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Navigating the Labour Market Needs Test: A Step-by-Step Guide for Irish Employers

Hiring skilled talent is crucial for any business, but in Ireland, finding the right candidate can sometimes extend beyond your immediate network. This is where the Labour Market Needs Test (LMNT) comes in. It ensures you've explored all avenues to find suitable Irish or EEA candidates before offering the position to non-EEA nationals. While it might seem like an extra hurdle, understanding the LMNT process can be smooth and even beneficial.

Why the LMNT?

The Labour Market Needs Test ensures fairness and transparency in the Irish job market. By advertising your vacancy widely, you give local talent a chance to apply before considering non-EEA candidates. This promotes a balanced workforce and benefits the economy as a whole.

Advertising the Vacancy: To initiate the Labour Market Needs Test, employers need to strategically advertise the vacancy. This involves a multi-platform approach:

  1. Department of Social Protection Employment Services/EURES: Utilise the national coverage of the Department of Social Protection Employment Services network and the expansive reach of the EURES (European Employment Services) network. Advertise the vacancy for a minimum of 4 weeks. You can do this through the user-friendly online service (Log onto JobsIreland, select the employer option, and register your vacancy) or

  • Contact JobsIreland via phone (Tel 08118 111 112 or 01 248 1389) or email ( for assistance.

  • Your registered vacancy will be assigned a reference number, a crucial identifier for the subsequent steps.

  1. National and Local Newspapers/Jobs Websites: Advertise in a national newspaper for a minimum of 3 days and in a local newspaper or jobs website for an additional 3 days.

Required Information in the Advertisement: Ensure that your vacancy complies with the specifications outlined by the Employment Permits Act 2006. The advertisement should include:

  1. Description of the Employment

  2. Name of the Employer

  3. Minimum Annual Remuneration

  4. Location/s of Employment

  5. Hours of Work

Submission of Employment Permit Application: Remember, an application for an employment permit can only be submitted after completing the Labour Market Needs Test, within 90 days of the advertisement's commencement. Importantly, avoid amending or extending vacancies during the

4-week advertising period on JobsIreland to maintain compliance.

Conclusion: Successfully navigating the Labour Market Needs Test is paramount for employers in Ireland aiming to hire non-EEA nationals. By adhering to the outlined steps and requirements, you not only ensure compliance with regulations but also contribute to a fair and transparent recruitment process. If you'd like to engage in a personalised discussion regarding your specific situation, kindly arrange a one-on-one conversation by scheduling an appointment here.



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