5 reasons why you should open a branch in Poland
Advantages of setting up a company in Poland
There are no doubts that Poland is an attractive place for foreign entrepreneurs who want to run their businesses. As someone who worked on creating and scaling new branches of several companies (more info can be found in my portfolio), I have decided to share the most important reasons why starting a business in Poland is a good idea.
As you can see, it's not a problem to reach all main cities in Europe quickly, like London (2:30 h), Berlin (1:20 h) Zurich (1:45) Paris (2:15) Amsterdam (2:00 h), Copenhagen (1:30 h) Stockholm (2:00 h), etc. The offer of flights between Poland and other continents is also wide: from Warsaw we can fly directly to New York City (8 h flight), Chicago (10 h flight, 39 flights per month), Los Angeles (12 h) , Tokyo, Doha, Mumbai and many many others.
Close proximity of the capital city of Germany, Austria or Czech Republic to which you can travel freely via the motorway is an asset that not every country can be proud of. The numbers like: 1247 km of motorways and 2,557 km of expressways not arouse great enthusiasm but in practice it means that for example we can take 4 hours road from Wrocław to Berlin, and it's free of charge. Kraków (our second biggest city in Poland) is well connected with southern Europe, so you can reach Vienna, Prague or Bratislava in around 5 hours by car. Main cities inside Poland are also well connected, which I can confirm with my own experience. Thanks to the continuous modernization of roads and highways, journeys are faster and faster. Today, the road from the south of Poland (Krakow) to the sea (To Gdańsk) takes about 6 hours by car.
If we take a look for an alternative to the car and a more eco option, we can choose very cheap (compared to the rest of Europe) railways in Poland. Traveling from Krakow to Gdańsk in 5 hours? No problem. Fast communication today makes cooperation easier, regardless of where people live. I work and I hire the best candidates for companies from opposite ends of the country, without any blocker. Remote work (with some visits in the office) is a standard today in Poland
Warsaw flight destinations.
Cracow flight destinations.
Winter in Tatry, Kasprowy Wierch
Summer in Polish beach
Spring in Gdańsk
Autumn in Bieszczady
Besides location I need to mention our time zone: Central European Time (CET). We are + 6 hours to New York (GMT-4), +9 h to Los Angeles (GMT-7) which makes cooperation between Poles and US citizens still comfortable. When it comes to standard hours, Poles usually work between 9-17 pm. However, a lot of Polish employees are open to adapt their working schedules. Personally, I know a lot of companies and IT teams working until 19 or 20 pm CEST (14 pm New York time). From the other side of the World we are -3:30 hours to Bombaj (Maharasztra, Indie) and -7 hours to Tokyo (Japan).
Poland is one of the most economically developed countries comparing to Eastern Europe, ninth economy in Europe. It offers a high level of salaries, low housing prices, low taxes compared to other EU countries and a lot of people are choosing Poland for permanent residence or as the first country to “move to Europe”. 9% of corporate income tax is really attractive and almost all registration duties can be easily done online. However, the topic of economics and operating costs is so extensive that I would like to share next time on my blog.
Cultural fit is always an important factor when teams work together to achieve a common goal. With Polish companies, you won’t feel much of a difference in personal interactions, and you will have no problem aligning standard business practices. There is no difference between Polish people and citizens of the Western countries. Poles are eager to integrate and establish relationships, so after negotiations or a business meeting you can expect a proposition to go out for a dinner, to go sightseeing or simply to go out for a beer. Polish hospitality is known all over the world! My foreign friends who decided to move to Poland more and more rarely entails experiencing even a little “culture shock”. It's because of the fact that majority of teams in Poland are multicultural: "international working environment" is nothing special nowadays. Even when the company's positions are occupied mostly by Poles, it doesn’t have an overwhelming influence on the corporate culture because most of the organizations based here work with clients/ partners/ customers from abroad.
The work and management of the Polish companies meets the best standards. These days Agile is nothing new for software development and finding a team without any working framework will be very rare. According to the HackerRank report, Polish programmers are considered as „tough”. In the category of: Which country never gives up ” we took the third place, just behind Hungary and Switzerland. This is an important skill, especially in the IT industry. Patience and reliability helps in solving problems and bugs in the code. Long-distance, it also allows you to get through more difficult periods in the project and with no less enthusiasm face all unwanted duties like on-calls.
Communication is always essential when choosing workmates or business partners. and the usual language barrier you might expect elsewhere, is not an issue in Poland. Poles start to learn English at the age of 6 and they are not afraid to use it. In the IT industry specifically, it is essentially a requirement to have a certain level of English proficiency to be hired.
Located in the very center of Europe, Poland is a gateway to both Western and Eastern markets, which is a strong argument to establish a company here. Close proximity of the major capitals in Europe, great air connections from one of our fourteen airports and well-developing railways which are ridiculously cheap, compared to the rest of Europe, Poland is becoming one of the best connected and the most reachable country in Europe. Polish airports provide a great base for trips to the largest business capitals of the world. See the map below with the approximate flight time from Krakow and a map of connections for Warsaw. What's more, the timeframe of your flight from other Polish cities (Gdansk, Wroclaw, Katowice) will be very similar to the ones presented below.
Executives also have huge impact on the company's culture. If a company operates in Poland but it is managed by executives from another country, it is them who shape such elements as communication & relationships. The country of a particular organization’s origin is also important. The working environment in a Polish branch of an international company from US or Norway will be more open, flexible and respecting diversity, without special national characteristics of one country. And Poles like that. Many companies boast of a "Scandinavian work culture".
Thanks to the location, we have got a perfect climate: snowy winters and really hot summers makes both groups: heat-lovers and cold-lovers really satisfied. Most importantly, the weather doesn’t preclude traveling and running a business freely. Really harsh winters can be found only in the mountains.
Thanks for your attention and until next time!