In Ireland, remote working is growing in popularity but from a relatively small base. Grow Remote organisers estimate that there are around 220,000 people working remotely in Ireland currently. Some of the international companies with operations here have already started implementing these policies. Shopify now has employees working in all 26 counties and has grown rapidly by outpacing the targets it set for the Irish operation. The Canadian e-commerce company started with basic frontline business and customer support positions but has since expanded its workforce by adding many more roles. Wayfair announced it was launching a “virtual workforce” of more than 200 new jobs around Ireland, aiming to tap into an even broader talent pool and provide employment opportunities to a wide range of qualified candidates.
The ESRI has noted that job stress owing to commuting times and other factors has doubled from 2010 to 2015 – all leading to workforce seeking changes to work remotely from home and leave the gridlock of commute behind them. It’s estimated that 50% of the workforce will be remote by 2040.
Grow Remote opened its 60th Chapter in town recently when Renate Kohlmann launched the branch at the Library. Over 30 people ,presenters, trainers, funders and potential workers interested in learning more about the sector and the concept were delivered a full Information and Induction evening into a new “Cottage“ style industry of the 21st Century.
Grow Remote was founded on Whatsapp by a couple of Irish Remote Workers in Autumn of 2019 and has now grown in 18 months to over 60 groups in 4 countries. The Volunteer led and owned network is to
1) help Community find employment
2) Help Repopulate their local area
3) Help remote workers engage locally.
The evening had passionate presentations from a cofounder Tracey Keogh of Kinvara, and Gary Mullin who is a team leader with Shopify working remotely out of Athenry. Tracey reflected on the trajectory of the REMOTE network and the power it is having in remote rural places like Achill, Valentia, Ballymahon and Cootehill in getting young couples from the Irish and UK Cities to return or resettle to locations they are happier having a healthier work life balance in. She reported that everyone in Government circles was very positive about the impact these jobs could have in rejuvenating rural Ireland – alongside (of course) access to broadband. She spoke of Seminars, Conferences and Town or Area Visits that different Chapters were promoting around the country to get people to lessen the isolation of working remotely. She wished Renate and the Chapter well in getting established in Ballinasloe.
Gary from Spotify told it as it was and surprised many with the range of companies looking for entry level and specialist remote worker. The jobs package and specs on offer were from anywhere between a median salary of €29,000 for a 35 hour week, training, allowances and up to 25 day holiday allowance with flexible working hours and fixed levels of client or customer interaction - upwards.
There were then some perspectives on leading innovative educators who recognise that not everyone can come to this work zone without some training. There were insightful presentations from Nuala McGinn NUIG, Patricia Farrell from the GRETB who spoke about the range of courses, CPD opportunities and certification processes that they are developing to cope with demand for these type of new posts. Renate, in wrapping up the evening, spoke about how a dedicated Remote working Hub in the locality would be a huge asset in raising awareness and getting more people to join the Remote Chapter and seek out new opportunities. Examples of where to find remote working opportunities are are: employmum.ie, freelancer.com, abodoo.com, remoteur.com, dynamitejobs.com, or LinkedIn, Indeed, Google or the EURemote Jobs Facebook page. For more information on the branch email or visit this link
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