Recent research by HRM Recruitment (2018) on Skills gaps in SMEs within Ireland, shows that although the Irish labour market continued to display high levels of unemployment, improvements were evident in almost all labour market indicators. Moreover, there was an increase in the number of mentions of skill gaps in Ireland. In most cases, gaps remained confined to specialised areas. Key areas are Business, R&D, Finance, and Engineering. Skills gaps vary according to company size however Marketing is noted to be a significant gap, arising in 2 out of every 5 SMEs. Production and Sales also highlight large gaps with just over a third reporting an extreme or moderate gap.
Acquisition of new staff and retention of current employees are the biggest current and future HR challenges for manufacturing SMEs.
Business and Finance Skills Gaps within Ireland
Occupations for which shortages have been identified include:
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ICT Skills Gaps within Ireland
Shortages of ICT skills have been identified in the following areas:
- web/mobile content management
- software development and programming
- project management and business analysis
- testing and troubleshooting
- databases/big data (e.g. NoSQL, SQL, MySQL, Oracle, MS SQL Server, IBMS DB2, Hadoop)
- IT security
- technical support
- networking and infrastructure.
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Social and Care Skills Gaps within Ireland
Shortages in social and child care services that have been noted:
- Full time Carers & Child minders
- Male Social and Child care professionals
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Science, Engineering & Healthcare Skills Gaps within Ireland
Difficult-to-fill vacancies have been identified in the areas of:
- product development
- production and process engineering
- quality control and assurance
- precision engineering
- project management
- Shortage of Medical Practitioners.