As Ireland’s leading independent IT recruitment agency, our team fields hundreds of questions from prospective candidates and eager clients each week. Each role that we advertise is completely unique with its own set of requirements, responsibilities, targets and expectations, with a myriad of queries from job spec inception right through to hiring, remuneration and reward packages that come at the end of every successful placement.
Every hiring organisation we work with is different, as is each individual applicant we put forward for roles, so we want to give you a helpful steer on what kind of questions we get asked for that you’re prepared for the recruitment process in full confidence with no ambiguity around what to expect when choosing to work with GemPool.
Here in our comprehensive recruitment FAQ section, you’ll find answers to frequently asked questions about general recruitment principles, how our processes work and what you can expect from the moment you contact us to the moment you hire or be hired!
To further satiate your quest for knowledge that’s led you to this page, you may also find value in reading our regularly published employment insights for tech recruitment industry news and practical tips on how to nail down that killer IT job you’ve been seeking!
Recruitment agencies act as the middleman between a company and job seeker. Companies approach recruitment agencies with job vacancies and it’s the agency’s job to fill these jobs with suitable talent, through sourcing, screening and filtering through large volumes of applicants. On the other hand it is their duty to help candidates in the market to find their ideal dream job that will help them in their career path.
Looking for your perfect recruitment partner? We can help you with that.
Recruitment agencies help companies fill job vacancies in a timely manner with strong candidates in the market and help candidates find the most suitable jobs based on their profile. Recruitment agencies also provide their clients and candidates with relevant market information that can help them in their decision making process.
Want to get in touch with a highly technical and qualified recruitment consultant? You can get in touch with us by submitting your queries on our contact page and we’ll get back to you right away.
A recruitment consultant can be a jobseeker's best friend. They bring exciting opportunities to you, help mend and structure your CV for better response rates, save you time by submitting applications to multiple job vacancies where they think you’re better suited to, and also provide you with guidance and assistance at every stage of the recruitment process.
Please check out our deep-dive on the duties of a recruitment consultant for more information.
Recruitment agencies generally charge a recruitment fee based on a percentage of the base salary of the candidate being placed in a company. However, there are a few different forms of fee structures that can be settled on based on the joint decision between the company and the agency. Some of the arrangements are:
Recruitment consultants will ask you a range of questions about your background, your ideal role, some competency based interview questions, salary requirements and availability.
There are many common questions that will help them connect you with the most suitable role. Some examples of the questions they usually ask include:
Recruitment consultants at agencies use different methods to secure high quality candidates for companies.
Naturally, we’re a little biased on this one but of course we feel that experienced, trusted recruitment agencies can be your best bet when it comes to securing a job.
They work on your behalf and to your schedule, preparing and advising you on how to best perform in an interview. They have an existing relationship with the company and are able to set your expectations and guide you on how to perform best to secure the job you’re after.
Recruitment agencies help you save time and cost in any hiring process. The consultants also have the technical skill set and industry knowledge to help companies create a more streamlined recruitment process. They also act as an extension of the company brand in the market which helps get the word out quicker.
If the recruiter deems you’re fit for the role and decides to put you forward, they would definitely inform you about the employer, their culture, location and all the information you’ll need to make an informed decision.
Yes, recruitment agencies on the instructions of the company they’re working with, do collect references and check them on their behalf.
Candidates categorically do not have to pay recruitment agencies any fees for their services. Companies on the other hand do pay recruitment fees for the services delivered. You can find out more about the available fee structures.
No, recruitment agencies do not charge candidates for their services.
You can approach a recruitment agency by either connecting with one of their consultants via email or LinkedIn and you can also contact them through their website contact pages.
It’s worth noting that recruitment agencies often receive a large volume of applications and they try to reach out to all those who apply in, but many times they respond to those whom they’re able to help immediately.
With a proven track record in placing for data centre jobs, we’ve determined that Data Centre Technicians’ salaries can range from €24k - €70k depending on the level of seniority of the role.
By definition, Data Centre Technicians work with servers or hardware infrastructure, they are responsible for backups and restoration of data within a network, decommissioning servers, fixing servers, replacing components, salvaging old usable components.
Diagnostics also plays a large part of the role. The role would also include running cables including copper (CAT5/CAT6) & Fiber (Single and Multi mode).
Data Centres would have a whole host of different professions working in the facility. These would include IT, facilities, security, networking, engineering, design, logistics and administration to name a few. Most of the above skills are transferable.
If you are technically-oriented for example, we would advise you to visit our jobs page. There are courses in Data Center hotspots such as Dublin, Amsterdam, London, Frankfurt that work closely with the large platers in the market such as AWS, Tencent, Google and Microsoft.
Working on the infrastructure within a Data Center typically you will require some hands on credentials/experience working with servers. There are college courses such as DIT Tallaght in association with AWS.
These programmes give you an excellent foothold into the sector at a junior level. At a more senior level, Hardware and Infrastructure Engineers have easily transferable skills. So if you have worked with servers, monitored performance in general, you would be an ideal candidate for a role in Data Center IT Infrastructure.
There are college courses such as DIT Tallaght in association with AWS. These programs give you an excellent foothold into the sector at a junior level. GemPool holds numerous accounts where we take more junior and in some cases IT hobbyists and place them into Technician roles that give valuable first time experience. Courses such as Comptia A+ is a terrific and affordable way to get some of the skills you needed to get your start in a Data Center.
As per above, there are college courses such as DIT Tallaght in association with AWS. These programs give you an excellent foothold into the sector at a junior level. GemPool holds numerous accounts where we take more junior and in some cases IT hobbyists and place them into Technician roles that give valuable first time experience.
Courses such as Comptia A+ is a terrific and affordable way to get some of the skills you needed to get your start in a Data Center.
There are also a huge amount of roles on the facility side of the Data Center including Electricians, Electrical and Mechanical Engineers. So your skills are very transferable if you have typically worked in areas that require back up generators or cooling systems, such as hospitals, shopping centers, Oil rigs and medical and Pharmaceutical facilities.
Data Centers are businesses made up of real estate, technology, and service. They supply space for racks/cabinets, power, cooling, network connectivity, and maintenance to the facility. So a company will host their infrastructure at a cost in a Data Center.
‘Big tech’ companies such as Facebook, Twitter, TikTok who sell user information to advertisers on their platforms need somewhere to store that data. This data is stored in Data Centers.
Currently there are around 60-70 Data Centers in Ireland with inward investment continuing to come into the country, this figure will grow to over 100 over the next 3-5 years.
Ireland is attracting interest from companies all over the world for a host of reasons. Ireland's climate, labour market, availability to the electrical grid and world class broadband infrastructure.
Not only is Ireland home to a Data Center epi-center to the major US giant's Google, Facebook, Microsoft and Amazon they are also attracting interest from China’s TikTok. Find out more about the phenomenon of Ireland being at the centre of Data Centre growth in Europe.
An independent contractor is an individual contracted to perform work or provide services to another company as a freelancer or contractor, you are not an employee of said company. As a result of this an independent contractor must pay their own taxes. These contractors are not entitled to the benefits a regular employee would receive.
The main difference is subcontracting is doing work on behalf of a third party for a company. For example if you are employed by an umbrella company working for a recruitment agency onsite in a company, that is considered subcontracting.
Contracting is when you work directly for a company/person as a non employee. For example if you are deployed directly from a Recruitment agency on a customer site on a specific contract.
Relying on data we’ve compiled as one of Ireland’s most prolific IT contracting service providers we know that an IT contractor generally earns more than a permanent employee. In many cases, a contractor can earn up to 30% more than somebody working as a permanent employee. This is due to flexibility and tax benefits. Contractors do not avail of the benefits that a permanent employee would.
Contractors are not paid for holidays or sick days. They will have to look for new opportunities every 6/12 months if contract renewals are not offered. Contractors only get paid when they work, so they’ll need to make provision for time between contracts, when they won’t have any money coming in.
One of our long-term employer clients, Fenero Accounting and Contracting specialists reported that to date the average IT Contracting daily rate in Ireland is €421.
When setting up as a contractor you can choose from 3 main options:
This is where an accounting partner set you up as an employee of an umbrella company for tax and payroll purposes. This option is best for short term contracts and people who want to retain Social Welfare benefits. Best suited for daily rates up to €200 and employers PRSI is paid.
This is where an accounting partner will set you up as the Director of an umbrella company for tax and payroll purposes. This option is for any length of contract and can help the contractor to maximise retention (how much of their daily rate they keep versus pay in tax). This fits someone who is not concerned about retaining Social Welfare benefits. Best suited for daily rates from €180-€400 and employers PRSI is not applicable. This setup is recommended if you are new to contracting.
This is when you set up your own company to contract under. Best suited for 12 month contracts on daily rates of €400+ . This option can take longer to set up than the umbrella options but allows you more control around tax planning and ability to claim expenses. Check out the type of expenses above.
If you need some more clarity to find out which option will suit you the best, you can contact an Accounting partner like Fenero.
Contract companies are hired by consulting or staffing agencies. They then place them into businesses that need help on projects. Contracts are typically 6-12 months.
Contracting work in a similar way to recruitment companies, they deploy workers on the request of their customer. These works can range from one off projects to maternity cover to relief staff. It is generally done on a daily rate or project basis, where the customer will predict how long a contractor is needed for and the Recruitment Company or Managed Services will then seek out the required talent.
Depending on your situation, if you are risk averse or financially motivated. In general cases Yes. There can be great benefits to working as a contractor. Increased Salary, more flexibility, and in general it is more tax efficient to mention a few benefits.
No contract jobs do not look bad on your CV. Clearly mark where you have worked as a contractor.
No, contract employees don’t get paid for time off. That’s why they are generally paid more to compensate for holidays, sick leave, and bank holidays.
Contract jobs pay more as employers are ready to invest more for a highly specialised individual to work on a project where that specific skill set is difficult to find. There are also cost savings for the company, such as they will save money on benefits, employer tax and annual leave, to attract a contractor it's generally given they will be paid a higher base rate.
The average national rent in Ireland is €1,412 per month, with Dublin taking the lead on the most expensive location in the country, with an average rent of €2,040 according to daft.ie.
On the other hand, the cheapest average rent can be found in Leitrim (€577 per month), followed by Donegal (€628 per month), Roscommon (€674 per month) and Longford (€680 per month). For a complete breakdown of utilities, markets, tax rates and more, you can find all your information in our comprehensive Living in Ireland Guide.
The following are some of the highest-paying IT jobs in the industry. You can also find a complete list of salary rates in our Tech Salary Guide.
Business Analysts can pursue different career paths in Business Analysis, product management, project management, and consulting. It largely depends on the employee's appetite to learn new concepts/technology as it is the only way to stay afloat in this domain.
After several years of experience as a Business Analyst, one can also choose to move as an IT Business Analyst, Data Scientist, Quantitative Analyst, Management Analyst, Information Security Analyst, or Solution Architect.
The average IT Technician will earn around €30,000, this is an average and it's not unusual to see this figure closer to €50k depending on what you are required to do as an IT Technician.
This one really depends on what type of role you’re interviewing for, and what type of company you’re interviewing with. You need to do your research on this. Several companies still operate a formal dress approach - shirt and tie - though this is becoming less and less common. Most operate a business casual/smart casual approach - shirt and slacks.
Some workplaces are much less formal, where jeans and a t-shirt are perfectly acceptable. What you don’t want, is to out-dress the interviewer. Nothing worse than being sat there in a tie and blazer, whilst the person looking to hire you is wearing a Metallica hoodie; throws the balance way off and just doesn’t work out well!
The good news is, this is a perfectly acceptable question to ask during an initial phone screen or as a reply to an interview invitation (most will actually state it in there).
There are lots of factors that come into play here so, the short answer is, it depends. From your side, it depends if you have a notice period that you need to honour in your current job. This is typically a month. Most employers would be looking to get you started as soon as possible - it’s not unheard of to be asked, “Can you start Monday?”. From the employers side though, factors can include time-consuming onboarding processes.
For an IT job, you are likely to need to be set up on the system, credentials issued, logins and email addresses and so on. This can take time and often requires verification from more than one person in the company. If you have no notice period and you don’t require a visa/permit to come through before you can work, it’s very rare you’ll be waiting more than a couple of weeks to get started.
Naturally, you’ll need to have appropriate knowledge/experience/overall credentials for the role - hopefully that’s a given. But to start with it’s a good idea to research companies in your area that work with the technologies/languages that you specialise in or, if you’re starting out, where you’re looking to specialise in.
It’s a good idea to connect with people in those companies too. Not just HR, but people who work on the “shop floor”. Get an insight into what they do day to day, what the company’s like, etc. Gather plenty of fuel for conversation in the event you secure an interview and looks great if you can name drop “I was speaking with Harry and Gillian from the red team actually…”.
Of course, you can save yourself a lot of leg work by simply giving your friendly neighbourhood recruiters at GemPool a call; we’re always on hand to advise and assist!
Software Development is a huge area within IT and there are numerous different programming languages to choose from. Each language is popular in it’s own way but some are in demand more than others, and hence might pay a little bit more. The truth is that a Software Developer can make anywhere from 30k to 120k depending on the seniority, the technical knowledge and of course the company itself and what they pay for the job.
To give you an idea, here are some salary ranges for one of the more popular backend programming languages, Java. Junior level Java Developer is 35k - 50k. Mid level Java Developer is 50k - 60k. Senior level Java Developer is 70k - 85k. Java Architect is 90k - 110k. You can find a complete list of salaries in our Tech Salary Guide.
Great Business Analysts are usually good with technology and also have an analytical approach to problem solving. Naturally, the first step towards securing one of these jobs is to complete a suitable degree such as, but not limited to Computer Science, Business Administration or Economics.
The next step is to update your CV etc and position yourself in an interview process for a suitable role. This can be done by using the jobs boards such as LinkedIn or Indeed or you could apply directly to a company that you would like to work in with your CV and cover letter.
The other and arguably most effective way of getting interviews for one of these jobs is by working with recruiters who are specialists within this area. So get in touch if you’re in the market and looking, you can email us on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Once you’ve set up an interview and are sitting in front of a Hiring Manager, that is half the battle. Business Analysts are usually great communicators and very organised individuals, so this should be evident throughout your interview. Just be confident and prepare well for this interview and before you know if you will be exactly where you want to be!
You are best assessing the availability of your skillset and see if there are options in Ireland, you can use job boards or reach out to Recruitment Agencies such as GemPool. Linkedin, Indeed and Irish Jobs are good job boards to seek out job opportunities.
The reality in Ireland is that it is a competitive place to work. So the simple answer is no. However with the right preparation, right advice and good CV your chances go up. Ireland is filled with exciting companies both indegionus and Multinational companies. There are excellent opportunities but these companies demand the best talent. So prepare yourself.
There are many ways to find new jobs in Ireland and here are a couple of ideas for those of you looking to get started on the job hunt.
There are a few striking signs that indicate it’s time to switch jobs and if you relate to any of the following signs, maybe it’s time to reevaluate:
If you need some guidance on taking a leap and switching jobs in the tech market, maybe we can be of some help, simply get in touch today.
First of all, take a deep breath. Take some time to allow yourself to come to terms with what has happened. Once you are ready, then these are the key steps you need to take.
Here in Ireland, you will find a wide range of Software Engineering roles right across the software development lifecycle and from Grad all the way up to C-Suite level. The IT industry is vibrant, growing and active in Ireland. Why not talk to one of our consultants about your own specific needs and we can give you more detailed insight that is tailored to you.
Sometimes. It does depend on the employer. For many Software Engineering positions, the potential employer wants to find out if you are a technical fit. Traditionally, doing a technical test or task is the preferred way to do this. These can be online tests that are timed and you get the results instantly (like Codility), or you might be given a task to complete over a few days, at home.
Other approaches that are popular are to do whiteboard exercises and technical challenges when in an interview, or to do some paired screen coding with a technical person from the potential employer.
In Ireland, these titles are used interchangeably. So there is little difference between them. Strictly speaking though, it would be considered that a Software Engineer is someone who is given a problem to solve, though code. They would need to come up with the solution and code it. A Software Developer would be someone who is given the solution and they code it. So they would not also incorporate the solution element.
If you are looking for a software development job in Ireland, you need a blended approach of actively applying and searching for jobs, as well as working with a preferred recruitment agency, like GemPool.
Many jobs are never advertised directly by companies as they rely on their recruitment partners to fill these roles. So you want to give yourself as much chance of hearing about the right jobs for you.
Nearly always, yes. If you are purporting that you are a skilled designer, you need to be able to show this design skill and track record. A very popular website that is used by designers is Behance.
No. This all depends on what the employer is looking to build. If their product is cloud based, then you would more than likely need to have some exposure to cloud technologies.
We find that AWS is a more popular hosting provider and therefore we see this more frequently on job ads, but an employers preference will all depend on what they use for their hosting. Both AWS and Azure are widely used, but we also see Google Cloud and other services also being preferred by employers.
Java is the language that is used by the most software developers in Ireland. So you could argue that it is the most widely used. C# would be in second place.
Most Software Engineers will follow the same path from Grad to Mid Level to Senior Software Engineer. At this point there are broadly two paths. Some will go down the ‘Team Lead’ path. This would still often be hands on with code but your focus will shift towards people management and leadership.
From there, it's feasible to move into a Software Engineering Manager role and then onto Director, VP or ‘Head of’ Engineering role. From there you would aim to become a CTO. The other path is to move into a ‘Technical Lead’ role. Here you would be still very technically hands-on and you would lead others purely from a technical standpoint to define tasks and make technical decisions.
As your career path evolves, you could then move into a Principle Engineer or Architect role. These are often sole contributor roles.
SaaS stands for ‘Software As A Service’. This refers to software that is accessed by the internet. Gmail, Facebook, online banking are all great examples of SaaS applications or products. You just need wifi and you can access it anywhere. Many software products are now SaaS based and this sector is growing.
The type of testing you would do could also differ in a SaaS company as you have differing user activities. E.g. load testing your application is key in case you get a sudden influx of users at the same time.
Hopefully we’ve covered most of the burning questions you’ve been thinking about as you embark on the next chapter of your long and prosperous career in tech.
If you’ve got anything else you’d like to ask, or indeed feel we’re missing anything in the above list that you’d like to see added, please get in touch today and we’ll both answer your query and update this list of resources periodically - we look forward to hearing from you soon!