Friday, January 1, 2016

Getting a Job in Ireland 2016: It's Gonna Be a Cracker of a Year

Okay, I admit it. I'm astounded by the number of people who have visited this Blog. Currently and as I write this on New Year's Day 2016, that figure stands at just shy of 80,000.  And most visitors still want one thing: more information on how to get a job in Ireland.

Over the years I've written a number of Posts on this area. The facts, figures and suggestions that I've noted have swung wildly, matching the crazed cyclicality of the Irish economy. With the dawn of 2016, all indicators point in one direction with regard to employment: Up.  In short, those seeking employment in this country haven't had it so good in years.

An example: Recruitment consulting firm Morgan McKinley reports that there has been a 9% increase in jobs coming onto the market - brand new professional positions - in 2015 v 2014. Of even more interest, new jobs were increasing at a rate of 7 percent per month. The demand for talent to fill those positions is quickly eating into Ireland's unemployment rate which has fallen from over 15% three years ago to just over 8% today.

The McKinley report suggests that certain sectors are hotter than others: IT is continuing to rocket out of orbit - for every skilled IT professional in Ireland, each has three to four job opportunities available to them. HR and Financial professionals are also being snapped up as the Irish economy continues to surge forward. Medical personnel - doctors, nurses, medical technicians, radiologists - are in high demand. This is a complete about face for this sector compared to a few years ago when medical professionals were leaving Ireland in droves. Today, there is such a shortage that the HSE, Ireland's pre-eminent medical organization - is chasing those who fled the country during the Great Recession, hoping to attract them back with better financial incentives and working conditions.

People with Multilingual skills are also in high demand which is simply explained. Ireland is now a centre of excellence for the Global sales and support of many large Blue Chip companies. Microsoft, PayPal, Yahoo, Google and so many more have created huge offices here, manned by speakers of French, German, Polish, Hebrew, Arabic, Spanish.... you name it.... to help customers located in countries across the world. And most of these companies are expanding. Each requires talented multilingual people to support their efforts.

Other areas crying out for skilled people include:

  • Hospitality / Tourism - over the Christmas holidays, the newspapers reported that in 2015, Ireland had its best tourism season on record. More tourists visited Ireland than ever before. For this reason hotels, restaurants, and other tourism-focused businesses are actively recruiting personnel to cope with the higher demand.
  • Skilled trades - the construction sector is finally showing signs of growth. Yet many skilled builders, electricians, plumbers and similar fled from Ireland during the Great Recession. While this sector has not yet fully recovered, it seems an area of opportunity for those getting in now.
  • Engineers, Chemical Scientists, Medical Lab Scientists, and Physical Scientists - with skills in manufacturing and product development.

How to Get a Job in Ireland: Do You Qualify for a Critical Skills Employment Permit?

If you are an Irish national or a citizen of the European Union, taking advantage of Ireland's rocketing economy and employment growth is easy because you are legally entitled to work in this country. However, if you have citizenship from outside the EU, qualifying to work in Ireland can be daunting (see the many other articles in this Blog covering this area).

However, such is the skills shortage in Ireland that the Irish government is working to attract non-residents to fill these vacancies with the recent Critical Skills Permit initiative. Essentially, what this means is that an employer will be granted a permit to employ a non-national relatively easily, as long as the job on offer meets the Highly Skilled Occupation List. (see below for references)

This new system can provide non-Irish nationals with a method to fast-track employment in Ireland. The only catch: you need a job offer from an employer for a Highly Skilled Occupation (that is, a 'highly skilled job' that has a critical skills shortage) before the employee can obtain a work permit for the new non-national employee.  In other words, if you want to work here, you need a permit provided by an employer first. And you can't get the permit unless you have a job offer.

If you're outside of the country and trying to get a job here, distance can make things difficult. But as I've counselled so many times before: search the Internet for jobs in your area. Then, contact prospective employers directly by email and / or phone. Do your best to create a relationship with them. Keep your fingers crossed, stay persistent, and you too could soon be working in Ireland.

To find out a whole lot more about the Critical Skills permits, go to: for detailed information and for a full list of 'Highly Skilled Occupations' in Ireland

Good luck in 2016. It's going to be a cracker of a year. And with any luck, you too can ride this roller coaster of an economy into fruitful Irish employment.

A Survivor's Guide to Living in Ireland 2015 / 2016 Kindle Edition Now Available!
If this blog interests you, then you might want to know more about living and working in Ireland. Are you thinking of traveling to Irelandmoving to Irelandworking in Ireland? Do you want to understand what makes the Irish tick, how you can get a job here, and how to survive in this wonderful country? If so, consider purchasing the 2015 Kindle edition of A Survivor's Guide to Living in Ireland. Over 11,000 have already done so! Now over 85,000 words long, this book could make the perfect gift for those interested in this wonderful country. Simply click on any of the above links to purchase the new 2015 Kindle edition. You can also download free apps to read the Kindle version on any PC or Mac. 


  1. Lots of student interested in Ireland study visa but its too difficult now a days .I have lots of friends in Ireland its really good place for job and study thanks for this survey .

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  2. Hope it helped, Susan. Best - Tom

  3. Hello Tom, I am looking for a job in Ireland as most people who message you. I am American and I have been applying online to various jobs which seems to be of no luck so far. I have heard that other people in this situation have given up looking online and went to Ireland for a 3 month vacation during which they gave their CV to recruitment agencies. In the end this is how they got jobs. However, this was back in about 2010. Do you know if there are any legalities prohibiting this approach now in 2016?

    Thank you in advance for your time and assistance.

  4. skilled occupation list

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