Tuesday 20 February 2018

New website aims to have 5,000 job pledges by June

Breda Heffernan

Breda Heffernan

IT started life in a kitchen, graduated to the classroom and yesterday it went live on the internet.

Hireland.ie, a new initiative aimed at encouraging job creation for Ireland's skilled unemployed, was launched yesterday with the aim of creating 5,000 new jobs by the end of June.

The brainchild of Gerard O'Neill, chairman of Amarach Research, and Lucy Masterson, a marketing lecturer, it is encouraging employers in the small and medium business sector to pledge to create at least one new job in the months ahead.

The not-for-profit initiative has been launched on a budget of just €149 and the Irish Independent has already agreed to provide €500,000 worth of free advertising for the project.

A new survey, conducted by Amarach, found 52pc of employers plan to hire one or more new employees this year.

"Lots of businesses are sitting on the fence. We're just trying to give them a gentle nudge, to tell them they can't keep cutting costs forever," explained Ms Masterson.

She said they came up with the idea while discussing the state of the economy in her kitchen last February.

"My son's music teacher had just broken the news that he was emigrating with his partner as she had lost her job. I was devastated for them."

Ms Masterson then enlisted the help of her students at Champlain College on Dublin's Leeson Street, who attracted the support of students at DIT through Facebook, and the result was www.hireland.ie.

Already 180 jobs have been pledged.

Irish Independent

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