Careers rarely develop the way we plan them. Our career path often takes many twists and turns, with particular events, choices and people influencing our direction.

We asked Kevin Keary from EU Careers to give some advice for people considering this job:


Kevin Keary

Parliamentary Assistant

EU Careers

Read more

  Kevin Keary
Be proactive and look for the areas that interest you whether it’s the Environment or Human Rights and find MEP’s or interest groups that specialise in those interests and take the initiative to send them your CV.

Having a European language would help you considerably in this career. Irish should also not be ruled out as an option as this is considered as a second language.

The Social person's interests focus on some aspect of those people in their environment. In all cases the social person enjoys the personal contact of other people in preference to the impersonal dealings with things, data and ideas found in other groups.

Many will seek out positions where there is direct contact with the public in some advisory role, whether a receptionist or a counsellor. Social people are motivated by an interest in different types of people, and like diversity in their work environments. Many are drawn towards careers in the caring professions and social welfare area, whilst others prefer teaching and other 'informing' roles.
Career Interviews
Sector Profiles
School Subjects (LC)
College Courses
Study Skills
Work Experience (School)
CV & Interview Preparation
Labour Market Sector Profiles
logo imagelogo image

Related Career Sectors

Education Education

Education Occupations

Key points for selected education occupations

  • In 2014, there were approximately 116,000 persons employed in the selected education occupations, representing 6.1% of national employment (Figure 9.6.1)
  • Four fifths of overall employment was at professional level (three fifths was in primary/nursery and secondary school teaching); a further 8% was at associate professional level
  • Between 2009 and 2014, while overall employment increased by only 0.6% on average annually, strong employment growth was observed for teaching & other educational professionals (7.3% on average annually), vocational & industrial trainers/instructors (6.9% on average annually) and secondary school teachers (5.2% on average annually); in contrast, employment contracted for all other occupations, with the strongest rate of decline observed for higher & further education teaching professionals
  • Over that five year period, a net 3,500 additional jobs were created; the largest employment increase was recorded for secondary teachers (6,600); in contrast, the largest decline was observed for primary/nursery teachers (almost 6,000)
  • Between 2013 and 2014, overall employment declined by 2.2%, with a net job loss of almost 3,000; while employment levels for most occupations did not change significantly, the most pronounced decline was observed for secondary school teachers (Figure 9.6.2)
  • One quarter of employed higher & further education teaching professionals were aged 55 or older (Figure 9.6.3)
  • The majority of persons employed in professional and associate professional occupations were third level graduates; two fifths of employed educational assistants were third level graduates
  • At least three fifths of those employed in each occupation was female; at 90%, the share of females was the highest for primary & nursery teachers and educational support assistants; with just over half male, the workforce of higher & further education teaching professionals was the most closely gender balanced.

Shortage Indicators

In recent years, the lack of permanent employment contracts in the publicly funded education sector resulted in frequent movements of teachers between employers. In 2014, the number of transitions arising due to a change of employer was estimated at 5,500 for primary and secondary teachers, which translates into a higher turnover rate than that for most other professionals. The removal of the recruitment ban should result in less intra-occupational movement and importantly in expansion demand for teachers.

While some expansion demand is expected to emerge as the public sector resumes recruitment, given the cautious increases in public spending, most of the recruitment requirement is expected to arise due to replacement demand. In 2014, almost 4,000 transitions to economic inactivity (i.e. retirement, home duty etc.) were identified for primary and secondary teachers.

In 2014, graduate output from education courses at NFQ levels 8 and above was almost 6,000 (including private colleges). To what extent will this be sufficient to meet the recruitment requirement will depend on Government policy regarding public expenditure on education.

The expected demographic change will create pressure to increase the number of teachers. The population in relevant age cohorts - children aged 5-12 (primary cycle) and 13-18 (secondary cycle) - is expected to increase over the medium term. For the period 2016- 2021, the CSO estimated growth of 35,000- 46,000 (depending on the scenario) for the primary cycle cohort and 32,000-37,000 for the secondary cycle cohort.(Population and Labour Force Projections 2016-2046, CSO, 2013.)

Even during the recent periods of excess supply of teachers (in May 2015, there were 600 job ready job seekers with third level qualifications), there were issues with sourcing teachers with a high level of expertise in specific fields, such as science and mathematics.

As the economy recovers, the ability to attract persons with science and maths skills into teaching may become more challenging given that such skills are also in demand in other sectors (e.g. financial).


Labour Market Research 20

These links are to well established sources of information used to review, evaluate and predict changes in our labour market.

Future Skills Needs of the Biopharma Industry in Ireland August 2016 
This report reviews the supply of, and demand for, skills within the Biopharma Industry in Ireland up to 2020, with a specific focus on Biologics manufacturing as a growing sub-sector within the industry. It is estimated that 8,400 potential job openings
Assessing the Demand for Big Data and Analytics Skills 2013 - 2020 
May 2014 EGFSN report identifying measures to build up the Big Data and analytics talent pool in Ireland over the period up to 2020 in line with enterprise demand.
Regional Labour Markets Bulletin 2014 
Report prepared by the Skills and Labour Market
Research Unit in SOLAS aimed at providing an analysis of the key labour market indicators for each of Ireland’s eight administrative
regions: Border, Dublin, Mid-East, Midland, Mid-West, South-East, South-
Addressing the Demand for Skills in the Freight Transport, Distribution and Logistics Sector in Ireland 2015 – 2020 
February 2015 EGFSN report assessing the skills and competency requirements for the Freight Transport, Distribution and Logistics sector in Ireland up to 2020
Vacancy Overview 2014 - EFGSN 
The Vacancy Overview 2014 produced May 2015 by the Skills and Labour Market Research Unit in SOLAS on behalf of the EGFSN, draws on data from newly advertised job vacancies in the following sources: DSP Jobs Ireland and The analysis focuses
Monitoring Ireland's Skills Supply 
July 2015 report on those entering and leaving the Irish education system (primary, post-primary,further education and training, and higher education) spanning the ten levels of the National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ)
Regional Labour Markets Bulletin 2015 
Annual report produced by the EGFSN which identifies variations in skills supply and demand across 8 regions (Border, Dublin, Mid East, Mid-West, Midland, South East, South West and West).
Assessment of Future Skills Requirements in the Hospitality Sector in Ireland 2015-2020 
Report from the EGFSN assessing the skills demand within the Hospitality sector in Ireland to 2020 to ensure the right supply of skills to help drive domestic hospitality sector business and employment growth.
Vacancy Overview 2015 - EGFSN May 2016 
A report produced by the Skills and Labour Market Research Unit (SLMRU) in SOLAS for the Expert Group on Future Skills Needs contextualising 2015 vacancy data with what is occurring in the Irish labour market
EGFSN - Report for HE Providers on Springboard 2014 / ICT Level 8 Conversion Programme 
February 2014 Report "Guidance for Higher Education providers on current and future skills needs of enterprise - Springboard 2014 / ICT Level 8 Conversion Programme"
Next Last

Current Labour Market Info 4

These sites provide news of current events that relate to our evolving labour market.

IBEC Quarterly Economic Trends 
Download publication in PDF format.
SCSI Employment Opportunities & Skills Requirements for Construction and Property Surveying 2014-18 
New report April 2014 from SCSI outlining the Employment Opportunities and Skills Requirements for Construction and Property Surveying projected from 2014-2018
Shortage of craft/entry level staff in the Hotel Sector 
Hotels and guesthouses are experiencing serious difficulties recruiting suitably qualified craft/entry level staff - IHF Annual Conference 24/2/14
National Skills Bulletin 2015 
The National Skills Bulletin 2015 provides an overview of the Irish labour market at occupational level, drawing on a variety of data sets, which have been systematically gathered in the National Skills Database (NSD) since 2003.

Know of a link that you think should be included in this section? Send it to