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2nd Nov, 2023

Chris Adcock
Chris Adcock
Job Title
Managing Director, Technology

In recent years, Birmingham and the West Midlands have emerged as a promising centre of technological innovation, signifying a shift in the region’s economic landscape. Not to be thwarted by the city council’s bankruptcy announcement in September, the future of long-term growth in the sector actually looks bright, according to recent news.  

Birmingham: city of digital transformation 

Birmingham is becoming synonymous with startups – a place for innovation, aided by collaborations between academia and industry. In the next three years, a significant jobs boom has been promised in the city, created by IT and digital transformation provider Version 1, which also plans to build two new tech academies there.  

The city’s rich cultural heritage, affordable living costs and central location make an appealing combination for both UK and overseas professionals and employers. It’s the reason for Singapore regulatory tech firm Primacy’s decision to settle there, among others. The influx of talent is enriching the local workforce, and will see students, graduates and career-changers naturally look to the West Midlands as a place to develop their skills and find work. 

As the youngest city in Europe, with nearly 40 per cent of the population aged under 25, Birmingham is in a strong position for growth. If more focus could be spent on raising awareness and interest in STEM subjects among its diverse communities – perhaps creating more avenues to learn tech skills – the digital skills gap issue could be narrowed, if not closed.  

I’m optimistic that as the tech hub gets established, we’ll see a rise in events and networking sessions for learners and entrepreneurs to connect. Reed’s own popular Tech on the Tyne learning events in the north east have shown tech professionals (and aspiring ones) the benefits of collaboration through informal meetups, which have sparked new ideas and exciting ventures. Similar opportunities are on their way to Birmingham. 

Across the West Midlands, we can no doubt expect a host of opportunities for those seeking work in the coming months and years. We look to technology for the solutions to issues like healthcare accessibility, urban congestion, and environmental sustainability – and the local community will be the first to benefit from these innovations. And with the region’s roots in the car manufacturing industry, and heritage firms such as Jaguar Land Rover and Aston Martin on the doorstep, we’ll likely see further demand for automotive tech talent too. 

Tech expertise: from local to global reach 

As a centre for cutting-edge technologies and a skilled workforce, businesses based here are poised to compete on the international stage.  

How the ever-increasing interest in the region impacts the current tech sector of some 150,000 workers remains to be seen, but recruitment firms are gearing up to accommodate a flood of new opportunities. And let’s not forget the infrastructure being built as part of the city’s so-called Transformation and Future Prospects, including new housing and HS2 transport links – ready to tempt professionals to relocate and stay put.  

It seems fitting for the region that birthed the industrial revolution to be at the heart of a tech revolution, and it’s an exciting time to see Birmingham finally rival other cities in terms of growth, development and desirability. 

Keep an eye on our technology job openings, and drop us a line if you’re looking to hire top tech talent.