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The UK’s tech hubs achieve growth as IT job openings and salaries rise

According to recruitment firm Experis, there has been an 18 per cent increase in the number of permanent job roles advertised across the country between January and March of this year.

Overall IT role advertisements grew by nine per cent, meanwhile, as 59,000 UK IT jobs were analysed for the study.

In particular, IT security was a key focus area for businesses. The number of roles in the sector rose by 32 per cent on Q4 2014 in London and by 65 per cent across all Tech Cities.

The IT security surge comes alongside a government-backed campaign that is bringing together 50 of the country’s finest cyber minds from universities nationwide to fight against online attacks at a hackathon this summer.

Experis is, of course, the company that started talk of a Tech City war in February when it revealed that cities outside of London were doing their best to attract talent from the capital by competing with salaries and promising a better standard of living.

Its new report found that cloud specialists were also in demand behind security experts, with 23 per cent more vacancies in Q1 than there were in Q4. Additionally, Cambridge, Bristol and Manchester showed more demand and opportunity for cloud workers than London.

Outside of the capital, Cambridge offered the highest salaries for cloud and mobile roles at an average of 50,034 and 42,008 respectively. It comes following the city becoming digitised by Virgin Media Business in March when it was announced the county is becoming connected with free WiFi for businesses and visitors.

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Geoff Smith, MD, Experis Europe, said: Q1 is commonly when companies release their annual recruitment budgets. This, combined with growing economic confidence for the coming year, has likely contributed to growth in permanent recruitment activity.

Across the UKs Tech Cities, a greater take-up of cloud and eCommerce services has also increased security requirements. High profile cybercrime events over the past year have illustrated the severe brand and material damage that can hit underprepared companies. This has put security hiring high on the radar.

Other disciplines covered included web development, mobile and big data, and it was the latter that was found to offer the highest average salary of all five sectors with 59,899. Across the board, the average salary rose by three per cent to 48,820.

Smith concluded: “With the General Election only a week away, all parties have stressed the need to place tech education and skills development much higher up the agenda. Our report highlights that demand for specialist IT and tech roles continues to be very strong, and is growing not just in London but across the country. 

Putting policies in place which help to meet the growing demand for skilled workers across the UKs Tech Cities should be a priority for whichever party or coalition of parties form a government next month.

Image: Shutterstock


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