Young Emirati students expect at least $5,444 a month salary for first job - survey
By Staff Writer
Tuesday, 3 February 2015 10:18 AM
Young Emiratis expect to receive a starting salary of at least AED20,000 ($5,444) a month in the private sector, with 80 percent opting for government jobs because of higher wages and more holidays, according to a new poll.
Gaps in private sector offerings and expectations remain the main challenge for Emiratisation, according to the results of a survey carried out at the Emirati Youth Forum at Tawdheef, UAE’s leading Emirati career fair in Abu Dhabi.
The survey, which questioned around 100 Emirati students from across the UAE's top universities and academies, found the majority of respondents said they would rather work for the public sector over the private sector, citing less annual leave, long working hours and lower salaries as main reasons.
Only 20 percent said they would be looking to start their own businesses fresh after graduation.
The poll showed that better salaries, more diversified benefits and international career options were voted among the factors that would encourage students to consider the private sector while the lack of career progression was among the main reasons why Emirati students look outside the public sector for work.
When asked about national service, Emirati male students said they have positive expectations about the impact it will have on their careers. Up to 38 percent believe that it will help them adapt better to challenging work environments and 25 percent said that it will strengthen their professional skills.
Earlier this month, it was reported that the UAE is currently discussing new amendments to its labour laws to encourage more Emiratis to move from being employed in the public sector to the private sector.
Labour Minister Saqr Ghobash said the objective of the proposed amendments will look to narrow the gaps in working conditions between the two sectors.
A trend of "job hopping" is slowing the integration of Emiratis into the UAE's private sector, the head of the Emirates Nationals Development Programme (ENDP) also said recently.
Essa Al Mulla, executive director at the ENDP, said the habit of "job hopping" was growing in the country, where employees will leave a well-paid job after a short time just for a better salary - even if it is a minimal increase.
Al Mulla said this in turn means that Emiratis aren't receiving the specialised industry experience they need at the early stages of their careers to ensure a steady rise up the career ladder.
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