How to find working abroad jobs in Dublin, Ireland

As long as you can brave the mad weather, working abroad with a job in Dublin (or anywhere in Ireland) is highly rewarding. The local folk are welcoming and relaxed, the atmosphere is multicultural and the cuisine is delicious. Here’s a step by step guide – just for you – on how you can find jobs in Dublin to work abroad in Ireland.

1. Get excited about working abroad in Ireland

Ireland is the place to be; It’s entering a new booming era of prosperity and culture. There are plenty of jobs in Dublin, Cork, Galway and more, particularly in the Science, Math, Engineering and Technology (STEM) fields, as well as finance. Salaries are higher in Ireland compared to most of Europe, placing itself as a high-value destination for English-speaking workers.

Dublin is the culture capital of the region, with the aptly named culture weekend, St Patrick’s festival and many other events during the year. Ireland is a safe and vibrant place to live, with a thriving pub social culture and beautiful natural scenery. For when you want to take a break, the rest of Europe is also highly accessible, with cheap flights into central Europe every day.

2. Determine your job and work permit eligibility

There are a number of ways in which you may be eligible to find jobs in Dublin or elsewhere in Ireland. As a European Economic Area (EEA) or Swiss citizen, you have automatic rights to live and work there. There are also limited ways you can obtain Irish citizenship, for example through your ancestry, which would also grant you the right to work in Ireland.

If you’re not an Irish or EU citizen, fear not – you can still obtain permission to work in Ireland. This can be via either a working holiday permit or a professional work permit (the latter is what I did). A working holiday visa allows you to arrive in Ireland and search for any short-term/casual work. It has many restrictions; it has a maximum time limit and typically does not allow longer-term professional work.

A professional work permit on the other hand, requires you to be sponsored by a specific employer. In other words, you must apply to work for companies that are willing to support your work permit application. If the company agrees, you will jointly apply to the immigration department. The benefit of a work permit is that it has less restrictions, as long as you meet the requirements. You can read about the many types of work permits at the DJEI.

3. Identify where you want to live in Ireland

Dublin, as the capital city, is naturally the most prominent. However, Cork, Limerick and other cities have seen impressive growth in recent years and have much to offer. There are a number of factors you should consider:

  • Cost of living (highest in Dublin), particularly rent
  • Average salaries available (likely to be higher in Dublin)
  • Weather (it’s rainy and windy occasionally.. OK, regularly! – even more so out west)
  • Access to services and infrastructure, eg. public transport, airports, hospitals, education
  • The local job market for your profession

You can read more about how to pick your next job location.

4. Search for jobs in Dublin or other Irish cities

Once you’ve shortlisted a city in Ireland (or two), you can begin your search for jobs and apply to any of interest. Remember that if you are seeking a work permit, the company must be willing to sponsor your work permit application – be upfront about this fact. Here’s how you can earn a job offer abroad. If you’re aiming for a working holiday visa, you can opt to find your job after you arrive (work permits don’t have this option).

The main job websites in Ireland are:

(Have a job website/recommendation? Leave a comment)

Don’t forget to apply directly to any companies that you are passionate for. They might have additional unlisted roles available for you. Alternatively, see what LinkedIn connections and job searches reveal.

With respect to the recruitment process in Ireland, you may find it’s easier than other countries. The Irish are very friendly and straight-forward, requiring only that you be open and honest with your skillsets, interests and passions. The key is to energetically demonstrate your capabilities in a professional manner. Your interviews and subsequent logistics may take some time however, as communications in some Irish companies can be slow.

5. Apply for the Ireland work permit or holiday

If you’re already eligible to work in Ireland (EEA citizen), you can skip this section. Otherwise, you need an Irish work permit (or working holiday visa) and you’ll need to apply for it. Processing times fluctuate between four and eight weeks depending on the time of year – ensure you factor this in. For the working holiday visa you must apply to the Irish embassy in your home country, which is a relatively simple process that they will guide you through.

A work permit however, is a little more complicated and you’ll need to handle it yourself by referring to the DJEI employment permits section. Ensure you double-check each type of employment permit thoroughly to determine which one is best suited for your skills and situation. For a general or critical skills work permit, you’ll need to have received a letter of job offer from a company that is willing to sponsor (support) your permit application. Sponsored work permits have the greatest benefits compared to the working holiday visa, including the ability to stay for as long as you’re employed. The other good news is – the DJEI process has very recently gone digital! You won’t need to worry about sending forms in the mail; it’s just an online process.

Here’s the overall steps in a nutshell:

  • You successfully apply for a job and receive a letter of offer from an employer willing to sponsor you
  • You start the work permit process via DJEI, requiring passport, photos and information about your profession. Your future employer supplements your application with their own information required.
  • Your permit is processed within 4-8 weeks and is received at a nominated address.
  • You arrive in Ireland and present your permit to the immigration offices in exchange for a registered GNIB (immigration) card – your permission to live in Ireland.

6. Plan for your relocation to Ireland

Relocating to Ireland has a few complexities. The most pressing issue is usually organising your accommodation; you’ll want a comfortable short-term (1 month) stay that will help you land on your feet initially. This is especially important in Dublin where it is impossible to organise long-term rental leases before your arrival. Check out these tips and tricks for moving to Ireland and avoid any surprises.

When you arrive, you must ensure that you have proof of your permission to work and reside in Ireland. That’s your citizenship, passport or work permit paperwork. Have a look at this relocation checklist to guide your preparation.

That’s all there is to it! Here’s some other resources for working abroad and finding jobs in Dublin or other parts of Ireland:

Have a question? Ask away in the comments below, or take this test and find out if you’re ready to work abroad. Otherwise, good luck on your hunt for jobs in Dublin and Ireland!