The Dynamics of the Middle Eastern Job Market in the Recent Past





The job markets of the Middle Eastern countries are gaining momentum with an increase in the overall recruitment scenario across every sector. Companies are pitching for the best talents in order to deal with the rise in workload and ensure growth. The following post provides an insight into the dynamics of the employment sector of the region.

In spite of the tumultuous global economy and a volatile political scenario pervading in the Middle East, the job market of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has experienced a relatively strong economic growth. With a workforce comprising more than 50 per cent expatriates, job search in Dubai has reached a different level altogether in 2013. There has been an increased hiring across all segments; while the multinational companies are following a more thoughtful approach towards the hiring process; many local organizations are taking this opportunity to recruit foreign nationals as well as natives in order to cooperate with the increasing workload.

Executives in the financial segment are extremely optimistic with at least eight out of every ten employers being confident about hiring as well as about their countries’ economic policies and also the revival of the overall economy; focusing on an increase in the overall hiring process. While workload has increased, leading to an increased demand for working professionals not only in the finance sector but also in others sectors.


Fig 1. Graph showing the GDP of major Gulf Countries

Let’s explore the employment trends in the Job Market of UAE in 2013.

2013 has been an exciting year in terms of employment opportunities in the UAE with the construction segment and the oil and gas industry generating rapid employment opportunities. The paragraphs below highlight the trends that were the most popular in terms of specialized sector.

Accounting and Financial Services

With more multinational corporations making UAE their base for the Middle East operations, recruitment of accounting and finance professionals have increased considerably. Business-savvy individuals who have a strong acumen for finance and business strategies are in high demand.

On the other hand, the financial services segment continues to evolve in keeping with the global banking trends. Moreover, the Eurozone crisis has enabled entrepreneurs and companies to shift focus to the job market of the UAE. Within the financial services, segments like audit, risks, regulatory and compliance taking away all the laurels. Industries where the above skills and acumen are much in demand are FMCG, Oil and Gas, Aerospace, Pharmaceuticals, and Alternative Energy.

Human Resources

As there is an increase in the overall recruitment process, demands for HR professionals are also increasing with each passing day. With workload rising by at least 42% and business growth expanding by at least 33%, companies are looking for competent HR professionals. A demand for bilingual individuals in the field of HR has increased considerably. Industries that have a high demand for competent HR professionals are FMCG, Professional Services, Manufacturing and Construction/Real Estate.

Technology and Legal Services

The domain of technology continues to remain a favourite among both—the employer and the employee. E-commerce has emerged as one of the strongest segments generating revenue and of course employment generation. It has been estimated that the technology sector will end up generating revenue that is as high as 300%.  Great demands for IT professionals have increased over the years.

On the other hand, legal services have opened up a new window for professionals in the segment. As more multinational corporations shift focus to the Middle East, a demand for legal professionals, expert in corporate law has also increased.

Salary Trends across the GCC Countries

2013 has turned out to be a good year for all the GCC countries; with such an ongoing resilience that has been contributing greatly towards the revival of the economy. Among all the GCC countries, companies based out of Saudi Arabia have recorded the highest salary packages followed by Oman and Kuwait. However, UAE needs to do a little more to be able to keep pace with the others.

Come 2014, experts opine that companies, both MNCs and local are predicting an average increase in the overall salary structure. At least an increase of 5.5% is expected in the Financial Year of 2014.


Fig.2 the GCC will be the world’s 5th largest economy by 2015

As stated earlier, the demand for expatriates remain higher especially in the financial and technical sectors. In order to fill vacancies in these segments, the GCC countries bank on the mature economies of the European countries like UK, France and the rest of Europe. Significantly, the hospitality sector has recorded an increased workforce from Asian countries like India and Sri Lanka.

The government has taken initiatives to increase nationalization of the private sector. Nonetheless, a demand for working professionals will continue to remain high in the coming years.


Author Bio: Sampurna Majumder is a professional writer who enjoys creativity and challenges.  She has written several posts, articles and blogs for prominent websites like where one can find all kinds of information pertaining to the world of employment in the Dubai.



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