Donegal County Council is the first local authority in Ireland to launch a Remote Working for Business Strategy that will see the county making the most of the benefits that the growth in remote working is bringing to Donegal.
Launching the strategy Cllr. Rena Donaghey explains that “whilst Covid-19 has created many challenges for us all, it has also provided an opportunity to test the concept of remote working and throughout the last year, it has proven to be an effective solution that not only protects people during a pandemic, but is offering a new alternative for people looking for that work life balance and an opportunity to relocate to places such as Donegal”.
This strategy which has been developed by the Councils Economic Development Division not only aims to promote Donegal both nationally and internationally as the ideal location for remote working but presents a new framework that will see future activities aligned to support the development of these emerging opportunities.
Chief Executive of Donegal County Council John McLaughlin says that “this strategy is aligned with the various programmes of activity currently being led by the Council including initiatives such as Donegal Digital, the ambitious town and village regeneration programme, assistance with the rollout of the National Broadband Programme (NBP), development of a range of co-working spaces and other economic development activity as well as key infrastructural projects such as the development of the road network, water and waste water provision, planning development and control, housing provision, environmental activity and the provision of outdoor recreational facilities”.
He added “as we continue with the transition to reopening our communities and economy indications strongly suggest that flexible working solutions, including remote working, will continue to feature strongly as a requirement of not only employees but of employers and this offers opportunities for places like Donegal. With a superb quality of life, a low cost of living, open spaces, excellent connectivity, a talented workforce and a range of digital working hubs, Donegal is well placed to reap the benefits of remote working in an increasingly digitalised world”.
In developing this strategy, the Council engaged with a wide range of stakeholders and had extensive input from various individuals and organizations who helped inform the scope, direction and intent of the strategy. The strategy helps solidify Donegal’s offering in terms of quality of life, our growing economy, digital connectivity, network of hubs and co-working spaces and available talent. It presents five pillars or strategic objectives focusing on Workspace, Promotion, Support, Talent as well as Infrastructure and Connectivity and sets out commitments to deliver under each of these pillars.
Collaboration will be the cornerstone to achieving the targets set in this strategy and Cllr Donaghey believes that this strategy can only be achieved by meaningful and positive engagement with a wide range of stakeholders saying “this strategy sets out a range of targeted initiatives aimed at positioning Donegal as a world class destination of choice, on the island of Ireland, for remote workers and businesses. This strategy is a reflection of our combined desire to transform Donegal’s economic landscape, support the development of sustainable communities, harness innovation and fulfill our vision of Donegal as the destination of choice to live, work, visit and do business in, in Ireland”.