Francis O' Toole Author – Careers Ireland

Students' embarking on their career journey – Is Féidir linn

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1,000 apply for 20 pharma jobs

Posted by Francis O' Toole on September 13, 2012

1,000 apply for 20 pharma jobs as IT firms can’t get staff

IT IS a tale of two industries. A thousand jobseekers yesterday clamoured for just 20 jobs being provided by a pharmaceutical firm, while the IT industry bemoaned the fact that 1,500 vacancies could not be filled.

BioMarin, which bought the former Pfizer plant at Shanbally, Co Cork, for €38m last year, was stunned to see 1,000 hopefuls turn up at a careers day.

There are only 20 jobs available, due to be filled in early 2013, with a further 80 jobs over the next two years.

Meanwhile, former soccer star turned entrepreneur Niall Quinn launched an initiative with Enterprise Ireland to persuade more students to consider careers in IT.

Sixteen leading software firms are involved in a new initiative called ‘IT’s Happening Here’ and they all have jobs available. Mr Quinn’s new firm Q Sat also wants to recruit software graduates.

Leaders within the IT industry have consistently spoken of the need for more graduates skilled in computing, putting pressure on the education system over maths and science teaching.

Yesterday an OECD report on education showed that, even at primary level, pupils are getting just one hour a week devoted to science.

Mr Quinn said that there were plenty of opportunities for “creative people” within IT.

“The Irish-owned software industry is leading edge, innovative and dynamic and contributes significantly to both our economy and our culture.

“We are looking to attract the very best talent from graduate to director level to keep us at the top of our game.”


Jarlath Dooley, chair of the industry working group behind the campaign, said: “There are currently 1,500 open vacancies in this industry.

“These roles offer exciting opportunities to really contribute, have your voice heard and your ideas implemented.”

A marketing campaign focused on social media is now under way to help fill the vacancies in these companies.

The campaign was launched as BioMarin, in contrast, saw its careers day hugely oversubscribed.

The US firm’s vice-president, Dr Robert Baffi, said they were delighted with the development of their new Irish operation — but were totally taken aback by the huge level of interest in the jobs on offer.

“We were overwhelmed with the phenomenal response we received following the announcement of our first ever career day in Ireland,” he told the Irish Independent.

BioMarin staged 500 individual meeting slots over the course of the day — but were also forced to stage a group briefing in the company auditorium to cope with the sheer numbers present.

“The calibre of applicants we have met is impressive and I’m confident we will build a strong team here in Ireland based on this.

“This is a very exciting time for BioMarin, and indeed for the Cork region, and we anticipate that additional positions will open later this year,” Dr Baffi said.

The jobs on offer are in manufacturing, supply chain, manufacturing sciences, health and safety, engineering and finance.

– Ralph Riegel

Irish Independent


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