IDA Ireland, in partnership with Microsoft and LinkedIn, has published its latest Labour Market Pulse, which provides an overview of the latest insights and trends across the Irish jobs market to help inform decision makers across business, academia and public policy.
This Labour Market Pulse looked at activity over a three-month period, between October and December 2021, and shows ongoing growth in the number of employers offering remote and hybrid working options. The latest data available from LinkedIn revealed that almost one in five (19%) Irish job postings on the online professional network in December offered the option of remote work, up from 1 in 7 job postings last quarter. This represents a 118% year-on-year increase on the availability of flexible work roles, placing Ireland second highest for the availability of remote roles across eight markets monitored by LinkedIn.
The report also recorded a continued labour market recovery in the final quarter of last year. Hiring rates in the final two months of 2021 were on average 22% higher than the same period in 2019, despite the heightened level of restrictions that were in place last December. The latest LinkedIn Hiring Rate has shown that this momentum has continued into 2022, with hiring rates in January on average 28% higher than in the same month in 2019.
While Covid-adjusted unemployment increased in December as new restrictions were introduced in response to Covid-19, the overall picture for the year was a positive one with a strong rebound evident across the labour market, supported by Ireland’s openness to trade and investment. In recent weeks, Ireland’s enterprise agencies have reported high levels of employment growth within their portfolios of client companies in 2021.
Beneath the aggregate LinkedIn Hiring Rate and the high-level employment results reported by Ireland’s enterprise agencies, a number of sectoral trends are apparent. Sectors more exposed to Covid-19 and its associated impacts are beginning to recover and other less exposed sectors are building on the resilient growth seen in the first year of the pandemic.
LinkedIn data shows that recovery in the demand for employees is particularly evident in the Consumer Goods and Retail sectors, which saw increases of 106% and 45% respectively in their share of jobs posted on LinkedIn by companies in Ireland between 2020 and 2021. The share of job postings in the Software and IT Services industry group, which remained buoyant in 2020, increased by 22% year-on-year, while there were increases of 9% in the Finance industry and 6% in Transport and Logistics. While the Manufacturing sector’s share of total job postings declined, in volume terms it did experience a year-on-year increase.
Commenting on the Labour Market Pulse IDA Ireland CEO Martin Shanahan said, “I welcome the data which shows an increase in remote working opportunities allowing employers to tap into the talent base across all regions of Ireland. Balanced regional investment is a key pillar of IDA’s strategy so the increase in employment across all regions is important and our focus is to maintain and build on our very strong 2021 annual results.”
Also commenting on the results, James O’Connor, Vice President of Microsoft International Operations said, “the latest Labour Market Pulse insights from IDA Ireland, in partnership with Microsoft and LinkedIn, reveal an interesting trend when it comes to the long-term impact of the pandemic on how we work. The growth in the number of job postings that include the option to work remotely demonstrates the degree to which the Irish economy is continuing to digitally transform. It’s clear, an increasing number of Irish-based employers are providing greater flexibility to employees who are seeking to embrace this new era of hybrid working.”
“In a climate where employers continue to face challenges in terms of attracting and retaining talent, it’s hugely positive to see hiring rates continue to grow and sectors that were more exposed to the challenges of Covid-19 begin to recover. By way of the Labour Market Pulse, we want to give employers insights into the latest trends within the Irish jobs market, and to help policymakers to identify the in-demand skills that are required to support an inclusive recovery and the ongoing digital transformation of the economy.”
Sharon McCooey, Head of LinkedIn Ireland, added, “the strong recovery in the labour market during the final quarter was a very positive way to close out 2021, and our January data points to continued momentum into the year ahead. Globally we are at a unique inflection point with people re-evaluating how, where and why they work – and Ireland is no different as we can see from the heightened activity across our two million strong membership.”
“With recovery evident, and a growing number of opportunities across the length and breadth of the country, it is very much a jobseeker’s market. In order to continue to attract the best talent, employers need to continue to offering the same level of flexibility that people have become accustomed to over the past two years.”
Amid an ongoing pandemic that largely prevented engagement with existing and prospective investors taking place in person, IDA Ireland saw the largest net increase in foreign direct investment (FDI) employment since records began in 1972. Enterprise Ireland also reported the highest net jobs gain in a single year for its client base of exporting Irish enterprises, reflecting an external economic landscape that, while still highly volatile, was improved on conditions in 2020.
Regional development remains a key area of focus for Ireland’s enterprise policy, and this is reflected in the results of the enterprise agencies. IDA Ireland and Enterprise Ireland both recorded employment growth in each region of the country in 2021. IDA Ireland and Enterprise Ireland clients now directly employ over 292,000 people outside of Dublin.
Ireland’s economic recovery during 2021 supported enterprises of all sizes across the country. Employment in over 7,100 small businesses that received financial assistance from their Local Enterprise Offices (LEOs) stood at 35,700 in 2021 – with 85% of these jobs outside of Dublin. These businesses are also continuing to transform and expand, with 131 LEO supported companies transferring to Enterprise Ireland to continue their growth journeys and to maximise their export potential.
Source: IDA Ireland