Wednesday, May 22, 2024

IBM to create 800 jobs across Ireland in AI push

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The country’s beleaguered tech sector has been given a boost with news that 800 jobs are to be created by IBM in Cork, Dublin and Waterford.

The US tech giant said the new roles will be created over the next three years at its sites in Dublin and Cork as well as at one of its subsidiaries, Red Hat, in Waterford.

The company’s chief financial officer, James Kavanaugh, said IBM’s continued investment in Ireland is as a result of its “strong relationship” with the Government and IDA Ireland. He added that it was also a “testament to the calibre of talent here in Ireland”.

The company has been operating in Ireland for 65 years and already employs roughly 3,000 people. Its current operations here are focused on technology in the financial services and healthcare sectors. Ireland is also host to IBM Research’s only facility in the EU. 

The new roles will be in digital sales, consulting roles, as well as research and development. IBM said they will be focused in areas such as security, automation, and cloud computing all of which it said would be underpinned by AI technology.

Taoiseach Simon Harris said the announcement “not only reinforces the company’s deep-rooted commitment to Ireland” but is also set to “deliver real impact to the Irish economy through job creation and by strengthening specialist skills and expertise”.

Since the end of 2022, the tech sector worldwide has been experiencing a slowdown resulting in approximately 400,000 lost jobs.

Although IBM casts some positivity on the beleaguered tech sector, there are signs that it is still in the midst of a slowdown. The high interest rate environment globally continues to impact the sector as many companies pivot to investing in AI. 

Worldwide job losses in the sector have continued to spill over into this year with around 50,000 lay-offs announced already.

The job cuts seen in the tech sector since 2022 have been made by some of the world’s largest companies, many of which — including Meta, Google, Microsoft, and Stripe — have significant operations in Ireland. Earlier this week, jobs site Indeed said it would slim down its staff numbers here by around 70 roles in the coming weeks.

Despite the turmoil experienced in the tech sector, the jobs market in Ireland remains tight with unemployment at record low levels. Also, the economy remains robust delivering strong Exchequer returns, albeit with falling corporation tax receipts.

Other job announcements

In addition to IBM, 400 jobs have been announced at Primeline Logistic, based in Co. Meath, with another 150 jobs being created by professional services firm PwC in its Cork offices.

In Meath, the new jobs are a part of the company’s plans to develop a €50m distribution facility. The supply chain company, which is Ireland’s largest independent provider of logistics services, employs around 1,100 people across its operations. 

It completes over 25,000 deliveries to more than 7,500 outlets each week. “We are currently recruiting for a variety of positions across IT, operations and sales for this state-of-the-art facility,” said chief people and culture officer at Primeline Nikki Mullin.

The new jobs at PwC come after the company announced the opening of its Cyber Managed Services Centre located in the firm’s offices in Cork. The ramped up services and job creation comes as cyber risks continue to rise for businesses, according to the company.

“At a time when disruption and uncertainty are all around us, businesses are becoming increasingly reliant on and interconnected with third parties, meaning cybersecurity supply chain risk is intensifying further,” said Leonard McAuliffe, cyber partner at PwC Ireland.

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