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Data study ranks cities and their residents’ ability to compete for remote jobs globally

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The new normal of remote work allows cities to boost their economies as residents obtain high paying remote positions with foreign companies. In this context, The Local Talent Index uses data to examine the competitiveness of cities’ workforces in different industries, as well as analyse remote working infrastructure and compliance legislation in each location. The results reveal the cities best placed to compete in the globalised remote job market of the future.

BERLIN - WorkMotion.com, the Global Talent Operating System company, has released a study that analyses cities’ ability to compete in a global remote employment market, ranking 100 cities worldwide based on the concentration of local talent, local salary levels, and remote working infrastructure. As a company that facilitates remote hires, WorkMotion decided to conduct the study in order to understand which cities have the most competitive talent in a range of careers that will increasingly become remote-first in the future. The study is designed to draw attention to the importance of city-level and national governments having a strategy to ease remote work compliance regulations, increase English literacy and educate their citizens for the jobs of tomorrow.  

“With a 140% rise in the number of people working from home since 2005, the employment landscape has changed and remote working is part of the new normal, with workers now having the ability to seek highly paid remote jobs with foreign employers,” comments Carsten Lebtig, Co-Founder and Managing Director of WorkMotion. “As a result, there is less pressure on city governments to attract new companies to their city, as their citizens can seek remote employment at companies based anywhere in the world. As such, the priority for cities must now be to educate and prepare their citizens so that they can compete for the careers of tomorrow, while bringing money into their local economies. We conducted this study in order to draw attention to the urgent need for cities to respond to the current changes in hiring practices and help equip their citizens to take full advantage of the new remote opportunities offered.”

How the study was conducted: 
WorkMotion began the study by identifying a list of indicators that impact a city’s ability to cultivate a remote workforce, exploring the concentration of local talent, average junior and senior-level salaries and the existing remote work infrastructure. The researchers then shortlisted 100 cities for analysis according to their global significance and the reliability of available data. 

Next, the researchers selected six different occupations to examine based on their ubiquity and their likelihood of becoming remote-first in the future: 

  • Developers / Programmers
  • Data Scientists / Analysts
  • Video Game Developers
  • Digital Marketing Managers
  • Cyber Security Professionals
  • HR Managers

For the first category, Access to Talent, researchers considered the concentration of both junior and senior-level talent in each city to gain an understanding of which cities are home to the most specialists in each field and can benefit most from a move towards remote work policies. 

Next, to analyse how location-based pay might influence future hiring decisions, they examined cities’ average junior and senior-level salaries for each profession. To allow for more direct comparison, the researchers also calculated the deviation from the average salary within the top-25 GPD countries. 

To assess which cities have anticipated and are already cultivating a remote work environment, the researchers then considered the Remote Working Infrastructure in each city by considering the ease of compliance regulations, the number of coworking spaces and English proficiency. 

To conclude, the researchers calculated an overall score for junior and senior-level talent based on access to talent, local salaries and remote working infrastructure. The resulting index reveals the cities most likely to benefit from the transition to remote-first working policies in the future, as well as those that are likely to lose out.

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