Main Building 288
Main Building 288
Why Glasgow?


Glasgow attracts major international companies because they are able to recruit and retain key staff from a highly-skilled workforce. Glasgow has a consistent track record of developing, attracting and retaining talent, an education system that is highly responsive in preparing the next generation of the workforce via multiple routes, and a high share of people working in higher-level occupations.  

We’re always looking for the best people anywhere in the world – that’s how the workforce generally develops these days. Scottish universities include some of the best in the world, and there’s a strong culture of innovation and entrepreneurship. We found a very good business infrastructure here, and a culture that’s viable for a growing company. The support in the business environment is comparable to Silicon Valley, which is a place we thought was unparalleled in that aspect.

– Silvian Centiu, Managing Partner at Retina 

Top businesses can capitalise on the quality and loyalty of Glasgow’s workforce. With one of the youngest populations in Scotland, finding and retaining staff is easy.  

The city has one of the most highly skilled and flexible workforces in Europe:


educated to degree level


of the population of working age (between 16 and 64). 

Glasgow regularly reports as second only to London amongst the UK’s largest cities for the share of the working age population having achieved graduate level qualifications. That strength also stands up to international comparison with Glasgow ranking in the top 15% of European regions.

1 million

working age population

within a 45-minute commute

2 million

working age population

within an hour commute

Glasgow is establishing itself as a knowledge city. The city has a strong performance in cultivating high level skills, and produces nearly 40,000 graduates from a pool of more than 185,000 students spanning 140 countries. The wider metropolitan region has the second largest student population in the UK and has more international students studying in competitive universities than almost any medium-sized city (1-3m) in the world.

Glasgow's universities produce…


Finance & Business graduates



Science & Engineering graduates



Computer Science graduates



Creative studies graduates


The primary reason we invested in Scotland is talent. In Glasgow, we can tap into talent from the universities across central Scotland including Glasgow, Strathclyde and Edinburgh, amongst others. The support that we’ve had from the government and Scottish Enterprise has also been very strong.

— Stephen Flaherty, Managing Director, J.P. Morgan

It now benefits from a very strong higher education attainment by European standards and the percentage of people employed in knowledge-intensive occupations also continues to increase with 40% of employees in the Glasgow City Region area in higher level occupations. 

The city is also ranked top in the UK for retaining its graduates once they have completed their degrees (51%) not least through a combination of a high disposable income and the UK’s most affordable major housing market.

Strathclydeuni 36669289440

The retention of this talent partly explains why Glasgow is consistently ranked in the top 100 most innovative cities in the world and why Glasgow has expanded its role in a range of innovative industries. Quantum engineering, low carbon industries, space communications, financial technology and precision medicine are some of the sectors that you will find the very best of Glasgow’s academic research talent working alongside a fast-growing community of innovative technology companies.