The state of the job market in the UAE and most of the Gulf countries seems to be on the upswing again, with more employers starting to recruit new staff, raising hopes for the jobless and those who are looking for better opportunities. The latest employment index released on Tuesday by Monster.com, which tracks tens of thousands of employer job opportunities culled from career websites and online job listings in the Middle East, showed that the UAE job market has registered a 25 per cent year-on-year growth, between June 2013 and 2014.
The uptick in the UAE’s hiring activity is the highest among the cities monitored by the site. Egypt followed closely, posting a 23 per cent growth. Recruitment in Oman grew by 14 per cent and in Kuwait by 13 per cent. Hiring in Saudi Arabia went up by 5 per cent, while Bahrain registered zero growth and Qatar fell by 5 per cent. Based on the index, more organisations in the UAE are seeking to fill positions in banks, financial services companies, hospitals and schools. Engineers and production personnel are also being sought after.
The country’s employment index for banking, financial services and insurance sector witnessed a 17 per cent annual growth, and emerged as the top performing sector. The rest of the industries, which include health care and engineering/construction/real estate, posted a 12 per cent and 11 per cent growth, respectively.
However, there has been a slowdown in hiring activity in some sectors, including the hospitality, advertising, market research, public relations, media and entertainment; information technology and telecommunications. Decline in these industries ranged between 8 and 19 per cent.
In terms of which professionals are highly sought after, those in the purchase, logistics and supply chain registered the highest demand, with a 60 per cent year-on-year growth. Engineering and production came second, at 22 per cent, followed by health care (11 per cent). There’s fewer demand for sales and business development personnel, as well as software, hardware, telecommunications and customer service staff.
Across the Middle East, however, recruitment activity is high in the hospitality sector, around 48 per cent. Overall, the sector has been charting robust annual growth in online hiring since March 2014.
“The hospitality sector, which is the key driver of economic growth and diversification for many Gulf countries, has exhibited the most significant growth,” said Sanjay Modi, Monster.com managing director for India, Middle East, Southeast Asia and Hong Kong. Hiring in the banking, financial services and insurance sector also looks positive, registering a 30 per cent growth, while recruitment in the engineering, construction and real estate industries went up by 4 per cent.
Online recruitment in production/manufacturing, automotive and ancillary dropped by one per cent. Things are also not looking up in the oil and gas sector, down by 5 per cent, as well as in consumer goods, fast-moving consumer goods, food and packaged food, home appliance, garment/textiles/leather, gems and jewellery sector, which posted the steepest decline of 25 per cent.
UAE’S TOP GROWTH INDUSTRIES (annual growth)
Banking, financial services and insurance: 17%
Health care: 12%
Engineering, construction and real estate: 11%
UAE’s LOWEST GROWTH INDUSTRIES (annual growth)
IT and Telecom/ISP: -8%
Advertising, market research, public relations, media and entertainment: -19%