Abstracts: February 8th, 2006

This study into changing patterns in the British workforce was commissioned by Telewest Business and carried out by the Centre for Business Research at Manchester Business School. It reveals trends and their causes affecting career decisions in Britain.In recent decades, traditional family units have been turned on their heads by people choosing to relocate away from the areas they were born to other parts of the country in the course of their careers. At the start of 2006 it seems that the attitudes that drive these decisions are changing. The overriding conclusion of the report is that far from widening, the divide in employment patterns and attitudes, or at least the perceived divide, between the North and the South is actually narrowing.

The main findings of the study were a narrowing of the divide which results from a diminishing desire of people in the North to move to other parts of the country in the course of their careers. The belief that highly qualified people have to move to the south of England to further their careers appears to be becoming a thing of the past despite uneven salaries across the country.

The report argues that the survey findings send a clear signal to organisations that the workforce is telling employers that they are increasingly less willing to relocate for work purposes, and that employer culture and attitude are more important factors for maintaining a happy and productive workforce than the likes of location.

The report is available at: http://www.telewest.co.uk/business/documents/press_campaigns/north_south_management_report.pdf