Denmark model could unlock top jobs for Ireland’s regions

Uplift in regional jobs | Ardlinn
The executive recruitment company argues that we could increase senior roles by 15%.

Executive recruitment firm Ardlinn (part of the Cpl Group) says annual rural job creation could be increased by 1,500 by following Denmark’s economic regional strategy.

Ardlinn is calling on the government to establish regional growth forums, similar to those that have been created in Denmark which it believes could transform rural employment, generate high-quality jobs and balance the spread of urban and regional roles.

The executive recruitment company argues that we could increase senior roles by 15% on an annual basis by:

  • Empowering regions
  • Utilising the availability of a strong skillset base
  • Developing processes and infrastructure that support regional hubs in sectors such as tech, finance, renewable energy and life sciences

Creating jobs through the development of regional governments

Growth forums in Demark generated more than 8,300 rural jobs, including many senior positions, through the creation of five regional governments, which were given responsibility for regional economic development.

The regions were empowered with statutory responsibility for establishing economic growth and focused on the strengths of each area rather than directing competition between regions.

By applying this approach, Ardlinn Founder and Director Áine Brolly, who was previously SVP for Invest NI for the West Coast of the US, estimates that Ireland’s regions would gain 1,500 jobs.

“Through applying an approach similar to that of Denmark’s, the government could unlock an additional 1,000 – 1,500 new roles per annum, enabling border regions, Midlands and outliers such as Kerry to benefit significantly.”

Áine added:

“By creating five regional hubs, and empowering them with specific economic powers, Denmark was able to generate considerable sectoral growth and create significant employment in its rural regions which potentially provides a blueprint for Ireland to follow.

Chronic under-investment in regional infrastructure is placing our economy, and future projects, at risk. There is a huge opportunity for economic growth in Ireland over the next 20 years. However, over-reliance on the Dublin region is jeopardising this growth as it struggles to meet demand.

We feel more must be done to make top talent and decision makers aware of the benefits of relocating to other cities so they can better compete with Dublin. Ireland’s regions are dynamic, pro-business and pro-entrepreneurship.

Career opportunities, education and the standard of living are attractive across Ireland’s major cities with other benefits such as shorter commute times contributing to other region’s attractiveness.”

Dublin is now home to the largest proportion of the wealth spread across the island of Ireland. Just under 38% of the €87bn combined wealth of Ireland’s richest 300 individuals is Dublin-based. The capital currently counts for 40 per cent of the State’s population, but its output represents half of gross domestic product.

Last year the Government set out a plan to redirect economic activity into the regions. With the state’s population set to grow by more than 1m to 5.7m in the next 20 years, the plan aims to curb Dublin’s domination by developing cities such as Galway, Cork and Limerick, and boosting infrastructure outside the capital. Figures show 59% of Ireland’s large companies are based in Dublin county alone.

Outlining how the Danish approach can generate regional regeneration in Ireland, Áine Brolly said:

“With the government’s regional planning agenda now more than a year old, it is crucial that we see tangible progress in the spread of investment to regions outside of Dublin. The Danish approach is an appropriate comparison, with population size and city to country ratio both similar.

On C level prospects Áine said:

“By empowering Ireland’s regions and attracting FDI, we could be looking at a 10-15% increase in the creation of C level roles, with only 40% of big business CEOs currently based outside of Dublin.”

This would lead to the opportunity of getting people back to the regions who are currently working in Dublin or Cork, revitalising local economies and areas.

However, in recognising this potential we acknowledge the great work of the Department of Enterprise and Innovation, IDA and Connect Ireland who have worked exceptionally hard over the last number of years to create opportunities across Ireland.

“Both Ireland and Denmark have favourable corporation tax rates which support FDI along with a high-quality standard of living, and growing tech and finance sectors.

Through investing in regional infrastructure and leveraging our regional skills base, academic institutions and transport connectivity, Ireland’s regions can flourish in a manner similar to that of Denmark.”

Looking for a talented executive or a new job opportunity in Ireland?

Ardlinn is a Global Irish based Executive Search firm and part of the Cpl resources group. Our name, Ardlinn, is a combination of two Irish words, ‘ard’ meaning ‘high’ or ‘peak’ and ‘linn’ meaning ‘with us’.

The name reflects what we represent as an executive search firm – for our clients, we offer the opportunity to reach leaders at the very highest levels in business. With us, you will get access to leaders in every industry – highly specialised or senior people who are driving major businesses forward.

We work closely with our clients to build a compelling proposition and engage executives who best fit your unique organisational needs.

For candidates, our goal is to help you to reach the peak of your potential. If you are an executive or C-Level and looking for a move – we can help you to find a company that will take you to the next level.

Get in touch with an Ardlinn executive recruitment specialist.

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