Prosperity Digital Recruitment has released its annual Salary and Employment survey for the Irish Digital Sector, and the report highlights some interesting developments and trends.

As the wider economy nears full employment, Prosperity believes that the Digital Economy is already there, and has been for at least 12 months, creating increased competition for candidates, which has put such pressure on salaries. While salaries are indeed increasing, some skills are seeing increases to the extent that there are often bidding wars for candidates, such as Data, UX and Programmatic Specialists.

There is currently a high demand for Data Specialists in the Irish market; there has been a lot of developments in marketing automation and this has moved the marketing sector much further into the technology space than it has ever been; so, while typically in the past Prosperity would have been required to recruit a marketing candidate with CRM experience, clients are now more likely to recruit an Analyst who has worked on marketing platforms. SQL / Python are now requirements in many roles where customer data is being used for marketing purposes.

Also, candidates who are skilled in data visualization tools such as Tableau and Power BI are now very much in demand.

Prosperity is also seeing a shortfall in digital and technology sales. While there is always great talent coming through, there isn’t enough – there seems to be a strong preference with job seekers for marketing overselling, and while there appears to be some saturation of candidates in the marketing sector, Prosperity are seeing a strong demand from our clients for good online and technology salespeople.

Small to Medium Businesses (SMBs) are continuing to find it challenging to compete with the large multinationals for talent, as the global players are often putting an extra 15-20% on top of typical salaries to attract staff. SMBs are finding it challenging to compete with this in Dublin; however, there are opportunities and incentives for SMBs to move outside of Dublin, particularly if they are in e-commerce or digital and are exporting services. This can give them a quality of life/cost of living advantage that the multi-nationals generally cannot offer.

Prosperity reports that candidates are becoming quicker to move. According to Gary Mullan, MD of Prosperity: “It is not quite back to the churn of the Celtic Tiger days, but there is a high level of choice and opportunity in the Digital Jobs Market at the moment, and while candidates might have been likely to stay with an employer for 2 years or more, we are seeing many candidates jumping after 6 months or a year.”

Gary goes on to say: “Our experience has been that international candidates who relocate to Ireland will generally show stronger loyalty and stickability to a brand or a company. Often the company/job is their first real connection to the country and they will make friends with colleagues and start to develop a network from within that company.

Additionally, the recent boom in the digital economy has seen the prospect of working from home become far more realistic. It is still less likely to find a full work from home position, but more and more companies are open to allowing employees to work from home one or two days during the week. While remote work can indeed be an option in other sectors too, we are noticing that its increased prevalence seems centred in digital and tech.

We also see an interesting development in that senior candidates from multi-nationals who have been with them for 5-8 years are increasingly approaching us about getting back into an SMB. So, in some ways, there is a cycle, SMB – Multinational – SMB. Candidates get great experience in multi-nationals, but they often work on a flat structure, and Multinationals tend to look for candidates with an entrepreneurial spirit, and ironically this is a trait that can bring them back to SMBs when they feel they cannot progress any further within the Multinational.”

In terms of Design, Prosperity reports that User Experience and User Interface designers who have worked on SaaS products are still in high demand in the Irish market. There are also not enough Design Managers who have led small, agile teams as well as Product Designers who apart from the full design process for software products understand the cost of implementing their design when it comes to code and who can discuss their designs with front end developers.

The Dublin market has quite a lot of roles for creative designers who can create brand identities covering both offline and online presence. Design that translates well across a variety of channels is what a lot of companies are looking for and they are offering attractive compensation to candidates who can bring this quality of design.

Gary Mullan adds: “In conclusion, the market remains strong and we are finding that it is sustained by a steady influx of international talent. This is evidenced by the fact that while our clients used to be often very reluctant to hire based on a critical skills visa, they don’t hesitate to do so now.”

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