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UAE's job market has been adding to its rolls, and increasingly more chances are being created for new graduates. Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: Jobs in marketing, banking and healthcare are the top hiring sectors for new graduates in UAE.

In the UAE, advertising/marketing/PR (19 per cent) and engineering/design (18 per cent) emerge as the most appealing places for fresh graduates to be from starting a career point of view, followed by banking/finance (17 per cent), according to the poll by bayt.com done in conjunction with YouGov.

“The survey depicts the perceptions of young job seekers and recent graduates across the MENA region in regard to the job market, the most attractive industries, as well how this group envisions their careers,” said Ola Haddad, Director of HR at bayt.com. 

Top job choices

The poll found that a handful of sectors in the UAE are thriving with opportunities for new entrants. Advertising/marketing/PR (24 per cent), banking/finance (14 per cent) and healthcare (14 per cent) emerged as the top hiring sectors.

Lower salary expectations (according to 45 per cent who participated in a survey) are the main reason why respondents believe that some sectors hire more fresh graduates than others, while 39 per cent believe that certain others hire more of tyro professionals because they can handle challenges.

In-demand skills

When asked about the top skills required to excel in the workplace, respondents mentioned computer skills (51 per cent) as most important, followed by communication skills (45 per cent) and interpersonal/team playing skills (36 per cent). In terms of their own personal skills, the top requirements were interpersonal/team playing skills (93 per cent), communication skills (93 per cent), and flexibility/adaptability to change (90 per cent).


UAE graduates (44 per cent) feel that the biggest challenge they face when searching for a job is lack of previous work experience. Not knowing how to approach the job search effectively (41 per cent) is also considered an obstacle. Over three-quarters of respondents said they acquired work experience during or before their time in college.

The nature of the job or being passionate about the job (39 per cent) emerges as the single most important factor for UAE respondents when selecting a job. Three-quarters expect to be offered a basic salary for their first job and 54 per cent expect to get personal medical insurance.

When asked what they will do if they do not find a job in their exact target job role, half of the graduates said they will keep looking until they do, while 29 per cent said they will start looking into another role or industry.

“The data shows that more employers are opening their doors to fresh graduates, presenting a significant shift in what employers need in this increasingly digital world,” said Zafar Shah, Research Director at YouGov.