Saturday, October 14, 2006

Employment Ads in the UAE

It’s about time I get off my ass and start looking for new work. I’ve worked in the UAE for more than 7 years now, in different positions and different ‘classes’ of companies. I enjoy working, and no matter what I’m doing, I’m pretty damn good at it and have multiple references that will state just the same. But when it comes to the UAE… there’s an issue. I’m sick of it; absolutely fed up of working for one shit company after another. I swear, every time I look at the opportunities in this market, I want to vomit. Here are a few examples of why (from

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Does anyone else see sheer racism in these ads? Am I insane to think that this type of ads wouldn’t be permitted in any other country, let alone the ability to openly admit you’re only interested in hiring certain nationalities? Can any one else see that these permitted standards of professionalism only help increase the racial divide that is already disgustingly disturbing in the UAE?

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Even with a salary of 10,000 Dhs a month, it’s almost impossible to live comfortably in Dubai (or even Sharjah or Ajman). Increasing rents, car payments, and even the cost of groceries are at an all-time high in the UAE. I’m not talking about luxurious living, either. My last position, I was taking around 10K, and I’ll tell you, by the end of the month I was broke – every month. And I didn’t have time to waste money. I was busy driving to my office in Abu Dhabi from my house in Ajman (because I couldn’t afford to stay closer). And do any of you readers know just how demanding the position “Executive Secretary” actually is? Do the people offering these positions have any idea? Do they realize that a secretary is essentially the backbone of any company? I may sound a little hypocritical here, because in my last position I was responsible for hiring a secretary and we didn’t offer a much better salary, but this wasn’t my choice nor did I have the power to change it.

The classifies and even appointments in the UAE are riddled with ads like this. If by chance, they don’t fall into these categories, they are based pretty obviously on sex-appeal over qualifications:

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Or they’re full of suspicious contact details; mobile phone numbers instead of office ones, or free email addresses instead of company ones. Spam email is not an excuse to lower your company image this way.

Before I close, here’s one ad that tops the cake!!!

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It’s not only sexist, but offering the shittiest possible salary, and check out those contact details! I know office-boys that get paid more than that, for making tea and coffee!

Personally, I wouldn’t even apply to these positions. Their ads alone are horrible display of discrimination (let me not even start on the sexism), and sheer unprofessional policies. I can’t imagine working for another shit company in the UAE and the truth is, 95% of the ads I read here, give me the first impression that this is exactly what they are. If you would apply to these positions, I've got to say... Either your standards/qualifications are far too low, or you must be pretty desperate for work.

(Perhaps that's the reason why there's such horrorific work ethics throughout the UAE, in general?)


Blogger ArO said...

Been through so many discussions about this topic for the past 4 years, seen (and participated) so much enthousiasm and energy denouncing this phenomenon, yet haven't seen a iota of change or interrest among those whose opinion and actions really would make a difference. Maybe this is some of those things that define the system over here. An maybe by admitting that it is descriminatory to allow the posting of such ads, it would mean accepting the first step that would inexorably lead to accepting equality among all those living on this land; Indians being equal to arabs, arabs being equal to weterners, westerners being equal to locals, etc.
I tend to think that appart from the people at the lowest part of this subjective social "ladder", all the rest are indeed ripping some advantages from the status quo.

Bottom line: "les chiens abboient, la caravanne passe"

Till then...

9:10 PM, October 14, 2006  
Blogger Tainted Female said...

I tend to think that appart from the people at the lowest part of this subjective social "ladder", all the rest are indeed ripping some advantages from the status quo.

I agree with you, but I disagree. Even the ‘lowest part’ here are ripping some (possibly fewer) advantages off this. At 15 years old, I was hired as an Assistant Marketing Manager by an Asian – because I was Canadian. Something he only told me about two weeks into working, after a sales meeting he sent me to that I wasn’t prepared for – being with the company just 2 weeks, he explained my nationality and looks should make the sale, after which I promptly quit.

Not only that, it’s widely accepted that certain nationalities will work for less salary which is one reason companies might specify them in the ads. That doesn’t make it alright at all, as I have an issue with the shit salaries as well as the racial discrimination that’s abundant here. If both were changed (yeah, we’re all dreaming), by the companies, or by all nationalities demanding similar salaries for specified positions, we’d have a completely different market and a more professional overall business environment.

I blame the people with lower personal standards as much as I blame the companies that offer them.

((By the way, you said you've been through this topic over and over. In no way am I trying to start a debate or drag you into another repeated discussion... I'm just sharing my thoughts, is all))

and uhhh... "les chiens abboient, la caravanne passe"


2:58 AM, October 15, 2006  
Blogger Shaykhspeara Sha'ira said...

It's from an old hebrew saying, "the dogs bark and the caravan just passes by".

These ads are tragic. And people will apply to them. Some because they don't have better options.

4:17 AM, October 15, 2006  
Blogger psamtani said...

I blame the people with lower personal standards as much as I blame the companies that offer them.

Desperation isn't a choice.

10:30 AM, October 15, 2006  
Blogger bklyn_in_dubai said...

this is a place where there's no minimum wage, there's no real laws to protect workers or renters or consumers, companies hold your passports and have you as bonded labourers on their work permits, and there seems to be enough of a pool of labor that companies can offer jobs at ridiculously low wages and still get workers, since you have to work to stay and while it may suck, it's better than manila or kochi.

while the libertarians and other free marketeers may cheer this as the natural and proper way of things, the liberal in me can only think, that ain't right. the libertarians should actually hate this system because it shackles workers to their employer, you can't decide this job sucks i'm quitting and going over here. it's a ridiculous system. you've already got residency visas, why do you need labour cards tied to a particular company, and that they get to hold your passport is even more ridiculous. don't say why though -- i've heard all the rationales and they are just that. bottom line is total control of the workforce. the worker is just a cog in the machine and the overarching goal is maximum profit for the big boys with minimal effort.

11:50 AM, October 15, 2006  
Blogger Tainted Female said...

SS… Hummm, It’s an interesting saying. Thanks for translating. (And God woman… You’re just full of knowledge Mashallah!)

Somebody’s always gotta debate… and Psamtani… I could have bet my ass it’d be you. (Missed ya, and I’ve not responded to the video you linked only because I’m on dial up just now. Can’t view it, bs next week Inshallah, it’ll be sorted out.) I mentioned in the entry itself, desperation. And I’m not disagreeing with you. But it’s simply not that possible that there is that many desperate people here or that chose to keep coming here, to keep these types of ads common practice.

And uh… Define ‘desperate’ please.

*Approx. 40,000 in debt for a car that has a resale value worth far less than that now.
*More than 10,000 in debt for other things I’d prefer not to mention.
*Less than 100Dhs in the pocket (or the bank) and no food in the fridge.
*Staying in mama’s house which won’t be here for long since they’ve pretty-much decided to move back home in a month’s time.
*And alimony of less than those salaries - that pretty much all goes to paying off those debts.

and don’t even give me the… but you have internet, blah, blah, blah… I’m not paying this bill – I’m not able to. Sort of like my daddy’s mobile. My mobile… It’s due to be cut at the end of this month, by the way.

That makes me pretty desperate, wouldn’t you say? And I still wouldn’t take any one of these job offers.

Bklyn… I couldn’t agree with you more. I really couldn’t. And you’ve said about all I could.

12:03 PM, October 15, 2006  
Blogger ArO said...

Shaykhspeara Sha'ira, Thanks for translating the expression. Though I always thought it was of arab-bedouin origin.

TF, I didn't mean to critisize the debate in itself. It is always good to voice what one does not accept, less we end up accepting it. Furthermore, it's your blog. So..
Tainted you might be,
still its queen you can be.

12:25 PM, October 15, 2006  
Blogger Tainted Female said...

Aro… You’re sweet. Thank you. But I didn’t feel you criticized it, honestly. I’m just so tired of the debate scene among blogs I’m trying my hardest not to stir one up around here.

12:37 PM, October 15, 2006  
Blogger Shaykhspeara Sha'ira said...

Aro you are welcome. The saying is also found in the arab and bedouin traditions like you said.

Who was first is not known but it is still attributed to both. And since the geography of both cultures hasbeen the same (both Hebrew and Arab) chances are the source is one and the same...rather geographical than ethnic.

4:57 PM, October 15, 2006  
Blogger psamtani said...

Awww... i missed you too.. :(

But it’s simply not that possible that there is that many desperate people here or that chose to keep coming here, to keep these types of ads common practice.

I think there are enough desperate people in pretty much any country to accept any of those job ads. Which is why, to protect salaries, you need minimum wage requirements. And people who emigrate tend to be among the more desperate in their home countries. You can't expect a man whose wife and kids depend on him to earn to refuse a job on principle.

And that example helps to define desperation. You're in Dubai, and you have a ton of loans, but you don't (as far as i know) have anyone depending on you. The married man with two kids and no social support system (family, friends) who relies on income to send his tots to school isn't really making a choice accepting whatever job he can get. Especially if he isn't qualified or experienced enough for the better paying ones.

Now are you going to pretend you don't have people who won't look after you if you can't look after yourself? After 15 years in Dubai?? I think not.

9:29 PM, October 15, 2006  
Blogger Tainted Female said...

Psamtani… I could tear the shit out of your argument based on just one or two sentences you said…

…But instead I’m going to bow down and admit defeat. I’m serious; I don’t have the energy for debating these days.

12:21 AM, October 16, 2006  
Blogger psamtani said...

You concede defeat, but not before warning me that you could defeat me easily if you tried. Now that's why I love ya.

On an unrelated note, I've heard rumors that Galadari has stopped his daily comment section. Must be all the hate mail he's been recieving from the readership (I believe he was especially baffled when he recieved criticism from the address

2:20 AM, October 16, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just went through your last posts, making up for the lack of internet for the past week and so they mixed up in my head and - why, instead of (or while) looking for another thankless job, don't you open some kind of business, since you seem to be good at buying and selling?

8:37 AM, October 16, 2006  
Blogger Tainted Female said...


Some things will never change, in me. You should know that already.

And as for Galadari… You really are just mean.


The boy and I, and even my parents have been considering it. The biggest problems are I don’t have the capitol myself, my parents want to open something in Canada, the boy wants to open something here. There’s no middle to be found, yet.

9:50 AM, October 16, 2006  
Blogger psamtani said...

Some things will never change, in me. You should know that already.
I think that's exactly the point I was trying to make. I was expressing my gladness in knowing that some things will never change.

And as for Galadari, I believe I have done the world a great service. If you think about it, he stands to benefit as KaTie will get slightly less shitty and circulation will go up.

9:58 AM, October 16, 2006  
Blogger Tainted Female said...

Now express that same gladness in knowing that I'm no more than a daft blond...

and loooooOoOOOooooooOOOOl! What if the guy now suffers severe psychological trauma?

10:34 AM, October 16, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"my parents want to open something in Canada, the boy wants to open something here."

And you'll work for both as the creative one. Canadian-UAE fusion, hmmm... dates in maple syrup? Sorry, iftar-inspired thought

7:30 PM, October 16, 2006  
Blogger Khaled Zamer said...

Sadly saying, that this is not only related to Indians, I've seen so many ads requesting for "Australian/South African/British" or usually they put it as Native English speaker. This is tragic as this cuts the road for anyone else.

I have tried to apply for these High profitable positions but no luck.

I remember one hilarious ad which I’ll never forget, it was "Personal Assistant to GM, European Educated, native English speaker, presentable and willing to travel, Salary 30,000" This is almost triple my salary.

The point which really hearts is I have 11 years experience in the most complicated banking applications.

Anyway I don’t know how long this will continue to happen especially we are not appointing according to qualifications, its just nationality preference and connections.

This is one of the reasons for having poor performance in sectors like health and nursing, education, even services.

A good example for this is the Banking sector; you enter any branch you see mixed nationalities, but when you reach the back office, OMG no one speaks Arabic or English! And I leave this to your imagination.

On the other hand if you go to the top management its all Native English speakers. Maybe this is what they call multi-national or international culture.

No obligations for God’s own judgment!

7:58 PM, October 16, 2006  
Blogger Tainted Female said...

lol @ Samoum...

Phoenix... You're 10000% right. It just so happened that these were the first ads I saw. It wasn't intentional that the 'native english' or Westerners only were left out.

10:00 PM, October 16, 2006  
Blogger Lizza said...

Sexism and age-ism appear regulary in want ads here, too. Isn't that pathetic?

I hope entrepreneurship offers a better avenue for you, Tainted! Lord knows you're talented enough. :-)

11:53 PM, October 16, 2006  

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