Photo looking over Belfast skyline
Partner Content by Invest Northern Ireland

A Northern Irish Welcome

The Academy Model is flexible and versatile, and has been used to help companies recruit new staff in a variety of areas – from data analytics, software development and cyber security to business, financial and legal services and even welding.

An environment that helps you get ahead

In spite of our small stature, over 1,100 companies currently operate in Northern Ireland, including major US companies like Microsoft, Allstate, Aflac and Seagate. And when they come, they tend to stay, with over 70 per cent of new investors choosing to re-invest in the region further down the line. That’s precisely why we still hold the accolade for attracting more FDI jobs per head than any other region in the UK.

But beyond talent, what’s the pull?

Firstly, the competitive cost of doing business and the renowned quality of life in Northern Ireland are clear benefits for employees and employers alike. Property costs, for instance, are around 75 per cent lower than they are in London and 60 per cent lower than Dublin, and, in line with lower living costs, salaries can be around 30% and 20% lower compared with London and Dublin respectively.

Secondly, digital connectivity is of significant importance to investors, even more as our world moves increasingly online and more people move to flexible or hybrid working. Northern Ireland benefits from quality connectivity throughout, and, thanks to its fibre foundations, Belfast is to be one of first cities in the UK to benefit from a city-wide roll out of 5G.

Northern Ireland also offers powerful networks of the non-digital kind. Collaboration is rich and well embedded across all sectors, and this ability for public, private and academic communities to work together has been instrumental in our success. In the coming years, this approach is set to unlock an anticipated £1 billion in fresh investment through a host of City Deals.

Finally, Northern Ireland provides uniquely international links, allowing companies to serve both UK and EU markets from one location. As a hotbed for investment, particularly in R&D, Northern Ireland can serve as an ideal central location for trialling, manufacturing, and commercialising products to reach multiple markets. For those seeking information on market access, a fact sheet is available on our website.

Sector hubs with pull factor

With its long industrial and shipbuilding heritage, Northern Ireland was previously associated with more traditional sectors. However, in recent decades, there is established leadership in some of the world’s most important and cutting edge industries including digital transformation, cyber security, biotech and data analytics.

Likewise, professional and business services, including legal and finance, are now very mature in terms of both access to talent and reputation. Indeed, Northern Ireland is home to some of the biggest names globally, including EY, Deloitte, PwC, KPMG, TPIcap, Citi, Allstate, and Aflac.