How the freelance market in Ukraine has changed in 2023

How the freelance market in Ukraine has changed in 2023

In 2023, the freelance market in Ukraine experienced another round of development, opening up new opportunities for specialists and service customers from all over the world. Freelancehunt explained how the full-scale invasion continues to influence market development: whether budgets have increased, projects specializing in frantic demand. We’ll talk about this and much more further.

23% more freelancers and 14% more clients

This year there has been a decrease in demand for freelancing among specialists. The number of freelancers in 2023 increased by 23% compared to last year’s 33%. In 2022, a strong influx of new specialists occurred due to the beginning of a full-scale invasion: specialists moved online to work remotely. Now growth has slowed down, but Ukrainians continue to actively switch to freelancing.

We see the opposite situation with customers – there were 14% more of them in 2023 compared to 12% last year. This dynamic is due to increased demand for freelance services among entrepreneurs in the IT and online product sectors.

If last year the number of projects fell by 11%, then in 2023 it, on the contrary, increased by 18%. Entrepreneurs have adapted to the conditions of war and continue to work steadily, turning to freelancers for help. We also see an increase in the total project budget, which increased by 27% compared to 2022. This dynamics of change indicates that the freelance market in Ukraine is working steadily and continues to grow.

Programming, design and writing remain the most popular areas

Freelancers, as in previous years, more often choose “Design and art” (28.9%), “Working with texts” (19.7%) and “Programming” (19.2%) as their main areas. The greatest growth of developers was observed in the following specializations:

  • Blockchain – 36.1%.
  • Go – 32.3%.
  • Machine learning – 28.2%.

There was an increase of 31.3% in the number of performers in the area of ​​“Scriptwriting”, and by 29.2% in the area of ​​“Editing and Proofreading”. Designers give preference to “Mobile application design” (the increase in freelancers was 27%), “Font development” (21.3%) and “Infographics” (20%).

In “Programming” the share of the total number of projects is 32.4% versus last year’s 35.3%, in “Working with texts” – 13% versus 15.1% in 2022. The share of “Design and Art,” on the contrary, increased from 22.8% to 23.7%.

The share of projects in some areas decreased due to the rapid growth of other categories, for example, “Audio and Video” (7.1%), “Outsourcing and Consulting” (4.7%), “Promotion” (11.7%).

As the number of projects increases, budgets also increase from year to year. First of all, it should be noted that the share increased in the following areas:

  • “Design and art” – by 18%.
  • “Promotion” – by 15.6%.
  • “Audio and video” – by 4.8%.
  • “Outsourcing and consulting” – by 3.4%.

Note that the share of budgets in some areas is also decreasing due to the rapid growth in other categories in 2023.

What specializations were in demand in the “Programming” category?

This year was marked by an increase in budgets year on year in the following specializations:

  • Python – budget growth by 37.6%.
  • JavaScript – up 41.4%.
  • Bot development – ​​growth by 41.1%.
  • Online stores – a record increase of 96.1%.
  • Turnkey website creation – growth by 39.9%.
  • Development for Android – up 51.5%.
  • Development for iOS – growth by 55.2%.

At the same time, we see a decrease in budgets in the Blockchain direction (28.4%).

According to a DOU study, the number of job openings for full-time programmers will decrease by a third in 2023. At the same time, we see how the number of freelance projects and budgets in this area, on the contrary, is growing. This market situation is due to the global economic crisis, the need to optimize costs and the obvious advantages of project cooperation.

Over the next few years, entrepreneurs and startups will invest more resources in attracting developers on a project basis to implement new products and services.

In design, there is a growing demand for corporate identity elements, website and interior design

You should pay attention to the growth of budgets for the “Interior Design” specialization by 153% from year to year. This may be due to the fact that in 2023, most specialists switched to an online format of cooperation.

In addition, the following specializations were popular in design:

  • “Logos” – budget increased by 64%.
  • “Website design” – increase in budgets by 63%.
  • “Corporate style” – an insane increase in the indicator by 91%.

Falling demand for copywriters

Last year, copywriters and translators were in great demand. Entrepreneurs needed texts in different formats in order to adapt to new realities or move from offline to online from scratch. Due to rapid growth in 2022, copywriters’ performance fell slightly – the total budget decreased from 6.8 to 5.4%. After all, now entrepreneurs have closed most of the tasks related to texts.

However, it is worth noting the specializations in which customers invested more:

  • Article writing – budgets increased by 20.6%.
  • Content manager – budget growth by 80.7%.

Considering that SEO specialists more often delegate writing articles for search engines to artificial intelligence, creative advertising content will be popular among authors.

Demand for video processing increased 2.5 times

Video content is a trend in the coming years, and the numbers confirm this. In the Audio and Video category, budgets increased for the following specializations:

  • Video processing – 147%.
  • Audio and video editing – 120%.
  • Video advertising – 115.6%.

In conditions of information oversaturation, video advertising allows you to better attract the attention of the audience. Therefore, entrepreneurs and brands are increasingly looking for high-quality video advertising solutions to promote products and services. All this causes an increase in demand for professional services for video processing and video editing and, as a result, an increase in project budgets.

Where entrepreneurs invest money to promote their business online

It is clear that most Ukrainians place big bets on the online presence of their business, but without high-quality promotion, the desired results cannot be achieved. The main promotion channels in which entrepreneurs invested more money:

  • Promotion in social networks – budget growth from year to year by 111%.
  • Search engine promotion – 73.5%.
  • Contextual advertising – 67.4%.

Today’s consumers are increasingly focused on searching for information about products and services online, forcing businesses to focus on digital marketing channels. This also creates an environment in which investing in online promotion becomes a key element of business strategies, which translates into increasing budgets.

Other promising areas of freelancing

Full-time accountants have gradually switched to freelancing, because here entrepreneurs are willing to pay for their services. At the same time, specialists get the opportunity to work in comfortable conditions and for the desired price. So the demand for accountants’ services has increased by 168% compared to last year’s figures.

At the same time, the demand for architects and designers online is increasing. We see an increase in budgets in the following specializations:

  • Landscape design – by 136.5%.
  • Architectural projects – by 103.5%.

Entrepreneurs delegate the search and collection of various information to freelancers, as evidenced by the growth of the budget in this area by 96.3%.

“In 2023, the freelance market in Ukraine showed stable growth, distinguished by an increase in the number of both freelancers and customers. Rising budgets across categories, from web development to design, marketing and architecture, indicate the market is adapting to the modern demands of the digital economy and changes in consumer priorities. These trends only confirm the increasing role of freelancing in the economy.

Predicting further development, we can expect that freelancing will take one of the key places in the labor market, in adapting to the latest technologies and meeting the growing needs of business,” emphasizes Valentin Zyuzin, head of Freelancehunt.

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