Here are a few things to do when you’re looking for your first job in Dublin
Photo: Andrew Neel
Welcome to Dublin! I hope you’ve settled in well so far and that you’ve taken some time to explore the city and a bit of Ireland. Not yet? There’s still plenty of time for touristing.
It’s important that you start looking for a job relatively soon after you relocate to Dublin. It’s not to say that you won’t find something, but processes can feel much longer when you’re available to start work immediately.
I’ve heard of people starting to apply for jobs before even moving to Ireland, hoping that by the time they arrived they’d be close to the end of a process. That’s up to you!
Here are some things to do and consider when looking for a job in Dublin.
Do You Want Permanent or Contract Work?
You may immediately think you want to find a permanent job. Fair enough! There is more stability in a permanent job and, in most industries, some form of private healthcare and opportunity to start a company pension. This is ideal for most, but might be more difficult if you’re on a temporary visa.
I would encourage you to consider contract work as well. No, this doesn’t mean you have to deliver pizza. Dublin has a thriving tech scene, and is a frontrunner for many European companies considering moving their head offices out of London after Brexit. Many companies offer roles for 11 month contracts, which is a great way to get your foot in the door and some Irish experience on your CV.
Submit your CV to Recruiting Agencies
When I was working in Canada, it wasn’t very popular to use recruiting agencies to find work. But in Ireland going through an agency is a very normal way to find a job! Start with an internet search for recruiting agencies that specialise in your industry and send out a few CVs (the European name for resume). You can also look at the bigger agencies that generally cover a wide range of industries like Morgan McKinley, CPL, and Hays.
You may get called to meet with a recruiter at the agency. They will conduct a short interview to gain a sense of who you are and what your work history is. From there, they’ll keep you in mind for placements that come up. Make sure you discuss whether you’re looking for permanent or contract work, often agency recruiters focus on one or the other.
This is a great way to have someone in your corner as you’re doing your job search. If they place you in a role, the agency will get a commission, so it’s in the recruiter’s interest to get you a job! Remember though, they’re very busy and they meet lots of different candidates, so you might not always be top of mind. It’s good to try to get your name in with a couple to maximise your chances.
Update Your LinkedIn Profile
No, this isn’t an ad for LinkedIn. LinkedIn is the holy grail of recruiting these days. Many recruiters don’t use anything else when they’re sourcing for top talent! LinkedIn is where you need to be! If you don’t have a profile yet, create one before you apply for any jobs.
Using LinkedIn will help you in two ways. First, connections. Being on LinkedIn will help you to start connecting with former colleagues and build your professional network. Second, it is the most comprehensive job board in the world and is where you’re likely to find out about your next job or dream company.
Make sure your LinkedIn Profile is up to date with the following:
- Photo – a professional photo of yourself where we can see your lovely face. You don’t need to get expensive headshots taken, just a clear photo (without a drink in your hand). This will help create rapport with recruiters.
- Headline – there is an option to create a headline that will show up with your name in search results. Use this to your advantage!
- Professional Experience – completing this portion of your profile will help you to come up in recruiter searches. If they’re looking for a Marketing Professional with a PMP certification, you will show up in their results if you’ve listed those keywords in your experience.
- Education or Certifications – LinkedIn allows you to search by education level or institution, so it’s always good to highlight any schooling or training you’ve done. What makes you qualified?
Don’t have much to put on your profile yet? That’s okay, we all have to start somewhere. Use the ‘about me’ section to introduce yourself, your skills, and what type of role you’re looking for. You can also talk about any volunteer work or projects completed in school that might help outline your abilities.
Use Local Job Boards
This one is more universal, but it’s worth mentioning. Looking for roles on job boards is a great way to get insight into the local job market. If you know exactly what you’re looking for, it will do the heavy lifting for you. It’s also a great way to find out what companies are based in the city. You might consider reaching out to some of their recruiters on LinkedIn and asking to have a coffee? Ireland is all about connections, so make sure you’re putting your best foot forward.
Job boards like Glassdoor, IrishJobs, Indeed, and Jobbio are good places to start.
Consider the Tech Companies
Do you want a job where you can sit on a beanbag all day, only pausing for free food and a game of foosball? If you think yes, you’re not alone. Don’t forget about the massive Tech scene that has developed over the last 10 years in Dublin. These companies are so big that they need every type of job from Facilities to Marketing to Sales to Business Development. Definitely take a look at the job boards of all the big tech companies who have set up their European HQ in Dublin.
Many of these companies are based in a part of Dublin lovingly nicknamed Silicon Docks. Here is a little Wiki-history and a long list of tech companies in the area. Happy hunting!
Want more information about being an expat? Read my other Dublin expat guides here.
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