Paul O'Malley, COO of Expleo Ireland standing in front of a purple sign with the Expleo logo partially visible in white writing.
Paul O'Malley. Image: John Ohle

94pc of Irish leaders struggle to hire IT staff, says Expleo survey

4 May 2023

More than a third of those surveyed by Expleo said candidates are receiving salary offers up to 20pc higher – or more – elsewhere.

New research by global tech company Expleo has found that the majority of Irish business leaders are concerned because they cannot get the technical staff they require, much less retain them.

These concerns are growing despite the ongoing problem of layoffs within the tech sector. While big names such as Stripe, Accenture, Meta and Google have cut jobs, some leaders maintain that they cannot meet the salary expectations of the tech staff they want to hire.

Expleo’s study of 141 business leaders based on the island of Ireland was carried out in conjunction with B2B International. It found that 83pc of respondents were struggling to meet the rising salary expectations of tech jobseekers.

More than one-third (38pc) said that candidates are receiving salary offers that are 20pc higher ­­– or more – elsewhere.

Overall, 94pc said they were struggling to find IT staff. Many are adopting automation as a way of filling tech talent gaps, with almost three quarters (74pc) believing that increased automation adoption is part of the solution to fix the current situation.

Business leaders are also outsourcing tech jobs, offering better working conditions, offering career promotion opportunities and development plans, and pushing hybrid and remote models.

In Dublin specifically, almost half (47pc) said they see work/life balance expectations as a top challenge in attracting and retaining staff.

However, many of these mitigation strategies are challenging for businesses, they say.

Lack of talent is stifling company growth

Up to 70pc of respondents said that their plans for growth are being halted by the lack of available talent, with one in five saying they were significantly impacted.

“Our research highlights that business leaders in Ireland are acutely aware of the role that technology talent plays in their growth and success,” said Paul O’Malley, COO, Expleo Ireland.

He acknowledged that many businesses are continuing to struggle despite more people entering the employment market since the layoffs.

“Businesses who are suffering from IT talent issues must take a bolder approach and tackle this issue head on. We can see that business leaders in Ireland are open to this, with almost three-quarters saying that part of the solution lies in automation, while others are outsourcing more functions,” O’Malley advised.

He referenced the statistic highlighted by the survey which found that 86pc of business leaders believe they underinvested in the skills base of their employees.

“With such an overwhelming majority of business leaders admitting that their company has under-invested in the skills base of their employees, now is the time to pave the way to a successful, sustainable future by investing in employees, their potential and their wellbeing.”

Expleo is no stranger to the hiring market, having made its own series of hiring announcements in recent months. The first was made in June 2022, while the most recent was a plan to create 70 positions at its new Galway office.

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Blathnaid O’Dea
By Blathnaid O’Dea

Blathnaid O’Dea worked as a Careers reporter until 2024, coming from a background in the Humanities. She likes people, pranking, pictures of puffins – and apparently alliteration.

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