"For many young people, London has that certain allure and excitement that draws them towards it. Being the centre of business and politics means it is a vibrant city in which you can start your graduate job and career. Still, there are a range of factors to consider before you embark on life in the city."
For many young people, London has that certain allure and excitement that draws them towards it. Being the centre of business and politics means it is a vibrant city in which you can start your graduate job and career. Still, there are a range of factors to consider before you embark on life in the city.
A study by a Graduate Recruitment Agency revealed that 44% of all graduate jobs are in London, while less than 10% are in the South East and about 12% are in the Northern area. It is clear that statistics will vary between surveys but the overall pattern is consistent, i.e. that London is a hub for jobs and this will continue in the future.
The benefits of working in London stem from its position in the global arena, including its close links with international markets. You can also gain a lot of exposure to different working styles since larger firms have staff from different countries. This will give you a broader outlook and may even spark a desire to work overseas in the future. The largest companies usually have their headquarters in London, so you can gain an insight into all the different service lines. Although this should not be the decisive factor for your job, the salary for an equivalent job in London is usually higher, even when considering the London weighting for higher living costs.
However, there may be certain drawbacks and it really depends on your preferred working style. Life can be quite hectic at times and the working culture sometimes means that work will come first during the week and even sometimes during the weekends. This is of course not the case in all London jobs but it can occur. Also, London is like any busy city, and so you need to see whether you can get used to the hustle and bustle. As living costs will be higher than other areas, you may not be able to stay in such a nice place until you have saved some money first. Still, a higher salary should help with this.
Although London seems to attract the most headlines, there are large reputable companies with major operations in the regions, which will provide similar opportunities and experiences. Indeed, working in any large company could mean visits to London and even overseas. Alternatively, smaller companies may give you the chance for more of a hands on approach by working in smaller teams. This could in turn give you greater experience and the opportunity to take more of a managerial role earlier on in your career.
Overall, the decision to make the move to the capital has to be yours alone. In a way it is a lifestyle choice but as nothing is permanent, you can always try it and then change your mind after gaining a few years' experience. Also, it is important to consider all of the options and not be blindly led to London by your peers. You need to take a long term view of your career and this may mean working in an international company based in London, but you may be equally successful in a smaller company based in one of the many regions across the UK.