WORKING ABROAD / NOV. 14, 2013
version 3, draft 3

London Nominated Talent Capital of the World

London is the best city in the world for employment in high-skilled, knowledge-based jobs, according to a report published by Deloitte. The UK’s capital employs 1.5 million people in high-skilled sectors, compared to 1.2 million in New York, 784,000 in Los Angeles and 630,000 in Hong Kong.

London pioneers in 12 of the 22 high-skilled sectors including digital media, legal services, publishing, education, accountancy and banking. Deloitte is forecasting a growth of 300,000 jobs to open in London by 2020 with at least a third of them in the high-skill sectors. It also predicts a decline in employment in banking, but growth in London's creative, digital and life science sectors.

Out of seven overarching areas - in terms of employment, London is the overall leader in five: financial services, technology, media and telecommunications, business and professional services, education and culture. It comes second in consumer business (after New York) but sadly nowhere to be seen in life sciences.

Angus Knowles-Cutler, London senior partner at Deloitte, underlines that London is a powerful economic hub that retains high quality local and international talents in different sectors. He states that "It is a desirable and diverse city in which to work, allowing it to attract the very best of British and international talent. Indeed, our city's highly skilled talent might be one of our greatest invisible exports."

London Has the Best Job Prospects in the UK

London is not just a model city for attracting the best talent in the world. It is also a robust city which has the best potential for employment growth. According to Thisismoney.co.uk , the City of London employed almost 240,000 at the end of 2012 in finance and professional services, 10,000 more than before 2007 crash.

Statistical data from the Office of National Statistics show that 11.2% of London’s workforce work as directors, managers and senior officials. Furthermore, 25% of  London’s labour force are in professional occupations and 18.1% are in associate professional and technical occupations. What’s more, employees working in London earn more on average than UK employees and their average earnings fell less rapidly than the UK average from 2010-2012. The gross weekly salary for full-time workers in London is £652,8 while for the rest of the UK this amounts to £507,600.

The Bid to Cope With the Ongoing Influx of Talent

London’s continuing eminence as a global talent magnet cannot be taken for granted given the highly competitive global economy. The report notes that if London is to retain its attractiveness as a recruitment hub, the capital would need to address various fundamental challenges like infrastructure, housing and immigration.

Housing is already under pressure, with the London Councils group calling for more than 800,000 new homes in the city by 2021 in order to keep pace with demand. Moreover, tough visa rules prevent overseas candidates from claiming new high-skill jobs.   There is also a need to improve education to help Londoners train up for these newly-created roles.

On the whole, London is a global dominant employer of highly-skilled individuals in key industries and is world-beating in 12 of the 22 industries. The future of the city’s labour market is expected to be bright, as 300,000 new jobs will be added by 2020. Although the findings crown Britain’s capital as the world’s top city for highly skilled jobs, they warn that the city should monitor the ongoing influx of talent and constantly adapt workplace skills in order to retain a competitive advantage in the dynamic global economy.

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