My life has been pretty miserable in the last few months and I couldn’t get back to you guys for all the questions you have asked me about job market in Ireland via blog comments or Facebook messages. I apologize.
The reason it has taken me so long to write this blog is that I wanted to personally know and experience the scenario you are put in once you have graduated. Now that I have had these experiences, I will be discussing the post education job market in Ireland, the blog you all have been waiting for.
DISCLAIMER: Everything I am discussing on here about current jobs in Ireland is purely based off my personal experience and may not be the same case for everyone. Please do not make out-of-the-box conclusions at the end of reading this blog post about job scenario in Ireland for international students after they complete higher education.
Jobs in Ireland for International Students
Before I actually start discussing the job scenario, I’d like to emphasize on how the job scenario works in Ireland for graduates (graduates meaning people who are freshly out of school).
For example, if you are on a one year course in Ireland and your course starts in the Fall of 2015 ( September or October), the deadlines for most companies would be Oct-Dec of 2015 for a job that starts the following year (Sept 2016).
In short, most companies start the hiring process about one year before the job actually begins, so by the time you graduate, you immediately have a job to join.
A normal job application process begins with sending either a Resume or submitting an online application followed by a series of (absolutely ridiculous) online assessments.
You will then be asked to attend a series of interviews before you finally get a job offer.
So be prepared to spend hours on a single application and tailor your resume/cover letter for each company and job position.
My HARROWING Job Search Story in Ireland
Just like the above process, I applied to a very big and successful company (whose name I do not wish to disclose) when I arrived in Dublin last year (September 2013) while attending a career fair at my university.
I submitted my application form (took me two days to complete) in December. Two months later (February), I got a call for the first HR interview that was held on-campus.
I did well and they called me to the second round, two months later (April), at a star hotel which included a group discussion, followed by a panel of three interviewers.
That went great for me, and they called me for a final round (again two months later, June) which was at their plant in the UK.
Imagine my happiness! They sponsored my UK visa, covered the flight charges, and sent a shiny Audi with a man waiting at the airport with my name board.
How good it felt! I arrived at the plant and the gentleman showed me around, told me how things work, advised me on how I should find an accommodation near-by, and even told me the department I would work in, people I would work with, and bought me lunch.
In short, he did everything, except confirmed my offer. The other manager was not available and told me he would send me the contract details in a day or two. This was my first ever application and interview, I came so far and I was sure I was getting the job. I went back home sent a “thank you” email.
One month passed and no reply.
Another month passed and no response from the company or any person.
Meanwhile, I attended two different interviews who had solid offers which I turned down as they did not cater to my field of career and interest.
And I was pretty sure I was getting this job (who wouldn’t?).
Finally, I got a call at 10 pm, about 3 months later, that something had happened to the manager (made up a random reason).
They told me, “I am sorry we can’t offer you a job, we are not turning down the offer due to your qualification, but purely due to an unavoidable circumstance, we wish you success.”
The shock I faced was unimaginable. I wrote a couple of emails to all the people involved in the company about my situation and not one person bothered to reply.
My career was f***ed up. Literally.
The deadlines for all the companies had been up ages back and I had to wait another year to apply for a similar graduate role (Graduate program is a role wherein the company hires only freshly graduated people, and the best part, no experience is required).
I would have been graduating in a few months and starting my career.
After I completed my studies and was looking for full-time employment, I worked at the same career fair, part-time (moving around boxes and helping employers put up their stall).
I met the same employer who messed up my career with the same HR standing at the stall. I went up and told them, “At this time, I would have now been at your company’s plant working a full-time professional job, rather than working my ass off by moving boxes at the career fair, even for their own stall”.
You guys can relate how bad I must have felt at that instant. This is life I guess…..
Job Market in Ireland for Foreign Students
The job scenario is really, really competitive here. Especially for Indians and any other foreigners who have visa limits.
Rather than dragging the blog with irrelevant details, I’d like to say that there are massive opportunities for computer science and IT graduates here in Ireland. (Yei!!! Finally something happy to read!) Yeah, this is true.
Considering the fact that Ireland is the hub and European headquarters for many IT companies like Amazon, Vodafone, Apple, Microsoft, Intel and many more big companies, there are loads of opportunities for people in this stream.
If you can add experience, you have a very STRONG chance of getting a job paying about 30,000 quid a year, with added benefits. They sponsor your work visa in Ireland and practically give you everything you need to live.
In fact, there are more jobs than people available. I know people who have failed in modules yet have a job.
One of them has got the latest iPhone, a laptop from the company and he’s in the US for training! Wow!
Another mate with a GPA of 2.2 and has gotten three job offers. Another mate with no experience has already started working with the same perks.
Another friend attended an interview and they asked him to simply draw a circuit diagram and they would hire him. Literally any circuit diagram!
When he couldn’t, they asked him to draw something, anything, so that they have a reason to hire him.
He drew some random stuff, told about some random computer languages he knew and boom! They hired him.
People with almost any description from computer science and IT are getting good jobs here. I am happy for them. Then there are some people like a friend of mine who got a job offer of 45,000 quid and a three-year contract but turned it down, as he wanted to serve his country, India.
Now, people with business backgrounds.
Be it marketing or finance or cloud computing, there are decent opportunities for people like these too. The business sector is huge here, so you can get hired by companies like EY, KPMG and many more related organizations/banks.
You need to convince them, show them you are brilliant. You need to show them a reason to hire you.
If you are brilliant at what you do, there is no reason a company wouldn’t hire you.
What about the rest of us?
From civil, mechanical, electrical engineers or any other field? It’s a struggle. Trust me, it sure is a struggle.
A friend of mine has about 5 years of work experience and master’s degree from Trinity College.
He flew back home since he could not find a job here. I have a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering with specialization in Production with a first class degree.
I have a master’s degree in Bio-systems Engineering, sustainable energy and green technology with a 2.1 (roughly 3.4 GPA) degree from a university that is among the world’s top 1% universities.
I have an IELTS score of 8.0.
I have a German language certificate.
I have one year of work experience. And yet I still do not have a job.
I have applied to 150+ companies. My email is flooded with “We regret to inform you that you have been unsuccessful…” emails.
My life now is currently miserable. I cannot find any more derogatory words to describe my plight.
I cannot go back to India. With what face do I expect to go back?
After spending lakhs of money, I can’t just go back empty handed. Who would want to do that?
I, along with dozens of others were and are still being trapped by the ugly and highly commercialized educational consultancies of India that have “dressed up ladies” who promise students there are loads of part time jobs here, and once you graduate, you have a job in your hand. This is BULLS**T. I repeat. It’s BULL CRAP!
Do not come to Ireland with those hopes. Once you graduate in Ireland, you have a one year “job search visa” (for which you need to pay another 300 quid).
I can provide contact details of dozens of students who are in a situation like me. All talented, but unemployed.
The job market for the rest of us is very competitive here. If you are exceptionally good and have the exact skills the company needs, you get immediately hired. Of course, like said before, it’s not that you have 0% chances to get a job, there are chances, but you just need to be lucky. Luck plays a vital role here.
Bottom-line here is, there’s a nice scope for people from Computer Science and IT and those with working experience have even more opportunities.
The rest of the streams have very unpredictable job markets. I advise all students planning to come to study in Ireland to do in-depth research before making decisions to come here and obtain a “foreign degree”.
Do not be fooled by educational consultancies.
Do not plan to settle here before even arriving here.
Decide what you want to do in life, decide where you want to pursue your career.
It’s going to matter for the rest of your life.
You would definitely be spending lakhs of hard earned money, so decide and plan accordingly. Again I repeat, do your research before deciding to come to Ireland.
Maybe this is my bad luck, or God knows what. This is my personal experience.
There could be people who have experienced better. But all in all, this is my personal impression and experience after studying in Ireland. I shall update if I have something to tell.
Wish you guys all the best for your career!