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16 April 2024

It's raining jobs in UAE: Hottest skills employers looking for

Survey, which polled over 200 companies this month, reveals that sectors such as banking & finance, retail, hospitality and healthcare express the highest need. (File)

By Shuchita Kapur

It seems 2015 is a good time for UAE employees, as a vast majority of companies in the country are looking to hire.

According to a new survey by recruiting firm Reach, demand for talent is still on the rise in the UAE and 91 per cent of the companies who took part in the survey intend to strategically recruit additional employees in 2015.

The survey, which polled over 200 companies this month, reveals that sectors such as banking & finance, retail, hospitality and healthcare express the highest need, with sales, operations and technical functions among the most sought-after proficiencies.

And this projected increase in headcount is despite falling oil prices. Even the oil & gas sector still sees demand as does the government sector following the release of the deficit-free UAE Federal budget for 2015.

Aside from hiring permanent staff, 40 per cent of the companies surveyed also said that they are interested in outsourcing staff to provide a more flexible workforce. Around 73 per cent will be hiring working mothers as well, reflecting the high confidence in the local female workforce and organizational efforts to achieve a balanced employment demographic, said the survey.

Previous surveys also point towards an increase in hiring activity in the local market. The latest Monster Employment Index shows that hiring activity in the UAE has exceeded the year-ago level by a significant 19 per cent (for the month of November 2014 when compared with the same period last year).

“This rise is contributing to the increase in consumer optimism for the UAE and across the region. Interestingly, most of the growth has been fuelled by increased hiring activity in the non-oil sector,” says Sanjay Modi, Managing Director, Monster.com (India/ Middle- East/ South East Asia).

Among industry sectors, BFSI (banking, financial services and insurance) continued to lead, as per the Monster index.

According to recruitment firm Robert Half UAE, professionals in banking, accounting and finance are already in hot demand, and this is likely to go up in 2015.

The experts at the firm say accounting and finance recruitment has returned to pre-recessionary levels, with companies expanding existing teams as well as investing in new initiatives.

Reach maintains that a number of factors underpin the positive outcomes of its survey. These include government-led efforts to transition to a knowledge-based economy under the UAE Vision 2021 agenda; growing business and investment confidence behind the UAE’s robust and diversified economy; and employment opportunities arising from Dubai’s hosting of the 2020 World Expo, among others.

“Our survey results clearly show positive growth for the UAE employment market with 91 per cent of companies expecting to strategically hire this year, layer on top of this natural employee attrition and talent acquisition which will be a major focus for companies in 2015,” said Andrew Croft, Deputy Chief Executive Officer of the company.

“Another positive sign is that UAE-based businesses are continuing to see the enormous value in employing working mothers. Companies with flexible operating models for mothers will see the greatest benefits from accessing this experience.”