Written by Dave Cullen
The latest figures from the CSO (Central Statistics Office) show a welcome decrease in the number of people currently signing on to the Live Register. In June of this year the number of dole claimants fell by 2,500 to 422,900, the standardised unemployment rate fell to 13.6%, which represents a three-year low. Youth unemployment has decreased considerably in the year to date; it now stands at 16.4%, down from 17.5% in 2012 and 19% for the same period in 2011.
This week, Managing Director of Careers Register, Lisa Holt spoke to Drivetime on RTE radio about the positive employment trends being observed in the market and how jobseekers can take advantage of current opportunities. “50% of the people on the Live Register are under 45 and the market has picked up dramatically” said Lisa. “In the month of May we placed 441 people in permanent jobs in Cpl, we placed 61 in contract and 685 in temporary jobs. Things have really, really picked up. I think people are trying harder to get jobs, I’m dealing with a guy who has been out of work for a year, and he now has two job offers. This is really exciting and it’s great for people’s self-esteem.”
Lisa went on to highlight the growth areas of the labour market and the expectations employers have of candidates. “There’s jobs in so many areas, IT is booming, Science and Engineering is booming, Finance and Banking is very strong at the moment, we’re looking for Sales & Marketing people and HR is doing very well. [Employers] are looking for young, energetic people who are going to come in, give it their all, be in on time and not be on Facebook”.
Lisa also explained how candidates in buoyant employment sectors of the market are now in a slightly better position to negotiate improved compensation packages. “The market has definitely improved up and people are able to go back and say ‘no I’d like €1k or €2k more’, they are also getting one or two offers at a time, there is never a stronger negotiation position [to be in].”
Finally, Lisa advised jobseekers and recent graduates to not be afraid of pursuing internships and minimum wage roles, which can be a source of invaluable experience. “We’ve got people coming in for summer work experience who are on the minimum wage who are gaining great experience in here. When it comes to looking for work Lisa said “I encourage people not to have their noses up in the air and be snobby about it, you’ve just got to get working, show your worth, and get some work experience on your CV no matter what it takes”.