Thousands looking for work in tech sector converge on convention centre
THOUSANDS OF job-seekers thronged the Convention Centre Dublin at the weekend in search of new careers, as some of Ireland’s major employers went on a recruitment drive.
Career Zoo covered everything from career advice for graduates and those who were looking for a change of direction to jobs in tech, pharma and other industries.
Candidates met companies, got information on the jobs on offer and submitted CVs to those firms in which they were interested.
To stand out from the thousands of attendees, some prospective candidates employed some unusual methods.
One man seeking a job at Twitter customised a T-shirt outlining his intention to work at the firm as an account manager, and included a QR code that linked directly to his CV when scanned.
It impressed the Twitter team and its director of online sales and operations for its international business, Stephen McIntyre, so much that the picture made it into a talk he gave at the event.
“Twitter is not just a trivial product; it’s a transformational platform. I wanted to be a part of something bigger that had some sort of a world impact,” McIntyre said. “Many companies do and Twitter is one of them.
Employees still had the chance to become one of the first 50 employees at the firm, he told listeners, but it wouldn’t be that way for long.
The company is hiring for its international office on Dublin’s Harcourt Road – incidentally, the same place at which Google Ireland was previously located.
Although the international heavyweights were present – Microsoft, AOL, Amazon – plenty of Irish firms were recruiting too, including Blueface, Swrve and FeedHenry.
Enterprise Ireland is backing an initiative aimed at promoting career opportunities in Irish-owned software firms.
“This is all about Irish-owned software companies,” said Anne Lanigan, senior development adviser with Enterprise Ireland.
“They’re mostly quite small, very innovative and the kind of work they offer is really exciting. When you work in there, you’re really part of everything that happens in the company.”
About 1,500 tech jobs were available at indigenous Irish firms at the event, and former Irish soccer international Niall Quinn was there to help promote the initiative. Quinn is now heading up satellite broadband firm Qsat, which specialises in bringing high-speed broadband to parts of the country not currently served by fibre or DSL.
“We’re on the cusp of going down five or six different channels now, for example maritime broadband,” he said.
“To do that, we need skilled experts and they’re not easy to find. If we get one good one from the likes of this event, they’ll bring everyone else on in the office, and within a year or so we’ll have five or six people upskilled.
“The sector has proved its resilience in the toughest time that this nation has ever seen and this event is about reminding people of that.”
The event was generally considered a success by organiser Brian Ó hOisín, who arranged Career Zoo with Jackie Slattery and the companies recruiting.
“We’re extremely pleased. The employers are all delighted with the quality of the applicants as well as the number and the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive,” Ó hOisín said.
“It’s been a really exciting day – great energy and buzz in the room. LinkedIn is great, but it’s quite something to meet someone in person, make an impression, and that works.”
Another Career Zoo event is planned for February.