UAE jobs: Not enough healthcare, customer service professionals around to fill vacancies

More organisations open to part-time recruits or allowing staff to have dual roles.

Dubai: There aren’t enough candidates available to fill some of the vacancies in UAE’s healthcare, customer services and even transportation sectors. Which is why employers will need to come up with higher packages and incentives to recruit.

“We’re going to see employers enhancing their rewards and recognition as there’s greater pressure in the labour market to do that,” said David Jones, CEO of The Talent Enterprise.

Demand for healthcare professionals, across categories, has been a natural outcome of whatever has happened during the pandemic in these two years. Several new hospitals and clinics elsewhere in the Gulf have also been recruiting trained personnel from the UAE, and this also showing up on demand and availability of fresh candidates to replace them, according to healthcare industry sources here.

On transportation, the sheer volume of growth in ecommerce sales means demand for trained personnel to handle delivery is seemingly never ending, at least for the next four or five years.
As for customer service, AI-enabled chatbots are taking over the initial interaction between consumers and organisations, but the human factor is still going to be needed at some level.

There is a scarcity of talent available in software designing and data science backgrounds. “If they want the best people with the potential to deliver results that they’re looking for, they don’t really have a choice,” said Radhika Punshi, Managing Director of The Talent Enterprise. “They have to be flexible about how they allow people to deliver that contribution.”

Employers are turning ‘radically flexible’ by considering part-time staffers or candidates with dual roles, where they have a full-time job in an organization and yet is also being supported to start a venture without having to leave employer.

Changes to workforce mix

In the next seven years, GCC employment markets will see changes in the mix between citizens and expats in the workforce. Higher numbers of young nationals emerging out of colleges and armed with the right credentials will find compelling offers in the private sector as well. In the UAE, the ‘Nafis’ programme – which seeks to create conditions for UAE Nationals to take up roles in private sector – is picking some serious traction.

There will also be changes brought on by changes in the expat numbers. “We are seeing already in Saudi Arabia, where more than 2 million expats leave the workforce,” said Jones. “That’s because of the increased focus of employment policies within the kingdom. So, we will see a change in the national-expat proportion.

“Whilst the proportion may change, there will still be more expatriates with more jobs in the region.”

Are these going to the top jobs of the future?

  1. Blockchain engineers, cloud computing scientists, VR and AR specialists;
  2. AI ethicists, Metaverse safety specialists;
  3. Digital currency managers, cryptocurrency wealth managers;
  4. Wellbeing scientists, mental health coaches, behavioural change specialists, learning optimisers;
  5. Food security scientists; and
  6. Epidemiologists, public health specialists.