Career Zoo returns in February with major focus on tech and upskilling
Stephen McIntyre, director of Online Sales and Operations at Twitter International, speaking at the Tech Box in September

Career Zoo returns in February with major focus on tech and upskilling

28 Nov 2012

Career Zoo, Ireland’s only career event targeted at professionals and graduates, returns to the Convention Centre Dublin on Saturday, 9 February next year, with a major focus on upskilling into the tech sector and on jobs in Irish software companies.

Career Zoo has become a well-established fixture on the jobs and recruitment calendar, and February will mark the fifth such event. Last September’s Career Zoo in the Convention Centre Dublin attracted some 8,500 visitors.

IT’s Happening Here, the Enterprise Ireland-supported campaign which promotes career opportunities in Irish-owned software companies, was launched at Career Zoo in September, and returns as a key sponsor in February. An umbrella brand for the industry, comprising some 600 companies, it aims to attract software professionals at Career Zoo, both from Ireland and from overseas.

“Irish software companies are looking for creative software professionals to develop and write the code for their products of the future, ensuring they stay ahead of the curve in delivering innovative software solutions across the globe,” says Anne Lanigan, Software Division, Enterprise Ireland. “At Career Zoo they are looking again to attract software professionals looking for a real challenge, and the opportunity to build an exciting career around the latest technologies.”

Dublin-based start-up Swrve recently announced a US$6.25m investment and 100 new jobs. As part of the IT’s Happening Here campaign, the company is looking for product engineers, server engineers, QA engineers and game integration specialists to join its Dublin-based development team.

Other Irish software employers involved in the campaign include technology outsourcing player and cloud support services company I.T. Alliance Group and ICT company Ergo, who have both made recent jobs announcements.

Focus on upskilling

Regular sponsor DIT also returns in February and will be promoting conversion programmes that enable graduates of one discipline to acquire a qualification in a different discipline at post-graduate diploma and masters level.

Along with its partners in 10 other institutes of technology nationwide, DIT hopes to offer free places on a one-year higher diploma in computing, starting in March 2013, subject to funding. Students can specialise in areas like software development and computer games and will be offered a six-month work placement with a major industry player, such as Dell, IBM or Microsoft.

“New job announcements are made in the ICT sector on a monthly basis,” says Frank Costello, head of Admissions & Enrolment Planning at DIT. “However, it is well recognised that there are insufficient qualified individuals in Ireland to fill the many vacancies in areas such as software development, IT infrastructure, IT security, computer games and many others.

“These vacancies exist at a time when there is a large number of graduates in other disciplines whose background demonstrates a suitability to a career in ICT, and who would require a short additional period of education to transition into the ICT sector.”

Interested candidates will be able to find out more and sign up for the course at Career Zoo. Other conversion courses offered by DIT will be in the sciences, engineering, business and arts.

“We’re delighted that IT’s Happening Here and DIT are returning as sponsors for February’s event,” says director at Career Zoo Brian Ó hOisín. “It reaffirms Career Zoo as an important hiring tool for companies in Ireland looking for top tech talent and a platform for colleges to showcase their upskilling opportunities to a professional audience.

Ó hOisín adds that the event will also feature leading employers from sectors such as pharma, biomedical, finance, agri-food and more.

Career Zoo added a new feature last September called ‘Tech Box’, where attendees could follow a range of tech activities, such as app factories from Microsoft and talks from Amazon, AOL and Swrve.

“There were also career workshops from industry leaders, such as Stephen McIntyre, director of Online Sales and Operations at Twitter International, and Ryan Shanks, head of Accenture Ireland’s Talent and Organisation Practice,” says Ó hOisín. “Again we have an exciting line-up of speakers and activities being planned for this February’s event.”

Career Zoo takes place in the Convention Centre Dublin on 9 February 2012, from 10am-6pm. Admission is free of charge and attendees may register online.

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