Loyalty is a trait always held in high esteem and employers do honour people who have stuck by them when the economy was bad and businesses were in bad shape.
Experts in the UAE recruitment industry believe that loyal employees in the country are better positioned for growth after the recession phase, and now is the time to reward them. As the job market picks up, many employees who were stuck in a company simply because of the lack of options will be eager to jump off the boat. So, it becomes all the more important to make the loyal ones feel important and compensate them accordingly.
“While many employees will look for greener pastures following the downturn, others will potentially see opportunity emerge with their current employers. Companies value their loyal employees, who often were required to do more with less, working longer hours for the same pay and/or possibly reduced or eliminated bonuses during the downturn.
"These individuals not only became even more valuable to their organisations, but they have expanded their skill sets, often without a commensurate promotion or pay rise. As companies return to growth, it is likely that they will reward these individuals and as positions become available, many organisations will first look internally before extending their recruitment efforts,” Gareth El Mettouri, Associate Director at Robert Half International told Emirates 24|7.
This is a relationship that works both ways, say experts. “Yes, people that invested in a company during more difficult years are now in better position as they have more experience and expertise and better market positioning,” said Konstantina Sakellariou, Partner, Marketing & Operations Director at Stanton Chase.
Numerous surveys conducted in the country reveal that nothing beats loyalty. It’s one of the most important traits that an employer is likely to look for in a candidate.
“Employers value loyalty in employees tremendously and survey after survey conducted [by us] places attitude at a premium in hiring and retention decisions taking precedence even over technical skills and experience. Provided they have the right qualifications and set of skills, loyal employees are always better positioned for growth within their companies, and this is true at all times and not only after a recession,” Lama Ataya, CMO, Bayt.com told this website.
Job market surveys show that one need not jump from one company to another for growth prospects. If an employee is valued by a company, she/he is bound to climb up the ladder.
“According to [our] poll on ‘hiring management in the MENA’ (August 2012), the potential for career growth within the same company in the MENA region is relatively high with 42.2 per cent of employers preferring to fill their top-level positions with promotions from within of their current employees,” added Ataya.
And, companies are rewarding their loyal staff as we speak. “Annual increments are across the board but our company plans to do a little bit extra for employees who have been with us for the longest period of time,” the HR manager of a real estate brokerage company told this website on the condition of anonymity.
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