Positive conditions for employers in the UAE

Date: 3rd October 2017

Employment conditions for organisations in the UAE are favourable thanks to reduced wage pressures and a ready supply of skilled candidates.

The findings come alongside the launch of the sixth edition of the Hays Global Skills Index, published in association with Oxford Economics. The report, ‘Regional dynamics of the global labour market: skills in demand and tomorrow’s workforce’ is based on an analysis of professional employment markets across 33 global economies, assessing the dynamics at play in each local labour market.

For the UAE, the overall index score has reduced marginally from 4.8 in 2016 to 4.7 in 2017, suggesting easing pressures overall, helped by a strong and ever-increasing supply of talent in the market.

Reasons for this can be explained by overall net migration, with the UAE having one of the highest rates in the world; and the growing working-age population, counterbalancing the issue many other countries face of an ageing population.

“As a region, the UAE has always embraced skilled labour migration, with expats making up over 90 percent of the working population. Candidates are typically attracted here by the tax-free salaries but also as a region, the decline in the energy sectors in recent years has forced increasing diversification of the economy. This has opened up many attractive opportunities for candidates across all industry sectors,” says Chris Greaves, Managing Director of Hays Gulf Region.

When looking at wage pressures, Oxford Economics have forecast real wage growth to be at 2.9 percent for year-end 2017, down from 3.6 percent in 2016, which is further good news for organisations based in the UAE. What’s more, the report revealed that easing wage pressures in the Middle East means employers may find it slightly easier to attract and retain top talent relative to last year.

Nevertheless, organisations should not become complacent warns Chris:

“An organisation is only as good as the people in it. While demand for roles remains strong from skilled candidates and salary increases slightly subdued year-on-year, high employee turnover does remain a challenge for employers in the UAE.

To continue attracting top talent and instilling a sense of loyalty from it, businesses need to benchmark their offerings against that of the competition – both locally and globally.

These favourable employment conditions offer an opportune time for organisations to boost their learning and development programmes to secure their talent pipeline for the future.”

About Hays

Hays plc (the “Group”) is a leading global professional recruiting group. The Group is the expert at recruiting qualified, professional and skilled people worldwide, being the market leader in the UK and Asia Pacific and one of the market leaders in Continental Europe and Latin America. The Group operates across the private and public sectors, dealing in permanent positions, contract roles and temporary assignments. As at 30 June 2017 the Group employed 10,000 staff operating from 250 offices in 33 countries across 20 specialisms. For the year ended 30 June 2017:

– the Group reported net fees of £954.6 million and operating profit (pre-exceptional items) of £211.5 million;

– the Group placed around 70,000 candidates into permanent jobs and around 240,000 people into temporary assignments;

– 24% of Group net fees were generated in Asia Pacific, 49% in Continental Europe & RoW (CERoW) and 27% in the United Kingdom & Ireland;

– the temporary placement business represented 59% of net fees and the permanent placement business represented 41% of net fees;

– Hays operates in the following countries: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Chile, China, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UAE, the UK and the USA