Bayt.com, YouGov survey reveals that work-life balance is most motivating factor for employees in UAE
- United Arab Emirates: Tuesday, January 08 - 2013 at 12:46
- PRESS RELEASE
An Employee Motivation in the MENA survey conducted by Bayt.com, the Middle East's number on job site, and YouGov, a research and consulting organisation, has revealed that employees in the UAE consider that a good work-life balance to be important for the levels of motivation.
On a day-to-day basis, more than half of the employees in the UAE (56%) feel that they are either 'highly motivated' (28%) or 'motivated' (28%) by the work that they do. Interesting, a solid three-quarters (75%) of UAE respondents believe that a good work-life balance is a very important source of motivation, with 60% claiming that their current organization offers support for them to achieve this (this is 2% higher than the regional average of 58%).
Other than work-life balance, the leading motivators for employees across the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region are recognition of work and achievements (47%); training and development opportunities (45%); the opportunity for career advancement (42%); being able to feel that their work has an impact (40%); personal fulfilment (39%) and opportunities for long-term career growth (39%). Also ranking highly were participating in decision making (37%); the respondent's colleagues and work environment (34%); the nature of their daily responsibilities (31%) and being able to set and reach goals (31%).
Despite these high motivation factors, there are not many respondents who prefer to maintain their position at the company they're currently employed at. Only four in every 10 UAE respondents (41%) are intending to stay with their current organization for a minimum of 12 months, compared to the regional average of 39%. A further 29% intend to stay for a minimum of 3 to 5 years, with only 10% stating that they will continue for at least 10 years, or until retirement.
"Retaining quality performers simply adds to increased productivity and morale, while reducing the associated costs of turnover," said Suhail Masri, VP of Sales, Bayt.com. "Our survey's results show that companies need to be doing more to help boost levels of motivation for the employees, specifically on the work-life balance front as that's what matters to most professionals. Bayt.com specialises not only in empowering job seekers by helping them to find their ideal job, but by providing all involved in the recruitment industry with essential statistics that shape the region's employment scene from all perspectives. We recommend using the benchmarks in Bayt.com's Employee Motivation in the MENA survey to help HR policymakers assess and identify the specific motivational factors that are important to employees. A proven process and strategy should then be set to boost retention levels, as with just any other business goal."
To help increase retention levels, the incentives that respondents claim are most important to them are monetary rewards (55%); certificates (35%); time off (19%); medals, or plaques of achievement (14%), and functional awards, such as gym memberships, discount vouchers and so on (13%).
Attitude towards work
Across the MENA region, the majority (92%) of respondents feel that the work that they do is significant to their company, with 86% stating that their job is significant and important to their colleagues, customers and business partners. Also 72% believe that their work is important to their country of residence, while 72% say that what they do is significant to their society. Three-quarters (76%) claim that their work gives them a sense of personal achievement, with 77% stating it offers them a sense of professional achievement.
In the UAE, respondents' personal attitudes towards work are high, in accordance with regional sentiments. 92% say that their job is significant to their company; 87% say their job is important to their colleagues, customers and business partners; 70% state that what they do is important to the country, and 67% believe their job is important to society. Three-quarters state that their work offers them a sense of personal achievement (75%), and a sense of professional achievement (74%).
Loyalty and Management
On a regional level, respondents are most loyal to their profession/line of work, followed by loyalty to their customers, clients and business partners. Those who command the least loyalty are line managers, with only 44% saying their manager communicates what is going on in the organisation to them.
Respondents from the MENA also believe that 54% of line managers consult with them enough on matters of importance; 53% challenge their employees to achieve their best and 50% give formal appreciation following a job well done. Line managers are perceived to be committed to their companies by 78% of respondents, as well as being open to suggestions (65%) and supportive if the respondent has a problem (62%). In the UAE, only 43% believe that their management takes the time to listen to their concerns and suggestions.
Work Environment and Job Satisfaction
Across the MENA region, respondents believe that levels of internal communication are high, with 71% stating that they are either 'fully informed' or 'fairly well informed' of their company's short and long term goals plus recent plans and developments. Companies are considered to be transparent by 64% of respondents.
On an average working day, 49% of respondents in the UAE feel either 'under stress' (32%), or 'under severe stress' (17%), in comparison to regional figures of 30% and 16%, respectively. This could be linked with the fact that, across MENA, 23% of employees always work overtime or take work home with them. Of these, 44% do so because it is part of their job requirement; 36% do it in order to get ahead and finish their projects early, while 30% claim that it is the only way to meet deadlines.
"Levels of stress and the number of people working overtime are most likely a prolonged effect of downsizing, due to the recent recession. As the economy picks up and companies once more begin to grow, these statistics may reduce further as the workload is spread more evenly between employees," said Sundip Chahal, CEO, YouGov.
Respondents on the whole feel that they are relatively free to find solutions to their own work challenges, with only 12% in the UAE stating that they can 'rarely' or 'never' do so.
The survey shows that the majority (59%) of MENA companies engage in CSR activities. Respondents feel most strongly that their organisation should be involved in providing job opportunities (35%), though the preservation of the environment also ranked highly (30%). Causes that companies should also consider include supporting orphans (28%), providing training and job opportunities (27%), medical support programmes (such as blood drives) (26%), and human rights support (25%).
Taking all of these factors into consideration, the respondents' overall satisfaction with their work and organisation is high. They are especially happy with their relationships with co-workers (85%), the responsibilities they are assigned (78%) and their physical working conditions (75%). Points of most dissatisfaction include compensation and benefits (48% satisfied), promises to employees not being kept (50% satisfied), and the quality of job and skill-training opportunities (50% satisfied).
Employees in private-sector multinational companies are most likely to recommend their organisation as an employer, according to 84% of respondents. Private sector LLCs would be recommended by 81% of employees, followed by public, government, semi-government or charity employees, with 79%.
Despite high levels of satisfaction, the survey's statistics show the potential for high levels of churn, with only 10% of UAE employees having never considered leaving their job (compared to 12% of regional respondents). Four out of 10 UAE respondents (41%) are either currently looking or have actively looked for other jobs, with 36% stating that they are willing to leave should an opportunity present itself, even though they are not actively seeking alternative employment.
Data for the Bayt.com "Employee Motivation in the MENA" survey was collected online from December 6-16, 2012, with 10,167 respondents aged 21+, representing Algeria, Bahrain, Egypt, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Morocco, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Tunisia and the UAE.
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