Limerick Business Leader: HR hero Ray’s aim is to prime businesses for success

Nick Rabbitts


Nick Rabbitts

Based in O’Connell Street, HR Hub, founded by Boher man Ray Ryan gives human resource support to business and employers

Based in O’Connell Street, HR Hub, founded by Boher man Ray Ryan gives human resource support to business and employers

Based in O’Connell Street, HR Hub, founded by Boher man Ray Ryan gives human resource support to business and employers

Tell us a little about HR Hub

HR Hub provides professional human resource (HR) supports and services to business and employers ensuring they meet all employment regulatory requirements, from hiring to retiring and everything in between. I am exceptionally fortunate as I get to work with a wide variety of interesting clients and business from auctioneers to accountants, vets to dentists, engineers to builders, retail to technology, basically any one that employs people. We have the expertise to handle all their HR requirements. Whether they employ one or 100 we tailor our services to meet their exact requirements delivered within their budget.

For some that may mean ensuring their compliance with employment law, employment contracts, record keeping, Workplace Relations Commission inspections. For others it’s recruiting or interviewing the best candidate to fill their vacancies or helping resolve workplace issues which if ignored or handled incorrectly all too often end badly for all concerned. I’m based at 70, O’Connell Street.

What does your role entail?

I work closely, in depth and confidentially with clients to identify their exact needs. This could be about compliance issues such as the Organisation of Working Time Act 1997 which has received a lot of media coverage recently when an employee was awarded €7,500 for having to answer emails outside of office hours. Recruitment is also a major part of our HR services and as the economy continues to grow and unemployment falls, many businesses face challenges recruiting, so I work with them to ensure they identify and recruit the right people and skill sets they need to build and improve their business.

Placing the right person in the right role is exceptionally rewarding and is most definitely one of the most enjoyable parts of my job.

Where were you born and raised?

I grew up in Annacotty. Now I live in Boher with my wife Patricia. We have five children Leah, 31, Kealin, 26, Caoimhe, 22, Megan, 19 and Adam, who is ten.

What is your educational background? ​

I went to primary school at Monaleen National School, a fabulous school. I’m fortunate that my own kids went there too.

I went to St Clement’s for secondary school and took the long way round in the world of work and business management before eventually returning to formal education when I got my degree in human resource management from the Kemmy Business School at the University of Limerick under the guidance of Dr Juliette McMahon and all in her department. I continue to educate myself through various HR and employment law courses such as with the Law Society. I am a member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel Development and also provide HR supports on the Mentors Panel with the Local Enterprise Office Limerick where Eamon Ryan and his team provide really helpful support to start-ups.

Why did you decide to set up the company?

I set up HR Hub to meet the needs of business owners and employers, so they get all the benefits of a HR department but at a fraction of the cost of doing it in house.  Employment law and HR best practices are now a basic requirement for every business in much the same way as tax compliance, company law, licensing or any of the many regulatory requirements business must comply with. HR Hub provides that skill set and knowledge in the same way your accountant or insurance broker does.

What are your goals for the next 12 months?

I consider myself very lucky as I get to work with interesting people running fantastic businesses, some from a small office at home others from state-of-the-art facilities, but all with the same aim, to do right by their employees. Providing these people with a personal, professional and affordable service results in recommendations to their peers so business for HR Hub is growing steadily through their kindness and help, something I never take for granted and am always very grateful for.

Who do you admire in business?

I suppose I am meant to say someone like Richard Branson or Michael O’Leary, but I am going to go for my mother and father Gus and Joan Ryan, both now sadly deceased. They both lead by example running successful businesses, they gave me a fantastic upbringing and start in business. I have to mention Pat Kearney of Rooney Auctioneers and Hugh Mulcahy of MGM accountants, both of whom have been so generous with their help, time and advice over many years and not just to me but to the business community of Limerick as a whole. I owe them both a debt of gratitude.

In business and life, are you guided by any particular motto?

‘Be grateful’

Away from work, what are your pastimes and hobbies?

As I said previously, I have five children. In terms of my free time: enough said!