1. Send in your CV in Irish
Always apply for an Irish language role through Irish. This includes your CV, cover letter and application email.
Sending in a CV in English doesn’t exactly communicate a personal passion for the language, and could come across as laziness. It may also seem like you don’t understand the role or employer, particularly if Irish is the working language of the company.
If Irish is not the working language of the company, it’s a good idea to send in two separate CV’s, one in English and one in Irish.
2. Ask someone to proofread your application
If you make a grammar mistake in an interview, it’s just a mistake. A mistake in your CV, however, says that you have poor attention to detail and weren’t all that bothered with the application.
Find someone with grammatically strong Irish to proofread your CV. You may have to pay for this, but it’s worth it.
If you are still in college, check if your university has a list of tutors like this one (NUI Galway). You could also ask the Irish language society to recommend some names. If you are not in university, you could get in touch with a translation company like snasta.ie.
Especially if you don’t have a lot of experience, a well-written CV is really important in helping you stand out from the crowd.
3. Get involved in the Irish language community
If you volunteer for Irish language projects, it will be clear to employers that you have a personal interest in the language. This is especially important for jobs that focus on the promotion of the language.
Taking part in Irish language campaigns will also give you something to talk about in any job interview. You will often be asked to talk about a time where you overcame an obstacle or worked effectively as part of a team.
Taking part in campaigns and attending events will help you build a group of Irish-speaking friends. This will increase your chances of hearing about job opportunities socially. You might meet someone who is leaving a job you could apply for, for example.
4. Get a job with a Gaeltacht summer college
If you are still in college, a great way to start your Irish language career is to work with a Gaeltacht summer college. You can earn money and improve your Irish, but more importantly you can make Irish-speaking friends for life. Lots of Ard-Chinnirí stay in touch for years. They are then able to share advice and help each other when looking for jobs later in life.
5. Keep an eye out online
A list of current Irish language vacancies can be found at www.peig.ie/foluntais. Both jobs through Irish and jobs for which the language would be an advantage are posted. The page is updated every day.
Job posts are taken from the websites of Irish language groups, as well as from sites like irishjobs.ie, jobbio.ie and indeed.ie. If you are browsing these sites yourself, a great way to find Irish language jobs is to put “Irish language” or “gaeilge” into the search boxes.
Louise Ní Fhearghail (le peig.ie)