Abu Dhabi: The Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation has launched a new job classification scheme, which is now used for new work permit applications across the country, a senior official said.
The new occupational classification scheme is comprised of a list of 725 job titles in nine professional categories, including managerial positions, specialists and clerical support staff, said Saif Ahmad Al Suwaidi, Undersecretary of the ministry for human resource affairs.
“Each designation belongs to one of five levels of professional skills that determine whether a degree certificate must be provided by a work permit applicant, or not. A brief job description and a unique code are attached to each designation on the list,” Al Suwaidi said
He added the new scheme has been prepared in accordance with the International Standard Classification of Occupations.
Al Suwaidi said companies can only apply for new work permits with job titles from the new list.
He assured foreigners holding employment residence permits with job titles that are not on the new list, will not need to revise their title to renew a job contract.
Experts, however, say the new scheme makes it more challenging for employers to select a suitable job title that matches the foreign worker’s responsibilities and educational qualifications.
“Considering that an old list consisted of over 3,000 positions, it is now more challenging for employers to select a suitable job title that matches the foreign worker’s responsibilities and educational qualifications. As per the new list, most of the job titles must be accompanied by a degree certificate,” Marcin Kubarek, manager of knowledge and content at Fragomen Worldwide, told Gulf News.
Kubarek explained employers have now limited options for selecting suitable job titles for their candidates, considering that the old list consisted of over 3,000 designations and the qualification requirements were more lenient.
“With the new list being implemented, the employers must ensure that an appropriate title is identified for work permit candidates, and that these titles are in accordance with business activities of the sponsoring entity as well as work activities that will be carried out by the employees,” Kubarek said.
Al Suwaidi said the new Emirati occupational classification scheme is in line with the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation’s commitment to achieve the strategic objectives and vision of the future government to achieve optimal management of human resources in the country and develop its skills.
He added that the new classification would support the plans, programmes and policies applied by the ministry to enable the labour market to be accessible to citizens and to contribute to the achievement of the objectives of the UAE Vision 2021 to increase the participation of the Emirati talent in the private sector.
Al Suwaidi pointed out that through the new classification, the job titles in the previous classification were updated and summarised along with the job description of each profession and the qualifications and job requirements and the career path of employees.
He said that professions that can be filled with Emiratis and the future careers were identified, which would make it easier for employers to attract Emirati human resources as well as skills and expertise from outside the country to fill the required jobs in the private sector.
“Professions that were created came after studying the reality of the labour market and looking forward to its future in cooperation with the ministry’s partners and international expert houses, so that the new classification will meet current and future needs of the job market, in line with the International Standard Classification of Occupations,” Al Suwaidi said.
Nine professional categories
The UAE Professional Classification comprises nine categories. The first category includes 83 designations for managers, while the second category comprises 183 job titles for specialists in scientific, technical and human areas.
The third category includes 114 jobs for technicians and professional assistants, while the fourth category comprises 37 jobs for office support staff.
The fifth category includes 63 professions for service and sales workers and the sixth category includes 16 job titles for skilled workers in the fields of agriculture and fishery, while the seventh category includes 111 jobs for craftsmen and related industries and the eighth category 63 jobs for operators of machinery and equipment.
The ninth category includes 55 job titles for low-skill workers.
These professions are divided into five skill levels: The first includes specialised professions, which require a high degree of scientific, technical and administrative skills with a minimum of a university degree.
The second skill level includes technical occupations that require scientific and technical skills as well as practical and supervisory skills with study of two to three years after high school.
The third skill level includes jobs, which require practical and professional skills, with a secondary school qualification, while the fourth level includes jobs that require practical and vocational skills related to only part of the work.
The fifth skill level includes a segment of the workforce associated with a limited skill set.