Hiring rates in the first five months of this year were on average 27% higher than the same period in 2019, despite the economic pressures being faced by businesses here.
That’s according to the latest IDA Ireland/Microsoft/LinkedIn Labour Market Pulse for the period from January to May, which also shows that the share of digital skills added by members of LinkedIn has risen 20% since 2019 and 30% since 2015.
The data also shows that nearly one in five Irish job postings on LinkedIn in April offered candidates the ability to work from home.
This meant that Ireland had the most availability of remote roles across seven markets monitored by LinkedIn.
“Our data shows that hybrid working continues to be a significant factor in attracting talent to organisations, which in turn has led to an evolution in how we collaborate, and a natural uptake in the adoption of digital skills and tools,” said Sharon McCooey, head of LinkedIn Ireland.
“This evolution in skills across the Irish workforce is not simply being driven by the pandemic, as a range of other factors like Brexit and increased regulation has seen many professionals upskill in areas like customs regulation, Know Your Customer and GDPR according to insights gleaned from LinkedIn’s 2+ million Irish membership base.”
The results come as the total number of people employed in Ireland now stands at record levels with unemployment back to pre-pandemic levels below 5%.
The IDA has also reported a strong flow of foreign direct investment (FDI) in recent months.
“Even amidst the significant uncertainty in today’s global economy, it’s highly encouraging to see the unemployment rate returning to below 5% and a strong flow of foreign direct investment into Ireland. In a challenging environment, firms throughout the country – from large multinationals to small SMEs – are adapting,” said Martin Shanahan, IDA chief executive.
The results show that while digital skills are on the rise, the share of non-digital skills added by LinkedIn members has fallen by almost 15% since 2019 and by almost 25% since 2015
The data also reveals that trends across certain sections of the labour market have been accelerated by factor such as Covid-19, Brexit and increased regulation, particularly in financial services.
For example, customs regulation was the top skill added by members in the transport and logistics sector last year.
While regulatory compliance, General Data Protection Regulation and Know Your Customer were the most added skill in financial services.
“The growth in the share of digital skills added by LinkedIn members and concurrent drop in the share of non-digital skills points to the ever-accelerating digital transformation of our economy and society and the need for today’s workforce to keep pace with this acceleration,” said James O’Connor, Microsoft Ireland Site Lead and Vice President of Microsoft International Operations.
“While people working in Software and IT services added the greatest share of digital skills in 2021, we are increasingly seeing a growth in the need for digital skills among traditionally non-technology sectors, including education, finance, media, construction and retail.”
The research also found that aside from pay, a positive work culture, followed by flexible work hours and benefits that promote positive health and wellbeing are most important to people.