SOUTHAMPTON is experiencing a jobs boom, with the number of advertised vacancies up by more than eight per cent on last year, a survey suggests.

The city had the fifth biggest rise in job ads of any in the UK, substantially ahead of London.

Job-changers could also secure a pay rise, with average salaries rising by 2.3 per cent year-on-year.

The research comes from the online jobs board CV-Library, which found the city had 8.3 per cent more jobs advertised in 2019 than in 2018. But the report also found that applications rose by 8.7 per cent, suggesting the competition for jobs could still be tough.

Ahead of Southampton were Glasgow, with job ads up by 25.7 per cent, Edinburgh (20.5 per cent), Portsmouth (11 per cent) and Bristol (10 per cent).

Southampton found itself ahead of Cardiff, Brighton, Nottingham, London and Liverpool. The rate of increase in the capital was 4.8 per cent.

Lee Biggins, chief executive and founder of CV-Library, said: “Despite severe political and economic uncertainty over the last year, it’s positive to see that the UK jobs market has continued to grow.

“We’ve noticed that this is an ongoing trend, which should instil confidence in professionals in the South East who may have put off searching for a new job in the run up to the election; especially as January is consistently one of the most popular times for companies to hire.”

He added: “There’s no doubt that now is the best time to look for a new job. Not only are there more roles available, but pay is also increasing, as businesses compete for the best candidates.”

CV-Library previously reported that the uncertainty about December’s general election had led to a 12 per cent month-on-month fall in job ads in November.

The new data is the latest in a series of upbeat analysis of Southampton’s economy.

Earlier this week, a report for digital firm Atos said the city was one of the UK’s top areas for its potential to support entrepreneurs.

Last October, research found Southampton’s economy performed better than that of any other city on the south coast. The UK Powerhouse report, by Irwin Mitchell and the Centre for Economic and Business Research, found its economy grew 1.6 per cent year-on-year.

In September, the real estate and investment giant CBRE said the city was “one of the standout performers in the south with its strong technology, real estate, education and marine business sectors”.

And in November, the god Growth for Cities report said Southampton was the third best city in the UK for “economic wellbeing” – combining quality of life with economic growth.