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How to Be a Critical Skills Worker in Ireland: What Jobs are In Demand?

Our guide highlights key information regarding Critical Skills Employment Permits in Ireland. Find out about critical skills, salaries and what you need to know to apply. We help you navigate Ireland’s Critical Skills and LMNT policies, and detail the most in-demand jobs. 

For expert advice on your Critical Skills Employment Permit, or for other Ireland work visa enquiries, call us on 0333 305 9375 or reach out to us online.

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What is Critical Skills Employment Permit?

The Critical Skills Employment Permit addresses skills gaps in the domestic labour market and attracts highly skilled workers. It is one of the two most common routes to overseas employment in Ireland, alongside the General Employment Permit. 

Critical Skills Employment focuses on Ireland’s key pillars and economic drivers. In particular, it concentrates on the key industries contributing to the country’s GDP (Gross Domestic Product) including Life Sciences, Medical Technologies, and ICT. These are considered the most in-demand skills in Ireland today. 

Driven by innovation, research and economic impact, these industries have transformed Ireland. Now a hub for world-class research and operations, Ireland attracts global talent to work. It is also a significant factor in Ireland’s immigration policy.

There are also mutliple roles in healthcare, education and construction for example on the Critical Skills Occupation List. You can see a broader list below. 

Eligibility Requirements

To be eligible for the Critical Skills Employment Permit, you must meet the following criteria:

  • You must have a job offer in a qualifying occupation from an Irish employer.
  • For most occupations, you must be paid the minimum annual salary requirement, which is €32,000. The minimum for some high-demand occupations, such as ICT professionals, is €64,000.
  • You must have the qualifications, skills, and experience relevant to the job offer

Do you need to do a Labour Market Needs Test (LMNT) in Ireland if applying for Critical Skills Employment?

LMNT is the Labour Market Needs Test in Ireland. It is required for General Employment Permits, but not for Critical Skills Employment Permits. Those with Critical Skills who can satisfy the criteria may be eligible for a visa without a LMNT. This means employers are not required to provide reasons why local candidates were unsuitable for the role before employing an overseas worker. 

Benefits of the Critical Skills Employment Permit

  • Permit holders can bring their families to Ireland straight away under Immediate Family Reunification
  • After two years, permit holders can apply for permanent residency
  • After 12 months, holders can move to a different employer within the same occupation without a new permit.

If you have any questions about the Critical Skills Employment Permit or other Ireland visas, our experienced and affordable lawyers are on hand to support you

Critical Skills Employment Permit Occupation List

In Demand Skills


The demand for ICT professionals has grown in recent years. Tech heavyweights, including Google, Microsoft and Facebook, have brought operations to Ireland. Some of the roles in the highest demand in Ireland are in:

  • Software Development
  • Cybersecurity
  • Data Science & Analysis
  • AI & Machine Learning
  • Network Engineering

Life Sciences, BioTech & MedTech

Biotech and MedTech companies have also moved some significant operations to Ireland. A thriving Life Sciences sector has brought global companies. This includes Medtronic, Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson. Some of the life sciences jobs that are in demand include:

  • Biotechnologists
  • Pharmaceutical Scientists
  • Clinical Research Associates
  • Quality Assurance Specialists
  • Regulatory Affairs Specialists

This has also extended into medical technologies (MedTech), emphasising innovation. Ireland has become one of the biggest global exporters in MedTech. Some in-demand roles include:

  • Biomedical Engineers
  • Device Design Engineers
  • Process Development Engineers
  • Product Development Managers
  • Compliance Officers

Get expert immigration advice to navigate Ireland work visas and immigration rules today.


Other roles, not listed above on the Critical Skills Employment Permit Occupation List include:

Construction and Engineering

  • Site Manager
  • Quantity Surveyor
  • Architectural Technologist
  • Construction Project Manager
  • Commercial Manager
  • Design and Development Engineer
  • Biomedical Engineer

Natural Sciences and Environment

  • Professional Forester
  • Operational Forecaster

Business and Management

  • Management Consultant specialising in big data analytics
  • Business Analyst specialising in finance & investment analytics
  • IT Business Analyst
  • IT Project and Programme Manager

Information Technology

  • IT Specialist Manager
  • IT Project and Programme Manager
  • Programmers and Software Development Professionals
  • Web Design and Development Professionals


  • Academics in higher education institutions


  • Medical Laboratory Scientist
  • Registered Midwife
  • Medical Practitioner
  • Psychologist
  • Industrial Pharmacist/Pharmacist
  • Radiographer
  • Radiation Therapist
  • Podiatrist/Chiropodist
  • Audiologist
  • Perfusionist
  • Dietician
  • Cardiac Physiologist
  • Medical Scientist
  • Physiotherapist
  • Occupational Therapist
  • Speech and Language Therapist
  • Orthoptist
  • Registered Nurse

Social Services

  • Social Worker

Quality Assurance and Regulatory

  • Quality Assurance and Regulatory Professional

Sports and Fitness

  • High Performance Sports Coach

How to Succeed in Critical Skills Employment in Ireland

Stay Updated

Technological advances are fast-moving in Ireland, so continuously upgrading skills and adapting to industry trends is commonplace.


Ireland has a thriving networking scene, especially in the LMNT fields. This can help with assimilation and job prospects.

Work Culture 

Adapt to Irish work culture, which places significant value on collaboration, innovation and flexibility.

Cultural adaptation

Understanding Irish customs, traditions, and social norms can facilitate smoother integration.

Why Work with IAS

Immigrating to Ireland can be an exciting opportunity, but understanding the immigration laws and visa types is crucial to ensure a smooth transition. 

Our Ireland immigration lawyers are experienced in all areas of Irish immigration law, and can uncover your eligibility, application process and support you every step of the way.

From advice to submitting supporting documentation, our experts can help you with a stress-free visa application. Call us on 0333 305 4796 or contact us online to begin your Ireland visa application.

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