As the world’s digital industry continues to grow, the north east is no exception. More than 50% of today’s jobs require some knowledge of technology and this figure is expected to rise to 77% in a decade, so it is more important than ever for young people to learn some of these skills to avoid being left ‘on the shelf’ as such when it comes to jobs.
The technology sector is growing three times faster than the wider job market and will continue to expand at, what is being described as an ‘unprecedented rate’. 1.56 million people in the UK work in this sector and this is expected to increase by 10% in three years. This sector already generates around £161 billion for the economy per year and as the number of businesses opening their doors continues to boom, so will this, already impressive, figure.
So how does all this affect the North East? Newcastle and Sunderland are both up at the top of the rankings for paying the top salaries for businesses in this sector. Good news for all of us employed in those areas because the average salary is already at £50,000, 36% higher than the average salary across all sectors in the UK.
Newcastle is definitely the centre of the North-Easts so called ‘tech boom’, with Gateshead and Sunderland not far behind. Between 2014 and 2015, the amount of tech business in the region increased by 9.2%, which was second only to London. With five universities and tech giants Sage headquartered in Newcastle, there is definitely the talent here to build some fantastic businesses.
The growth has been attributed to many factors, a major one of these being the lower costs in the North East compared to London. This makes it the perfect place for a business start-up as it means that funds can be focused on development of the business rather than having to be put towards the cost of the property and staff.
London was the most popular for so many years mainly because of the availability of funding in the capital for business start-ups in the tech industry. However, with ignite100 having one of their UK offices now in Newcastle, the distance between the regions is steadily decreasing.
As a region, we are growing and we should all be proud to be a part of such an immense increase. There is no doubt that this increase will continue and the likes of London should keep their eye on us as we have no plans to slow down.