Demand for accounting professionals is growing in the UAE as start-ups seek professionals with accountancy experience.
Management accountants, talent acquisition specialists and HR business partners top the list of UAE’s top 10 in-demand roles for the first half of 2020, said Robert Half, a global recruitment consultancy, in a new report.
To attract new hires and retain top talent, remuneration trends such as flexible working, training and development will be essential for companies looking to build the best workforce and secure the right candidates, added the report titled “2020 Salary Guide”.
Top 10 jobs for the year ahead, with salary brackets:
1. Management accountants ($79,300 – $113,000)
Demand for accounting professionals is growing in the UAE as start-ups seek professionals with accountancy experience to establish and develop their financial processes. Equally, SMEs through to large multinational companies are looking to streamline costs and maximise their bottom line.
2. CFOs ($196,100 – $438,900)
At the head of finance operations, CFOs are regarded as the key to driving global best practice. With a talent deficit threatening hiring strategy across the finance and accounting sector, organisations are looking for CFOs to lead from the top and deliver business targets, with a focus on market regulation and increased return on investment.
3. Risk managers ($98,100 – $156,900)
The financial services sector is seeing a hiring increase due to rapid advancements in technology. One of the most in-demand professions is risk managers, as awareness of the dangers posed by new technologies and processes becomes a priority.
4. Heads of digital/digital transformation ($170,800 – $261,600)
The UAE technology market is one of the most competitive in the region, but technical knowledge is something that won’t be limited to the technology department. Leading from the top, heads of digital, or heads of digital transformation, will be required to oversee the modernisation and vital digitalisation needed for future business success.
5. Artificial intelligence (AI) developers ($52,300 – $125,100)
To remain at the forefront of development expertise, businesses are bringing specialist support in AI within their in-house technology team. Those with medium to senior-level development experience will stand out against the competition as they can bring best-practice insights to the role.
6. HR business partners ($65,400 – $98,000)
Due to new UAE labour laws, HR professionals including HR business partners can expect a surge in demand for their skills, especially those who specialise in the benchmarking of compensation and benefits packages to attract and retain staff.
7. Talent acquisition specialists ($39,200 – $58,900)
Demand for talent acquisition professionals has increased within large multinational organisations, as the need to source top talent becomes increasingly competitive.
8. Legal counsel ($89,000 – $155,500)
With legal practices adapting to a rapidly changing business landscape, corporates are looking for legal counsel professionals with 5-8 years’ local experience, who offer the skills to support with developments in FinTech, financial regulation and dispute resolution.
9. Legal assistants ($46,000 – $65,000)
Bilingual legal assistants can expect a wider range of job opportunities, as businesses look for support in drafting and reviewing contracts in different languages, to maintain alignment with international best practice.
10. Security analysts ($55,600 – $114,400)
Security analysts will be in high demand, supplying businesses with the know-how on what they should be doing to defend and secure their data.
Gareth El Mettouri, associate director of Robert Half UAE, said: “With economic growth in the UAE set to accelerate this year, it is unsurprising to see faster evolution of the workplace. As companies adjust to the challenges and opportunities presented to their business, the need not only for top talent, but a meaningful ‘business fit’ for candidates, intensifies.”
“Employers are seeking candidates with specialist skills, industry experience, and systems knowledge. The most in-demand of these being mid-level, specialised roles such as security analysts and AI developers.
“Candidates applying for these jobs can expect to enjoy some negotiating room on flexible working and starting salaries within their remuneration packages. The search for bilingual candidates in the legal and finance sectors is also set to increase, as companies look to comply with international best practice standards,” he added.