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More jobs available in 2017

* Surveys show employers will seek new talent in 2017

* 30 per cent increase in the demand for employees: EZHeights

* Upcoming projects and Expo 2020 to create further job opportunities

The new year will bring cheer to job seekers in the UAE as new surveys indicate that employers will be looking out for talent in 2017.

After a dull 2016, when oil lingered at low prices while the dollar remained strong for the best part of the year, businesses in the region are counting on top talent to achieve the new year’s objectives.

Steep declines

Leading employment website Monster in its latest tracker said that November recorded a steep decline in online job opportunities in the GCC region, with the UAE witnessing the highest drop at 35 per cent.

However, it adds that 2017 will be a better year for job hunters as confidence is restored with stabler market conditions.

According to the figures from the portal’s Monster Employment Index, the year-on-year employment growth momentum in the country tumbled from a negative 18 per cent in October to negative 35 per cent in November 2016.

Hospitality, retail, banking, media and education sectors witnessed the lowest growth towards the year-end, while consumer goods, IT and healthcare were the top performers during the period.

However, in December last year, figures from classifieds website EZHeights showed that there was a 30 per cent increase in the demand for employees across different industries.

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Increasing demand

“The vacancies section on the website has been seeing a steady increase in the number of posts from employers since late 2016 and is expected to continue into 2017,” says Adham Saleh, the CEO of EZHeights.

“A number of projects currently in the pipeline, including those slated for Expo 2020, will soon open up several job opportunities for young job seekers in the UAE,” Saleh adds.

Higher competition

New York-listed ManpowerGroup had earlier revealed that companies across the globe were facing the most acute talent shortage since the recession in 2007. The American multinational human resource consulting firm’s Talent Shortage Survey, released in October, showed that that over two thirds of surveyed employers are looking to expand workforce in the coming 12 months.

Nonetheless, job opportunities are far less compared to demand and this has intensified competition in the employment market.

While companies are hiring new talent to fill roles, they have also started to look inside their organisations for solutions. ManpowerGroup finds that, out of the 42,000 employers surveyed, half of them are choosing to develop and train their own people.

“While online hiring activity in the UAE currently remains very low, the movement of employees and employee talent gaps will create more opportunities but higher competition for job seekers, making it important for job seekers to find ways to stand out,” said Sanjay Modi, managing director,, APAC & Middle East.