Aberdeen, Scotland versus Aberdeen, New Jersey – Which is happiest?

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HIJOBS, a Highlands-based online recruitment company has put together research and data to determine the happiness scale of Aberdeen, Scotland to that of the township of Aberdeen, New Jersey in the United States.

Named one of the UK’s best cities to work in due to its high income and high-skilled population Aberdeen, Scotland loses out on the wealth scale to its twin named US-based city but wins at earning job satisfaction.

“The need for job satisfaction is slowly outstripping high stress and high salary roles, putting pressure on industries such as mining and quarrying,” said Chris Snelgrove, founder of HIJOBS. “Job seekers in Aberdeen are not just considering their potential salary, but also looking for a career where their happiness levels can be sustained.”

The research looks at deciding factors such as unemployment rates, national holidays, common jobs and household income. Job satisfaction is a big indicator of overall happiness and both cities show a distinct difference in common job roles and salary levels. Aberdeen’s mining and quarrying roles, which include oil and gas, pay the highest hourly rate [of all known industries], however, these roles have declined the most in the last 10 years, giving way to the increase of retail trade of vehicle repair, where hourly pay is 55% less in comparison, and to social work, where pay is 33% less but yields higher job satisfaction. A contrast to the rise in labour intensive jobs such as truck transportation in NJ, where average hourly pay is $23.96 (£18.58) but also contributes to the most fatalities on the job.

Unemployment levels of those aged 16+ in Aberdeen, NJ were 15% lower than those in Aberdeen, Scotland. With households in Aberdeen, NJ bringing in total average income worth $84,720 (£65,661), 57% more than those in Aberdeen, Scotland. In addition, the US city has 11 national holidays per year compared with the 9 of Scotland.

According to the World Happiness Report, the UK rank a mere 5 places below the US in terms of the happiest countries in the world with the ONS reporting that 43% of people in the Scottish Highlands rated their happiness levels 10 out of 10, a statistic local employers remain thoroughly optimistic about.


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