Project management (PM) leaders fear a Brexit skills shortage, according to a survey by the Ireland Chapter of Project Management Institute (PMI). The findings on the potential implications of Brexit for Ireland revealed 60% of those surveyed said there are not enough experienced Irish project and programme managers to fulfil the country’s PM needs.

Concern for this labour gap is mounting, as almost 70% of respondents expect Brexit to increase the complexity of their projects. Two in three (66.67%) also anticipate a rise in the next 12 months in the resources needed to complete projects. Over 50,000 are employed in PM across Ireland, in sectors such as IT, public sector, financial services, construction, pharmaceuticals and manufacturing.

The results come ahead of the Ireland Chapter of PMI’s annual national conference, with the theme Challenge in Changing Times. The largest PM conference in Ireland, the event takes place on May 4th at the Aviva Stadium. Some of the country’s top experts in project leadership will speak, including Cathriona Hallahan, the managing director of Microsoft Irelandand Féilim Harvey, partner in PwC.

Ireland Chapter of PMI President Niall Murphy said the results of the members’ poll highlights a worrying skills deficiency. “With our close economic ties to Britain, we cannot underestimate the effect that triggering Article 50 will have on Irish businesses over the coming two years. At the same time, companies here will be dealing with the implications of an increasingly evident skills shortage in the project management sector.  

“Project management will be instrumental in navigating this uncharted territory that is Brexit, from managing a company’s future trading relationships with the British market, to working with major financial institutions who are expected to relocate here. Without a sufficient supply of skilled project managers nationwide, there is a concern projects will not be effectively delivered. This shortage needs to be tackled, as it will ultimately effect the Irish economy as a whole.” 

The Ireland Chapter of PMI conference will look at strategies and implications of Brexit on May 4th. Registration is now open at projectireland.ie.

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