'Jobs will be there, but not the applicants'
WHEN James Nugent, managing director of one of Ireland's largest property firms, Lisney, took on seven graduates in May, he snapped up more than he needed – with good reason.
He was looking to the year ahead and with a certain buoyancy returning to the property business, he didn't want to get caught out by a staff shortage.
"I know the company is not going to be hampered by a lack of business, but by availability of graduates. There is a skills shortage," he said.
Mr Nugent, pictured below, recognises the influence Irish parents have on their children's college choices, which contributed to dwindling entrants to property and construction-related courses during the recession.
"The numbers coming in are very few, but anyone graduating from Bolton Street now will get a job," he said of the Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT) property economics course.
The property industry is competing with firms like Facebook and Google to catch the imagination of school-leavers and their parents, he added, but said many may not understand what a career in property offers.
Some of the Lisney team is dealing with some €5-6bn of international money seeking to invest in Ireland, he said, while other projects include land purchasing for the Luas line.