November Employment Monitor | Talent Crunch Intensifies

Morgan McKinley 09.12.2018

Tuesday, 20th November 2018: The Morgan McKinley Employment Monitor registered a decrease of 8.5% in the number of new professional job opportunities available in November compared to the previous month. Overall, the availability of professional jobs increased by 7% in November 2018 compared to the same month a year ago. This is in line with seasonal trends in a generally buoyant professional employment market.

There was also a decrease of 27% in the number of professionals seeking new roles in November compared to the previous month. Overall, the monitor recorded a decrease of 25% in the number of professionals actively seeking new job opportunities in November 2018, compared to November 2017.

Morgan McKinley Ireland, Global FDI Director, Trayc Keevans commented:

“Overall 2018 has been an exceptional year for jobs growth, with a steady flow of professional opportunities across the country and across the year to date. There were a number of significant job announcements in November and, much like previous months, the bulk of these announcements were focused in areas outside of the main city locations. Encouragingly, there were also a number of announcements from existing FDI companies looking to expand  their investments here.

“The pace and level of growth is however creating challenges in a global market that is extremely tight.  While we are still attracting a lot of European talent into Ireland, we are now facing more competition than before from other European employers who are actively looking to secure European native talent based here back to their countries of origin. Furthermore, employers are continuing to find it difficult to navigate the still lengthy processing times for employment permits and waiting times to secure Residence Permits. There needs to be continued focus on the government to reduce these delays. Similarly employers here need to be open to considering talent beyond Europe as well as offering both financial and relocation support in order to effectively attract talent here.

“Project change and transformation was one of the busiest areas of hiring over the last month. This is due to a number of factors including regulatory change and readiness for same, required process improvements as companies are entering new or expanding markets, system upgrades and digitization projects. The positions most in demand for November included Change Managers, Project Managers, Programme Managers, Business Analysts, Client On-boarding Specialists, Digital Transformation Managers and Finance Transformational Experts.

“In the technology sector there was continued demand for security engineers and for Senior UX Designers, specifically User Experience professionals and Dedicated User Interface Designers. The candidate flow for professionals in this area is currently very tight both here and across Europe and looking ahead we expect this to continue into 2019. While in the development and data space there is still a strong demand for Java and .Net and Full Stack developers. Data scientists, Data Engineers, ML (Machine Learning) AI (Artificial Intelligence), C# Engineers and Azure DevOps were also in high demand. More and more value is being put on company culture so we have begun to see a continuing shift away from contract to permanent hiring and that is down to companies looking to establish and imbed their company culture in new teams, which has proven more difficult to do with transient contract staff.

“In Financial Services the biggest talent demand areas were in compliance, funds and insurance. We have seen a notable up-lift in demand for commercial account handlers and claims professionals and this is due to a growth in the market and surge in demand for qualified insurance professionals. The strongest demand for funds professionals continues to be in the areas of real estate and private equity particularly outside of Dublin. We are  seeing ongoing numbers of Financial Services professionals returning home from London, Australia and in some more recent cases Canada.”

“As one might expect, as the clock ticks down on Brexit, the biggest growth area in both the legal and supply chain sectors is in the area of trade compliance and customs and duty professionals. There is lot of demand for talent both in terms of global and EMEA trade compliance and we are expecting this to grow into 2019. Furthermore, asset management and insurance companies setting up new legal entities or subsidiary teams in Ireland are hiring heads of legal and compliance professionals as key hires for that initial set up. 

“Brexit is also biting in the area of engineering and manufacturing with the biggest surge in demand for project engineers’ right across the country in both a contract and permanent capacity. Skill-sets in strong demand included aseptic pharmaceuticals experience, lean manufacturing processes, and continual process improvement skills. There is a considerable level of activity in the area of contract manufacturing and with the level of uncertainty from Brexit, we are anticipating stock-piling of drugs in anticipation of potential shortages.

As our unemployment rate continues to drop to its’ lowest levels in more than ten years at 5.3%, the war for skills is very real and requires a concerted effort on the part of government to ensure efficiencies that allow ease of access to skills globally for all, in addition to employers adopting broader and more global focused talent attraction strategies supported by a relocation policy that is fit for purpose in attracting key skills and talent to their organizations. "

For media queries please contact:
Sarah Lawlor, MKC Communications, 01 703 8608 

About the Morgan McKinley Irish Employment Monitor

The Morgan McKinley Irish Employment Monitor (previously known as the Premier Group Irish Employment Monitor) measures the pulse of the Irish professional jobs market by tracking the number of new job vacancies and new candidates within the Republic of Ireland each month. See for details. 

Statistical methodology

Monthly new jobs and new candidates:

Monthly new jobs and new candidate figures are based on Morgan McKinley’s own monthly records of new permanent job vacancies and new candidates registering with the firm for permanent employment. Statistics for the full market are derived using Morgan McKinley’s own market share.

Job classification:

Job vacancies are professional level roles within the following sectors and functions: Banking & Financial Services, Commerce & Industry Finance, Insurance, Public Practice & Tax, legal, HR, IT, Life Sciences, Engineering, Process & Manufacturing, Professional Services, Sales & Marketing, Customer Service, Secretarial & Office Support. 


The data is based on new job vacancies and new candidates registered with Morgan McKinley’s network of Irish offices in Cork, Dublin, Galway, Limerick and Waterford.

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