New initiative to attract up to 3,000 techies to Ireland

Government launches €1.9m initiative with tech industry to attract top tech talent to Ireland

 Martin Shanahan CEO IDA Ireland said the high quality of life available in Ireland, coupled with a thriving ICT sector attracts talent from around the world.  Photograph: Alan Betson / The Irish Times

Martin Shanahan CEO IDA Ireland said the high quality of life available in Ireland, coupled with a thriving ICT sector attracts talent from around the world. Photograph: Alan Betson / The Irish Times

 

Tech/Life Ireland, a new national initiative to brand Ireland as a top destination to pursue a career in technology was launched on Monday.

The initiative, funded by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation and will be delivered in partnership with Enterprise Ireland, IDA Ireland and the tech industry to help attract up to 3,000 top tech professionals to Ireland each year.

Tech/Life Ireland is a focused international marketing initiative with a dedicated website, www.techlifeireland.com, to attract talented and experienced tech experts to Ireland and to promote top tech career opportunities here.

The initiative uses digital and social media to showcase the unrivalled lifestyle, tech environment and job opportunities available in Ireland. Initial target markets include countries in Central and Southern Europe.

These have been identified based on detailed analysis of talent movement, local search activity and consultation with recruitment professionals from industry.

Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Mary Mitchell O’Connor said the Tech/Life Ireland campaign is focused on attracting top-end professionals to work and live in Ireland.

“If we are to continue to win overseas investment in ICT-related jobs, and to grow the strong base of Irish-owned companies in ICT and related areas, we need to ensure that we have a sufficient supply of talent to meet the needs of enterprises. The growth we are seeing in ICT employment requires us to supplement the supply of our own excellent graduates with overseas talent.

Ms Mitchell O’Connor said it will not lessen the opportunities for Irish graduates, “but will add to the overall diversity, knowledge base and experience in the ICT workforce.”

Karl Flannery chief executive of Storm Technology and Chair of the Tech/Life Ireland delivery group said industry and government recognise the need to attract top tech talent to work in Ireland.

“We have engaged extensively together to understand the needs of the industry in the coming years and to develop this initiative. We are delighted to launch it today. I would encourage companies to register with the initiative and keep Ireland’s tech sector thriving through the attraction of the world’s best talent.”

The Tech/Life Ireland brand was developed based on extensive interviews with international tech talent to understand their motivations for relocation – key themes of Job Challenge, World-Class Peer Group, Career Scope, and Diverse, Positive Workplaces were emphasized throughout.

The techlifeireland.com website and digital platforms like Twitter and Linkedin will provide information about the tech environment and careers in Ireland, as well as practical advice about moving to Ireland and its lifestyle benefits.

Key features of the website include:

• A set of case studies of foreign workers in Ireland’s tech sector and their positive experiences in the country.

• Regular updates from Ireland’s top tech influencers on developments in the tech community.

• Valuable quarterly reports for companies based on industry research.

• A live tailored feed of current tech job opportunities in Ireland.

• Profiles of leading tech companies.

Ireland employs over 80,000 people in ICT companies and employment grew strongly over the period 2009 to 2015.

In 2013, the Expert Group on Future Skills Needs identified significant demand for ICT skills in Ireland.

This demand for ICT talent relates not only to the software sector, but also to other sectors such as financial services, business services, retail and high-end manufacturing.

Recent jobs figures suggest that ICT employment is growing faster than previously forecast.

Martin Shanahan, chief executive of IDA Ireland, said Ireland has become a global technology hub attracting the strategic business activities of ICT companies.

“This has earned Ireland the reputation for being the heart of the ICT industry in Europe. The high quality of life available in Ireland, coupled with a thriving ICT sector attracts talent from around the world. This has been a key factor in the success of multinational companies here. IDA Ireland sees this trend continuing as more and more technology companies choose Ireland as a gateway to service the global market.”

ICT Ireland and the ISA, the Ibec groups that represent the digital technology sector, said the initiative will play a major role in addressing the skills demand in the tech sector while strengthening Ireland’s position as a thriving tech hub. ICT Ireland and ISA Director Paul Sweetman said: “Since 2008, over 40 per cent of Silicon Valley tech companies have had at least one founder from outside the US. This is a crucial statistic. It points to the importance of diversity in creating an innovative world-class tech hub. Ireland is home to technology businesses from across the globe and is a hotbed of indigenous digital technology companies. It stands to reason that this global footprint of companies be matched by a global workforce.”