Tuesday 15 July 2014 6:33 am

One in ten Britons looking for work abroad

One in ten UK workers are seeking employment abroad, with France the preferred destination.

That's according to a new study on cross-border global labour mobility from the Indeed Hiring Lab, the research branch of job site indeed.com.

After France, Italy, the US, Canada and South Africa are the most popular destinations for those looking for employment outside the UK, based on the study that examines where people actively look for jobs.

For Britons thinking about the possibility of moving to France for a job, accounting seems to be the most popular search term, while for work employment in Italy, hotel and marketing jobs top the list. The term pharmacist tops the list for those searching in Ireland.

On the other hand, the UK has the third most desirable job market worldwide in terms of the total number of external searchers and closely trails the US in receiving the greatest diversity of international job searches.

After the US and India, Ireland, France and Spain make up the top five international searches to the UK.

As the chart below shows, four countries, three of them in the Middle East, have more than 50 per cent of jobseekers looking for work outside the country. Just below half of those based in Singapore searching for employment opportunities are looking abroad, while the figure is 47 per cent for Pakistan and 40 per cent for Hong Kong. At nine per cent, the UK is above the US on eight per cent but below Ireland, where one in three of those searching for work are looking abroad. 

The UK is highlighted as the top source for international searches for flexible jobs. According to the report, the recent extension of the right to request flexible working for all UK employees "reflects the global emphasis that workers place on this aspect of their job".

"This trend runs far deeper than a domestic desire to improve work-life balance, to encompass a change in mobility patterns including mobility for short-term assignments," finds the study.

According to the lead author of the report, Tara Sinclair, looking at jobseeker intent could be crucial to filling the employment gaps in the labour market.

“The disparity between job search and actual job movement is an intriguing insight into jobseeker intent, and shows the potential that can be tapped if governments are able to implement the visa and migration policies that will help people find, retain and move jobs more easily. The growth of the global economy depends on a more vigorous and structured approach to international workforce mobility,” she said.