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UAE Workforce Trends: Sacrifices, Perks, and the Evolving Job Landscape

Employees in the UAE are eager to forego savings in order to retain their existing standard of living.

UAE employees display a strong willingness to forgo savings in favor of maintaining their current lifestyles. 

A recent survey by global recruitment agency Robert Half sheds light on the sacrifices employees are ready to make to remain in the country, showcasing a prioritization of lifestyle maintenance over monetary savings.

UAE’s Growing Appeal and Initiatives:

The UAE’s allure as a preferred destination for professionals and investors has soared, largely attributed to its adept handling of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The influx of tourists, a surge in real estate investments, and a substantial increase in millionaires choosing Dubai as their new home underscore the country’s heightened global appeal. 

New residency programs like the Golden Visa, retirement visa, and freelance visa have garnered significant traction among employees, signaling the government’s commitment to attracting and retaining top talent.

Shifting Perks and Benefits Landscape:

Robert Half’s survey unveils evolving trends in employment perks and benefits. Employers have transitioned from offering allowances as a percentage of total costs to fixed lump sums, aiming to stabilize benefit expenditures. 

However, as businesses navigate cost-cutting strategies, there’s a noticeable trend of reductions in childcare and school fee allowances for new hires, even as family benefits remain on the table.

Salary Projections and Industry Insights:

The survey conducted by Robert Half among 500 UAE-based professionals highlights nuanced salary trends across sectors. 

While professional services roles witnessed a 2% year-on-year salary increase, this growth trailed behind Dubai’s inflation rate. 

Projections suggest varied increments for different job sectors, with finance and accounting roles projected at 1.6%, IT and technology executives at 1.2%, and administration, HR, and business support personnel at 4.4%.

Post-Pandemic Workplace Realignment:

With a gradual return to pre-pandemic working norms, Robert Half emphasizes the pressure on businesses to trim costs, impacting previously provided employee allowances. 

This shift signals a reevaluation of benefits and cost structures in the wake of changing work dynamics.

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