Glenmore and Piltown among rural locations offering work/life balance benefits
New data shows that demand for Kilkenny’s six rural Connected Hubs and its five established Business Centres has increased as a growing number of professionals are now hot desking while remote working two to three days a week – and enjoying a far greater work/life balance.
More than four out of ten homes sold in the city and county in recent months were bought by people with addresses outside of Kilkenny. One agent in the city revealed that 46% of buyers of large, detached family homes in a new estate on the edge of Kilkenny had sold smaller semi-detached properties in the greater Dublin area to fund their investment.
According to the latest Daft.ie House Price Report for Quarter 2 2023, the average asking price in County Kilkenny for a house is €283,177 – 8.5% lower than the national average and 25% below that in Dublin City Centre, where the average asking price is €377,543.
Professionals who previously worked from home on remote working days are now edging back to fully serviced remote working bases. They’re being lured in by the super-fast broadband connectivity offered, along with a dedicated working space away from distractions in the home.
Data gathered by the community-led Grow Remote movement also indicates that the team support provided in a more collaborative and inclusive environment, along with weekly meetups, are factors contributing to the lure of the Connected Hubs and Business Centres across the city and county.
The top-class facilities provided for the up to 150-plus remote working stations in all 10 locations also help companies address staff welfare and due diligence in terms of workplace ergonomics, separating work and home environments, while availing of secure broadband infrastructure and more.
Sean McKeown, Director of Services at Kilkenny County Council, said at the launch of the “More than just a Desk” campaign: “This initiative further promotes Connected Hub and Business Centre working, gets people co-working and networking more again and showcases what a fantastic remote working base Kilkenny city and county has to offer.
“The variety and quality of remote working hubs in locations across Kilkenny creates fantastic opportunities for people to live and work and hotdesk, where necessary, or even during visits here.
“This, in turn, supports our small local businesses and communities as local spend increases. It gives people more family time and fewer commutes also means lower greenhouse gas emissions. It’s a win/win for everyone,” he added.
The physical infrastructure provided and positive business environment created is all boosting demand from employees, freelancers and the self-employed for the up to 150 individual working bases/spaces, with the added bonus of being signposted to supporting bodies such as the Local Enterprise Office (LEO).
Aileen McGrath, Acting Head of Enterprise with Kilkenny LEO, said: “We’ve seen that such a flexible, on-demand working environment is also a support for employees of companies that are still teasing out their remote working conditions for staff, and for firms concerned with issues around staff retention and maintaining a high level of professionalism.”
Kilkenny’s established Business Centres include: We Do Work Centre; Castlecomer Enterprise Centre; New Work Junction; Pembroke Business Centre, and Piltown Enterprise Centre.
Connected Hubs are located in Galmoy, Glenmore, Ballyouskill and Crosspatrick Community Centres, as well as Connolly’s of Dunbell and Urlingford Exit 4 Remote Networking Hub.
For more information on these opportunities and booking, visit www.belongkilkenny.ie. This project is funded by the Department of Rural and Community Development under Town and Village Renewal Scheme.