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No Talent, No Digital Nation: Nexten’s Mission to Develop Luxembourg As A Tech Talent Hub


Today, there are more than 1200 unfilled tech jobs in Luxembourg. To fill that gap nexten.io launched a job platform that matches tech experts with innovative companies. Founder and CEO Eric Busch tells us more about the services the startup offer and gives us his point of view on the current state of the tech ecosystem.
by: Silicon Luxembourg
photo: Serge Deuces / Silicon Luxembourg
featured: Eric Busch

“If we can not attract the right talent, startups and existing companies will leave or outsource their tech innovation elsewhere in Europe.”

How is the IT Talent Market in Luxembourg doing?

Let’s face it, Luxembourg suffers from a significant skills shortage in the IT space. With all the projects in digitalization, this is probably the most significant challenge affecting its future development.

Today, there are more than 1200 unfilled tech jobs in Luxembourg, which has nearly doubled in just five years from 600-700 in 2014.

Our university is growing fast, but it is still young and isn’t yet producing as many software engineers as we need.

For nexten.io, active in tech recruitment, this represents a business opportunity, but for the attractiveness of the country, this should be considered an enormous threat for the future. If we can not attract the right talent, startups and existing companies will leave or outsource their tech innovation elsewhere in Europe. I believe that this would be a catastrophic scenario for Luxembourg!

OK, then how can we reinforce Luxembourg’s IT and tech talent pool?

Good question, because I have the impression that everybody is talking and complaining about this, but not taking enough concrete action to reverse the trend.

In the short-term, we don’t have any choice but to attract and import young graduates and tech experts from all across Europe to fill our positions. Then we need to go into local high schools to instill a passion for engineering in students and encourage more of them to pursue this direction in their studies, which will have the mid-term effect of increasing our local talent pool. Finally, we need to introduce coding classes and digital skills at primary school level, because these concepts will be required in most future jobs, and will help shape Luxembourg’s workforce in the long-term.

We are working on launching a new community for developers and tech experts, with the aim of address these three aspects. Building an engaged and impactful tech scene in Luxembourg that focuses on self-growth, making connections and sharing knowledge will create buzz at both local and international level that will convince tech talent that Luxembourg is an exciting place to work with many opportunities. In addition, through the community, we will be able to raise public interest and thus awareness for subjects like women and diversity in tech, coding for kids, and tech careers in general.

“The local IT market is candidate-driven due to the scarcity of tech talent.”

Tell us about your startup. What is nexten.io about?

nexten.io is a job platform that matches tech experts with innovative companies.

We help companies find and recruit top tech talent. On top of that, we also actively support the local tech scene by attracting and working with creative, talented doers.

Through all our community activities, we hope to give the Luxembourg’s tech scene and its players the attention it deserves and needs so that it can flourish and prosper.

And that’s where we come back to our goal of empowering people to find a job they love. We believe that talented and motivated employees are the foundation of a healthy and sustainable tech ecosystem.

How did you come up with the idea for the recruitment platform? Did you experience the challenges around finding the right developer?

Today, the local IT market is candidate-driven due to the scarcity of tech talent. Developers do not apply to job ads on Monster or other job boards. LinkedIn is overcrowded by inexperienced headhunters who spam and harass candidates with inappropriate job offers. Now the top tech experts are turning to candidate-driven platforms like nexten.io. In a few clicks, they select the companies they’re interested in talking to, keeping control over the recruitment process. Platforms like nexten.io are likely to replace classic recruitment agencies with low added value within a few years.

What are your products/services? What is your business model?

For companies, it’s straightforward. Once they have created an account on our platform, they can search our pool of pre-screened and available software developers and other sought-after tech profiles such as data scientists or UX designers. If the company likes a profile, they can contact the candidate directly to schedule a technical interview. We provide companies with a constant stream of freshly qualified candidates that match their needs.

Candidates, on the other hand, need to pass one HR interview with one of our talent coaches. If they meet our criteria for acceptance, their profile will become visible to the companies on our platform. They will then start receiving invitations to schedule technical interviews with interested tech managers. This way, they only need to pass one HR interview, then can skip straight to technical interviews, saving a great deal of time and avoiding the hassle of the traditional recruitment process.

When a company successfully hires a candidate through our platform, they pay a success fee based on the experience of the profile.

“More than 40 tech experts found a new job in Luxembourg through nexten.io.”

Who are your clients?

Our clients include fintech’s, startups, banks and SMEs. The common ground between all of them is that they have innovative and ambitious digital transformation projects. Some of our happy clients include Finquest, ArcelorMittal, Creos, BIL, ING, Seqvoia, Pictet Technologies, among many others.

What are your main achievements so far?

Our main achievement is that in the first six months after the launch of the platform, more than 40 tech experts found a new job in Luxembourg through nexten.io. That’s much more than we had expected and shows how much interest our model generated in the industry among both developers and companies looking for talent.

What are the next steps in your development?

On the business development side, we aim to solve the tech talent scarcity problem in Luxembourg and to reverse the current trend of the growing skills gap by investing in online campaigns across Europe to attract international talent. Our objective for 2020 is to match at least 250 tech experts with new jobs in Luxembourg.

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