Business Irish

Friday 20 September 2019

Employers expect to hire despite Brexit

(stock photo)
(stock photo)
Dearbhail McDonald

Dearbhail McDonald

Almost six out of 10 employers are forecasting an increase in employee numbers of up to 6.5pc next year, according to an all-island, cross-industry survey of business leaders.

But more than half (51pc) are "concerned" or "somewhat concerned" that Brexit will have an impact on their ability to hire and retain staff in their sector.

Surprisingly, only 36pc of leaders expressed concerns that Brexit may lead to staff reductions, according to the survey carried out by Performance Reward Consulting (PRC).

However, this number rises to 63pc in the food, drinks and dairy sectors, and to 42pc of those responding from the financial services sector.

"It is clear that Brexit is likely to impact some sectors more than others," said Patrick Robertson, managing director of PRC, which devises reward strategies for companies.

"It is clear most businesses are taking a wait-and-see attitude, and are hoping for the best.

"Where action is happening, it is tending to be focussed on retention of their key employees and potential mobility issues that may be caused."

Some 76 companies across the island took part in the October survey. Of these, 47 had employees in the Republic of Ireland only, whilst 13 had employees on both sides of the Border.

The combined employment within the survey was 110,616 employees. Sectors surveyed included transport, retail, pharma, manufacturing, legal, tech, food and drink, financial services, entertainment and media, and energy/telecoms.

The survey comes days after the European Commission approved a €10m Irish Government scheme that can be tapped to support restructuring of SMEs affected by Brexit.

Irish Independent

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