Jan 28 2012
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Nitaqat compels red firms to hire 'absentee' Saudis
Human resource officials of these establishments said that in meeting the requirements of the green category of Nitaqat, they have no other solution except to employ Saudis, as required by the Ministry of Labor. They admitted that hiring Saudis who are not required to report to their companies helps them comply with the Nitaqat regulations.
"We have to resort to hiring absentee Saudi employees, who are often without skills, in order to fill positions reserved for them as mandated by the Ministry of Labor," the manager of a local contracting company said. He said he hired a young Saudi as secretary and another as security officer.
"I must admit that these workers do not report to their jobs, and their salaries are paid through the ATM, which is very convenient for us," he said.
Some companies which have hired young Saudis without skills are providing on-the-job training to them so that they can be persuaded to stay and be part of the companies' human resource pool. A number of companies said, however, they often discover no serious commitment by the so-called absentee employees to learn and stay on in the job.
A company here offered a young Saudi, who has skills in K-9 training, a job as a government relations officer, but he refused the position. "We have no need for a K-9 security officer in our company, but employed him just the same in order to fill the position," the personnel representative of a logistics company told the Saudi Gazette.
The hiring of handicapped and physically challenged Saudis is being encouraged by the Ministry of Labor because of their socio-economic value in the national workforce, according to an official at the Dammam Municipality. He said one employed handicapped Saudi is equivalent to four Saudis.
The personnel manager of a construction firm in Dammam who tried looking for physically challenged Saudi workers to employ said he had difficulty finding one.
"Because of this option that we could employ this category of worker and be able to count him as the equivalent of four Saudi workers, we tried looking for one who could work as secretary or telephone operator but we could not find one," the human resource manager of a joint venture company in Dammam said.
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