Employment and business statistics

Economic Profile - Economic Activity

A high proportion (82.6%) of Wandsworth's workforce is economically active compared to its Inner London neighbours. According to the UK 2011 census, 71 per cent of the borough's usual residents were employed, compared with 62 per cent nationally. Just over half - 51 per cent - of employed people work in professional and associate professional and technical occupations compared to 30 per cent in England and Wales. This ranks Wandsworth seventh nationally.


In the UK 2011 Census, 70.8% of Wandsworth's usual residents aged 16 to 74 were employed, compared with 62.4% in London and 61.9% nationally.  3.8% of the population was unemployed, compared with a London average of 5.2% and national average of 4.4%. 

According to the 2011 UK Census, Wandsworth ranked 2nd highest in the country (outside the City of London) for the proportion of full-time employees (50.9%), whist having amongst the lowest proportions of part-time employees (7.8%) and retired residents (6.2%).

The number of economically active full-time students also increased significantly (47%), whilst there was an 11% reduction in the number of people looking after home or family.

Between the 2001 and 2011 Census, there was a 90% increase in the number of residents employed in professional occupations.

According to the 2011 UK Census, 16.8% of Wandsworth's usual residents aged 16 to 74 (in employment the week before the census) worked in professional, scientific and technical activities, compared to 10.9% in London and 6.6% nationally, the 4th highest proportion in the country. 10.8% worked in financial and insurance activities, compared to 7.7% in London and 4.3% nationally, the 8th highest proportion in the country.

Although relatively small in terms of numbers, 2.5% of usual residents in employment worked in real estate activities, ranking 6th nationally.  Information and communication was also a significant industry of employment, with 9.1% of those in employment compared to 6.9% in London and 4.0% in England and Wales.

The borough's residents had some of the lowest levels of employment in the country in industries including agriculture, forestry and fishing; manufacturing; water supply, sewerage, waste management and remediation activities; construction; wholesale and retail trade, repair of motor vehicles and motor cycles; transport and storage.  

Self Employment

The 2011 UK Census estimated that there are over 29,535 self-employed people in the borough, representing 12.1% of Wandsworth's usual residents - similar to London (11.7%) but higher than the national average (9.7%) - and highlighting the importance of self-employment within Wandsworth's economy.  Compared to the 2001 census which reported 18,977 self-employed people in the borough, this represents a healthy growth of 56%. Interestingly, growth in the number of self-employed females according to recent census figures, is up 71% in 2011 compared to 2001. 


Gross value added (GVA) per head in Wandsworth was reportedly very high, according to a recent Place Profile from the Local Futures Group, with the area ranking in the top 20% of districts nationally. GVA per head in Wandsworth is £57,438, compared with £70,690 in London Central and £46,047 nationally.  Furthermore, between 2010 and 2011, the total number of employees in Wandsworth changed by 3.57%. The Local Futures Group have attributed this to a relatively strong level of economic growth by national standards, and placed Wandsworth in the top 40% of districts nationally in their reporting.