Undoubtedly, the past 12 months has been a turbulent period for Ireland. A new government was formed, a harsh austerity Budget was unveiled and shockwaves from the eurozone crisis affected decision making domestically and abroad.
The outlook for 2012 remains clouded and cautious. The European Commission has lowered its growth forecast for Ireland in 2012 from 1.9% to 1%, saying that the country’s growth prospects have weakened due to the poor macro-economic environment.
Our Morgan McKinley Salary Survey examines hiring and remuneration trends for 2012 across accountancy and finance, financial services, HR, IT, legal, sales & marketing and technical.
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Karen O'Flaherty, COO. Morgan McKinley talks about the 2012 Ireland Salary Survey
So what does all this mean for the Irish professional jobs market? To provide a clearer picture, we surveyed 584 senior-level managers working in financial services, IT, manufacturing and professional services across Ireland. Morgan McKinley recruits across multiple areas within these four core markets, so we have combined this data with insight from our specialist consultants to give further clarity on hiring and remuneration trends for 2012.
The financial services sector ended 2011 on a positive note, despite a mid-year slowdown due to global nervousness around credit and the US downgrade by S&P. More than half (52%) of survey respondents within this sector feel more positive about the outlook for businesses this year compared to 2011.
Information technology was Ireland’s ‘good news’ story for business and jobs growth in 2011. It is has been widely publicised that demand for talented IT professionals often outstrips supply, particularly within the field of software development.
The bio-pharmaceutical, medical device, electronic consumer goods and food industries were the main drivers of recruitment within manufacturing last year, a trend which looks set to continue into 2012. When asked about salaries for 2012, most respondents were quite positive. More than half (60%) of manufacturing companies said that salaries will remain stable, with a further 22% predicting modest salary increases of 1-5%.
There was mixed sentiment from the professional services sector, with 57% expressing a positive outlook for 2012. However, this outlook was balanced by other professional services companies that are finding it more difficult as they support the property, construction, retail or SME markets.
Our survey found that all four sectors predict talent retention, attraction and skills shortages will be the main HR challenges for 2012. Morgan McKinley will endeavour to update our clients on a quarterly basis with advice and assistance in these areas.
Currently, the Agency Workers Directive (AWD) is a hot topic due to the lack of clarity around exactly how the proposed legislation might impact businesses employing temporary staff. We are monitoring the situation closely and will keep our clients and candidates up to date as the situation progresses.
Although there is still considerable uncertainty in the market and growth predictions are sombre, all this feedback points to a growing positive mood in the Irish professional marketplace. We hope you find this salary survey informative and we welcome any feedback you may have.
Finally, I would like to thank you for your continued support and wish you all the best in your employment endeavours in 2012.
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