Waterford firm Eishtec is seeking to fill 100 more positions

Company founded by former TalkTalk managers will grow to 750 staff

“There’s lads after coming through that door who had no computer skills and now they’re top sales people.”

Mark Walsh from Kilmeaden has been working for Eishtech in Waterford city for the last 20 months and was yesterday encouraging job-seekers to follow a similar path as the fast-expanding contact centre company held its own jobs fair to recruit 100 new staff.

Eishtech was founded less than two years ago, with staff numbers in single figures, but by the end of this year will have 500 people on its payroll at its Waterford base and another 250 working in Wexford.

"I was in construction beforehand and nothing was happening so I decided it was time for a change," said Mr Walsh. "There was no point waiting for a construction job to turn up. There was only 20 people there when I came in the door. [Co-founder] Heather Reynolds interviewed me and said they'd take a chance."


Ms Reynolds set up Eishtech with fellow former TalkTalk local management Colm Tracey and Brian Barry and their success has seen them gaining more business from UK telecommunications giant Orange, which merged with T-Mobile to form Everything Everywhere (EE).

“Orange realised the potential of the lads and threw the contracts at them,” Mr Walsh added. “Before they knew it, they had to expand the call centre at Cleaboy [business park].” Ideal candidates for Eishtech positions are those with “plenty of chat,” he said.

Ms Reynolds said they decided to hold the jobs fair — which continues today in the Theatre Royal in Waterford — to talk to potential applicants about their industry and to “create our own talent pool” in the area.

“We were delighted to see people queueing at the door at 9am, in the freezing cold,” she said.

All of the EE clients who ring the contact centre are based in the UK so language proficiency isn’t a “must” for job applicants at Eishtech, and neither is previous call centre experience or specific qualifications.

One would-be employee, Brian Walsh from Waterford, said he was looking for a change of direction having worked for a printing company for 29 years. “I had to be let go due to the economic downturn. I’m just trying to plan for the future.”