A recent Bayt.com "Top Industries in the Middle East and North Africa" survey conducted by Bayt.com, the Middle East's number one job site, and YouGov, a research and consulting organisation, has shown that respondents in the U.A.E. consider the oil, gas and petrochemicals industry to be the most preferable for employment. Government careers are also thought of highly and attract more than half of the local talent, while women are predominantly interested in banking and finance.
In the U.A.E., 44% of employed respondents are satisfied with the salary package in their current industry, while 47% are satisfied with their ability to maintain a good work-life balance. They are also generally content with the potential for career growth (with 37% being satisfied), job security (46%), working hours (56%), and training and development opportunities (40%). 50% are happy with their current work culture, which shows that the U.A.E. work environment is generally a happy one.
The best salary packages in the U.A.E. are perceived to be in the oil, gas and petrochemicals industry (56%), though government, civil services and utilities careers are also seen to pay well, according to 30% of the respondents. Government jobs are also seen as being the best for maintaining a good work-life balance (43%), followed by oil, gas and petrochemicals (33%) and banking and finance (24%).
Oil, gas and petrochemicals offers the best potential for career growth according to the majority of respondents (44%), with banking and finance coming second (26%). The highest levels of job security are seen to be in government positions (42%), though there is also a perceived high degree of security in oil, gas and petrochemicals (40%) and military, defence, police and security services (20%).
Respondents believe that the most stressful industries are construction (30%), banking and finance (23%), advertising, media, PR, market research and publishing (16%), and oil, gas and petrochemicals (16%). Construction is also considered to have the longest working hours, by a third of respondents (32%).
Women in the U.A.E. are most attracted to banking and finance according to 34% of respondents, followed by education and academia (34%), and healthcare, medical services and pharmaceuticals (28%). Local talent is seem to be drawn predominantly to government, civil service and utilities jobs (55%), military, defence, police or security services (35%), and oil, gas and petrochemicals (29%).
In the past year, respondents believe that the oil, gas and petrochemicals industry has seen the strongest growth (34%), followed by real estate (22%), and banking and finance (21%).
According to 68% of U.A.E. respondents, the government is a favourable employer.
A fifth of U.A.E. respondents (19%) have changed the industry they work in during the last 24 months, with 57% considering an industry change in the next few years. Oil, gas and petrochemicals is the industry of choice for 22%, though government (12%) and banking and finance (9%) jobs are also popular. The top reasons for career changes are perceived better salaries (71%), career growth opportunities (56%), and better benefits (40%).
Data for the survey was collected online from November 18th-25th, 2013, with 7,370 respondents aged 18+, representing Algeria, Bahrain, Egypt, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Morocco, Oman, Pakistan, Qatar, KSA, Syria, Tunisia, and the UAE..