What can this tool show?

This interactive tool enables users to explore demand for particular occupations and the potential salary benefits and likely levels of competition for these positions. The findings can be shown at UK-wide, national and regional levels, along with local enterprise partnership areas and certain city areas.

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Important considerations as you use the tool:

  • The tool focuses on certain roles, excluding senior management roles and many elementary positions (see limitations).
  • The tool focuses on entry-level jobs, defined by those postings in which the employer asks for less than two years’ experience, and on new entrants to the labour market.
  • This labour market information is targeted at employers, training and education providers, and local and national decision-makers. Individuals who are seeking career guidance are welcome to make use of the tool, but since it is not intended to be a source of comprehensive advice and guidance to individual jobseekers, we would urge them to seek out other advice and guidance in addition to this tool.
  • The tool does not take migration, either internal or international, into account. Therefore any significant inward or outward flows of education finishers within regions or LEP areas will not be reflected in the competitiveness levels shown in this tool.
  • The data that underlies this tool can be downloaded as a spreadsheet (see methodology).

Exploring all occupations within a location

From the homepage, you can explore occupational prospects by location. The two categories on the main view are:

  • Job openings: The bar chart shows the number of advertised job openings for each occupation, broken down by education level (higher education, further education, or school-leaver) required for the job. The default view shows occupations in groups. Click on the bar to expand the group.
  • Employment opportunity: The scatterplot shows the average salary and level of opportunity (a figure that combines number of posted openings and number of jobseekers) for each middle-skill occupation. The opportunity score ranges from 1 to 100; a high score means there are few jobseekers relative to the number of job openings, and therefore that positions are less competitive, while a lower score means that jobseekers face greater competition for open positions.

These charts are best viewed in combination.

Exploring a given occupation

To explore prospects across the UK for a given occupation, select an occupation group from the bar chart. This brings up data for individual roles within that group. Click on an individual occupation and a data window appears. There is also an option to compare data for this occupation across locations.

In the occupation table, you can browse job concentration and job prospects (openings, salary, employment opportunity) across locations. Job concentration can also be visualised in a map.

Occupations included

The tool shows information on mid-skilled jobs, as defined by the Office for National Statistics’ standard occupational classification codes. These include roles from the following major occupation groups:

  • professional
  • associate professional and technical
  • administrative and secretarial
  • skilled trades
  • caring
  • leisure and other service
  • sales and customer service occupations

All data are from 2015, the most recent year for which both job-posting and educational data are available.


Though this tool provides the most comprehensive and detailed free-to-use dashboard of supply and demand in the UK, the following limitations should be taken into account when interpreting the data.

Senior Management and Elementary roles

Occupations not open to recent HR graduates or FE finishers are not considered. Similarly, occupations that do not require any formal qualifications or training are also excluded from this tool, since the number of job-seekers cannot be meaningfully quantified.

Matching supply and demand

Some occupations do not have specific qualifications or subject-specific requirements (such as sales, marketing and related associate professionals). As a result of this, and despite the fact that many people with a broad range of qualifications can apply for these occupations, they frequently appear ‘undersupplied’ in the tool, i.e. when the “job opportunity” is low. Occupations with very small sample sizes (either of finishers or job postings) are excluded from the dataset.

Internal and international migration

Some occupations do not rely solely on FE finishers or HE graduates from their immediate location. Many people travel to find work, often moving across the country. Other occupations, such as those on the Migration Advisory Committee’s shortage occupation list, may rely more heavily on jobseekers arriving from outside the UK.

Online and offline postings

Burning Glass Technologies (BGT) acknowledge that not all jobs are posted online, although a comparison of the Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings (ASHE) employment data and BGT postings data for UK in 2014 showed a 94 per cent correlation between ASHE and BGT occupational distributions. The BGT posting data slightly overestimate the proportion of professional and associate professional occupations, while slightly underestimating the proportion of elementary occupations.