Public sector and semi-state jobs are becoming increasingly popular among Irish professionals, a new survey has found, with the ESB, civil service and HSE climbing a ranking of potential employers.
Universum, a subsidiary of IrishJobs.ie that specialises in employer branding, said big multinational tech companies were less attractive this year, with Facebook and LinkedIn slipping down the Most Attractive Employers Index Ireland 2023.
But Google topped the list for another year for business and IT professionals, despite the company’s well-publicised job cuts this year, although the survey found it had lost ground as an “ideal employer”.
Among business professionals, semi-state and public bodies accounted for six of the top 10 most attractive employers, including Enterprise Ireland in eighth place, the Central Bank of Ireland in ninth, and An Post in fourth. The civil service was in second place, with the HSE moving from sixth to third.
The financial services and professional services sectors also performed well, with Irish Life rising 13 places and Vhi Healthcare up 11 places. Bank of Ireland was in 12th place.
Meanwhile, Facebook fell to 28th place from last year’s fourth place, while Microsoft was in 21st and Linkedin was in 13th.
Among IT professionals, semi-state and public bodies accounted for three of the top 10 employers, with the HSE in fifth, An Post in sixth and the Civil Service in eighth. TikTok, a new entrant to the list, was seventh among IT professionals.
Professional services firms were more popular, with Deloitte up 10 places to 23rd, and KPMG gaining 33 places to 35th position. Banks also showed notable moves with Bank of Ireland and JP Morgan both rising up the rankings.
For engineering professionals, the ESB was the top employer, and the Civil Service moved to fifth place. Technology companies such as Facebook, Apple and Intel all showed a decline.
“With the employment rate in Ireland close to a historic high, the competition for talent among organisations is significant,” said Steve Ward, UK and Ireland Business Director, Universum.
“Macroeconomic factors are having a clear impact on how talent views potential employers. With considerable economic uncertainty and volatility across the globe, professionals increasingly value Irish public and semi-state sector organisations that provide greater stability and resilience against these changes. Meanwhile, the significant drop in popularity of some multinationals in the technology sector is also likely a feature of this economic backdrop, exacerbated by the layoffs across the sector over the past 18 months.”
Professionals are seeking out more competitive benefits from potential employers, suggesting priorities are shifting to beyond financial compensation. But competitive base salary, work-life balance, and secure employment were still top for workers.
“Given the impact of the continued rising cost of living, it is unsurprising that a competitive salary remains the most highly desired employer attribute in our research. However, given the tight labour market, financial compensation is only the first step in attracting and retaining employees. The rise in importance of competitive benefits year-on-year shows that professionals are seeking wider and more meaningful value from employers in a talent friendly labour market,” said Sam Dooley, country director of the Stepstone Group Ireland, parent company of IrishJobs.
“With economic conditions globally remaining volatile, it is notable that job security has also risen up the agenda for many professionals – secure employment is now the third highest employer attribute, behind only competitive salary and work-life balance.”