Estonia attracts tech talent with all-expenses paid trips for job interviews

Sander Nõmmik
Author Sander Nõmmik

Building on its reputation as a top European start-up hub, Estonia’s second Career Hunt programme seeks global IT specialists to bolster the ranks of the country’s leading tech companies.

TALLINN, 18 FEBRUARY 2019 – Estonia, the nation with the most startups with a valuation over $1 billion per capita, announced today the launch of its second Career Hunt campaign. Following the success of its first campaign in 2018, this new initiative is designed to draw the world’s top IT professionals to Estonia and match them with talent-hungry tech companies in the country, such as Transferwise, Taxify, Veriff, Swedbank Estonia and many others.

Applications are open online until 21st March 2019 at

In a similar campaign conducted last year, 5,500 people from around the world applied for the opportunity to work in Estonia. In total, 23 successful candidates participated in the trip, earning face-to-face final round interviews with top Estonian tech companies – with seven candidates starting new jobs in the country soon after.

For this second campaign, Estonia is again welcoming tech specialists to apply for a life changing job interview. Those who pass the initial screening rounds in their interviews will be flown to Estonia for a five-day tech tour. The all-inclusive trip will include the opportunity to meet some of the biggest IT-wonders in Estonia, in addition to getting exclusive VIP-shortcuts for job interviews with selected companies. The candidates are also invited to have a taste of after-work fun, explore Estonian traditional sauna and experience the famous white nights together with Nordic cuisine.

“Do not let its small size fool you; Estonia is well and truly embedded in the digital economy as we have made IT history several times over,” says Kaisa-Triin Kosenkranius, head of Career Hunt project at Work in Estonia programme, who emphasized Estonia as a cutting-edge digital society. “Skype was engineered by Estonians and the country gave birth to the world’s first e-residency. So, working in Estonia provides vast opportunities and unique experiences for people to enhance their career through top-level professional networks.”

Adding to that, Kosenkranius noted that, “The startup community in Estonia is tight-knit, offering tech professionals endless opportunities to bring their ideas to life, both on the local and international level. It’s these unique attributes found in Estonia that make it is possible to have coffee with leaders of game-changing IT companies, brainstorm, and then get to work to make it all happen. I don’t think it’s that achievable anywhere else.”

Out of the companies who were searching for talent in last year’s campaign, Swedbank Estonia, Taxify, Finestmedia and Veriff have decided to participate again. “Career Hunt gave new visibility to Veriff and thanks to it we found data scientist from Brazil,” comments Kaarel Kotkas, CEO of the online identity verification solutions provider Veriff. “We could not be happier for the talent we managed to acquire.”

“Estonia is a place for independent minds working together without much of a hierarchy,” stated Kosenkranius; confirming that several alumni from the first Career Hunt are expected to meet with the President of the Republic of Estonia, Kersti Kaljulaid. Today, the first recruits who have now settled in Estonia reflect on their Career Hunt  Week in Estonia as “a life-changing experience”.

“Before the campaign, I only knew a little about Estonia itself and I did let the size of the country fool me. The few companies I had a chance to know convinced me that’s the place I was looking for,“ says Luiz Felipe de Souza Gomes, alumni of the first Career Hunt who now lives and works in Tallinn. Maria de las Mercedes, another alumni from the first year’s campaign admits: “The way that people work here and the way that the companies function here is very nice, very horizontal. You can reach anyone in the company.”

In addition to its status as a world-beating tech innovation hub, Estonia also tops the lists for clean air, forests, sustainable living, and public safety. Living costs are low compared to Western Europe. The smallness of the country has its own perks. According to Ana Falcon a Digital Marketing Specialist who moved to Tallinn from Mexico: “Estonia is a cozy country where you can do things that have an impact on a global scale.”

Career Hunt is launched by the Estonian Government via its ‘Work in Estonia programme’. 14 Estonian IT industry heavyweights participate in the initiative to find and nurture more talent. The companies include Transferwise, Monese, Veriff, Starship Technologies, Pipedrive, Thorgate, Taxify, Malwarebytes, Finestmedia, Icefire, betPawa, Swedbank Estonia, Genius Sports Services Estonia and Mooncascade.

Full profiles of the participating companies and requirements for the candidates can be found: