering what makes Oslo worth considering for settling and working from, here are the top reasons that could facilitate your decision-making:

  • Good salary (average base pay for a software engineer in Oslo is NOK 6,44,784 annually, which is around €63,491/year)
  • Good work-life balance, holiday allowances, and benefit packages
  • A booming tech scene with an eclectic mix of innovative start-ups, hyper-growth scale-ups, and small creative businesses, along with global companies
  • Easy access to nature in addition to wonderful nightlife, food, and cultural events
  • A conducive work environment with excellent work conditions

3.     London

In 2021, London became host to over 18,000 new tech start-ups. This was a 94% increase from 2020 that propelled the U.K. capital to the apex of European cities for new tech incorporations. Apart from offering excellent support to tech entrepreneurs through numerous incubators, co-working spaces, and angel investor networks, London also houses some of the world’s leading tech companies, all of which fuel the steady demand for tech talents, including software engineers.

If you have harboured the dream of working for the world’s leading tech companies (such as Google, Microsoft, Amazon, Apple, and Facebook), you should head straight to London. With Google’s new U.K. headquarters slated to become operational soon, London’s tech scene is set to get a huge boost.

With a booming tech industry and playing home to home to 13 decacorns (companies worth $10 billion or more), London is a good choice for software engineers looking to advance their careers and enjoy the advantages of living in a major international city.

Still not sure why London is a good choice career-wise? Here are the reasons that make the city worth relocating to:

  • Good salary (average base pay for a software engineer in London is £53,392 annually, which is around €62,705/year)
  • Increasing focus on work-life balance and DE&I (diversity, equity, and inclusion)
  • Significant holiday allowances and benefit packages
  • Employee-friendly work environment
  • A good standard of living

Final Words

Silicon Valley may have been the dream destination of software engineers once. However, the scenario has changed as several European cities have emerged as better and more preferred choices for these professionals, the leading names being featured in the list above.

If you have been thinking of relocating to a European city to further or kick-start your career as a software engineer, you can consider the above list to make your decision.

What other European cities would you like to add to the list above?

This article was written by