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May 2024 Employment Roundup: IDA to create 800 tech jobs in three sites across Ireland | Inside Ireland May 2024 Employment Roundup

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Our roundup of some employment news across the island of Ireland in May 2024 continues with news that IBM Ireland has announced a new investment that it said will create up to 800 high-tech jobs in three sites across Ireland.

Job advertisements (Pic: InsideIreland.ie)

IDA to create 800 tech jobs in three sites across Ireland

Technology company IBM Ireland has announced a new investment that it said will create up to 800 high-tech jobs in three sites across Ireland.

IBM said the investment will create ‘hundreds of roles in research and development, as well as digital sales and consulting’.

The roles will be created across IBM sites in Dublin, Cork and at IBM’s subsidiary, Red Hat, in Waterford.

The company said the new staff will join IBM’s and Red Hat’s workforce, and ‘will help enhance Ireland’s rich and highly skilled technology talent pool’.

Investment from IBM Ireland to create up to 800 high value tech jobs. Pic shows ( l to r ) Taoiseach Simon Harris, Deborah Threadgold, IBM Country General Manager, James Kavanaugh, IBM SVP and Chief Financial Officer and Michael Lohan, CEO, IDA Ireland (PIC: MAXWELLS)

One of the reasons given by IBM for investing in Ireland was:

“As the EU leader for the number of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) graduates per capita, Ireland has a talent pipeline fuelled by skilled young people while educators collaborate with industry to provide the skills needed in the future.”

IBM has been in Ireland for more than 65 years.

The three-year investment is supported by the Government of Ireland through IDA Ireland.

Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Peter Burke said this is ‘fantastic news’.

“Today’s announcement that IBM Ireland are to create 800 skilled tech jobs between Dublin, Cork and Waterford, is hugely welcome. IBM is a world leader in Technology and has been a long standing high value employer in Ireland for almost three quarters of a century. Ireland is now ranked as the fifth most advanced digital economy in the EU, and having IBM choose Ireland for this new project is another vote of confidence in our country.”

Speaking of the announcement James Kavanaugh, IBM senior vice president and chief financial officer, said:

“As IBM continues to help organizations transform their businesses with hybrid cloud and AI, attracting, developing, and retaining talent remains a key priority.”

“Today’s announcement is a result of our strong relationship with IDA Ireland and the Irish government, but is also a testament to the calibre of talent here in Ireland, one of many reasons Ireland continues to be a strategic location for IBM,” added Mr Kavanaugh.

Professional services firm to create 100 new jobs in Ireland

RTÉ News have reported that a professional services firm has said it is to create 100 jobs in Ireland over the next two years.

Jacobs said the new roles are in areas such as ‘engineering, project management, construction management, commissioning and qualification’.

The company currently has offices in Dublin, Cork and Belfast.

Jacobs employs over 60,000 people in over 40 counties.

Logistics provider to create 400 jobs in Co Meath

An independent logistics provider said it is to create 400 new jobs across a range of disciplines, with the opening of a €50m distribution hub in Co Meath.

Primeline Group said the new 360,000sq ft distribution centre is located at its Group headquarters at Ashbourne Business Park.

Primeline Group

 

The company employs a total of 1,100 colleagues across its operations.

CEO of Primeline Group Tim Cummins is confident of securing high-quality customers for the new hub said he was ‘proud’ to lead a team with ‘decades of collective experience’.

CEO of Enterprise Ireland Leo Clancy says Primeline Group’s growth is an ‘excellent example’ of the potential for Irish business.

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Chief People & Culture Officer at Primeline Group Nikki Mullin outlines the kind of roles which will be available at the new facility:

“We are currently recruiting for a variety of positions across IT, Operations & Sales for this state-of-the-art facility. We are always keen to engage with colleagues whose values are aligned to ours and who prioritise their dedication to teamwork, great communication and a can-do attitude so that, together, we deliver a World Class Customer Experience.”

“We are super proud of the brilliantly diverse team we have and at the core of our colleague offering is our commitment to creating a flexible & supportive environment where colleagues can be at their best day in day out,” added Ms Mullin.

The company said hiring for the new hub is underway and more information on the company and roles on offer is available via the company’s website.

BT confirms call centre in Co Fermanagh to close

Telecom company BT has confirmed it is to close its call centre in Co Fermanagh.

About 300 people were employed at the Enniskillen site.

In a statement, BT said it recently closed its voluntary paid leavers offer for its workers, and ‘over 80% of colleagues have taken the opportunity to take this up’.

‘Extremely disappointing’

The company confirmed it had taken the ‘difficult decision’ to propose closing the site to the small number of remaining desk-based colleagues on 31 October 2024.

It added that it had entered into consultation with those affected and trade unions.

New Interim Stormont Economy Minister Deirdre Hargey said it is ‘extremely disappointing’ that BT has decided to close its Enniskillen contact centre.

“As a major employer in the region for over three decades, this decision is devastating for the workers and their families, and also for the wider community.”

“I have asked Invest NI to ensure every step possible is taken to support the staff impacted,” added the minister.

Fermanagh and South Tyrone MLA Áine Murphy said the closure of the EE / BT site was ‘a huge blow’ to local workers and families.

“My immediate thoughts are with the workers who have lost their jobs at this site. This will be a huge blow to workers and families right across the county, and also the local economy.”

-Áine Murphy, Sinn Féin MLA

At a recent CWU conference, Motion 38 Category A at the conference specifically addressed the BT/EE operation, ‘condemning the short notice given to workers regarding the voluntary paid leavers scheme and the site’s strategic downgrading’.

It mandated continued advocacy by the union against the site closure.

Over 200 jobs to be created in Dublin 18

An international insurance provider has said it intends to create 230 roles over the next three years, as part of an overall investment programme of €160 million.

The OUTsurance Group currently employs 70 people at its head office in Cherrywood in Dublin 18.

Minister of State with responsibility for Financial Services, Credit Unions & Insurance, Neale Richmond said:

“This is a very positive sign that Ireland is an attractive destination for international insurance companies, and I look forward to working with OUTsurance over the coming months.”

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Speaking at the launch, OUTsurance Ireland Chief Executive Peter Broome said:

“In anticipation of demand for our home and motor insurance products, we are planning to grow our team to 300 people over the next three years as part of an overall investment programme of €160 million in Ireland.”

Michael Lohan, CEO, IDA Ireland, said the investment decision to grow its headquarters in Dublin is ‘testament to the company’s commitment to Ireland’.

The OUTsurance Group was established 26 years ago, employs more than 7,000 people and is listed on the Johannesburg Securities Exchange.

Tara Mines Group of Unions members vote to accept proposals on mine reopening

SIPTU has confirmed on 03 May that members of the Tara Mines Groups of Unions (GOU) have voted to accept proposals agreed at the Workplace Relations Commission last month.

A proposed agreement was negotiated on 16 April at the WRC in an attempt to deal with the Tara Mines dispute.

WRC (Pic: InsideIreland.ie)

In June 2023, Boliden, the metals company that owns Tara Mines in Co Meath announced that production would temporarily cease at its Navan plant, meaning 650 employees would be ‘temporarily laid off’.

Boliden said due to a combination of factors, the Tara Mines in Ireland would be placed under ‘care and maintenance’.

In January 2024, workers were asked by management to express their interest in a proposed voluntary severance scheme.

However, trade union Unite – which represents craft and staff grades at Tara Mines – expressed ‘outrage’ at the proposals advanced by the company.

Voluntary redundancies

Unite said that the proposed agreement negotiated in April at the WRC represented a ‘significant improvement’ on the scheme proposed by Boliden in January.

The union said that, if the agreement is accepted by a ballot of workers, the company ‘must commit to the long-term future of Tara Mines’.

Reports suggest that over 150 jobs could go in redundancies as part of a proposed deal to reopen the mines.

Unite office (Pic: InsideIreland.ie)

Unite said the proposed agreement stipulates that ‘all redundancies will be voluntary where they arise’, and unions have ‘secured redundancy terms of five weeks per year of service capped at two years’.

According to Unite, the voluntary severance process is expected to take approximately one month.

The ballot on the reopening of the mine was counted on Friday morning, 03 May, in the SIPTU Dan Shaw Centre in Navan, County Meath.

SIPTU - Services Industrial Professional and Technical Union

SIPTU Organiser, Andrew McGuiness said that SIPTU members voted by 67% to 33% to accept the proposals while similar sizable majorities in favour were also returned by Connect and Unite.

Connect Regional Secretary, Tom Faulkner, said:

“Workers have had to accept a lot of change and there is a significant number of voluntary redundancies included within these proposals. However, this vote should allow for the immediate commencement of the process of fully reopening the mine and secure the economic benefits of its operation into the future.”

Unite Regional Officer, Brian Hewitt, said:

“Overall we believe this a positive day for Tara Mines, our members and the surrounding communities. Tara Mines is a very important resource extraction facility which is key to zinc and other metal production not only in Ireland but wider within Europe and globally.”

SIPTU Sector Organiser, John Regan, said the work of the Tara Mines GOU will now focus on ensuring the Government ‘makes good’ on commitments it has provided concerning changes to support the future operation of the mine.

“These include changes to how royalties are calculated, and the provision of energy subsidies and concessions in relation to the social welfare supports that the laid-off workforce will continue to require until the mine returns to full operation.”

“It is a day that hopefully also brings to a conclusion a very difficult period for everyone involved and the wider country which recognises the importance of the utilisation of our natural resources in a sustainable manner,” added Mr Regan.

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