The Remote Working revolution is in full flow. For many, the grind of commuting from home to a city centre office has been left behind, in favour of a move to a more rural location and a relaxed pace of living.
Whether you want to live and work in Ennis, Galway, Ballina, Sligo or Letterkenny, there are vacancies available that suit people in many varied professions. In most cases, if you have the skills and can access good broadband, you are in with a good shout.
However standards and processes remain high and remote workers will be expected to be resilient, self-sufficient, keen learners and have the discipline to manage work-life balance.
According to Michelle Murphy, Director of national recruitment firm Collins McNicholas, there are exciting opportunities for people who want to live and work in the West.
She says: “A great number of roles are being offered where location is not an issue for the company. Even if people don’t want to or cannot work at home, they won’t be far from a regional or community hub that has good broadband and a desk.”
So, what’s out there? Here’s a quick look at the current crop of openings advertised on some of Ireland’s leading recruitment websites:
- House hunting in Co Sligo? eBay is a trail blazer in remote working and is looking for a range of people to join their ‘Work From Home’ Customer Experience teams.
- Based in Co. Mayo with top-level marketing experience? Content marketing giant, HubSpot, is currently advertising remote working roles including Account Executive, Customer Support Specialists and the position of UK (yes, UK!) Marketing Manager, stressing that even this role is open to Irish-based remote workers.
- Living in Co. Leitrim but fancy working for the maker of the iPhone and iPad? Apple is seeking to recruit Apple Quality Program Managers and Care Advisors to work remotely. The roles are ‘location-less’ and some rotate around 8-hour shifts.
- “Join our international team while working from the comfort of your own home!” says an advertisement from PayPal which is recruiting Fraud Prevention Customer Advisors with French speaking ability.
These are just a tiny snapshot of some of the 1700+ remote job vacancies currently advertised in Ireland – hundreds of positions are listed on a specially curated employment list featured on the website of Grow Remote, which advocates for remote working.
John Evoy, General Manager of Grow Remote, says there are hundreds of openings in careers such as law, design, marketing, customer support, HR, sales and of course tech.
“There are opportunities for many different types of work,” says John, “to work at home or in a Digital Hub or a Co-Working hub with a solid fibre connection.”
He adds: “The pandemic is a health emergency first and foremost – but it has accelerated the move to remote work exponentially.”
eBay was one major employer that introduced a ‘virtual work model’ well before the pandemic hit, so when the first Covid-19 restrictions were put in place, eBay was quickly able to move its entire workforce online.
Siobhan Curtin, Head of Customer Engagement for eBay, says: “There are many fantastic roles available that suit remote working, so it’s very exciting to see more employers transitioning to this style and to see home based work go from strength to strength.
“At eBay, we’ve taken lots of learnings regarding how home working benefits our employees, but also what challenges it brings. The more other companies and their employees experience this, the quicker work from home can evolve for everyone.”
Michelle Murphy of Collins McNicholas advises people who are thinking of a Remote Working position to complete ‘due diligence’ in checking out the required skillsets and set-up that may be required. There may be some ‘trial and error’ before you get it right. Michelle says that as well as good salaries, some remote workers can expect to be tempted with new IT equipment, monthly internet allowances and ergonomic chairs and desks.
Siobhan Curtin explains that eBay does have some technical requirements that are necessary for its employees to perform their work successfully. These include access to a wired fibre broadband service and a private space to work. “We provide all employees with the necessary technology and we offer virtual ergonomic assessments to help our people create and maintain a safe and healthy work from home environment. “
Grow Remote recently asked people what was important to them when making their decision to move. While many people mentioned good broadband and cheaper property prices, a lot of people talked about being closer to family and a better quality of life.
John Evoy believes that the new landscape of remote working is here to stay. “This will help to transform towns and village across Ireland. It’s an opportunity to build back better, to have more time for families and less commuting. It’s an opportunity to hit the reset button.”
Siobhan Curtin agrees and says that eBay’s Remote Working implementation has been a success. But she stresses that the company will facilitate employees who want to to get back to working from the office as soon as possible, to do so. “Going forward we expect that there will be more flexibility than ever to work from home long-term, and that companies will be competing over a larger than ever pool of talent with remote working experience.”
Whatever the trends, Michelle Murphy says the future is bright in the Western region. She says: “The ability to choose where you now live is important for many people. So too is finding a job where people feel the work that they do will make a difference. There’s no doubt that there is a great opportunity here for the West of Ireland.”