Signs of continued momentum in the U.K. tech startup scene today. Figures put out by Silicon Milkroundabout, which runs startup jobs fairs, and job ad search engine Adzuna, suggest there’s been a significant uptick in the number of tech startups recruiting. The data shows 44% more tech startup jobs are being advertised than at the same time last year, with 4,753 vacancies currently on offer across the U.K.
Coincidentally or not, the U.K. unemployment rate has fallen to a three-year low, according to Office for National Statistics figures put out this week — which the government was quick to trumpet as proof that its recovery plan is (finally) working.
Slashing public sector jobs to make efficiency savings and bring down the national deficit has been Treasury-driven policy since the Tory-led coalition took office back in 2010. But reducing the number of public sector jobs means the private sector needs to pick up the slack — and that’s been taking some time. As part of a private sector jobs growth strategy, U.K. Prime Minister, David Cameron, has put some emphasis on the tech startup sector — spotting a trend in the shape of East London’s startup cluster and hitching the government’s wagon to it by (re)branding the area ‘Tech City‘.
That in turn raised the area’s profile, and encouraged more tech companies to move in. The government’s Tech City initiative has not been without its critics, and the high profile marketing of the area has certainly pushed up rents — making it harder for East London startups to afford office space. But putting startups in the spotlight has also been good news for a sector that had arguably been overlooked politically for years. (Of course startups don’t need politicians holding their hands to flourish but governments can certainly help or hinder when it comes to key issues such as visas to manage the flow of required skills.)
Talking of skills, according to the Silicon Milkroundabout/Adzuna data, the most sought after workers for U.K. tech startups are (unsurprisingly) developers, with a third (31%) of the advertised roles being for coders; followed by marketers, sought in a quarter (24%) of the ads; and product people (12%). The rest of the jobs pie breaks down as follows: sales/biz dev (10%); designers (8%); grads/interns (8%); analysts (4%); others (3%).
In terms of salaries on offer, developers joining U.K. tech startups are getting a 17% higher average wage than the national average for their skillset — £45,088 vs £38,426 — suggesting U.K. tech startups are having to bid over the odds (relatively speaking) to bag their coding ninja. It’s still a (very) far cry from average tech developer wages in Silicon Valley, of course.
Designers are the other only role able to command a premium on their national wage average by opting to work for a tech startup — with the data showing that designers are being offered 5% more on average (£38,692 vs £36,757). Meanwhile product people, marketers, sales/biz dev professionals all have to take home less on average if they opt to work for a tech startup (6%, 12% and 14% less respectively).
The 10 most common selling points for choosing to work at a tech startup are, in no particular order:
backed by respected investors; a competitive salary; share options; flexible working hours; choose your own equipment; make an impact; challenge; fast growing; small team; shape the product
Silicon Milkroundabout will be running another jobs fair in East London this weekend, where it’s looking to match up 120 U.K. tech startups with up to 3,000+ developers, product managers, and designers. Who’s leading the hiring charge on the startup side? Badoo, MOO, Shazam, Mind Candy & onefinestay. There are some 800+ startup jobs on offer in total.
The fair is divided into a Product Management & Design Day, taking place on Saturday November 16 — for jobseekers in the fields of Product Management, UX Design (Interaction Design, Visual Design, User Research and Prototyping), Intelligence/Analytics, and Tech Marketing/Growth — and an Engineering Day, taking place on Sunday November 17 — for jobseekers in the fields of Software Engineering, Web Development, QA/Testing, and TechOps.
More information about the jobs fair here.