A recent study by the Ulster University Economic Policy Centre has revealed that a total of half a million jobs have been created in Northern Ireland in the last 15 years. Most of these jobs, 64% in fact, were created in the service sector, a sector that is so important to the country, and most of the jobs were created in businesses that were very young (the majority of them were in their first year of business).
Helping Us Understand The Process Of Job Creation
This is an interesting study as it looks at when and why most jobs are created by firms and it will help us understand the process of job creation, which could be vital for local government when making policy decisions.
Job Creation Has Been A Policy Lever To Help Grow The Economy
Speaking on the report, Dr Karen Bonner, principal economist at the Economic Policy Centre, is quoted in an article in the Evening Standard as saying:
“In Northern Ireland job creation has been a policy lever to help grow the economy but to date we know little about the ‘how’ of firm job creation in terms of when and how often firms generate employment over their lifetime,” she said.
“To this end, this project seeks to understand both the extent of job creation in Northern Ireland since 2007 and the job creation history of businesses.”
Effective Interventions Are Required
Dr Bonner said government policy should focus on helping established businesses to create job growth.
“Effective interventions could focus on firms with static job patterns over their lifetime, as they represent the most commonly observed pattern,” she said.
“Whether firms survived for three years or 10 years, a significant proportion of them exhibited static job patterns, indicating a lack of significant job creation or loss.
“Programmes supporting job growth could establish entry criteria based on various factors including business characteristics, employment history, and the growth mindset of the owner.”
The article goes on to say that:
‘The report uses individual firm-level records to track job creation, job retention and job loss over time and identifies how prevalent job creation is amongst new firms.’
This is very useful data to use as we move forward over the next few years. Job growth is such an important factor in the wealth of the country and the government should do all that they can to encourage more creation of jobs, not just in the services sector but in all sectors of our economy.