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Job Search

It is a good idea to start your job search before you return to Ireland, especially as many more employers are open to conducting interviews virtually.

Depending on your industry, it may be useful to update your LinkedIn profile. Setting your profile to be ‘open to work’ lets recruiters know that you are seeking job opportunities and allows you to set location and profession preferences, increasing your profile’s visibility. Connect with people working in your desired sector and reach out to recruiters to maximise your opportunities. Business networks, such as the Irish International Business Network (IIBN), are great places to connect with people working in your sector, along with other Irish citizens who have returned from abroad.

There are plenty of websites to begin your job search, but ensure that you use reputable resources. Some reputable online resources include:

  • JobsIreland.ie – the Public Employment Service of the Department of Social Protection
  • PublicJobs.ie – Public Appointments Service careers across the Irish Civil and Public Service
  • Activelink.ie – hub for Irish non-profit and community organisation career listings
  • Indeed – search job opportunities in all sectors
  • IrishJobs.ie – search job vacancies across Ireland in all sectors

Some Irish recruitment companies, like FRS Recruitment, cater to Irish citizens returning to Ireland from abroad so it can be worth reaching out to them as well to guide your search.

Entrepreneurship

If you are hoping to start your own business on your return, check out Back for Business, an initiative to foster and support entrepreneurial activity among returned Irish emigrants or those planning to return to live in Ireland. Back for Business is funded by the Department of Foreign Affairs through the Emigrant Support Programme.

The Citizens Information website also provides  information on setting up a business in Ireland.

Essential Documents

In addition to an updated Curriculum Vitae (CV), it can be useful to bring:

  • Reference letters from former employers
  • Copies of qualifications and relevant certifications
  • Social insurance record from the country you are leaving. These forms provide details of your social insurance record and will be required if you need to claim sickness, maternity, or unemployment benefits in Ireland
    • If returning from within the European Union, request form E104 and form U1 (formerly E301) from the relevant state authority
  • Detailed records of your employment history, including contracts and payslips

Getting your foreign qualifications recognised

Before you return, make sure that your foreign qualifications are recognised in Ireland by using Foreign Qualifications Database on the National Academic Recognition Information Centre (NARIC) website. This database lists over 1,600 qualifications from more than 160 countries. You can use it to search for your qualification and compare your academic qualification to an Irish qualification of a similar level on the Irish National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ).

If you cannot find your qualification in the database, you can seek guidance from NARIC here.

Claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance

You may need to apply for a social welfare payment for a short time to help you while you look for a job. If you are under pension age (66) and are fit for and genuinely seeking work, you can apply for Jobseeker’s Allowance online on mywelfare.ie or at your local Intreo Centre.

(NOTE: If you last worked in Ireland less than two years ago, you might be eligible a PRSI based payment like Jobseeker’s Benefit instead. See gov.ie for more information)

You will need a PPS Number, photo ID, and proof of your Irish address as part of your application. Proof of address can be a utility bill in your name, or a letter from the bill-payer stating that you are residing with them and a bill in their name.

As Jobseeker’s Allowance is a means-tested payment, you must provide information on your income, savings, and assets. If you are married or living with your partner, both of your incomes will be assessed. You will usually need to provide bank statements for at least the last six months from all accounts and details of property you own but do not live in. Read more about the means test here.

You will also need to satisfy the Habitual Residence Condition (HRC) in order to qualify for this payment. Before you apply, read our guide on HRC and collect useful supporting documentation. Read our HRC information page to get a better understanding. You will need to submit a HRC1 form along with your Jobseeker’s Allowance form when making your application.

You will also need to show evidence on a regular basis that you are capable of, available for, and genuinely seeking work. Emails to or from prospective employers via job websites, or proof of attending interviews will generally be enough to show this.

You can add your children and spouse or partner to your application in order to get an increase for them. They will need PPS Numbers in order for you to do this.

For more information on how to apply for Jobseeker’s Allowance, click here .

Page last updated on 12 February, 2024

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