Milton Keynes ranks top of UK jobs growth cities

Low business start-up costs, a booming property market and good transport links has sent Milton Keynes to the top of the list of UK cities with the highest jobs growth over the past decade, recruiters say.

Mon, 19 Jan 2015Low business start-up costs, a booming property market and good transport links has sent Milton Keynes to the top of the list of UK cities with the highest jobs growth over the past decade, recruiters say.

Their comments stem from the publication today [19 January] of a report from think-tank Centre for Cities, which reveals Milton Keynes (+24,400 jobs [+18.2%], compared to a decade ago) was top of the list, followed by London (+769,500 jobs [+17.1%]) and Cambridge (+12,400 [+15.7%]).

Brighton (+15,100 jobs [+11.1%]) and Bournemouth (+15,500 jobs [+10%]) made up the list of top five cities that witnessed highest jobs growth.

According to Avtar Singh, director of operations at multi-sector Venn Group, which recruits in Milton Keynes, increased investment in property in the city is adding funds to local businesses looking to expand.

He said in a statement: “The majority of demand has been seen, perhaps unsurprisingly, in the housing sector with management level professionals particularly sought after at the moment.

“We’ve also noted a growing requirement for healthcare professionals, which is potentially down to the number of people migrating to the region.”

He explained that with an increasing population, local authorities required greater numbers of health workers “to ensure that high standards are maintained and this is largely behind the demand for such specialists”.

He added: “At the moment, we’ve noted that professionals with experience of working in administrative or communications roles in the sector are able to walk into jobs, and this demand can be expected to continue well into 2015.”

Geoff Sims, regional managing director at recruitment giant Hays, which recruits for temporary workers for Milton Keynes Council, told Recruiter Milton Keynes benefits from “strong links” to London and Birmingham, with major rail connections and its proximity to the M25 and M1 for road access.

“The expanse of head office functions in the area proves this, with organisations like Mercedes and National Rail continuing to grow and invest locally, creating new jobs and contributing to the growth of the city,” he added.

“For start-ups, lower overhead costs in Milton Keynes when compared to the capital makes it a popular destination for new businesses. A huge investment in local house building and infrastructure projects, such as the purpose-built business park including the new football stadium, also add to the desirability of the area.”

Meanwhile James Taylor, director at professional services staffing specialist Macildowie, told Recruiter jobs creation in Milton Keynes has caused the professional staffing specialist to open an office in the city in the last fortnight.

“We have been recruiting in the Milton Keynes market since 1999,” he said. “With the way the world has gone digital, we didn’t have to physically be there but we have now built a team to 13 staff, and we were losing a lot of man-hours going up the M1 to interview people, so it felt like the right time.”

According to the report, four of the top 10 cities with the lowest jobs growth were in the North-West. This list included Burnley (-3,200 jobs [-4.7%]), Wigan (-5,800 jobs [-5.7%]), Rochdale (-9,300 jobs [-12.2%]) and Blackpool (-14,500 jobs [-10.9%]).

The quartet were joined by Swindon (-7,100 jobs [-6.5%]), Huddersfield (-10,700 jobs [-6.7%]), Hull (-10,000 jobs [-7.9%]), Newport (-6,500 jobs [-8.6%]), Grimsby (-500 jobs [-7.3%]) and bottom of the list Gloucester (8,100 jobs [-12.6%]).

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