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How far would YOU travel for a job?

Published: Friday 28th August 2015

Celebrity Big Brother stormed back onto the nation’s TV sets last night, setting Twitter alight with CBB hashtags. But this year there’s a twist – it’s not an all-British affair. Half the celebrity housemates are American and the most-watched house in Britain is set for a transatlantic battle as the producers set the two countries’ teams against each other for supremacy in the house. The participants who have travelled here from America, presumably to raise their profile and chances of further job opportunities, comprise a hip-hop producer, a porn star, an actor and three reality TV stars. Look out for at least one of them appearing in a panto near you later this year.

Looking for a job in Britain or the USA?

But the twist got us thinking here at job search app Zoek… is it better to be looking for a job in Britain or the USA at the moment?

• According to the Office for National Statistics, in 2003 the average daily UK commute was 45 minutes, today it’s 54 minutes. Londoners have the longest commute at an average of 74 minutes whereas those workers in Wales and the South West enjoy the shortest, at 44 minutes. In the US the average daily commute is 25.8 minutes. In New York it’s 39.7 minutes, in Chicago it’s 33.7 and in Oklahoma City it’s just 20.7 minutes on average. The word ‘commute’ actually comes from America when, a century ago, people living in the suburbs could pay a reduced or ‘commuted’ fare to use the trains to get to work in the cities. Today the US is home to the ‘super-commuter’ where people fly to work. In Houston, Texas, 13 per cent of the workforce have flown in from another city.

Celebrity big brother USA logo

More facts…

• As of April this year the unemployment rate in the USA as a whole was 5.4% compared to 5.6% in the UK. In Los Angeles the rate was 7.5% and in New York it was 5.5%. Correspondingly, in London and Manchester the figures were 5.6% and 7.3% respectively. At the height of the worldwide recession in 2010 the unemployment figure for the US as a whole was 9.9% and in the UK it was slightly lower at 7.9%.

• The 2011 census (the latest figures available) counted 177,185 people living in England and Wales who were born in the United States. The number of British-born people living in the USA is 678,000. To work in the US you need either a temporary or full work visa and anyone with a criminal conviction is unlikely to get one.

• According to Glassdoor, the website where employees can anonymously rate their employer, the best companies to work for in the US benefits-wise are Google, Costco, Facebook and Adobe. In Britain it’s again Google then John Lewis, Microsoft and Accenture.

• While here in Britain we have the NHS, if you get ill in the US prepare to see your savings disappear. More than half of all bankruptcies are due to medical bills, and many of those had medical insurance.

• And if you are considering looking to America for your next job, remember that in general employees have only two weeks paid holiday a year. Most companies in Britain offer four weeks and some up to six.

Wherever you’re thinking of looking for your next job, if it’s in the UK why not download the Zoek app to let your new job find you? The app for faster, smarter recruitment can be downloaded on iOS or Android. 


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