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Contracting in the public sector

Posted on 2 Apr 2024 by Jack

For many, IT contracting in Ireland will be nothing new. The IT sector in Ireland has shown robust growth and significant resilience, reflecting its pivotal role in the country's economy. Amidst global economic disruption, Irish tech leaders are heavily investing in digital transformation, technology recruitment, and the maintenance or increase of technology budgets.

A standout detail from the EY Ireland Tech Leaders Outlook Survey 2023 is that 95% of Irish CTOs plan to either increase or maintain current technology spending over the next two years, while 93% aim to either increase or maintain current IT staffing levels.

All this is great news, particularly for those currently employed or looking to work in Ireland's tech sector. Ireland's economy has been the fastest growing in Europe, with a GDP growth of 12.2% and Modified Domestic Demand growing by 8.2%.

The growth of the public sector has been intertwined with broader economic trends and specific government policies aimed at addressing the cost of living, housing, and the expansion of public services. The government's budget for 2023 included significant allocations for public spending, including increases in public expenditure by 6.3%, resulting in €90.4 billion of public expenditure. This expenditure is aimed at supporting various sectors, including housing, health, education, and infrastructure.

Concurrently to this, contractors will see the effect of “Connecting Government 2030” which is the new digital and ICT strategy for Ireland’s Public Service aimed at delivering a modern digital public service by 2030.

So, what does all this mean for Ireland IT contractors? Well, firstly, there has never been a better time to seek out a contract in the public sector. The days of stagnant systems and tools are long gone, replaced with cutting-edge tech aimed at delivering Connecting Government 2030. This, it is hoped, will also drive the wider GovTech priorities, which aim to ensure that Ireland is the best place in Europe to transact digitally with the Government and the best place in Europe to be part of a tech start-up.

For contractors, this will mean more work on longer-term contracts. With the scale of the scope of Connecting Government 2030, many day rate contracts are 2- 4 years in duration. Additionally, with the projects being so vital in delivering on the government strategy, contractors with vital skills gained in the private sector have never been so in demand. So if you have been tempted to explore opportunities in the public sector, the time is now.