New vacancies in the Irish job market have stalled for the second consecutive quarter, according to the latest edition of the IrishJobs.ie Jobs Index.

Job vacancies declined by 8pc year-on-year and by 5pc quarter-on-quarter, according to a new report from Jobs.ie focusing on the third quarter of 2019.

The Jobs Index also shows consistent vacancy decreases across key industries, with science, pharmaceuticals, and food vacancies decreasing by 24pc year-on-year; medical professionals and healthcare vacancies decreasing by 18pc; and banking, financial services, and insurance vacancies decreasing by 1pc.

Despite an urgent need for more residential and commercial spaces, growth in construction vacancies levelled off in Q3. There was no increase or decrease in vacancies year-on-year, and a slight 1pc decrease on the previous quarter.

“This trend is illustrative of multiple factors, with Brexit being the most obvious”

Tourism, however, remains a pillar of the economy. Job vacancies in the hotel and catering industry accounted for almost a third (31pc) of all vacancies in Q3. The actual number of vacancies increased by 7pc year-on-year.

Although the Irish economy is fundamentally strong and diversified, it is clear that certain political and economic factors, like Brexit and the performance of EU markets, are having detrimental effects on the jobs market here.

“The Irish jobs market, while built on a strong, diversified foundation, appears to be plateauing after years of post-crash growth”

Commenting on the report, Jane Lorigan of IrishJobs.ie, said; “Despite a good showing for certain industries, particularly hotel and catering, as well as education and childcare and the public sector, Q3 was the second successive quarter of job vacancy declines.

“This trend is illustrative of multiple factors, with Brexit being the most obvious. The longer uncertainty surrounds the UK’s future trading relationship with the EU and, by extension, Ireland, businesses and consumers will continue to delay important investments. This restricts the funding necessary to create new jobs, especially in the Border region.

“The Irish jobs market, while built on a strong, diversified foundation, appears to be plateauing after years of post-crash growth. This has not been helped by the cooling of trade relationships with the UK and, to some degree, the United States as it follows its hardline stance on tariffs. EU markets remain sluggish, with Germany, the biggest, on the brink of recession. To this end, we anticipate caution to be the prevailing mood among employers as we enter the new year.”

The IrishJobs.ie Jobs Index utilises a dataset comprising all corporate jobs advertised on IrishJobs.ie and Jobs.ie from 1 July 2019 to 30 September 2019.

By Stephen Larkin

Published 8 November, 2019

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