|13 March, 2018

Dubai job fair offers 'right placements' for Emiratis

Three-day Careers UAE 2018 opens at Dubai World Trade Centre on Tuesday

Image used for illustrative purpose. A jobseeker looks at a board showing job information at an office of the Employment Information Service in Seoul May 11, 2011.

Image used for illustrative purpose. A jobseeker looks at a board showing job information at an office of the Employment Information Service in Seoul May 11, 2011.

Reuters/Truth Leem

Young Emiratis now welcome private jobs with open arms, but coordinated efforts between public and private sectors are the need of the hour, according to recruitment experts.

Over 100 private companies introduced different initiatives to attract Emirati employees during the annual Careers UAE 2018, in line with the government's Emiratisation drive in private sector.

During the exhibition, organised for hiring UAE nationals from March 13-15, recruitment experts said internship programmes and constant meetings between government and private sector are recommended to ensure creating the right career opportunities for Emiratis.


Mohammad Al Hamadi, HR manager at Pepsi Co AMENA, said the Emirati youth are ready to join the private sector, but they need guidance. "Emiratis today look beyond having high salaries and shorter working hours. Their sight is now focused on career opportunities," said Al Hamadi.

He said the experience Emiratis would get at international companies "is invaluable." However, private companies shouldn't only focus on employment process of Emiratis, but the quality of jobs the youth is being placed in. "It isn't a matter of numbers of Emiratis you have in an organisation, but what comes after the hiring process and how are you making these employees happy and engaged in the company's growth."

Pepsi Co receives 250 applications from Emiratis a year, among which 40 per cent are selected to fulfil different job roles. The company offers a six-month Future Leadership Programme, which focuses on utilising Emirati talents with 0-2 years of experience and enables them to take up senior positions in the field they find suitable. Summer internships are also offered to prepare them for future jobs.

"We look into the pool of candidates, and based on interviews, we place them in relevant roles based on their aspirations," said Al Hamadi.

Similarly, Majid Al Futtaim Group has already hired Emirati managers across its 10 shopping malls in the UAE, while looking to hire "as many trained Emiratis as possible" by 2021.

The group offers Tumoohi programme that trains Emirati fresh graduates for 18 months, with rotation in properties, retail and ventures every six months to help see their aspirations and recruit accordingly.

Ali Al Abdulla, head of community, neighbourhood malls development and government affairs at Majid Al Futtaim, said the most important aspect of recruitment is to add trained employees to their jobs. About 50 per cent of Emiratis hired are women.

"Youth's mentality towards the private sector changed, but Emiratis are still hesitant about joining. As companies, we need to provide good offers, training and awareness," said Al Abdulla, stating that the group looks to add more Emiratis it its legal, facilities, finance, accounting and marketing departments, besides the new fields of mall management and retail.

Through Careers UAE, Al Noor Bank is looking to fill 25 positions across corporate banking, risk management, compliance and retail banking business units, with the stand witnessing more applications than last year. Hind Al Attar, head of human resources, said the bank already hired 146 nationals and 12 more will be hired as part of their fresh graduate national program Imtiyaz.

She said since the youth are looking for digitisation and transformation, the bank looks to align its vision with the youth interest in technology. "We are moving towards innovation, and the youth will be the ones to provide fresh ideas. We look forward to having them as key players in this area," said Al Attar.

Trainings, programmes

DP World is looking to recruit 100 young Emirati nationals in trade and logistics in roles covering multiple disciplines, including operations, engineering, commercial, planning and administration.

In the booth at Careers UAE, DP World uses smart technology to introduce and train Emiratis in crane operations and marine jobs. DP World trains and develops graduates in different parts of its business through a range of specific programmes such as the Ruwad Training Programme aimed at those with less than two years' experience, Tumoohi Programme for graduates, Ta'heel Sponsorship Programme, Nautical Science Programme, Bedaya Summer Programme for school and university students, and its Internship & Work Placement Programme.

Meanwhile, Emirates Group are looking to hire 100 Emirati cadet pilots, with high school degrees, who will undergo up to three years training. The group already employed 13 Emirati pilots. The company, determined to attract more UAE nationals, has 3,030 Emiratis in total, with target to hire 100 Emirati pilots a year.

Emirati women storm male bastion

Crane operating is considered man's job in across the world and women are rarely seen in this field. Contrary to this, the DP World recently hired two females as crane operator and technical supervisor.

Marwa Al Dousari, is the technical supervisor at the crane workshop of DP World, UAE Region. From repairing giant gantry or quay cranes to managing a multi-lingual staff, she plays a key role in keeping our massive operations up and running.

Amna Ghanim, crane operator, works on height of 50 feet and discharges 35 containers per hour. When Amna joined the organisation, people thought she would be working in administration but she chose to handle a huge quay crane.

Meanwhile, Emirates Group has employed seven female pilots and five more women are currently at the Emirates training academy that launched last year in Dubai.

Nouf Abdelhamid Omar, a pilot with the Emirates, looks to inspire more females to join the field through her talks in different schools.

"The attitude towards having female pilots changed. People now give me more encouraged, than shocked, looks. They also send their regards to me through the cabin crew," said Omar. She added that being a pilot gave her the opportunity to perform her passion of aviation.

One such pilot since 2014 is Nouf Abdelhamid Omar who already headed 15 flights of Boeing 777 to Egypt, India, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia at 21 years old. Nouf joined Emirates after graduating from Al Mawakeb School in 2014, spending two years in training in Spain and flying since May 2017. Careers UAE brings together over 160 UAE-based companies and close to 18,000 Emirati job seekers.

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