NEW census data has revealed how most people are employed in Test Valley.

Office for National Statistics figures shows residents were most commonly working as sales and retail assistants when the census was carried out in 2021, with 2,140 employees in the sector.

This is equivalent to one in 35 working-age people – defined by the ONS as aged between 16 and 64.

Sales and retail assistants were followed by 1,545 people in other administrative occupations, and 1,440 as care workers and home carers.

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There have been warnings in recent years that certain jobs may be automated as new technology simplifies repetitive tasks in both manual and office settings.

James Reed, chairman of the jobs website, said we have reasons to be optimistic about the future job market.

He said: "Sales professionals who can build genuine relationships, healthcare providers tending to the needs of our ageing population, and educators shaping young minds – these will continue to be popular and coveted vocations."

The figures further show around 10,370 Test Valley residents were working in the broader category of managers, directors and senior officials in Test Valley – the most highly skilled job category according to the ONS.

Meanwhile, 5,765 were working in so-called 'elementary' occupations, defined as requiring the least amount of education or training.

This means 7.6 per cent of the working-age population were in very low-skilled roles.

Across England and Wales, sales and retail jobs were the most common, with around 1.1 million workers, followed by more than 800,000 people employed in the care sector.