Why Hiring Palestinians

They are good, committed, hard workers, their English is good. they can come to my office anytime I like with no overseas travelling cost and no entertainment cost. They start the week with me, on Sunday. The turnover rate is lower than elsewhere, they have a sense of responsibility to the code they write for me.

This is the typical answer I get when I ask people in Israel why they choose to work with Palestinians. Cisco is doing it for 10 years now, they started with a team in Israel who needed augmentation and it spread to engineering groups in the US and India. Mellanox are doing it for about 9 years already, Nuvoton 13 years or more, Microsoft almost 10 years, Nokia, Western Digital, Cadence, startups like Cloudify, Earlisense and others started working with Palestinians in the past few years. All of those companies are not only highly technological with very reputed development capabilities they also have experience working in other outsourcing places, places that can supply 100 times more people than the Palestinians (e.g., India), yet they bother and choose to work also with Palestinians, so does this teach us anything? 

Well, it does. There are places where the turnover rate is high, this is very expensive, it cost training time, it cost ramp up time.  Other places are reputed for individual developers who open a kind of an Italian strike when they want to raise their compensation for example, they won’t tell you a thing, it takes weeks to realise what the problem is and then to resolve it, it cost a lot of money. Some complains about the English, either unsatisfactory level or hard to understand accent. The Palestinian do not suffer from any of the above. You can find extraordinary Palestinian developers “I would replace half of my staff with this Palestinian Developer” told me once a colleague in Cisco, pointing at a Palestinian woman developer. “I wish my board would let me work with Palestinians, I had enough headache with my Eastern European team” told me a friend, VP R&D in a late stage startup.

“We built a team from scratch, it took us years to teach them the technology and nurse them closely, now, they accept new members to the team and bring them to speed in a record time, there is no chance I will give up this Palestinian team, the investment was worthwhile”  said a CEO of another company who needs a very sophisticated technology.

Those who take the leap of faith and work with Palestinians enjoy the benefits of this emerging outsourcing place.