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UK still appeals to the IT community in spite of Brexit decision

Brexit remains a contentious issue in spite of the fact that the prime minister is likely to trigger Article 50 next week (if she doesn’t call a general election on Monday as several commentators are suggesting, although the Fixed Term Parliaments Act would make this difficult). Both sides of the debate are entrenched in their positions with the Remain faction, in spite of losing last year’s referendum, convinced it has to be stopped because of the risk to the economy.

Something that won’t help their cause is KPMG’s new Global Technology Innovation Report. This suggests, in a nutshell, that the IT community still wants to come and work in the UK, Brexit notwithstanding.

Brexit means going fourth

The report, an annual publication, had Britain as the seventh most desirable place for technology professionals to work last year and we have now moved to fourth place. The reasons include an increased focus on technology through hubs plus the development of services aimed at emerging markets.

Tudor Aw, head of technology sector at KPMG UK said: “The research shows the UK’s technology sector drew more investment than that of any other European country in 2016 and that London is seen as a major hub for big data, fintech and a variety of digital technologies. Despite the uncertainty presented by Brexit and other economic factors, the UK and London has not lost its shine when it comes to its technology pedigree.”

The report puts London fourth as the most likely place to host technological breakthroughs, with India just ahead and the US and China taking a much larger lead. Respondents in Europe, the Middle East and Africa actually put the UK ahead of China.

The positive response to the UK is all the more remarkable because, as the report reiterates, 70% of players in the tech market were in favour of the UK remaining in Europe.