The Accounting and Finance sector within the Financial Services industry of Ireland has experienced a significant level of market activity and growth in the first quarter of this year. There has been a considerable surge in the requirement for competent accountants in Ireland, ranging from recent newly qualified accountants to individuals with 4-5 years PQE. Furthermore, there is a rising demand for senior-level professionals, particularly in the aircraft leasing domain.
The aircraft leasing sector is currently experiencing a significant resurgence, which was anticipated and not unexpected. However, the accelerated pace of the demand for accountants in this sector has taken been a surprise. Over the past 18 months to 2 years, the market has witnessed a great deal of consolidation. Nonetheless, organisations require highly qualified and seasoned experts to assist them with their integration programmes and daily BAU operations, resulting in a significant demand for accountants in this area.
Within the Insurance sector, there has been a consistent requirement for technical accountants across all areas. Most major companies are undergoing restructuring, are seeking specialised accountants, primarily in IFRS 17 reporting. Individuals with Solvency II experience are at a significant advantage since their expertise can be translated to some extent into IFRS 17 functions. The overriding theme is that organisations will succeed in implementing the new standard requirements in 2023.
Within the Asset and Wealth Management sector, once again, there has been a consistent need for proficient accountants. Moreover, quite a few fund service companies in Dublin have created several new mandates in Q1. This has ultimately taken on more of a need for qualified accountants in the private equity and private debt space. We at Coopman work alongside various global investment management and private equity firms; they are searching for highly specialised accountants skilled in structured credit and across multi-asset categories. Private equity reporting accountants are particularly critical for these sectors at present. There has been somewhat a shift of funds from conventional institutional investors towards private equity, resulting in an increased need for skilled accountants in this domain.
Lastly, the Banking sector remains steady. The Central Bank has issued a directive mandating an increase in headcounts within corporate governance functions, prompting several Irish banks to hire rapidly across their risk and internal audit departments. Consequently, the market has witnessed a huge demand for internal auditors at all levels in these institutions due to the abundance of open vacancies. As KBC bank plans to depart later this year and with Ulster Bank selling its portfolio, other Irish banks will be faced with an escalated workload, resulting in a higher demand for accountants.
What can we expect?
In general, the market is anticipated to worsen significantly as there will be an insufficient number of proficient accountants to fill the available job positions. As a result, vacancy durations are expected to be prolonged. Organisations must proactively prepare for future hiring needs and look up to 6 months ahead. Additionally, they should explore ways to provide sponsorship to candidates from regions outside Ireland and the EU.
Advice for companies:
Companies must identify their USP’s and comprehend why individuals would want to work for them. They need to focus on what sets them apart; is it their flexible work arrangements, employee retention initiatives, remote or hybrid work options? By recognising and promoting these strengths, companies can attract top talent and enhance their recruitment efforts.
If you are concerned about how the current market may affect your position, or to discuss how we can support your hiring processes in the current market, please get in touch with Director and Co-Founder Mark Fallon at firstname.lastname@example.org