London – IT workers in the UK have more opportunities than ever to develop their careers, no matter where they reside, with top tech towns identified in every corner of the country, according to a new report released today by leading IT trade association CompTIA.
According to the CompTIA UK Tech Town Index – a first-of-its-kind examination of IT employment opportunities in more than 200 towns and cities in the UK – Manchester is the number one place for IT pros in the UK.
The broad scope of opportunities that Manchester has to offer landed the city at the top of the inaugural UK Tech Town Index. These opportunities include career progression options and a high quality of living in the North West, based on the cost of living and job demand.
Bristol was revealed as the number two tech town, an area that provides more year-on-year job opportunity growth than anywhere else in the UK.
Leeds sits at number three on the list. This was based largely on the city’s lower cost of living and expected job growth in tech professions.
The CompTIA UK Tech Town Index identifies these 10 cities as the top places to start or develop an IT career:
Nancy Hammervik, executive vice president, industry relations at CompTIA, commented: “The UK Tech Town Index shows the breadth and depth of opportunity in the UK. No longer are IT jobs concentrated in traditional pockets like London. More and more opportunities are being presented across the region to ensure anyone can pursue their dream career in technology without geographical or economical restrictions.”
Tracy Pound, Managing Director of Maximity said: “Having strong technology clusters spread throughout the UK creates a greater number of career opportunities with increasing diversity for the national IT workforce. The UK remains a hotbed for technology talent, and as the demand for this talent continues to grow, it's reassuring that we’re also creating more environments that connect IT career opportunities with where people want to live.”
The UK IT workforce continues to grow year-on-year and is projected to increase by more than 14,000 workers in 2019 alone. Additionally, job growth of 4 percent – 48,000 new jobs – is projected for the five-year period between 2018 and 2023 meaning there is plenty of opportunity for those looking to start a career in tech.
According CompTIA’s most recent UK Tech Snapshot, the unemployment rate was 3.8 percent for the three-month period ending in July 2019, down from 4 percent a year ago and still the lowest unemployment rate since the period of October to December 1974.
CompTIA’s UK Tech Town Index is designed to help in-demand IT pros make educated decisions about where to live and work based on opportunity and opportunity costs. CompTIA examined factors such as the number of locally posted IT job postings, projected job growth and reported cost of living in travel to work areas (TTWAs) across the UK.
The Index also highlights the need for an educated, tech-ready workforce and the factors that are contributing to each areas’ ability to attract and retain that workforce.
The CompTIA UK Tech Town Index illustrates to individuals looking to have a career in IT that there are many options for employment in locations and sectors not traditionally thought of as tech heavy. The Index also identifies the top employers in each region which include key players in the education sector and the NHS.
Cllr. Elise Wilson, Greater Manchester’s Portfolio Lead for Digital City Region, said: “I’m delighted that in Greater Manchester we are leading the way and doing digital differently. It’s great to see that we are perfectly positioned to become one of Europe’s top-five digital city-regions, boasting some of the most cutting-edge technology firms in the world.
“This recognition as the United Kingdom’s top town for IT jobs only reinforces our ambition and shows we are creating a bold digital economy which will encourage our businesses to grow. To help Greater Manchester to keep pace with this rapid growth, we are putting in place a range of initiatives to recruit a highly skilled workforce from all our communities regardless of their background or starting point.”
CompTIA’s UK Tech Town Index is a snapshot created to provide some guidance on locations to consider a tech job.
It is not meant to measure everything. It gives a unique look into key locations as it goes beyond number of jobs and considers factors such as job postings, projected job growth and cost of living. CompTIA recognises that there are many ways to assess places to live and work. Some people may place more emphasis on culture and entertainment, while some place more emphasis on family friendly locales, etc. CompTIA’s assessment takes one approach that emphasizes the relative strength of the opportunity, along with cost of living.
The initial top 10 travel to work areas (TTWAs or 'work area' as referred to throughout the report) are selected based on location quotient (LQ) using Burning Glass data, i.e. the number of job postings over the last 12 months per 1,000 people employed in that work area.
A location quotient is a measure of concentration, comparing local concentrations to the national level. All 10 of these work areas have a higher demand than average as far as number of job postings by number of people employed in comparison to the UK.
Additional factors are then considered to develop CompTIA’s ranking among these 10 work areas, including actual number of job ads, projected job growth and cost of living.
About CompTIA The Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA) is a leading voice and advocate for the $5 trillion global information technology ecosystem; and the more than 50 million industry and tech professionals who design, implement, manage, and safeguard the technology that powers the world’s economy. Through education, training, certifications, advocacy, philanthropy, and market research, CompTIA is the hub for advancing the tech industry and its workforce. https://www.comptia.org/