Job-pledge initiative claims more than 4,600 people hired

Urban-rural divide evident as 49% of job pledges made by firms in Dublin, says Hireland

Hireland is running a third advertising campaign, encouraging firms that cannot hire someone full-time to consider job-sharing an employee with another business. Employers can pledge a job on hireland.ie

Hireland is running a third advertising campaign, encouraging firms that cannot hire someone full-time to consider job-sharing an employee with another business. Employers can pledge a job on hireland.ie

Thu, Feb 13, 2014, 01:00

The founders of the job creation initiative Hireland have calculated that it has led to the employment of 4,620 people since it began two years ago. The national campaign was created to encourage companies to hire staff.

Employers interested in hiring someone can pledge a job on hireland.ie – 7,105 jobs have been pledged since January 2012, according to Hireland co-founder Lucy Masterson. Some 4,620 of those pledges turned into jobs, she said. “Hireland aims to reach 10,000 pledges by the end of this year,” she said.

Hireland is now running a third advertising campaign, encouraging firms that cannot hire someone full-time to consider job-sharing an employee with another business or offering mentoring services.

“Larger organisations can help smaller ones to grow by offering them support and advice,” said Ms Masterson.

The campaign started when a group of people involved in business, marketing and the media decided to come together to do something to kick- start the economy.

“When we started Hireland the country was on its knees. Fear and a sense of desperation ruled the economic landscape,” Ms Masterson said.

“We wanted to create a positive campaign that would encourage positive thinking and fight this depression. The can-do fighting attitude of Ireland was exemplified by the companies that pledged with Hireland and now in 2014 we are seeing the first genuine green shoots of positivity.”

The area of IT services and systems accounted for the most jobs pledged in the past 18 months, followed by the medical profession and medical services.

Ms Masterson said that while urban areas were experiencing growth, rural areas were much slower to recover. This is borne out by Hireland’s figures, which show 49 per cent of the job pledges were made by firms in Dublin. Cork recorded the second highest number of pledges but accounted for only 4 per cent of the jobs pledged. It was followed by Galway, Kildare, Waterford and Limerick.

Co Monaghan accounted for the smallest number of jobs pledged at five, while Offaly recorded seven and Sligo recorded nine. Some 2,102 jobs were pledged by companies operating in more than one county.

Pauline Bolger from Ringsend, who recently started work as an office assistant with Spanish Point Technologies, said Hireland had given her hope that she would work again. She had given up work to care for her mother but then found it very difficult to re-enter the workforce.

“I was out of work for one year and four months. It is really hard to keep going when there is so much negativity out there, not to mention the odds stacked against you when you are over 50,” she said.

“I am so delighted to have started the new year with a new job. Hireland is an organisation that kept my hope going, hope that there would be a job with my name on it, and that job came through this year.”

Spirit Motor Group was one of the first companies to pledge a job when Hireland began two years ago. Dealer principal Alan Moore said the motor industry was hit particularly hard by the recession. “We realised that we needed an injection of positivity and immediately recognised the importance of an initiative like Hireland,” he said.

Adding one job at a time, the company expanded and took on new franchises from Ford and Skoda. Mr Moore said the company has created more than 40 full-time jobs.

“A number of these hires were long-term unemployed and it gives us great satisfaction to help Ireland get back on its feet one job at a time,” he said.