CodeClan on Castle Terrace

Why Scotland is the place to work in digital

Scotland is becoming an increasingly attractive place to carve out a career in digital, and it’s thanks in no small part to the growing number of tech businesses based here.

In fact, outside of London, Edinburgh is now the largest cluster in terms of productivity, according to the Tech Nation 2016 Report.

Jamie Coleman, co-founder of Edinburgh’s Codebase tech incubator, puts it down to the number of local investors willing to take risks on start-ups, as well as the rich resource of staff with up-to-date expertise in how to build successful tech firms.

ScotlandIS’s 2016 Scottish Technology Industry Survey found that tech companies are gravitating towards Scotland; 34% of the businesses who participated in the survey now have their HQ in Edinburgh and the surrounding area, and a further 22% have their HQ in Glasgow and the surrounding area.

A growing demand for skills

CodeClan keyboards

The stats for employment are also encouraging. According to the ScotlandIS survey mentioned above, medium-sized businesses reported an 88% demand for software and web development skills in 2016.

Taking into account the 84,000 people who currently work in digital technology roles across Scotland, supporting an industry that generates more than £5bn in gross value added, it’s no surprise that Scotland’s blossoming ‘Silicon Glen’ has caught the eye of those working out in Silicon Valley.

In a recent SF Gate article, Scotland was described as “the best kept secret in European tech”, home to a diverse selection of digital companies, covering apps, video games, financial services and e-books.

When the folks in California are raving about “the thriving, interconnected, entrepreneurial Scottish ecosystem”, it’s clear we must be doing something right.

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