Ireland’s fintech job opportunities booming

With almost 500 new jobs recently created in Ireland's emerging fintech industry, the country has received a boost in its employment stats.

Pramerica, a software and contact centre for Prudential Financial (with currently over $1trn assets under management, is to increase its workforce in Donegal by 330 jobs in a new campus. Pramerica already employs 1,200 people in Letterkenny, 1km away from the new location.

Caroline Faulkner, senior managing director and chief information officer at Primerica, said: “Pramerica is delighted that we have reached this historic milestone just 15 short years since we launched our business in Letterkenny with eight employees. With Ireland’s rich pipeline of talent and favourable work environment, now is the ideal time for us to make an investment in a new campus facility.”

In addition, business processing outsourcing provider Abtran is hiring 100 more employees in the consulting and technology services division in Dublin, adding to their 2,000 Ireland employees.

Michael Fitzgerald, chief executive, said: “This expansion is a great opportunity for our employees to grow and develop their careers with Abtran.”

The rise in fintech jobs in Ireland has not been a surprise to consultancy firm Deloitte. In March, a report from the firm estimated that there were approximately 5,000 people employed in the direct fintech industry in Ireland, but expects that to double by 2020.

However, the report states that financial service firms are ‘struggling with outdate legacy platforms and IT architectures which are hampering their ability to grow and innovate’.

For this the good fortune to continue, Deloitte listed five aspects to focus on:

  • Connectivity: Steps need to be taken so fintechs and larger financial service companies work together. As they are widely different in scale and method, there may have been an ‘awareness gap’ created.
  • Talent: In a country with just 4.5 million people, the search for talent in this sector is tough. The Government ICT Skills Action Plan has set a target of meeting 74% of industry demands for ICT professionals in Ireland by 2018 through an additional 1250 undergraduate ICT places per year in higher education institutions.
  • Innovation: Ireland needs to follow the successful model of other global fintech hubs, such s London and New York. The country needs an ‘interactive, visually immersive environment’ to inspire innovation and idea development.
  • Investment: High-tech companies account for 90% of VC investment in Ireland, but approximately 3-10% out of an average €400m has been invested in fintech companies over the last three years.
  • Cyber: Cybersecurity is crucial in financial services. A fault in security can create immense amounts of bad press and deter people from innovative solutions.