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Edinburgh may be the capital, but Glasgow has the numbers: Scotland’s largest city is also the fourth largest in all of UK. What used to be a small rural village, located on the Clyde river bank, following industrial revolution Glasgow has been developing and attracting more and more people. The city and its surroundings rapidly turned into a major chemical, textile and engineering (marine and shipbuilding) hub. Today, Glasgow is the most densely populated city in Scotland, at an estimated population of more than 621,020 people. 

Economy and labour market

Specialising in the services sector, Glasgow is one of the top 20 European business and finance centres, with its city-centre being a hub for more than 50,000 professionals. Glasgow's economy also relies on sectors such as sciences, trade, engineering, education, tourism, as well as media (television, cinema, etc). Companies headquartered in Glasgow include Scottish Power (one of the UK's major power suppliers), Aggreko (electricity generators specialists) and several others excelling in manufacturing, engineering and whisky distribution.

Glasgow is also aspiring to become a learning city. Local authorities are planning massive investments in the education sector so as to set up child care centres, primary schools, and even tutoring facilities. If you have the required expertise in this field, you are advised to research for related opportunities.

Of course, finding work in Glasgow will not be without its challenges. The global financial crisis, along with recent changes in the welfare policy, have taken their toll in employment. The situation is difficult for both expats and locals alike, as the city still holds a high unemployment rate — the second highest rate in the whole country after Dundee. Combine that fact with the population growth and density, and it’s becoming apparent that competition for any open positions will be fierce. But there is also good news: Glasgow has had the highest business start-up rate within the last few years, which means more positions are becoming available constantly. In fact, looking at the unemployment rate of past years, it is safe to say that Glasgow’s labour market is doing significantly better.

 Good to know:

If you want to learn more about Glasgow’s economy, you may find the Open Glasgow programme quite useful. Glasgow has been named a Future City, and has received funding from Innovate UK to “explore innovative ways to use technology and data to make life in the city safer, smarter and more sustainable”. On the Open Glasgow website, you can find a treasure trove of data — from employment statistics to everyday life issues. Find out more here.

Job hunting

If you are not yet on the spot, you are probably likely to start your job search on the Internet. Feel free to browse offers on the different job websites, as well as professionals social networks such as LinkedIn. If you are already in Scotland, you can also check out offers in local newspapers. Word of mouth may also help if you have friends, contacts or relatives in Glasgow. Why not try your luck by sending spontaneous job applications as well? You can start by selecting a few companies in which you might be interested. Another option is to reach out to a recruitment agency: there are several in Glasgow, and they can assist you in finding your dream job.

 Useful links

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CV Library

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