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Galway Jobseekers Report Mental Health Strain and Housing Fears in Survey

19 February 2020
Est. Reading: 4 minutes
  • Bullying: 18% of people have experienced bullying from colleges, while 23% have experienced bullying at the hands of a manager.
  • 49% of respondents reported that their mental health has suffered because of their job
  • Salary is only the third factor considered by jobseekers, under a good working environment and career progression.
  • 54% of respondents say they have not benefited from the positive trends in the economy


A recent survey conducted in the Galway region has revealed that working and fiscal stress is taking its toll on the mental health of local jobseekers. The results of two polls, taken six months apart, demonstrate that despite the positive trends in the economy, workers are feeling the pressure of the housing crisis, have fears about their future prospects and are prepared to leave the region to improve their quality of life.

The survey was carried out by Jobs Expo Galway, a careers event taking place at the Galmont Hotel in the city on Saturday 22nd February. The event will feature more than 30 employers from the West of Ireland as well as a day of free talks, seminars and career guidance advice.

Unhappy in the Workplace

When questioned about their present career, most jobseekers reported to have faced problems across a number of areas: 40% of the survey’s respondents say that a lack of opportunities have halted their professional progression, while 24% see a lack of resources as a major roadblock. As a result, it’s no surprise to learn that 49% of people said that their mental health has suffered because of their job.


This could also be the a result of a toxic workplace, as a whopping 18% of people have experienced bullying from colleges while 23% have experienced bullying by a manager. 32% of respondents have found that the working demands placed on them by their employers were unreasonable - and this trend is set to continue, as this number is up by 5% from the 2019 survey. Only 27% of those who’d experienced issues in the workplace felt they could complain to HR, and 75% of those who did bring the problem to the attention of their employer were unhappy with the actions taken.

Plans to Leave

For employers looking to hold on to their staff, money isn’t always the answer. In fact, of those who were offered jobs in the past year, 57% felt they were offered a fair salary. Also 26% of survey respondents say that when it comes to deciding on whether or not to accept a role, the main factor they consider is the potential for career advancement. The next thing they look for is a good working environment, which was cited as vital by 23% of respondents, while salary was only an issue for 19% of jobseekers - ranking it third on the list overall.


While most people were hoping to find a job in the Galway region, quality of life is key; 51% of respondents stated that they would consider moving from the area if offered the right job - this number has increased by 6% from last year. The cost of living has also become a major factor on people’s decisions to relocate; 18% of jobseekers said they would take this into account when it comes to moving for the right job.

Who’s Attending Jobs Expo Galway 2020?

Most of the responders, 44%, are already employed but are actively looking to change roles, while 7% are students or recent graduates looking to take the first step in their career. 16% are from an IT background, 20% have come from Science and Engineering fields and 13% come from the world of Finance. Almost 40% of attendees are from Galway, 24% are from elsewhere in Ireland and 17% hail from further afield.


When it comes to applying for jobs, these are a selective bunch, as most of the survey respondents, 45%, have only applied for up to five jobs in the past year. They are also highly-educated and experienced. Of those questioned, the vast majority have more than five years experience working in their given field. 76% of jobseekers have completed third- or postgraduate-level education and 72% of respondents committed to undergoing further training in the next year.

Changing Trends

How people are finding potential jobs has changed notably over the six-month period. The number of respondents who reported using jobs boards and recruitment agencies sits at around 60%. While the amount of people who searched for jobs on LinkedIn and Twitter has risen slightly to 69% and those looking for roles via jobs fairs has risen by 7%. Markably, however, the amount of jobseekers using newspapers or traditional media to find their next position has dipped by 15%.

Leadership Fears

At present, the number of people who believe that the government is doing enough to protect employees has dipped in 2020 by 3%. While 16% of jobseekers even reported that things are presently getting worse on the jobs market. Many people are feeling left behind by the recent  economic boom - 54% say they have not benefited from the positive trends in the economy, while 55% of people are concerned about their future prospects.  Fears about Brexit have subsided, dipping from 19% to 10%, however, now the housing crisis has become a problem for 29% - a notable rise of 13% on the previous report.

Register Your Place Today

This comprehensive series of surveys was carried out among the thousands of registered attendees to the Jobs Expo Galway. This busy careers fair is taking place this Saturday, 22nd February at the Galmont Hotel and Spa. Register your free place right here.

Employers will include industry leading companies such as Planet, BCS Recruitment, Sector, Nikon, Merit Medical, Kirby Group, ASML, HID Global, RSA Group, Northern Trust, Ericsson, Kelly Services and training providers and regulatory bodies such as NUI Galway, GRETB, GMIT, TEFL and eCollege

The jobs fair, being described as the West's leading jobs and recruitment fair, will cover opportunities in developing areas such as Medtech, Retail, Pharma, Computers & IT, Construction & Engineering, Public Sector, Smart Data, E-commerce, and more.

The event will include the Career & CV Clinic, where visitors can receive free career coaching from a team of qualified career counsellors. Meanwhile, the Agenda Stage will offer a day of free, topical talks by industry insiders.

More information:
Kevin Branigan
Jobs Expo Galway
t: 087 2679047


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