BCG: London, New York and Paris best working cities

13 October 2014 2 min. read

London, New York and Paris are the most popular cities to move to and work in, according to a research from The Boston Consulting Group and The Network. Top reasons mentioned to work abroad are to broaden personal experience and to acquire work experience, with better financial perspectives found on number four of the top ten reasons.

Working abroad is becoming more and more common, and international working places more and more popular. The Boston Consulting Group, together with The Network – an online recruitment specialist – researched the phenomenon in the recently released ‘Decoding Global Talent’ report. For this study, they analysed the responses of 203,756 job seekers from 189 countries to 33 questions on mobility and employment preferences. Of the people that responded to the survey, the biggest number came from Germany, with more than 16,000 respondents, followed by Mexico, and the US. In 46 of the 189 countries, 1,000 or more people participated in the survey.

Breakdown of Survey Participants by Country

The research shows that almost two in three participants, 63.8%, is currently living abroad or willing to move to a foreign country to work. With the highest percentage of >90% found in among others France, Jamaica, and the Netherlands. In the UK is this percentage is less than 50%.

Top Reasons for Considering a Foreign Work Assignment

Personal and work related drivers are most mentioned reasons for moving and working abroad (65%), followed by better career opportunities, and attractive job offers. Money also matters, but finance as a driver is not found in the top 3, as improved salary prospects is ranked #4 of the top 10 reasons.

Top Cities to Work In

BCG and The Network in addition highlight that expatriates, when planning their move, do not think in terms of countries but rather in terms of cities. In the report they identified the cities ranked the most popular to move to. Both the top 10, with 6 cities listed, as well as the top 30, with 17 cities, is dominated by Europe.

The city ranked #1 is London with 16%, followed by New York with 12.2%, and Paris with 8.9%. The choice for these three cities is not surprising as these cities are global centres of business and culture. Just recently, consulting firm A.T. Kearney released a research on the world’s most global cities in which the same cities are found in the top three, albeit, New York was ranked #1 in this index and London #2.