Reveals the Best and Worst Cities to Find a Job in the UK

By Adzuna, PRNE
Tuesday, August 16, 2011

LONDON, August 17, 2011 -


  • Hull the dull-spot for job seekers with 45 claimants per vacancy
  • Northern cities dominate employment black holes
  • Cambridge boffins & Aberdeen riggers in demand
  • While unemployment is heading north, job seekers should move south

Hull is the hardest city in the UK to find a job while Cambridge is the easiest, according to the latest research from job search website

The top 50 cities in the UK were ranked by comparing the total number of live local job vacancies in Adzuna’s comprehensive search index to the number of Jobseekers’ Allowance claimants in each city according to the ONS data released today. The results reveal a huge variation in prospects for job seekers across the country.

Hull tops the list of unemployment black holes with 45 job seekers for every open vacancy. There are 18,795 people in the Hull area looking for work yet Adzuna found a meager 318 jobs available to them out of nearly 400,000 live vacancies listed on nationally.

Sunderland comes second with 33 job seekers chasing every single vacancy.  The data demonstrates a clear north-south divide around the national average of 4 claimants per job ad.  Six of the hardest ten cities to find a job are in the North of England, while Southend in Essex is the worst place to find a job in the South with 25 claimants per job. Motherwell, Swansea and Belfast all figure prominently, topping the list for Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland respectively.

University towns and southern English cities dominate the employment hotspots. Cambridge is an applicant’s dream with just 1.3 job seekers for every available job, while Reading, Oxford & London all have less than 2.5 job seekers per vacancy.  Aberdeen at 1.6 comes a surprising second to Cambridge, with oil and gas industry jobs very much to the fore.

Andrew Hunter, Co-Founder of Adzuna, said “By listing nearly every job ad in the UK on our Adzuna jobs search engine, our aim is to make it easier for people to find the right job for them.  But the data is clear - if you live in an employment blackspot like Hull where there aren’t many jobs to go round, you’ve got to be ready to move to find work. For new graduates coming in to this market, looking for work down south or in a few other regional hotspots looks like the smart option.”

Worst cities to find a job
Rank City         Claimants per vacancy
1    Hull                  45.46
2    Sunderland            33.40
3    Wirral                32.09
4    Stoke-on-Trent        27.04
5    Middlesbrough         26.17
6    Belfast               25.51
7    Southend              25.49
8    Rochdale              24.26
9    Motherwell            22.13
10   Swansea               21.55

Best cities to find a job
Rank City         Claimants per vacancy
1    Cambridge              1.25
2    Aberdeen               1.61
3    Reading                1.69
4    London                 2.06
5    Oxford                 2.57
6    Milton Keynes          2.59
7    Bristol                2.90
8    Guildford              3.26
9    Southampton            3.56
10    Maidstone             3.60

To see a visual representation of the data, check out ‘The best (and worst) cities to find a job in the UK’ infographic at the Adzuna blog.

Notes to editors is a comprehensive search engine for job ads which makes it easier for users to find the right job locally. We search hundreds of sites so you don’t have to, bring together hundreds of thousands of ads so you can find them all in one place, and organize them with useful features so that you can easily find what you need. was founded in 2011 by Andrew Hunter and Doug Monro, formerly of eBay, Gumtree, Qype and Zoopla and is backed by leading Venture Capital firm Passion Capital.

Claimant count data is based on the August 2011 Labour Market Statistics released today by the ONS.  The city areas referred to in this study are the ONS ‘Travel to work areas’.  The full Jobseeker’s Allowance claimant count statistics are available for download here:

For more information please contact Andrew Hunter at andrew at, +44-7957324720 or Doug Monro at doug at, +44-7971224604.

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