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The cities most at risk from the Great Resignation

The Great Resignation is still unfolding across the UK. But how does this vary across the country? At Adzuna, we have taken a look at the towns and cities most at threat from the Great Resignation. To do this, we analysed jobseeker demand across UK towns and cities, in terms of average views per job posting. From this, we can reveal which areas are seeing the most active jobseekers, suggesting a higher propensity to move between jobs in the near future, sustaining the Great Resignation.


What is the Great Resignation?

The Great Resignation is an ongoing trend surrounding the record numbers of people leaving their jobs following the pandemic. This is often a result of a change in priorities following the pandemic such as work hours, flexible work options, or simply looking for a pay rise to counteract the rising living costs we’re all experiencing. Other workers were stuck in jobs they didn’t enjoy during the pandemic but didn’t feel confident to leave, but now that’s all changed.

For the first time ever, the number of job openings has overtaken the number of UK unemployed jobseekers. And the resulting hot jobs market is tempting many jobseekers to jump ship from their current employer.

So, which locations are most at risk from the Great Resignation?

1. London

The capital is seeing the highest level of jobseeker activity in the UK by far. On average, every job listing in the city is viewed over 64 times. In April 2022, there were over half a million vacancies on offer across London and surrounding commutable areas. These vacancies have an average salary of £45,515. This suggests that London not only has a huge number of vacancies but also a high interest in people moving roles, making London the centre of the UK Great Resignation.

Check out vacancies in London


2. Manchester

There is a huge gap between the first and second cities on the list of places most at risk of the Great Resignation. Manchester takes the second place, however, far fewer job seekers are viewing each posting. Each job receives an average of over 9 views. Salaries in the city average at £37,381, with 101,376 available vacancies in April.

Recently, more large businesses have been moving to Greater Manchester, such as the creative companies in Media City. 

Why not explore vacancies in Manchester?


3. Birmingham

Birmingham takes the third spot on the list. Each job in the Midlands city received an average of 7.43 views. The average salary in Birmingham sits at £38,175, with 62,191 jobs available.

Birmingham is central to the engineering and manufacturing industries, with brands such as Jaguar Land Rover being based out of Solihull, Birmingham. 

Vacancies in Birmingham can be found here


4. Slough and Heathrow

The prime location for the UK’s largest airport is next on the list. Each of the 45,429 job postings in the area attracts 4.61 views on average. Average salaries for the area lie at £35,283. One reason Slough and Heathrow may be so high on the list is the unpredictable situation within the travel industry, making people rethink their career choices. 

Jobs in Slough can be found here


5. Glasgow

The Scottish city of Glasgow rounds off the top five locations most affected by the Great Resignation. The city has 27,082 vacancies, each of which received 3.85 views. Jobseekers in the city can expect to see a salary of £33,302.

Glasgow is increasingly becoming the Scottish centre for technology, meaning that there has recently been a real shift in the main industry of the city. 

Explore jobs in Glasgow here


6. Bristol

The southwestern city of Bristol places sixth on the list, with each job advert receiving an average of 3.73 views. Salaries in the city average at £36,050 and there are 60,332 vacancies available. 

The main industries in Bristol include aerospace engineering and technology, with Airbus being based in the city.

Check out jobs in Bristol here


7. Medway

Medway is the next city on the list of areas experiencing the effects of the Great Resignation. The 39,724 vacancies receive 3.96 views on average. The average salary seen in Medway is slightly lower than some others on the list, sitting at £32,871. 

Jobs in Kent can be found here


8. Leicester

Vacancies in Leicester tend to have an average of 3.41 views. There are 30,942 available vacancies, with an average salary of £32,302. 

Why not take a look at jobs in Leicester?


9. Liverpool

With an average of 3.2 per job advert, Liverpool takes the ninth spot on the list of places most affected by the Great Resignation. There are 28,656 vacancies available in the city, with an overall average salary of £32,828.

Take a look at Liverpool vacancies here


10. Newcastle

The north-eastern city of Newcastle just makes it into the top 10 locations on the list. Each of the 27,866 jobs receive 3.16 views on average. Salaries in the city average at £33,014. 

Vacancies in Newcastle are available here


Commuter belt towns

There is a general trend of particularly high job seeker activity in London’s commuter belt towns. This may be due to a shift in the priority of job seekers following the pandemic. Job seekers are frequently shifting their focus to an improved work-life balance, meaning they are choosing to work closer to home, rather than in London, Overall, commuter belt towns account for a fifth of the top 30 UK towns and cities with the highest jobseeker activity. These towns include Chelmsford (2.47), Reading (2.45), Guildford and Aldershot (2.07), Luton (1.88), and Crawley (1.87).


Table 1: The top 30 towns and cities with highest jobseeker activity

Town or CityAdvertised vacancies within a commutable distance, April 2022Average advertised salary, April 2022Posting views, April 2022
Slough and Heathrow45,429£35,2834.61
Milton Keynes27,865£34,5172.26
Guildford and Aldershot31,633£36,6562.07
Wolverhampton and Walsall14,099£32,5901.93
Warrington and Wigan18,114£33,8331.84


Jobseeker activity in the UK nations

Generally speaking, England is seeing the highest activity from jobseekers, with 3.6 views per job ad. The other nations fall quite far behind in terms of views per job ad, with Scotland receiving 0.26 views, Wales with 0.11, and Northern Ireland with 0.03. This suggests that the Great Resignation is yet to spread across the UK.

Overall advertised UK vacancies have increased by a huge 48% in just a year. The number of vacancies available in the UK sits at 1,298,581 in 2022. 


With more flexible working options becoming far more common across the UK, it is clear to see why some areas are feeling the effects of the Great Resignation. Jobseekers are prioritising their needs over their current jobs, meaning that more and more people are seeking new roles. Although not every area of the UK is experiencing the Great Resignation at the same time, England, in particular, is feeling the effects. 


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