London’s tech firms are finding it difficult to hire as Silicon Valley behemoths expand in the city.

As Silicon Valley tech titans expand their operations in the United Kingdom’s capital, technology companies in London are finding it increasingly difficult to recruit qualified tech employees.

Companies such as Google, Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Microsoft, Palantir and Twitter have established fancy offices across London to accommodate the influx of digital professionals from the United States. Some of these companies are planning large expansions in the coming years.

CEO and founder Oscar White of venture capital-backed travel startup Beyonk told CNBC that the company’s expansion has made recruitment more difficult, citing increased salary expectations and a scarcity of technical resources as reasons for the difficulty in finding qualified candidates.

Alphabet, Google’s parent company, is now constructing a massive complex in King’s Cross, London, with adequate space for up to 7,000 Google employees and about 1,000 DeepMind personnel. Apple plans to relocate 1,400 employees to a new Apple Campus at Battersea Power Station, which will be located just a few miles away. While the construction has been halted due to coronavirus lockdowns, the project is still on schedule. Facebook and Amazon, on the other hand, have recently erected massive multi-story offices in London.

According to Facebook’s career page, the company now has 266 open opportunities in London, while Google has 172 and Apple has 103 roles available. There are 162 software developers, 143 solutions architects, and 72 technical managers on Amazon’s list of open positions in the city.

Expectations in terms of compensation

Tom Richardson, the CEO of the money management software Lumio, told CNBC that finding the appropriate individuals is “very difficult.” According to him, because they are still in the early stages and have only raised seed funding, they are unable to attract developers or excellent product managers. “Starting salaries are ridiculous.”

In order to get around the problem, Richardson is considering relocating his company or hiring more remote workers, but he acknowledges that both options come with risks. Another CEO of a London-based technology company, who requested anonymity out of worry that their company would appear to be having difficulty recruiting, told CNBC that large U.S. technology companies have attempted to abduct several of their employees in recent years. According to the report, one employee responded by saying, “When Manchester United knocks on the door, you have to answer.”


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