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London’s Reign as UK Tech Capital Threatened by Workers’ Itchy Feet

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The success of London’s technology sector could be stopped in its tracks by the restlessness of its tech workforce, according to new research by the world’s largest job site Indeed.

The analysis of millions of job adverts – and job searches by candidates – revealed the sheer size of London’s tech sector puts it in a class of its own. 10.8% of all jobs advertised in the capital are in tech, virtually the same as the 10.9% as in the world’s best-known tech city, San Francisco.

London-based employers account for just over a fifth (21.6%) of all UK job adverts listed on Indeed, yet the capital accounts for nearly a third (30.6%) of the nation’s tech job listings, far more than any other region.

Yet London’s outsized tech sector could be tripped up by the itchy feet of its skilled workers. Indeed’s researchers found London-based tech professionals are far more likely to look for work outside their home region than workers from elsewhere in the country.

In fact, London-based tech sector candidates are nearly twice as likely as the average Londoner to be searching for a job in Scotland, with North West England having a similar draw for tech professionals keen to escape the capital.

Table: How much more likely a London-based tech worker is to be looking for work outside the capital than the average Londoner

Region Likelihood of a London-based tech worker looking for a job here (compared to the average London jobseeker)
Scotland 1.9
North-West 1.8
Yorkshire and the Humber 1.6
West Midlands 1.6
East Midlands 1.5
South West 1.4
North East 1.4
Wales 1.3
East Anglia 1.3
South East 1.0
London 1.0

London’s high cost of living is the most likely culprit for the willingness of its tech workers to consider jobs elsewhere. Official ONS data showed the average London property cost £484,000 in September, more than double the UK average of £226,000.

Mariano Mamertino, EMEA economist at global job site, Indeed, commented:

“London still boasts nearly a third of the nation’s available tech jobs, meaning the capital’s dominance of the UK tech sector is under no immediate threat.

“Yet booming regional tech hubs like Cambridge – which this month saw the opening of a major new Amazon development centre – are catching up fast. Our research suggests their success, coupled with the regions’ lower living costs, could tempt ever more London-based tech workers to look beyond the M25 for their next role.

“While London’s tech hub crown is not yet up for grabs, such an exodus could make it harder for the capital’s tech employers to find the skilled people they need to grow further.”

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Chris is a digital marketing and publishing whizz by trade, having worked alongside the Automotive, Information Security and Software Asset Management sectors.

Specialising in data analysis and social media, he combines an analytical approach with a creative flair to achieve the best results. With a keen interest in Technology and Politics, Chris is constantly on the look-out for the latest stories around change and innovation.

As a lover of all things innovative, he has developed a keen eye for spotting the latest trends and hot topics. He sources and reads the latest news and thought-leadership articles from the world of recruitment before sharing them with the social media population.

 

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