±A - Join Our Community

Learn from the experiences of other expats and make new friends in our disccussion forums and Facebook groups

±A - Cigna

±A - Read Our Guide

The Expat Focus Guide to Moving Abroad contains everything you need to know when planning an international relocation available now, completely free

±A - Compare Quotes and Save

Insurance, FX and international movers

±A - Listen to the Podcast

The Expat Focus podcast features interviews with expats living abroad and service providers meeting their needs subscribe today!

±A - Expert Financial

From our tax, investment and FX partners

±A - ExpatFocus Partners

Expat Focus Partners

Become a Partner. Click Here.

Finding Employment

Ireland - Finding Employment

If you are thinking of relocating to Ireland, getting a job should be one of your priorities. You may also want to plan for accommodation in advance. Research available employment opportunities before moving to Ireland. It is also important to research average wages and relevant taxation laws. Ensure that there are no restrictions that would limit you from working while in Ireland.

Ireland has a wide range of employment opportunities. You can get a job by simply applying to companies with vacancies or through recruitment agencies, which are widely available throughout Ireland. Many job recruitment agencies in Ireland offer opportunities that range from casual jobs to positions that require specialized skills.

Unlike other countries in Europe, Ireland has a very small labor market with high competition for the best-paid jobs. Many Irish citizens find it easier to find a job in Ireland than expats do. Many foreigners who move to work in Ireland find that many companies have excellent working conditions and better pay than many other countries in Europe.

Any foreigner who wants to work in Ireland should have a work permit, also known as the Irish General Work Permit. This is basically an employment permit that allows non-Irish citizens to work legally in Ireland for any employer in a specific occupation. The validity period for the work permit is two years. The employment permit is only given to people who have job offers. The General Employment Permit covers all occupations, unlike the Critical Skills Employment Permit.


Ireland has a relatively low unemployment rate. Ireland’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate dropped to 7.1 percent in January 2017 from 7.2 percent in the previous month. The average rate of unemployment in Ireland was 10.85 percent between 1983 and 2017. It reached an all time high of 17.3 percent in December of 1985 and a record low of 3.7 percent in December of 2000. The seasonally adjusted number of unemployed people in Ireland was 169,100 in June 2016, which is a decrease of 500 from May 2016 or 34,600 from June 2015.

Casual work

Casual jobs are normally advertised in shopping centers, shop windows, newspapers, and employment agencies. Most of these jobs do not require any specific professional qualifications, but it is advisable to provide proof of the academic achievements you have attained including degrees, secondary school certificates, or diplomas.

It is also important to provide an updated CV to your potential recruiter because the potential employer may ask you to provide information on your expertise and experience. Anyone seeking casual employment can register with a recruitment agency in advance before moving to Ireland. It is also important to keep an eye out on advertisements for casual employees in shops and stores.

Professions and careers

Getting a white-collar job in Ireland will require additional research and planning. You will have to put in more work if you plan to work as a professional in Ireland than as a casual laborer. Most career jobs in Ireland take some time to secure. Therefore, it is important to start applying for jobs before travelling to the country. The effort spent on looking for a career in Ireland is well worth it because these jobs often have competitive remuneration for qualified candidates.

Nearly all professions in Ireland have societies or associations that regulate and represent their members. Most of these associations will provide their members with information regarding the professions, as well as recognizing professional achievements.

All employees are protected by the law in Ireland irrespective of their experience, nationality, profession, or expertise. The Irish labor laws have set down specific rules on working hours, changing jobs, employment rights, leave, rates of pay, health and safety.

There are many recruitment agencies and job sites that list thousands of employment opportunities in Ireland. Some of the most popular recruitment agencies in Ireland include:

CPL Recruitment
t: +353 1 614 6000
f: +353 015 227 338
e: info@cpl.ie
Cork: +353 21 494 4860
Galway: +353 91 509 740
Limerick: +61 221701
Waterford: +353 51 5111 80
Belfast: +44 289 072 5600

Sigmar Recruitment
Tel: + 353 1 4744 600
Fax: + 353 1 4744 641
Email: info@sigmar.ie

IRC Recruitment
Phone: +353 1 6610644
Phone: +353 61 313744
Fax: +353 1 6610648
Fax:+353 1 6610648

Telephone: +1 800 603 604
E-mail: info@servisource.ie

It is important to know that you may have to pay certain fees when searching for jobs through a recruitment agency.

How to apply

Anyone applying for a job in Ireland needs to have a resume or curriculum vitae, which should be written in English. The resume should provide a summary of the applicant’s work experience and skills. You should also have genuine copies of your certificates. Contact your country’s consulate or embassy if you need your documents to be translated to English.

Non-Irish nationals can get more information about Critical Skills Employment Permits and General Employment Permit from the office of the Department of Jobs, Enterprise, and Innovation.

Working Illegally

Any foreigner working illegally in Ireland can face a number of penalties, including 5 years in jail and fines. Employees who do not have permission to enter and stay in Ireland and whose documents have expired are guilty of working illegally in Ireland. Companies that employ people without proper working permits can also be charged or fined by the Irish government.

Read more about this country

Expat Health Insurance Partners

Bupa Global

At Bupa we have been helping individuals and families live longer, healthier, happier lives for over 60 years. We are trusted by expats in 190 different countries and have links with healthcare organisations throughout the world. So whether you're moving abroad for a change of career or a change of scene, with our international private health insurance you will always be in safe hands.


Cigna has worked in international health insurance for more than 30 years. Today, Cigna has over 71 million customer relationships around the world. Looking after them is an international workforce of 31,000 people, plus a network of over 1 million hospitals, physicians, clinics and health and wellness specialists worldwide, meaning you have easy access to treatment.