London workers the happiest in the UK


As salaries steady and recruitment set to increase, says Office Angels

Londoners are the happiest office workers in the country, according to Office Angels. Over half (51.7%) of workers in London claimed to be happy in a recent nationwide survey, nearly 10% higher than those who said they are happy nationally.

Across the country, 43.6% of workers claimed to be happy. This is a much more positive picture than this time last year, when only a third (36.5%) described themselves as happy, while a quarter (24.2%) were distinctly unhappy.

Steven Kirkpatrick, Managing Director at Office Angels said: “At the beginning of quarter three – against a back drop of a worsening economic uncertainty – the Olympics was set to create disruption to the working day while we were not seeing a spike in recruitment as was expected. At the same time rain pelted the capital and the summer seemed unlikely to arrive.

“It is therefore refreshing to see that Londoners are on a high and feeling more positive about their working lives.”

Salaries hold firm

A sense of security in their jobs could be encouraging Londoners to be more optimistic. Despite the economic turbulence, salaries have held firm during the last quarter, showing positive change across most roles. Office Angels’ recent Quarterly Salary Watch found:

  • Average salary for customer services professionals in London increased by 2.18% during the quarter, now £23, 488. This fits in with the national picture, but the average salary in September is 5% less than September 2011.
  • Average salary for office managers in London increased by 1.74% during the quarter and is now £33,380, which is over 5% higher than average salary in September 2011.
  • Average salary for secretaries decreased during the quarter by -0.13% to £26,773. In all other regions across the UK salary for secretaries showed positive increase. However, London average is 3% higher than September 2011.

Steven Kirkpatrick said: “While the changes in salaries are not extreme, there is a lot to be positive about here. Solid salaries suggest market stability, which is good news for London office workers. Even where average salary for secretarial roles has declined over the last quarter, looking more broadly across the whole year we can see a positive change on last year.”

A healthy recruitment landscape

While salaries are steady, the prospects for job hunters during the next quarter are on the up.

Andrew Morris, Senior Branch Manager at Office Angels, Oxford Circus, London said: “The last three months have been a challenge in central London due to the Diamond Jubilee, Olympics and Paralympics. Many clients took advantage of the unique summer to enjoy the events or to take annual leave resulting in a decline of permanent vacancies.

“We have seen opportunities for job hunters starting later on in the year with many businesses forward planning.

“Following the end of the summer events, recruitment has picked up significantly and the months ahead are shaping up to offer a variety of opportunities for job hunters”.

Steven Kirkpatrick added: “While our data on happiness shows Londoners are already feeling more buoyant, encouraging news around salaries and job opportunities should help sustain this feeling into the next quarter so we end 2012 on a high”.

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