As per the Tech Nation Visa Report 2020, “Demand for global tech talent relocating to the UK has rocketed in 2020”. Despite 2020 being an unprecedented year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, UK tech continued to be a global talent magnet, open for business, attracting investment from all over the world.
A growth platform for tech companies and leaders, Tech Nation “fuels the growth of game-changing founders, leaders and scaling companies so they can positively transform societies and economies”.
Tech Nation’s present mission is that of unlocking the growth potential of 1,000 scaling tech leadership teams across the UK by the year 2022.
The findings reached in the Tech Nation Visa 2020 report are based on data collected internally between 2018 to 2020. In addition to Adzuna data being analysed, SEMrush data was also taken into consideration. Using Google data, SEMrush analyses online browsing trends on a global scale.
As the race for global talent heats up, countries all over the world have been making their pitch in an attempt at attracting the best and the brightest for growing their individual tech industries, leading to the creation of jobs.
The UK Global Talent Visa is the first visa route of its kind. Created in 2014, the Tier 1 Exceptional Talent visa can be regarded to be the predecessor of the Global Talent Visa.
Here, Tech Nation comes into the picture as the official endorsing body – the Designated Competent Body [DCB] – for the Digital Technology route of the Global Talent Visa.
Enabling tech talent to work in the digital technology sector in the UK, the Global Talent visa has received more than 1,975 applications, endorsing 920 visas from 90+ countries worldwide.
Demand for the visa has seen a growth of 45% and 48% in the previous two years.
In 2020, around 52% of those receiving an endorsement for the visa are employees at the leading tech firms in the UK. On the other hand, 28% of those endorsed are tech founders.
The Global Talent visa of the UK has enabled 421 founders to set-up business in the UK in 2020. In 2019, the number was 400. Another factor that works in favour of the visa is that of there being no requirement for sponsorship.
Top 5 roles or skill groups for endorsement
As per the Report, “having Machine learning and AI, Software development and Research skills are strong predictors of Visa endorsement”.
The Top 5 skills for endorsement are –
|AI & Machine Learning|
|Academic or Researcher|
As per the finding of the Report, the Top 3 countries which have been the source countries for exceptional talent coming into the UK through the Tech Nation Global Talent visa are – India, the US, and Nigeria.
In terms of the importance in the UK labour market in 2020, Digital Technology has been found to be second only to Healthcare.
The Tech Nation Visa – that is, the Global Talent Visa in digital technology – allows the brightest and the best from all over the world to come to the UK and work in the UK’s digital technology sector.
In 2020, more than 50% of the applications have been from Asia.
Top 10 countries in terms of applications by country 
Nationals of the following countries sent in the most number of applications for the Tech Nation visa in 2020 –
Now, among the most highly valued skills for the Tech Nation visa are – Software engineer, Data Scientist, UX Designer, Hardware engineer, Product management, Solutions Architect, Research etc.
Successful applicants from India have been those that have mostly worked in Fintech, Apps & Software Development, Cloud Computing, AI & Machine Learning.
The Report outlines the nature of demand globally for the UK as a tech destination.
The Tech Nation visa of the UK puts out a strong signal to the world that the UK is indeed open to exceptional talent and remains one of the ideal places for individuals for fulfilling their tech ambitions.
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