I attended a very interesting evening hosted by Morgan McKinley and London Irish Business Society entitled “Life after London” at the end of September in the heart of London.
There was an interesting array of attendees to listen to the various speakers – Sandra Dawson who Heads up AIB’s Talent Acquisition team (formerly of UBS, Zurich), Fiona Mullan (International HR, Facebook), Sam Hendry (Director, Morgan McKinley) and Justin McKenna (Head of Experienced Talent Acquisition & Global Mobility at Deloitte).
Attendees were asked at the start of the evening where they ultimately saw themselves going next considering they were there to talk about life “after” London. Most attendees were considering an array of international locations and about a third were looking at Ireland for various reasons. The community hailed from banking, legal, advertising, hospitality, construction – I was amazed to see such an array of ages and levels of experience.
Sandra Dawson has recently returned from Zurich and sees a difference in Ireland and perhaps for the best, she sees a banking sector that is once more on the rise and AIB continue its’ strategic path ahead in continuing to hold its’ own as one of Ireland’s pillar banks with good people at the heart of that.
Sam from Morgan McKinley was able to relay his experience of international travel, from Edinburgh to Singapore and finally settling with his family in Dublin. A key component for Sam and others is to take into consideration where you are in your life – are you young free and single, do you need to consider schools for young children, are you debt free etc… cities and what they offer depend on some of those considerations.
Justin from Deloitte talked about his experience of taking a family to the Caribbean for work and what an amazing and colourful once in a life time opportunity that proved to be, but now happy to be back in Dublin and capable of relaying to international candidates personally what a move to Dublin from abroad feels like.
A common theme from the evening was the concern that individuals felt in terms of choice. For every 10 jobs available at a certain level at any given time in London there would be 2 or 3 max available in Dublin. “What if I don’t like my job in Dublin?!” “How easy is it for me to move?” For that very reason it lies with employers to ensure that employees stay longer term in a happier environment, retention rates are lowering and we need to ensure that we keep the best talent here in Ireland.
Despite Brexit, London is still booming and biggest concern was that Dublin is considered a small pond compared to some of the international locations but as Fiona Mullan muted “you can always leave Ireland again if you don’t like the return home experience”. Which sounds like good advice coming from a Facebook employee, whose company has made the world feel like a much smaller and less intimidating place.
The emotional bond that an Irish person feels when abroad is a huge draw home and despite some of the topics that arose around house prices, rent and traffic, all agreed that they would ultimately like to end up in Ireland as a final career move.
Thank you to all of those in attendance and especially to LIBs and the Speakers representing, AIB, Deloitte and Facebook