HR & Management

The top 20 UK towns for work in 2016

6 min read

13 July 2016

Former deputy editor

Using three factors, job marketplace Glassdoor has revealed the top 20 UK towns and cities for Brits to seek work in 2016, and London has not made the cut.

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It may come as a shock that the British capital has not been included on the rundown, given how many businesses, investments and headlines that the city generates, but it turns out Cambridge is the best location in the country to work this year.

“Cambridge has long had a reputation for one of Britain’s most loved cities, but now it’s emerged as a prime spot for high-tech companies which is clearly having an impact on where people decide to live and work,” said Andrew Chamberlain, Glassdoor chief economist.

London’s exile was also attributed to the success of the Northern Powerhouse, as cities beyond the south have started to thrive.

Glassdoor’s research was based around three factors to decide the ranking, which uses a job score out of five:

(1) How easy it is to get a job (hiring opportunity)
(2) How affordable it is to live there (cost of living)
(3) How satisfied employees are working there (overall job satisfaction)

The firm also offered the average pay for employees and average home value for optimum transparency.

The 20 best towns and cities for work in 2016, as revealed by Glassdoor, are:

(1) Cambridge – Glassdoor Job Score: 4.1

• Population: 145,818
• Median base salary: £35,000
• Average home value: £436,932
• Job satisfaction rating: 3.5
• Hot jobs: Software engineer, chef, sales rep

(2) Milton Keynes – Glassdoor Job Score: 4.0

• Population: 171,750
• Median base salary: £36,000
• Average home value: £292,692
• Job satisfaction rating: 3.2
• Hot jobs: Store manager, management consultant, business development manager

(3) Nottingham – Glassdoor Job Score: 4.0

• Population: 289,301
• Median base salary: £27,814
• Average home value: £181,974
• Job satisfaction rating: 3.3
• Hot jobs: Sales manager, business analyst, software engineer

(4) Leeds – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.8

• Population: 474,632
• Media base salary: £30,000
• Average home value: £195,370
• Job satisfaction rating: 3.2
• Hot jobs: Recruitment consultant, chef, project manager

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(5) Peterborough – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.7

• Population: 161,707
• Median base salary: £34,755
• Average home value: £210,571
• Job satisfaction rating: 3.2
• Hot jobs: Product manager, store manager, bartender,

(6) Coventry – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.7

• Population: 325,949
• Median base salary: £35,000
• Average home value: £184,397
• Job satisfaction rating: 3.3
• Hot jobs: Maintenance engineer, sales manager, customer service advisor

(7) Reading – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.7

• Population: 218,705
• Median base salary: £43,000
• Average home value: £430,503
• Job satisfaction rating: 3.4
• Hot jobs: Sales associate, sales representative, technical support engineer

(8) Bradford – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.6

• Population: 349,561
• Median base salary: £28,350
• Average home value: £124,766
• Job satisfaction rating: 3.0
• Hot jobs: Customer services advisor, operations manager, technician

(9) Northampton – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.6

• Population: 215,173
• Median base salary: £35,000
• Average home value: £226,661
• Job satisfaction rating: 3.5
• Hot jobs: Finance manager, recruitment consultant, bus driver

(10) Swindon – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.6

• Population: 182,441
• Median base salary: £35,525
• Average home value: £235,507
• Job satisfaction rating: 3.2
• Hot jobs: Sales rep, store manager, civil engineer

Continue on the next page to see which non-London locations made up the remaining ten cities for dreamy working conditions.

Image: Shutterstock

(11) Manchester – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.6

• Population: 510,746
• Median base salary: £28,000
• Average home value: £166,951
• Job satisfaction rating: 3.3
• Hot jobs: Project manager, sales manager, business development manager

(12) Aberdeen – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.5

• Population: 195,021
• Median base salary: £43,000
• Average home value: £222,323
• Job satisfaction rating: 3.2
• Hot jobs: Tax manager, site engineer, SAP consultant

(13) Warrington – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.5

• Population: 165,456
• Median base salary: £30,000
• Average home value: £201,077
• Job satisfaction rating: 3.0
• Hot jobs: Buyer, project manager, HR manager

(14) Bristol – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.5

• Population: 535,907
• Median base salary: £32,000
• Average home value: £297,657
• Job satisfaction rating: 3.5
• Hot jobs: Software engineer, project manager, product manager

(15) Glasgow – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.5

• Population: 590,507
• Median base salary: £26,500
• Average home value: £168,797
• Job satisfaction rating: 3.1
• Hot jobs: Research assistant, sales representative, security officer

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(16) Edinburgh – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.5

• Population: 459,366
• Median base salary: £30,000
• Average home value: £259,866
• Job satisfaction rating: 3.2
• Hot jobs: Business analyst, sales rep, recruitment consultant

(17) Oxford – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.4

• Population: 159,994
• Median base salary: £32,000
• Average home value: £502,452
• Job satisfaction rating: 3.4
• Hot jobs: Personal banking advisor, project manager, research scientist

(18) Liverpool – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.4

• Population: 552,267
• Median base salary: £26,000
• Average home value: £159,121
• Job satisfaction rating: 3.2
• Hot jobs: Recruitment consultant, audiologist, sales administrator

(19) Birmingham – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.4

• Population: 1,085,810
• Median base salary: £30,000
• Average home value: £177,941
• Job satisfaction rating: 3.0
• Hot jobs: Finance manager, sales manager, business analyst

(20) Derby – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.4

• Population: 255,394
• Median base salary: £33,727
• Average home value: £190,236
• Job satisfaction rating: 3.0
• Hot jobs: Tax manager, registered nurse, accountant

The emergence of some of Britain’s key industrial and northern cities has meant that Britain’s capital city, London, is not in the top 20 on this 2016 list.

Chamberlain continued: “These results are a reminder that although there are more jobs in London and employees are generally pretty satisfied, it is a competitive place to work and an expensive place to live.

“Towns and cities such as Nottingham, Leeds and Reading offer decent salaries and job prospects combined with a lower cost of living which means your money will go further, you can save, and still and have a good quality of life.”

With location in mind, here are the reasons 7.5m UK workers want to swap a pay rise for home working.