UAE employees want work/life balance but many admit to being stressed

by Ray Clancy on February 5, 2013

UAE employees want work/life balance but many admit to being stressed

The majority of people working in the United Arab Emirates regard a good work/life balance as being important but many feel under stress every day, according to a new survey. On a day to day basis some 56% of employees in the UAE feel that they are either highly motivated or motivated 28% by the work that they do, the poll conducted by job site research organisation YouGov found. Overall 75% believe that a good work/life balance is a very important source of motivation, with 60% claiming that their current organisation offers support for them to achieve this.

Other leading motivators for employees across the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region are recognition of work and achievements, training and development opportunities, career advancement, being able to feel that their work has an impact, personal fulfilment and opportunities for long term career growth. Also ranking highly were participating in decision making, respondent’s colleagues and work environment, the nature of their daily responsibilities and being able to set and reach goals.

Three quarters state that their work offers them a sense of personal achievement and a sense of professional achievement but many admit to feeling stress as work. On an average working day, 49% of respondents in the UAE feel either under stress or under severe stress. The firm says this could be linked with the fact that, across MENA, 23% of employees always work overtime or take work home with them. Of these, 44% do so because it is part of their job requirement, 36% do it in order to get ahead and finish their projects early, while 30% claim that it is the only way to meet deadlines.

Quote from : “I’m in desperate need of help, advice or if anyone can point me in the right direction. I need help with finding a job in Abu Dhabi my fiancé is living there and I’m still in Canada at the moment trying to move down as soon as possible. I have applied on every site I can find but with no success.”

‘Levels of stress and the number of people working overtime are most likely a prolonged effect of downsizing, due to the recent recession. As the economy picks up and companies once more begin to grow, these statistics may reduce further as the workload is spread more evenly between employees,’ said Sundip Chahal, chief executive officer of YouGov.

The research also found that there are not many respondents who prefer to maintain their position at the company they’re currently employed at. Only 41% are intending to stay with their current organisation for a minimum of 12 months. A further 29% intend to stay for a minimum of three to five years, with only 10% stating that they will continue for at least 10 years, or until retirement.

‘Retaining quality performers simply adds to increased productivity and morale, while reducing the associated costs of turnover,’ said Suhail Masri, vice president for sales at ‘Our survey’s results show that companies need to be doing more to help boost levels of motivation for the employees, specifically on the work/life balance front as that’s what matters to most professionals,’ he explained.

To help increase retention levels, the incentives that respondents claim are most important to them are monetary rewards (55%); certificates (35%); time off (19%); medals, or plaques of achievement (14%), and functional awards, such as gym memberships, discount vouchers and so on (13%). The research also found that across the MENA region, the majority, 92%, of respondents feel that the work that they do is significant to their company, with 86% stating that their job is significant and important to their colleagues, customers and business partners.

A further 72% believe that their work is important to their country of residence, while 72% say that what they do is significant to their society. Three quarters claim that their work gives them a sense of personal achievement, with 77% stating it offers them a sense of professional achievement.

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Griebies September 29, 2014 at 1:04 pm

I am a South African with good qualificatios as a heavy truck driver, but don’t have a UAE license how can I qualify to obtain a UAElicense. I am also qualified as Logitician.

Can the forum assist me with contact details how and at what companies to apply as I really want to work abroad and if possible in UAE countries.



Griebies September 29, 2014 at 1:07 pm

Should I be able to get work in a UAE country may my wife join me immediataly, who will be responsible for her traveling costs and visa?



Griebies September 29, 2014 at 1:10 pm

Should I be able to obtain a work in a UAE country, do I pay my tax there (deducted from my salary) or when I come back to South Africa?


Griebies September 29, 2014 at 1:12 pm

Is there any age restriction of age when applying for work? Either as a driver or in the Logistical field.


Griebies September 29, 2014 at 1:19 pm

Who will be responsible for extetion of my visa should it be neccesary, and what about a workers permit?


Gajendran July 30, 2015 at 10:11 am

Hi Indian Guys !!! Be careful with pinay girls who are working in companies,hotels,night clubs and shopping complex… They ask you for help and you will be cried when you ask your money from them.

Mind it to avoid empty your vallett or bank balance.


Ammar Asghar April 15, 2016 at 2:06 pm

So true Gajendran….these pinays are the worst crooks than bankers 😀


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