London may be the UK's biggest tech hub, but new data reveals that the average IT wage goes more than twice as far in cities such as Birmingham and Manchester.
London is seen as the centre of the UK's tech scene, but spiralling property prices are making the city increasingly unattractive, both for tech workers and new startups. London wages have traditionally been higher in order to compensate for this, but the sharp increases in rents and house prices have not been proportional to pay rises.
The study, conducted by recruitment site Indeed, examined the affordability of the UK's major tech hubs based on the average cost of a flat in comparison with the average IT income. It found that in London, the average flat costs in excess of 432,000 - more than eight times the average tech industry salary of 51,070.
In areas such as Cardiff, Manchester and Birmingham, meanwhile, the average flat costs less than four times the average annual wage, despite the fact that salaries in these cities are lower than in London. Birmingham emerged as the most cost-effective tech hub to live in, with the average flat going for just 120,856, with the average tech salary standing at 42,268.
Moreover, a Spiceworks survey showed that despite the fact that IT jobs generally pay at least 10,000 more than the average wage, 59% of IT professionals feel that they're underpaid, with less that 25% expecting a pay rise of more than 5% in 2017.
In order to cope with the growing disconnect between wages and property in the capital, many tech experts may be driven to accept jobs with companies based in more affordable cities, and Indeed's VP of product, Terence Chiu, noted that they would not have a hard time finding work.
"It is increasingly competitive for companies to find the technical talent they need as companies ramp up their demand for these professionals," he said. "Our data shows this is a jobseeker's market, with huge demand for tech talent and simply not enough of the right candidates to fill those open roles."
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Adam Shepherd has been a technology journalist since 2015, covering everything from cloud storage and security, to smartphones and servers. Over the course of his career, he’s seen the spread of 5G, the growing ubiquity of wireless devices, and the start of the connected revolution. He’s also been to more trade shows and technology conferences than he cares to count.
Adam is an avid follower of the latest hardware innovations, and he is never happier than when tinkering with complex network configurations, or exploring a new Linux distro. He was also previously a co-host on the ITPro Podcast, where he was often found ranting about his love of strange gadgets, his disdain for Windows Mobile, and everything in between.
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