Why the UK is a top destination for tech professionals

There are more than 1.5 million ‘digital tech’ jobs in the UK, and the sector is said to be growing faster than the wider economy in terms of turnover and productivity. In our recent Voice of the Workforce research, which brought together the views of over 1,600 tech professionals around the world, 54% said that they would like to work abroad at some point in their career. Europe was the preferred destination and the UK in particular came out top, with 24% saying that would be their country of choice.

But why is the UK so attractive to tech professionals? Where are the best locations for tech jobs in the UK? And what location might suit you best based on your area of expertise?

The attraction of the UK

Whilst North America is seen as the most industry leading region by tech professionals around the world (Networkers Voice of the Workforce report 2017), the UK is striving to become a leader in many technology fields including 5G and the regulation of the use of personal data and the internet.

Funding plays a big part in this and in 2016 UK digital tech investment reached £6.8 billion, a figure which is 50% higher than any other European country (Tech Nation report 2017).

Another quality which will help the UK get ahead in the tech world is people who are passionate about innovation. Something which hints at this pioneering spirit is the amount of meet-ups that take place in the capital. London hosted 22,000 meet-ups in 2016, which is three times as many as Berlin, Amsterdam or Paris.

Top 5 UK locations for tech jobs

1. London

With a digital tech turnover of £56 billion, over 7,500 tech start-ups and over 300,000 tech jobs, London is by far the largest tech hub in the UK. The city is home to start-ups such as Deliveroo (food delivery) and Babylon (AI doctor) as well as multinationals including 50 FTSE 100 companies. The opportunities in London attract a wide range of tech professionals from all over the world who are seeking to work with cutting edge technologies in areas including Cloud, Cyber Security, The Internet of Things (IoT) and Robot Process Automation (RPA).

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has summarised London’s position as a tech hub by saying:

"London is a truly global tech hub, with a tech sector that sustains thousands of high quality jobs and an unrivalled pool of talented and creative people from all over the world.”

To see our latest tech jobs in London click here.

2. Manchester

Manchester’s tech and digital sectors have transformed in the past five years. According to a 2017 report from Tech Nation, Manchester has the UK’s fourth highest total digital turnover at £2.9 billion and is home to almost 900 tech start-ups. It is also a city which boasts over 60,000 digital jobs. Additionally, £10 million in government funding is being put into the CityVerve project to test IoT technology which will lead to a high demand for tech professionals with a working knowledge of IoT.

To see our latest tech jobs in Manchester click here.

3. Reading & Bracknell Forest

Dubbed the UK’s answer to the Silicon Valley and boasting tech giants such as Oracle, Huawei and Symantec, tech firms in Reading and Bracknell specialise in enterprise software and cloud computing as well as data management and analysis. Over 45,000 tech jobs are based in this area, which has a digital tech turnover of £12.5 billion.

To see our latest tech jobs in Reading click here.

4. Bristol & Bath

With around 36,000 tech jobs and over 200 tech start up births Bristol and Bath in Somerset are popular destinations to find technology jobs. What’s more global businesses from these sectors are based in the region, including Meiko and XMOS and a heritage of aerospace companies in the region make Bristol and Bath a popular choice for tech professionals. Additionally, The Bristol Robotics Laboratory is now the UK’s leading academic centre for robotics research and the city has been chosen by Oracle to host one of its new global Start-up Cloud Accelerators, which will create demand for cloud professionals in the area.

To see our latest tech jobs in Bristol & Bath click here.

5. Birmingham

Last year, 6,016 people moved from London to Birmingham. The West Midlands city attracted more movers from the capital than any other city in the UK. Part of the city’s attraction is an increasing supply of jobs: Advanced Computer Software Group, for example, announced the creation of 400 more opportunities last year. The arrival of big banks such as HSBC has accelerated digital jobs growth with demand for Cyber Security professionals particularly likely to increase. The birth of 557 digital start-ups has created over 36,000 jobs in Birmingham.

To see our latest tech jobs in Birmingham click here.

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