Jobhop Jobhop's blog : Why You Should Consider South Wales for a Career in Tech
This year's Tech City Tech Nation report highlighted the growth of tech and digital across the UK, while also demonstrating the country's claim to become Europe's digital capital.
It highlighted South Wales as an attractive area for techies to work outside of London and it's easy to see why they would consider South Wales over the UK capital...
Wales probably isn't the first place that comes to mind when thinking of innovative technology. That title would go to large tech hubs like Tokyo in Japan and Silicon Valley in San Francisco.
But what you may not know is that according to Tech City's most recent report, South Wales actually possesses one of the fasted growing digital economies in the whole of the UK - just behind the larger cities like London and Manchester. There is an increasing number of tech start-ups putting South Wales on the map by developing innovative products and services. From Swansea to Cardiff, you will find an enterprising hub of tech companies which prove South Wales is perfectly capable of competing with the big guys.
Why South Wales?
Young & Entrepreneurial
Although traditionally Wales is known for the coal and steel industries, the tech sector is booming and growing at a rapid pace. One factor that seems to be influencing this growth is the vast amount of graduates being churned out by the four Welsh universities; The University of South Wales, Cardiff University, Swansea University and Cardiff Metropolitan University. This means that there are a lot of graduates looking for jobs in tech and IT across South Wales, with a high level of education in both areas. And with 17,471 digital jobs available across Cardiff and Swansea, and 103 start-up's, people looking for work in this sector will not be short of opportunities.
Opportunities - Notable Workplaces and Start-ups
The increased demand for tech workspace has driven the development of communities like Techhub Swansea. They are a flexible workspace encouraging networking opportunities and collaborative working, while also being a platform for many start-up companies, allowing them to thrive.
Tramshed (Cardiff) have created a space designed to promote collaboration between some of the finest creative businesses in Wales, focused on providing an innovative platform for a supportive and successful co-working community.
This very accommodating environment is not only a reason to start working in Wales, but also to start up a company there. It's a great starting place for companies looking to establish themselves before finding a more permanent base.
Funding for the future
Another factor that is boosting the Welsh tech hub is the recent funding they received from the UK Government. Last year, it was announced that Cardiff would become home to a new 'Compound Semiconductor Applications Catapult'; receiving £10m of government support every year. The Welsh Governments 'Superfast' programme offers a connection to next generation broadband, with connectivity spreading at a fast pace across Wales. The 1.28 billion Cardiff Capital Region City Deal plans include a world-class metro system. The improvements to the metro system will allow residents to travel across the region with ease as well as in and out of city centres and to neighbouring cities such as Bristol and cities further afield such as London, therefore further boosting the tech sector.
Not only have the UK Government been funding recent developments, but the Welsh Government also recently gave a loan of £400k to SME's. This created dozens of jobs and allowed small businesses to employ highly skilled staff, therefore boosting the company's performance.
The Good Life
Although the average salary in South Wales tends to be considerably lower than those of London, living costs are also a lot cheaper. This is one of many benefits of living in South Wales. The various cultural sights such as the Brecon Beacons and Cardiff Bay, the exciting nightlife and sporting opportunities, are what make South Wales one of the UK's top destinations.
South Wales obtained a life satisfaction rating of 7.56, and the average house price comes in at £185,639, below the UK average and for those who already purchased a property in the area have seen them increase in value.
Cardiff and Swansea are perfectly placed to explore the rest of the country. They have great transport links, geographical proximity to both tourism and leisure destinations, and natural beauty spots, like the Brecon Beacons, which make Cardiff the ideal hub from which to explore.
If not South Wales, there are many alternative places to pursue a career in tech other than London. Although being the capital means London will quite often be the first choice for most companies, there are other cities where companies can thrive and there are talented people looking for work in every city.
With a strong base, quality tech courses and a lot of investment, Wales have made great strides recently, enabling them to compete as a hub for the digital sector.
In: Kyria Bush Jobhop.co.uk
Kyria Bush Jobhop.co.uk