Changing career takes a considerable amount of commitment and determination. If you feel that you want to change careers, ask yourself these 10 questions to see if a career change is right for you… What Do You Want? Self-assessment is the first step in making any big life decision. The only way to make an informed decision about a career change is to learn about yourself first. Understanding you and your work-related values, interests, personality type and aptitudes will help you know exactly what it is you want. Do You Have What It Takes? If you’re interested in pursuing a new career, you need to do your research. Look at the job market, understand what hiring managers want, what the expectations are and the skills you need. It is important to recognise what is expected before diving right in. It’s important to note that you may also be expected to work unpaid, in an interning capacity, until you gain enough experience. What Can You Offer? If you choose this new career what exactly is it that you can bring to the table? Do you have transferable skills or industry knowledge? If not, you may need to return to education before you can move into this new field. Who Do You Know Who Can Help? Even though you want a career change, the network you’ve made in your current role could help. Look at who you know and see if anyone has advice in the industry you’re interested in. LinkedIn is a great place to start. Is There Long-Term Prospects? Can you go far with this career? Changing career is a big step and you need to figure out in advance if it is worth it. Ask yourself where you see yourself in 5 years with this career and 10 years and so on. If the career path isn’t clear, you may need to reconsider. Is This A Good Time? Timing is everything. You need to take a look at where you are in your life and decide whether changing careers is feasible. It’s a huge commitment, so you need to be sure the timing is right as well as the career. Is It Affordable? Changing careers may involve taking a pay cut. You could have 10 years’ experience working, but if it’s not in the field you’re going into you can’t expect to be on the same salary. Can you afford to earn less or even nothing at all, because you may be required to do an unpaid internship? This is probably the most important question of them all but it’s important to remember that higher earnings don't necessarily mean job satisfaction. Do You Have Your Family & Friends Support? Having the support of your family and friends can be crucial in succeeding with a career change. Having that bit of encouragement can really help. Also, it’s important to listen to the people close to you. If your family and friends aren’t being supportive of your decision, you may be making the wrong one. Are You Willing To Return to Education? Qualifications aren’t everything but they are important to hiring mangers. If you don’t have transferable skills and industry experience, returning to education may be the only way to move into a new career. Are Your Expectations Realistic? Weigh up the facts. Can you really do this? Talk it through with someone you trust. Sometimes when you really want something it’s easy to get carried away in excitement. Don’t rush into it and make sure the change is possible. Transitioning to a new career is difficult, but if you are confident it’s the right decision for you and you persevere, you should have no trouble succeeding.
Broadly the global economic performance and Ireland’s position are positive for the rest of 2018. With unemployment at 6.1%, two points lower than the European average (8.6%) and trending closer to 5%, continued inward and indigenous investment along with low inflation, all signals point towards continued, sustainable improvement. Last year we suggested the real impacts of Brexit and the Trump administration may yet to be seen, and this may well still be the case. Ireland has been resilient throughout ten years of turbulence, however, so can be confident of maintaining growth. In terms of professional salaries, increases in the region of 4% have remained ahead of cost inflation and enabled the sustainability of economic (and employment) performance. Indeed the impact of new organisations (mainly financial and fintech) relocating some operations to Ireland from UK will be higher in 2018 due to the time it takes to set up financial operations. The strong sectors (ICT, pharmaceutical, financial, etc.) remain strong, with specialisms like GDPR, Blockchain (not just Bitcoin) and analytics getting the headlines in 2018. There is an on-going drive for a better regional spread for new and existing jobs. There is a salary differential in the region of 5-10% and better retention rates (and more property options), so the regions will be disproportionate beneficiaries of new job creation. 2018 Salary Guides for each discipline: Accountancy & Finance Banking & Financial Services Construction & Property Services HR Insurance IT Legal & Compliance Manufacturing & Engineering Marketing Office Support Sales Science & Pharma Supply Chain
“Ireland is now operating in the same ballpark as major science-funding countries around the world” Professor Mark Ferguson – SFI Director Thoughts on the Market Ireland has a long tradition of attracting manufacturing facilities from major life sciences companies and the life sciences sector in Ireland has continued to grow strongly in the last decade. There are now over 60,000 people employed in the industry, either directly or indirectly. This trend looks set to continue into 2018 with major expansions of many of the big pharma players across the country. The IDA reports the biopharmaceutical industry has made a capital investment of approximately €8 billion in new facilities in Ireland, predominantly in the last 10 years. This represents one of the largest investments in new biotech facilities anywhere in the world. Out of the world’s twenty-five largest independent, public biotech and pharma companies, Ireland is home to twenty-four of them. However recent figures put the number of pharmaceutical companies operating here at approximately seventy-five. While many of the large companies are major sources of employment here, new smaller start-up companies are also seeking out Ireland as a new home which is exciting in terms of R&D. The growth of the biologics and biopharma industry in Ireland reflects current global trends. According to the Irish Times, sales of biologics products look set to grow by 10% in the next eight years. Given anticipated expansion and growth of new sites here in Ireland, it is estimated that there will be almost 8,500 potential job openings arising within the biopharma industry in Ireland over the next five years. These investments promise the life sciences sector in Ireland will continue to thrive, with strong pharmaceutical hubs based in Dublin and Cork, and rapidly developing areas in Sligo, Waterford and Mayo. The future career opportunities for the scientific workforce is looking very strong for 2018 and beyond. Salaries Salaries increased in the latter half of 2017. According to the CSO website, average earnings increased in 12 of the 13 sectors in the Irish economy in 2017. The second largest increase was 4.8% in the scientific and technical sector. This trend doesn’t look to change in 2018 as it will continue to be a very candidate driven market, which will drive salaries as companies compete to keep their talent and attract more. Top Tip for 2018 Qualified persons (QPs) are in very high demand at the moment. Pharmaceutical graduates who gain postgraduate qualifications in “QP” eligible courses satisfy the EU educational requirements concerning the ‘Qualified Person’ responsible for the manufacturing of human and veterinary medicinal products. Having these qualifications makes you very employable in the life sciences industry. Looking for a science job? Check out our latest jobs here
“The office support market saw overall a 14% increase in roles available in 2017, an upward trend set to continue throughout 2018.” Thoughts on the Market Office support professionals have seen an increase of available roles in 2017, which is set to continue throughout 2018. Temporary candidates are being sought by 85% of our clients which is an increase of almost 50% in comparison to 2009. Customer service and administration sectors have seen the most growth with employers seeking industry experienced candidates specifically. By focusing on this, employers are reducing the time needed to train new employees. Executive assistant and personal assistant candidates are in high demand, particularly in the financial services and tech industries. We’ve seen a solid increase in international recruitment to fill these essential positions. Office management saw the least growth in 2017. The influence of international tech firms has seen top talent increasingly looking for companies with strong cultures and growth prospects. Office candidates are more and more choosing these factor over salaries when accepting roles. Counter-offers are becoming more commonplace so employers need to make their processes as quick, attractive and competitive as possible. Salaries We saw a particularly significant jump in salaries in 2016 and 2017 which seems to have evened out. Some of the more specialised roles like PAs and EAs can demand higher salaries with specific industry experience. Similarly, the senior end operational roles are increasing to standard management levels. Legislation for temporary workers is at the forefront so matching salaries to that of their permanent counterparts is essential. Top Tips for 2018 Be flexible with lengths of contracts – often a 6/12 week cover for a busy period can lead to permanency if you make yourself indispensable. CV prep – keep it clean, concise and well-organised. Your proficiency as an administrator will be rated by how well you communicate your prior experience and skills. Emphasise relevant industries. The area of office and administration is growing ever more competitive and industry-specific experience will win you an interview so target these roles. Looking for an office support job? Check out our latest jobs here
“2018 looks set to be the year of the customer. In previous years it was all about sales; new business, client acquisition, opportunity development etc. 2018 will change this. The focus is now on retaining those customers that took so much energy to get on in the first place.” Thoughts on the Market The competition for multilingual talent is higher than ever. As per previous years German, Dutch and the Nordic languages are the highest in demand. However, in 2017 we have seen companies avoiding competing for candidates based in Ireland by sourcing from mainland Europe and increasingly by setting up local offices to hire for senior local talent in-country. The pace of change in technology has led to a demand for more experienced candidates, where before entry-level roles required candidates merely to be fluent in a language(s). Now companies are requiring candidates to have experience, either practically or academically, in the industry or technology they are dealing with. Salaries As salaries have continued to rise companies have begun to look at more creative ways to both attract and retain staff. Our research has shown that lack of progression and management issues are the highest factors in staff churn. Companies are starting to realise that throwing money at these problems only temporarily solves the problem for employees. 2018 will see more initiatives involving employee engagement, clearly defined promotional paths and other initiatives that will seek to tackle these issues at source. In turn, salary increases will slow down. Top Tip for 2018 Go Digital! Everything that has not already gone online is going online. The hottest employers are in technology or eCommerce and they are all fighting for candidates who have digital experience. If anything this trend is set to continue so if you don’t have these skills, 2018 is definitely the time to get them. Looking for a multilingual job? Check out our latest jobs here
“Marketers must become even more commercially focused in 2018.” Thoughts on the Market Marketers must become even more commercially focused in 2018. Roles such as demand generation and growth manager are becoming more sought after as clients are demanding marketers that understand the full sales cycle from enquiry to conversion. Aligned with this, core skills in customer experience (CX) and programmatic advertising will also be in demand. As the country is close to 100% employment, the demand for communication professionals will continue to increase in 2018 as employers look to engage employees in order to retain staff. Demand is also increasing as more sectors come under the regulatory spotlight in public affairs. We foresee the low activity trend in FMCG continuing into 2018 as external factors such as Brexit kick in. On the other hand, B2B marketing skills will increase as sectors such as construction, engineering and design improve as the economy grows. Although 2017 was a relatively quiet year for senior executive marketing positions, we foresee more activity at a senior level in 2018. Salaries In general, marketing salaries remained fixed in 2017 with slight increases for skills such as SEO and customer experience. With a real sense of optimism for the year ahead, we predict salaries will increase in 2018. Particularly in the Dublin area as it remains the hub of activity for marketers as it’s the main location for many tech multinationals and corporate businesses. Top Tip for 2018 Work on your digital skills! There’s no stopping or ignoring it, more and more buyers are looking online for services. All companies will have to raise their online marketing content, which means a further increase in demand for digital skills. Looking for a marketing job? Check out our latest jobs here
“Consumers are forcing supply chains to adapt and react quicker than expected given a growing trend of localisation of marketplaces.” Thoughts on the Market The Irish supply chain and logistics marketplace changed significantly in 2017. The reality of Brexit and the EU’s position on Britain, a common market and trade between the two parties had and will have a greater effect on Irish/EU and American supply chains in the future. This will become a pressing matter in 2018 with companies looking to establish a UK base of operations which can be easily set up or moved given the political ramifications of the divorce proceedings involved in Brexit. Another supply chain issue that is becoming prevalent is the growth in consumer spending on companies that have a strong corporate social responsibility policy outlined on their products or marketing material. Consumers are becoming more conscious of global issues and how the products they buy endorse these issues through indirect funding or unlawful workforce practices. Global companies with a strong CSR agenda have improved consumer return factors and can future-proof sales. IT systems and even artificial intelligence are complex issues for supply chain improvement in Ireland. Given the huge proportion of multinationals employing supply chain professionals in Ireland, a supply chain professional needs to be open to up-skilling in IT systems or processes or using IT to manage a supply chain virtually. Employees at indigenous companies need to see beyond a job for life and up-skill themselves in the latest market trends especially in the ever-fluctuating FMCG marketplace. Salaries Salary levels have increased across the board particularly in planning and procurement roles and mid-level management roles. We foresee this trend continuing as companies look to retain staff against market pressures of a growing economy, inflation and a number of new multinationals arriving in the Irish marketplace and seeking to obtain talent. Top Tip for 2018 With the advent of improved planning, robotics and even artificial intelligence, up-skilling oneself in technology, be it systems or processes is needed by every supply chain professional that wants to get ahead in their career. Looking for a supply chain job? Check out our latest jobs here
“Irish economic growth for 2017 and 2018 is forecast to be faster than it was a year ago, after the initial, muted impact from Britain’s decision to leave the European Union.” Thoughts on the Market Throughout 2017, the Irish manufacturing sector has shown resilience despite external events such as the threat from Brexit. After the results of this vote in June 2016, Irish manufacturing and exports slowed initially. According to Davy’s review of the Irish economy in May of 2017; depreciation in the sterling and initial reduced orders had a brief effect. The Irish manufacturing sector reacted in a calm and cautious manner but continued the trend of growth. While some sectors of manufacturing, such as food production, have been more restrained in investment, the life science industry (pharmaceuticals and medical device manufacturing) continues to go from strength to strength with upgrades, new builds and new start-ups being announced. Certain external factors abroad, such as potential tax changes for US multinationals, threatened the level of foreign direct investment in Ireland but these corporations have been resilient to pressure and continue to invest massively in Ireland, including on expanded pharmaceutical, medical device, and data centre operations and the highly educated Irish workforce. Medical Devices: The medical device manufacturing sector continues to flourish in the West of Ireland. The emergence of new healthcare delivery models (smart drug delivery and connected health), technological innovation (robotics, analytics) and evolving regulatory frameworks calls for experienced and blended skillsets. There has been a significant increase in the number of contracting opportunities available to engineers with niche skills who enjoy working on a projects basis and can add value at a specific point in the product development lifecycle. There has also been a significant increase in the number of permanent opportunities on offer. Food: The food industry in Ireland, according to the Bord Bia Performance Report for 2017, is worth €11.15 billion to the Irish economy which is a substantial market share. The industry itself has been cautious with investment from the Brexit announcement as 37% of our exports are to the UK, but an increase in exports to European nations led to a two year high in August. Growth in manufacturing slowed slightly in October due to weaker new orders, but companies have expressed increased confidence about future output. Other: Automation is the aim of the game for lean and efficient manufacturing. Companies are increasingly investing in upgrading their systems and taking on more and more automation engineers. Salaries Ireland is becoming the candidate’s market once again with jobs being created at an ever-increasing rate. Due to demand for quality candidates, salaries are continuing to rise from early 2017 levels across the board. Top Tip for 2018 Like previous years savings is the aim of the game, cost reduction and efficiency improvements are key in all business models. Lean projects and qualifications add weight to your CV, don’t skimp on adding the detail of savings you have made in your career. Looking for a manufacturing and engineering job? Check out our latest jobs here