Abu Dhabi: Standard Chartered bank is on a hiring spree, with over 120 vacancies in the UAE in 2015, according to Ruth McGill, the bank’s regional head of human resources in the Mena (Middle East and North Africa) and Pakistan region and head of HR (human resources) in the UAE.

The vacancies include at least 23 for fresh graduates, and are across different departments including retail, legal and compliance, operations, and risk assessment among others.

Speaking to Gulf News, McGill said that the recent drop in oil prices has had no impact on Standard Chartered’s hiring plans.

“Fluctuations in oil prices have not impacted our hiring plans, and we are focused on hiring top quality local and international talent with the right skill set … Not all Middle East economies are dependent on energy for growth and job creation. From an economic point of view, the UAE has really diversified, and the traditional dependence of the region on hydrocarbons is, I think, changing,” she said.

Asked about reports on a slowdown in the country’s economy, McGill said she did not see an impact on hiring schemes at the bank as the UAE continues to be a hub for tourism, investment, and wealth creation — all of which support banking.

Standard Chartered is also on the lookout for Emirati talent, with an increase in the number of Emiratis the bank hires year-on-year.

“We have a clear vision about Emiratisation and that is to be an international employer of choice for UAE national talent to drive our business growth and to drive the economy. One of the things we have introduced in the last 12 months is a flexible work programme where people can apply for part-time and flexible hours, and we found that to be of interest to our local workforce,” McGill said.

She added that there were areas in the economy where Emiratis were under-represented, and that the bank was implementing entry-level programmes for departments such as finance, and risk to allow fresh graduates to qualify professionally.

Standard Chartered currently employs 2,300 people in the UAE. Of the Emiratis employed by the bank, 13 per cent hold senior positions and 75 per cent are women.