The MENA region employment problematics

The majority of employees expect a pay rise of 5% while employers are not ready to award such increment

A new study found that around 78% of employees in the GCC will be considering looking for a new job in 2015 because of lower salary rise than expected.

The difference between employee and employer on salary expectations is bound to be conducive to a market driven by employees.  This comes as a logical reaction if we consider the prevailing conjecture of booming construction, retail, and catering, etc. in fact the entire economies of the GCC region that when coupled with the difficulty of hiring employees locally and finding their replacement by overseas counterparts.  Several surveys were arranged by major recruiting agencies such as Hays UAE for 2015 prospecting expectations on salaried personnel turn-overs and Bayt (Middle East No. 1) and YouGov for 2014 on MENA salary increases possibilities.

The findings are debatable but it remains that employees expect a pay rise within a fairly short time of starting.

  • Salary : current and expectation

The great majority of professionals confirmed receiving a basic salary, benefits to cover housing, transportation and for a few, insurance, schools fees and a year return ticket home.  Very few receive either productivity and / or commission.  Overtime however is not considered and generally not remunerated.

Expectations are high especially amongst certain communities of expatriate workers.

  • Loyalty

Salaries are not the influencing factor and it is rather the company’s reputation and the opportunities that could be brought from it.  Career advancement and company’s personnel leadership characteristics are also factors are also major inflencers.

  • End of service Benefits

All employees receive an end of services gratuity but a few usually national citizens do get a pension.  There is however a number that receives neither.

  • Insurance

The greatest majority does have access to some health cover for themselves and in case of family status, the number of the beneficiaries diminishes.

  • Cost of living, quality of life and savings

In the conjecture of boom development in the GCC, cost of living increased in 2013 as affected by higher and higher rents despite some of the governments’ less than energetic capping policies.  Food and utilities affect globally all countries of the GCC and most employees strongly believe that it will continue through 2015.

Despite all of the above, most sampled employees in the various surveys maintain that they are far better off than their fellow countrymen / women back home.  And that the fact of not being able to put aside for either a side investment and / or for a pension could only be relegated few more years without great worries.  This latter item in fact adds onto the salary rise expectations pushing the employee towards the greener pastures on the other side of the fence.




About FaroLaz

Professional architect with extensive experience in all aspects of international design and construction projects management.

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