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Are all the graduate jobs really only in London?

Published: Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Research suggests that London is still the top city for recruiting new graduates. So how does the rest of the UK fair and what do you need to know about finding work outside of the capital?

Over the last 10 years London has consistently been the most common first employment destination for new graduates. Since the recession, the market share of early graduate employment has increased and continues to rise. On the other hand Scotland has seen a year on year decrease of the share of early graduate employment. The East of England has also seen a yearly increase since the recession.

Before people pack up and head for the capital it is important to do some research into regional variations in the job market according to the sector you are looking to work in.

For example a career as a financial analyst would likely lead a graduate to London for their first job, but away from the capital Glasgow, Edinburgh and Manchester are the best destinations.

Only 38% of new marketing graduate roles were located in London in 2011 and whilst most marketing roles where found in the South of England, 10% of roles were located in the North West. 

Software engineering is another career area that is growing and only 23% of vacancies are in London and a further 16% are in the South East. The biggest city, outside of London, for new graduate recruitment, is Belfast with Cambridge not far behind.

Growing careers that have a more country wide spread of opportunities include Pharmacy with cities like Leeds, Liverpool and Manchester comparing well with London. Another is Mechanical Engineering, the highest proportion of new graduate vacancies were found in Aberdeen with Coventry, Newcastle, Derby and Leicester also good locations for finding work.

Things change even further the longer a graduate has been in a career with a much wider spread of vacancies across the UK. For more information on the top locations for overall graduate employment see the Top cities for graduate recruitment page of our website and a recent blog written by Freya Labram