A new survey published by the Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland indicates that there is a shortage of suitably qualified property graduates in the property sector.
The survey also found that a shortage of graduates with surveying qualifications in construction will materialize by the middle of next year.
The SCSI said that while employment in the property and construction sectors fell by 56% between 2007 and 2011, employment in both sectors is returning to growth and is likely to increase in the coming years.
The key elements in the shortfall is the huge drop-off in graduates enrolling on property and construction courses after 2007 and a recent pick-up in activity levels in both sectors.
The SCSI ‘Graduate Employment Trends in Construction and Property Surveying’ found that between 2007 and 2011, employment in property surveying fell by 43% while construction surveying employment fell by more than 60%.
Since 2007, there has been a 86% decline in CAO applications for property courses and a 66% fall in the number of CAO applicants for construction courses.
However, SCSI members have reported a greater demand for property graduates in 2012 due to increased workload and an increased expectation of activity due to a €2.2bn construction stimulus plan next year.
Roland O’Connell, President of the Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland said: "There is already a shortage of graduates coming into the property sector to meet demand by employers as the residential and commercial property markets stabilise and activity increases.
"While the findings are good news for students who are just starting property and construction courses, it is a real concern right now for employers who need to recruit graduates in the short term as industry activity increases in the coming years."
O’Connell said that a similar situation is likely to arise in the construction sector in 2013 as both construction projects to meet the demands of foreign direct investment and the €2.2bn government stimulus package to build schools, health facilities and roads, begins.
He referred to the situation in the IT industry which suffered a significant reduction in graduates arising from the Dot-com bubble and which is currently manifesting in a lack of available graduates as reported by the high-tech firms.