Finding a job in Dubai

Finding a job in Dubai

13th December, 2011

With year round sunshine and tax-free salaries, Dubai is a popular destination for job seekers. Although though the construction industry there isn’t as buoyant as it was a few years ago, there are still plenty companies in a variety of sectors looking for professional talent.  A recent report by international recruiter BAYT found that 25% of all UAE companies were ‘definitely looking to hire’ in the next three months. Whilst another 28% would probably hire, with executive positions forming the mainstay of recruitment for most employers. 

In this post we look at ways you can increase your chances of finding a job in Dubai. If this is your aim, you might also find it useful to read more about becoming an Expat in our free eBook The New Expat.

Who is being hired?

Jobs posted on recruitment websites show there is still a strong trend towards the construction trade, with experienced managers, architects and engineers in popular demand. Healthcare professionals are also sought after, and those trained as doctors and nurses should have few problems finding a job in Dubai. Also in demand are professionals with skills in sales, information technology, training and hospitality.

Where to look

The new millennium has seen a boom in online job hunting and finding a job in Dubai is no exception. However, many local employers are also searching out skilled staff for themselves. For those in high-demand industries this could mean that their airfare and expenses to attend an interview are covered, taking the risk out of travelling to the UAE without a job in place.

Finding a job in Dubai with companies who are proactively recruiting can be achieved through contacting local headhunting agencies or HR departments direct. In this way, you can get yourself ahead of the game before a job is even advertised. Similarly, if you work in the hospitality industry for an international hotel chain you may find the process quite straightforward. Often a word with a manager could be all that it takes to put you at the front of the queue for a Dubai transfer.

Searching in person

But what if you’re not in the kind of trade that gets headhunted? Should you just travel and begin your job search? It is certainly possible to arrive in person and start the process of finding a job in Dubai. This will give you the opportunity to attend networking events and meet potential employers face to face. In general, however, this is a less popular tactic. For example, if you’re already in Dubai your future employer may allocate you less favourable accommodation support and budget.

Work visas and red tape

The easiest way to get a work visa for Dubai is to be sponsored by a local company. This is another good reason to secure your new job before arrival and let your future employer support your move. Visa requirements change frequently, but at the time of writing the work visa is valid for 60 days, after which holders are required to apply for residency.

An alternative to finding a job in Dubai is to establish your own business, which typically takes 15 days to set up. This would allow you to take international as well as local contracts whilst living in Dubai, or to undertake freelance work.

Learn more about finding a job in Dubai

The websites below offer more information about finding a job in Dubai:

For more on making the move abroad, don’t forget to download our free eBook The New Expat which covers family matters, accommodation issues, financial arrangements, medical considerations and much more.

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Alison Massey

Group Marketing Director

Now Health International

Alison Massey is a 15-year digital marketing veteran, who has spent the last seven years using social media to help expats and soon to be expats find out what to expect from a life overseas. An expat living in Hong Kong herself, Alison is the Group Marketing Director of Now Health, the award-winning international health insurance provider.

Contact Alison Massey

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