This week the world looks different to me; brighter than at any point in the last seven years.
A major recession from 2008 on ushered in an era of pressure and challenges for businesses and individuals. Small tech companies like the one I had established in Ireland were no exception, and survival mode became the norm for my team and I. From 2013 we saw an improvement, yet the waters were still choppy. Zartis diversified its business, and we started providing recruitment services as well as recruitment software. So we now provide technology to the recruitment sector, and recruitment to the tech sector. We rebranded to make the distinction clear: Zartis.com is our recruitment services division, and HireHive.io is our recruitment software.
Customers for our software can be found from New Delhi to New York; while our services business is, for now, primarily based in Ireland. However, we have opened an office in Madrid to attract developers from across Europe into Ireland. Weve also opened a small office in Vancouver to spearhead market entry into North America.
All of this growth has been made possible because of our clients and candidates in the booming Irish tech sector. The sector is completely different from when I first started working in what could hardly be called a sector in the mid-nineties. Today Irish companies are raising series A and B rounds in excess of what anybody would have imagined possible 20 years ago. Were seeing non-tech companies building out huge development teams in companies like MasterCard and Ryanair. Were seeing unicorns like Stripe setting up operations back ‘home’ in Ireland. Were seeing private equity pumping $75m into companies like Fenergo.
The growth in capital flow is matched only by the flood of talent attracted to Ireland. In 2002 we had a much more homogenous country with only about 2.5% of people in Ireland born outside of the country. By 2013 this had risen to 12.5%, the fastest growth in any European country and on par with the best talent magnets like Canada and Australia. In our small company Im privileged to work with Spanish, Bulgarian and German co-workers.
Today I find myself writing with a great sense of gratitude, as I see the size of our recruitment services business in Ireland doubling in less than six months. We are fortunate enough to now work with many of the most exciting companies in Dublin, Cork, and beyond, helping them to source CTOs, software professionals and support staff from Ireland, Europe and beyond. Since the start of the year, our existing customer base has started to use us more frequently, which is a great compliment, and many have endorsed us to other companies (an even greater one).
Candidates have referred us to other candidates, my team has helped me to make internal hires by recommending Zartis as a great place to work, and while recruitment does not always give you an instant return on your efforts, we see in the medium and long run that our hard work is paying off. We make mistakes: sometimes the candidates we send for interview dont meet the expectations of our clients; sometimes its the other way around. We have sometimes neglected to give feedback to candidates, or to call them when we said we would. However, every day I see my team doing what they can to deliver recruitment services ethically, and with a focus on quality.
Its not in our DNA to stand still; we are open for business in Vancouver and Madrid, and soon we plan on expanding our services into a much larger geography. This is possible because of the Irish tech sector: resilient, dynamic and wonderfully diverse.