Our Web Development Munich: State of the Market 2022 report will give you the full lowdown on one of the Bavarian capital’s most dynamic market sectors. A sub-sector of software development, web development specifically refers to software like websites, portals or apps, designed to run via a web browser.
Germany’s largest city economy (Bavaria is also Germany’s wealthiest and most productive state), Munich (München) is, alongside Berlin, one of the country’s two major technology hubs. The city’s local government has invested heavily in its digital infrastructure.
Together with other factors such as local universities, research institutions and a thriving start-up ecosystem that has attracted tech-centric companies big and small to the Munich area, web development is one of the city’s most dynamic sectors.
That means especially big demand for web development skills, which the Deutschland.de portal says are generally the most in-demand on Germany’s nationwide labour market.
This report looks at the web development sector in Munich and its wider metropolitan area. We’ll cover:
You might also be interested in our sister report on the broader Munich software development sector in 2022.
Can We Help You With Your Next Web Development Project?
Flexible models to fit your needs!
Munich may be a city with a history stretching back well over a thousand years (as a settlement it dates back to at least 750 CE and the Benedictine monastery at Tegernsee) but today it boasts one of the world’s most modern economies.
The strength of the city’s economy (Munich is Germany’s third-largest city by population after Berlin and Hamburg but by some distance its biggest by economy) is also historical. It became a walled and fortified town as a direct result of the success of the market established by local monks with the blessing of Henry the Lion, Duke of Bavaria, in the 12th century.
In 2022, entrepreneurship and a thriving market economy will continue to be Munich’s key drivers. According to a 2019 report, the region around Munich is considered the most expensive in Germany, with the highest per capita disposable income of more than 30,000 euros. That’s significantly more than in many parts of eastern Germany, as well as in Lower Saxony, Saarland and the Ruhr region. The city of Gelsenkirchen, for example, has a disposable per capita income of only around 16,200 euros, putting it at the bottom of the country.
Munich owes much of its relative wealth to its high-tech economy. While Germany is best known as a manufacturing-based economy, Munich’s is very much services-oriented. Services account for 75.9% of Munich’s GDP, compared to just 24.1% from manufacturing. That is reflected in the Bavarian capital’s labour productivity, which was €103,369 per capita in 2017 – by some margin the highest of any large city in Germany.
Munich’s local government has heavily invested in the city’s digital infrastructure and digital transformation. That long-term strategy and its results, such as high-speed internet and educational institutes and research centres churning out a highly skilled workforce, has acted as a magnet, attracting digitally progressive companies focused on technology-centric products and services.
According to Germany Trade & Invest, the country is the fifth largest Information and Communications Technology (ICT) market in the world. We’ve already mentioned Munich is the country’s largest city economy and wealthiest metropolitan area. It also has the most highly educated workforce in the country, as evidenced by the chart below.
As such, it comes as no surprise that the city’s ICT and digital economy is also particularly strong. Berlin is also well known for its digital economy but it has different qualities to that of Munich. The engine of Berlin’s tech sector is start-ups and growth-stage companies while Munich’s can be considered as representing a broader-based mix that also includes the highest concentration of tech-centric corporations in the country.
It’s that combination that makes the Munich web development sector so buoyant.
As mentioned, Munich’s tech scene benefits from a healthy mix of corporates, a strong SME economy, a vibrant start-up community and higher education and research institutes. These different stratospheres together to form one mutually beneficial tech ecosystem.
Munich plays host to six of the thirty constituents of the TecDAX index of Germany’s biggest technology enterprises.
And of course, blue-chip companies that are not specifically classified as technology or software companies also all have significant web development and other IT needs. Six members of the DAX 40, Germany’s benchmark index, are also based in Munich itself or within the wider Munich district, compared to a maximum of two each hosted by other urban centres such as Berlin and Frankfurt/Main.
10 of the 60 constituents of the mid-cap MDAX also call Munich home.
Munich start-up founders, 96% of whom rated the regional start-up ecosystem as good to very good in a 2018 PwC study, highlight the opportunities to collaborate with established companies, many of whom also invest in or otherwise support local start-ups, as a major plus.
Check out this informative and entertaining video on Munich’s start-up scene produced by mobile media company The Lunicorn, in partnership with Germany’s Digital Hub Initiative:
The concentration of thriving companies with web development needs means there is especially high demand for professionals with web development skills, both as direct employees and through specialist service providers.
On the popular job portal StepStone.de, the demand for web developers in the Munich area is the highest in Germany, even before Berlin. A very similar pattern can also be observed on many other large German job portals such as Xing, LinkedIn or de.indeed.com.
If you are looking for a web development job in Munich or researching the employment market in the city more generally, a good place to start would be the following jobs portals:
Even Muenchen.de, the city’s informational portal has a jobs section that may be worth keeping an eye on.
These application technologies are reflected in the number of jobs listed on StepStone for each JS library/framework.
Back-end web development skills are often even scarcer on the ground in Munich and there can be tough competition for specialists. Currently, the most in-demand back-end programming languages are Java, Python, Node.js and Go with DevOps engineers also sought after.
The job offers published on StepStone suggest that the demand for the 4 programming languages is in that order. However, it is worth noting that Java and Python are not only used for web development but also for software development in other areas such as embedded software or machine learning. In our experience, the most sought-after back-end developer language is Node.js, for which we receive the most requests.
Of the back-end database technologies, our experience is that MySQL and MongoDB are currently in the highest demand in Munich.
Web development is expensive everywhere but especially so in Munich. The relative shortage of IT specialists compared to demand is a global issue, pushing up salary, freelance contractor or agency costs. And in a city such as Munich, where a particularly strong economy and knock-on demand for coders combines with living expenses that are significantly higher than German averages, web development is even more expensive than in most places in the world.
Salaries are generally higher in Munich than elsewhere in Germany, as are overheads like office rents. This means hiring web developers locally, either as full-time employees or contractors, is more expensive than equivalent experts would be expected to cost elsewhere in Germany.
One option Munich-based companies have to bring down web development costs is to work with nearshore developers based in East Europe. That can be done either directly, by setting up an office in a nearshore location and hiring specialists directly. Or, which is generally more practical, working with an IT services provider with established teams and recruitment capacity in nearshore locations.
K&C, for example, is headquartered in Munich but predominantly offers software development teams based in our nearshored talent centres in Ukraine, Poland and Belarus. That’s often a good solution for our Munich and Germany-based clients.
They have a contract and point of contact with a local web development company but avoid Munich rates. And nearshore developers can relatively cheaply and conveniently travel to Munich or elsewhere in Germany to be onsite for periods when necessary or preferred.
Some organisations, for different reasons, only want to work with locally-based IT specialists. Or it’s a requirement for specific roles or projects. If that strategic decision is reached the reality is that it means accepting a Munich cost premium.
When does IT Outsourcing work?
(And when doesn’t it?)
As mentioned, web developers based in Munich can expect to earn a higher salary than their peers elsewhere in Germany. Based on SalaryExpert data, the average salary for a front end web developer in Munich comes in at slightly over €65,677 a year plus almost €3000 in bonuses.
That compares to a German average of €60,000 for front end developers. The same pattern can be seen for coders and IT specialists with other tech stacks.
As a Munich-based web development agency ourselves, we won’t pretend to be an objective judge of who the best of our peers and competitors are 😊. But we can give you some good pointers on how to find a web development partner that’s a good fit for your needs.
Some Munich web development agencies only offer locally-based experts while others, like us, mainly work with nearshore specialists. And there are agencies able to offer both options.
If you are dead-set against working with remote web developers and are ready to pay a premium to work with Munich-based experts, you can immediately filter out all of the agency options that offer only near and offshore options. Likewise, if you would prefer to contain costs, you can filter out agencies that only work with local, onshore web developers.
If a hybrid model of a point person or project manager that is based locally, with a nearshored or offshored team whose members can potentially travel to be onsite at key moments, then look for an agency that can offer that.
Check out our blueprint to selecting the right software agency to match your needs.
Munich-based web developers, and others in the city’s tech scene, also benefit from a busy calendar of events and meetups held regularly across the city. Over 2020/21 live events, especially those involving large numbers of people, have been impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic. But many have moved online and hopefully this year we’ll see the return of more live, in-person events and meet-ups.
The following are all great resources to find out more about tech events going on in the city:
If you are looking for web development roles in Munich, you might like to check out Tchooz Tech Dating. Tchooz describes its regular event as “casual, interactive and engaging event where you can discover, meet and chats with technical teams (major corporations, scaleups, startups, consulting) currently hiring”.
Techfest Munich has not happened over the past two years as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic but is usually a great annual event and will hopefully return this year. It’s a hackathon for web developers and other tech specialists from all over Europe to work together across disciplines for one weekend, solving real-world industry problems.
Another well known Munich tech event is the Bits & Pretzels Networking Week, billed as Europe’s biggest event for founders.
*If you know of or run other useful directories of Munich tech and software development events, meetups or conferences, please get in touch to let us know and we’d be delighted to add them to this list.
We hope you found this resource on the web development sector and scene in Munich helpful and informative. We’d love to keep on improving it so please get in touch if you think there is any interesting information, facts, figures etc. you think we could add to make it even better.
K&C - Creating Beautiful Technology Solutions For 20+ Years . Can We Be Your Competitive Edge?
Drop us a line to discuss your needs or next project