Ireland slips in attractiveness for work as housing crisis bites

Global survey shows European countries make up seven of the top 10 countries where Ireland is considered a top destination

Ireland’s housing crisis has been cited as the reason it has slipped four places in a global survey of attractive locations for professionals to work.

A new report published by the Stepstone Group, which is a global jobs platform and the parent company of IrishJobs, shows Ireland has fallen four places to 36th. The city of Dublin holds the same rank, but it is unchanged since the last survey in 2021.

The report is based on survey data from more than 150,000 workforce respondents from 188 countries, including 1,746 respondents in Ireland, and is the fourth instalment in a series.

Sam Dooley, country director of the Stepstone Group Ireland, said the drop in rankings “may be a sign that the infrastructure challenges that the economy faces, particularly in housing supply, are having a greater impact on the desire of talent to move to the country”.


“It is crucial that employers, Government and representative groups work together to address these challenges and make sure that Ireland has the right infrastructure and policies in place to be an attractive location for global talent into the future,” he added.

Quality of life is the top reason that professionals choose to relocate in Ireland. Quality of job opportunities and safety, stability and security complete the top three factors underlying a desire to work in the country.

Findings show it is predominantly professionals in Europe considering relocating to Ireland. European countries make up seven of the top 10 countries where Ireland is considered a top destination for work.

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These include Portugal, Hungary, Estonia, Spain, Netherlands, Italy and the UK. Pakistan, the UAE and Ghana are the countries outside Europe where Ireland is viewed as a top destination to work.

The research also reveals that workers who move to Ireland expect support from employers across a wide range of areas including housing and visas and work permits.

More than eight out of 10 (84 per cent) workers expect to receive help with housing. About the same amount look for visa and work permit assistance, while 75 per cent seek relocation support.

The results show the UK remains the top destination for professionals in Ireland looking to work abroad. Australia has risen to second place in the most attractive countries for those in Ireland seeking to work abroad, followed by the US in third position.

Only 8 per cent of workers in Ireland describe themselves as actively seeking to work abroad. This compares with an average global figure of 23 per cent.

Colin Gleeson

Colin Gleeson

Colin Gleeson is an Irish Times reporter