Which jobs are being kept in London?

The long-term impact of COVID has yet to be felt on the economy. Equally, the societal change is already here. Work from home and hybrid is now becoming de-rigeur, where for people with London based jobs, it is increasingly a pre-requisite, especially when factoring the commute times. This is creating its own conflict within Financial Services, especially, as banks push for people to be back to work, equally are increasingly flexible about which work location is used. For example, HSBC now employs more people in Birmingham than in London.

We expect this trend to continue, with banks pushing for people to be on-site, but more flexible about how workflows are then allocated by office. Financial Services have such a big part to play in the UK economy in every way. In this week’s analysis, I have decided to showcase how recruitment for skills in demand is changing by location within the industry, to help us understand the super trends overall. However, if anyone would like to see this analysis for their industry, just ping me. Anyway, to give people an idea of volumes, this is taken from the last month, with there being approx 1500 vacancies in London, vs 2300 in the rest of the country for the last month, and is for roles of 50K+.

With that, what we see is:

IT Management is the largest area for IT recruitment within London within Financial Services. Meaning there are more vacancies for change, project, product & IT managers in London than there are for developers. This is a super trend we are seeing, which is accentuated by the increasing salaries, combined with the ever-improving infrastructure. With that, therefore, we see that the largest area of IT regionally is for developers. As a result, what it seems is now with COVID over, where possible, development roles are being relocated away from London. We expect this super trend to continue, and for the gap to widen. One to watch

In London, risk and compliance is the biggest area, making up 13.8% of all vacancies in FS in the capital for risk and compliance, where regionally it is 9.5%. Risk & Compliance remains a busy area of recruitment, equally the share has grown disproportionately as front office recruitment has slowed down. Hence we expect that as corporate activity picks up, the share drops, both in London and in the rest of the country. By that token, we can see that front office areas such as investment management, trading and research and analysis, remain the preserve of London, with volumes regionally being really quite small.

For people in Insurance, broking remains a London-centric activity, perhaps unsurprisingly, where claims is the area most likely to be recruited for out of the capital. With these trends though, it is worth looking at how the last month has performed against a longer time span, say 1 year, to see if the gap is widening or narrowing. That is, are businesses currently more likely to hire into London or the regions, and if regionally, which is seeing the biggest surge? Similarly, if you are hiring for new desks, by skills, which regions should you be targeting to be ahead of the crowd?

Vacancy Analytics is a reporting platform that allows you to do this and more. Already widely used in the industry by leading recruitment firms from PLCs to PE-backed market leaders, our team are happy to work with you to analyse current market activity, to help you plan your strategy for 2024. And, to help with that, we are offering free workshops to people, where we do a deep-dive into your market, to pinpoint your specific market segments, to see what opportunities there are, that you could be targeting, right now, that you aren’t.

We look forward to hearing from you!


The data referenced above has been sourced from Vacancy Analytics, a cutting-edge Business Intelligence tool that tracks recruitment industry trends and identifies emerging hotspots. With 17 years of experience, we have a deep understanding of market activities in the UK and globally.

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