Moving to Ireland from South Africa with EY

Mzwakhe Netyisi

Mzwakhe Netyisi moved from Port Elizabeth in South Africa to Dublin with EY Financial Services. He and his wife are raising their family in Ireland.


I’m from Port Elizabeth, South Africa and moved to Dublin in March 2017 with my wife of three months. Nine months after that we had our first child.

After my training in another Big Four firm, I worked with one of the largest privately owned insurer in South Africa as a senior internal auditor.  I was contacted by a recruiter with an opportunity to join EY Financial Services in Dublin as an Insurance senior and the move seemed like a natural progression for me. I was excited about working with clients on complex regulatory and technical issues, as well as the changes that are coming in accounting standards like IFRS 17.

The interview process was straightforward – it started with a computer interview, followed by a teleconference with one of the Irish partners. From there, it was a matter of weeks till we were in Dublin, with the visa process taking about 2 weeks! The spouse of a critical skills visa holder now has the right to work in Ireland automatically, so it was straightforward for my wife to find work too.

I find that there are lots of similarities between the lifestyle and culture in Port Elizabeth and Ireland. Both are very laid back which made settling into life in Ireland much easier.

I enjoy working in financial services, specifically insurance, because there is so much happening in the sector. In my current role, I work with one of the top reinsurers in the world and I deal with both life and non-life insurers in the Irish and European markets, as well as captive insurers of large global corporations.

The challenges and deadlines are unique for each client, and our level of delivery speaks volumes about the calibre of my team that no challenge is too big or too small. The people I work with are friendly and approachable and we socialise outside of work as much as we can – though not always easy with an 18-month-old!

Ireland is a great place to raise a family. The standard of service we received from the health service during my wife’s pregnancy was brilliant – we didn’t go private, and the hospital staff, equipment, and support in the public system were the world’s best.

For me, an added benefit of life at EY Financial Services is the flexibility that’s offered. When I need to I can work from home. I can also adjust my start or finish times if it’s my turn to drop off or pick up my son from crèche. Flexible working allows me to raise my child and be part of my child’s life, and that’s what I enjoy the most.

Interested in making the move? Apply HERE

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