10 tips to get a job in UAE

As discussed in order to retire early, there are three things one must do- make more, save more and invest wisely. So as a part of making more money, there are many who come to the Middle East with a hope of finding a job which pays. So, this guide is for those who come to UAE (most points are equally applicable in other countries as well), the land of dreams to fulfill their dreams.

  1. Tweak your CV
    I am fed up with the number of people who are in the beginning of their career and send me CVs which are long and boring. If you want prospective employer to go through your CV, keep it short. No spelling or grammar mistakes. I will write another post about how to draft a good CV. But in the meantime, you can do your own research. Also include a good photo of yours preferably in a formal wear.
  2. Customize covering letter for each application
    If you have done your research you would know that the CV generally remains static irrespective of the post applied to. What changes is your covering letter. In this you mention your experience, your qualification, your skills etc. You highlight those which are specific to the said job. Also, in case you do not have the any of required skills or experience, you mention that as well including a reason as to why in spite of that you should be considered. Do this thinking that the person sorting CV has very little time. Try to have maximum impact in a minimum time.
  3. Cold calling
    This is a very intrusive but at times helpful point so make sure you don’t over do it. Once you have applied for the job, check if you can find the company. If you can, check them online and get a phone number. You can ask to speak to the HR and tell them that you have applied for the specific post and ask if it is still available. Probably they will tell you that CV selection is going on and hopefully will also ask for your name. If so you are in luck as during CV selection if by some chance the person remembers your name, they might shortlist you as well.
  4. Treat the job search as a job
    When I had come to UAE on a one month visit visa in August 2014, my only job was to get up in morning and applying for jobs. I would go through every single jobs listed. After finding something suitable would research anything that was unfamiliar (like some technical terms or a software etc.) in the job listing. Based on all that would draft a suitable covering letter and apply. After exhausting all the job portals would continue my research on job search. Most of what I did during the day was relevant to my job search.
  5. Look for quality and not quantity
    When I came here for job search, one person told me to aim at sending 100 applications a day. I was able to send only 60, in a month. The reason I was applying for so less is because I would customize each application, understand the requirement of the job. If I lacked a particular experience I would mention that in my covering letter and would mention other relevant experience which might give me a fighting chance. This also helps in saving time of the prospective employer which is always good.
  6. Utilize Bayt.com properly
    com is one of the best job portals in UAE and trying to explain everything will require blog post on the topic alone. But in short, I will list down my observations:

    1. In Bayt.com we can have two CVs uploaded, one should be the two-page CV about which we discussed earlier and the second would be the one in which we enter the details. Here enter the specific keyword relevant to your field, but don’t overdo it. This gives your CV more relevancy for different vacancies.
    2. Make sure your profile is 100%. How you can achieve that you can check their help section.
    3. Regularly refresh your CV and apply for jobs (if you are seeking).
  7. Plan your journey for the interview
    Most interviewers give the route map to their office. You can use “Wojahati” to properly plan your journey. Plan such that you can reach the venue at least 30 min before interview. Also try to keep fresh by using under arm gel and deodorants. During peak summer you might as well use an umbrella. There might be people looking at you in a weird way, just don’t mind them.
  8. Dress accordingly for interview
    Single colour shirts preferably light shades. Else vertical stripes are also fine. But no big checks and multi-colours. Also, for trousers, dark coloured & properly ironed. Shoes should be polished with matching socks. I have also seen companies here preferring interviewee to be in a suit specially in the field of accounting and auditing. So, it might be a good time to invest in a decent well fitted suit if you are in a related field.
  9. Before interview hate the job
    This must be the most confusing heading in this post. Don’t want to boast but for a person who has passed all the interviews he has attended this is a very important step to have a clear mind when attending the interview. So, if you have been called for an interview, research and prepare for it. But before you go for it, think of all the good things you can have if you don’t get the job, like you don’t have to change your current job, or you can look for something in a better field or other excuses. This helps as you are no longer under pressure to impress the interviewer/s.
  10. Be honest
    Integrity is not something you can buy from market. Be honest in all aspects of your job search, whether it is your qualifications, experience or previous salary. Trust me when I tell you that honesty is indeed the best policy. I was working in Oman earlier and the salary was equivalent to AED 1,800. From there my first salary in UAE was AED 9300 which is more than 5 times jump. But I was outright honest about everything. Most good companies have a salary scale and your previous salary has very little to do with your expectation. They should be paying for the job they are offering not the job you were doing.

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