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Edinburgh and Glasgow Have More than One-fifth of Workforce in Tech Jobs

David Paul

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technology sector

More than 69,000 tech jobs were advertised in Edinburgh and Glasgow in 2019, making the sector one of the largest employers.

New data has revealed that more than one-fifth of workers in Scotland’s two largest cities hold positions in the technology sector.

Data analysed by Tech Nation for the Government’s Digital Economy Council shows Edinburgh has 23% of its workforce in digital tech roles. In Glasgow, 22% of the city’s workforce hold digital tech-related positions.

The data underlines the growing importance of the technology sector not only to Glasgow and Edinburgh but to the Scottish economy as a whole. During 2019, more than 113,274 vacancies were advertised in digital tech positions across Scotland. Just under half of these were in Edinburgh and Glasgow.

According to Adzuna data, 16.5% of advertised roles in Scotland are now in the tech sector. Demand for employees in engineering roles in Edinburgh has jumped by a quarter while Glasgow has seen particularly strong demand for devops engineers and engineers, up by 85% and 84% respectively.

As well as Edinburgh and Glasgow, seven other UK cities employ similar numbers of their workforce in the tech industry, including Belfast, Cardiff, Newcastle, Leeds, Bristol, Reading and Cambridge.

Over the past two years, jobs across Britain’s digital tech sector have increased by 40% and it now employs 2.9 million people. The digital tech workforce now accounts for 9% of the UK’s total workforce and in 2019 comprised over 1 million people with non-tech skills.

Despite a challenging period for the country, Digital Secretary Oliver Dowden said the new figures demonstrate the “strength and depth of our tech sector as an engine of job creation”.

Statistics show that the number of vacancies advertised in the digital tech sector climbed by 36% between June and August.

“We are a nation of innovators, entrepreneurs and inventors, and technology will underpin our infrastructure revolution of national renewal to unite and level up the UK,” Dowden said.

“This government is backing people to succeed by investing heavily in cutting-edge research, digital skills and digital infrastructure to support our economic recovery,” he added.

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UK Government Minister for Scotland Iain Stewart said: “It is fantastic to see our multi-billion pound digital tech sector not only continue to thrive but make a vital contribution to economic recovery as we emerge from the coronavirus pandemic.

“This report shows Scotland is a competitive choice for both companies and individuals creating high-quality, well-paid jobs.

“We are at the forefront in pushing the boundaries in areas such as artificial intelligence, big data, cybersecurity, fintech and gaming. The UK Government is proud to champion the digital tech sector and will continue to support its growth in Scotland.”

David Paul

Staff Writer, DIGIT

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