You’ve read about the weird part, now on to the serious, no non-sense topic on how to find a job in Dubai. Here are some scenarios, tips and word(s) of caution.
1. First, beware of scams – NEVER pay any amount for those ‘consultancy’ companies offering to receive your CV and finding a job on your behalf – in exchange for any amount.
There’s this consultancy firm in Ajman that promises a job and make you pay 200-300 dhs upon submission of your CV. Don’t go there! You will just be wasting your time and money. Honestly, I’m surprised why this firm still operates and continue to post ads and dupe job seekers without getting caught.
Another consultancy firm in Sheikh Zayed Road called Core Elements. They are scam too.
And I’m sure there are lots of other. Rule of thumb: never trust any firms that require you to pay cash in exchange for a job, no matter how small the amount!
Here are the legit ones that accept online applications:
http://dubai.dubizzle.com/jobs/ (Proceed with caution, there are lots of jobs posted by that consultancy in Ajman, which is scam)
…just to name a few.
2. Come in the cooler months – Expect a lot of walking around town for interviews and some companies are far from bus/train stations so you are required to walk. But believe me when I say that job seekers who come here now are way luckier than those who came in 2007 where the train system was non-existent, the buses scarce and stink.
Bear in mind though that jobs in the cooler months are competitive as Dubai welcomes a deluge of job seekers.
3. Connect with friends – Nepotism strongly exists. Sometimes, it’s not what you know but who you know. There are companies who don’t hire if you don’t have a blood relative working within the company (true story!). While there are a lot of jobs advertised, it’s more likely that those who are hired have some connection in some way with people working there.
Connect with friends, with friend’s friends as there are a lot of jobs unadvertised and only available to people within the organization.
4. Females: be alert of the danger signs – There are those employers that take advantage of desperate female job seekers, be sharp and alert to read the signs.
My friend had been offered a secretarial position with duties that can only be summarized as “all around”. The boss shamelessly told her to live with him to satisfy some of his “needs”. So disgusting. My friend left after just 5 minutes into the interview.
5. Stand firm with your salary expectation – The days where Filipinos, for example are compensated properly are long gone. Before, the minimum pay for secretaries/clerks is at least 3,000 dhs (US$810)/month. Right now, my friend had been offered an appalling 1500 dhs-2000 dhs (US$405-540)/month by at least 5 companies!
How will a person live decently and save up (the main reason for working abroad to many is saving up) with this meager salary?
Just for the kicks – a Western educated secretary, of the same qualification could rake in at least 10,000 dhs (US$2,700)/month, more than three times that of a secretary from Asia! And that is bluntly, shamelessly acceptable in Dubai.
TIP: When asked of your salary expectation, do not go too low. Keep your head up but be realistic. A ‘realistic’ starting salary for any non-technical admin job is 3,000 dhs. Sad to say, there are lots of job seekers from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh who are willing to accept the job with half the amount so that reduces the chance of Filipinos, for example, of getting that job.
BONUS TIP: With so many jobs under the sun (literally), always stay positive that there’s that one job specially for you! Polish that resume, keep your head up, be confident and go get that job!
**While some job seekers apply from their home countries, it’s very common for people to come to Dubai on tourist/visit visas and look around.