Monday 17 June 2019

Gaming and leisure billed as the most 'in-demand' sectors


Alternatives founder Sandra Lawler said the outlook is dominated by Brexit
Alternatives founder Sandra Lawler said the outlook is dominated by Brexit

Michael Cogley

The gaming, construction and hotel and leisure sectors will be the most in-demand areas for employment this year, according to a leading recruiter.

Motor, pharma, media, government, logistics and retail have all been tipped for a lull in 2019, according to recruitment company Alternatives. In its predictions for the new year, Alternatives said there will be intensified demand for workers with specialist skills in search engine optimisation as well as user experience and user interface.

Alternatives founder Sandra Lawler said that the outlook for the year will still be dominated by Brexit. "It goes without saying that a no-deal scenario will impact the whole of the Irish economy negatively," said Lawler. "However, if a smoother transition is agreed, then trading conditions will continue to improve in 2019 for most of the marketing and business communities.

"Ways of working will continue to evolve, driven by the need for businesses to access, attract and retain great talent and by the demand from professionals themselves who want flexibility, mobile work environments and variety in the work they do."

Lawler said that the gig economy will "continue to thrive" into this year, despite it facing heavy criticism for the use of zero-hour contracts throughout 2018. The Alternatives chief said that a third of the marketing community has contracted or freelanced before and that the proportion of people doing so was likely to increase.

The presence of remote and flexible working is also set to surge this year, partly due to the increase in gender-balanced workplaces, according to Alternatives. Lawler said this had "debunked the myth that it's just mums or pre-retirees that want to work more flexibly".

"Companies will come under pressure to increase salaries, driven by the market competition for good talent and by rising house and rental prices in particular," Lawler said.

"Last year over 60pc of the marketing and digital communities had some salary increase and we anticipate that this upward pressure will continue. However, this will be influenced by Brexit."

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