Most sectors in the Middle East are likely to adopt a "wait and see" policy on hiring during 2017 as companies monitor market conditions, according to a new report.
Recruitment agency Michael Page Middle East said real estate firms are most likely to buck this trend, with signs that hiring activity is returning as liquidity enters the market.
The report added that, following a move to reduce headcount last year, businesses in Saudi Arabia is re-organising itself and will require top tier talent to steer it in the right direction - both in the public and private sector.
Michael Page, part of FTSE 250 firm Page Group, said that digital is another area where all organisations are investing and will be hiring this year.
The agency added that the aforementioned sectors will see upward pressure on salaries but the bulk of the private sector will not start aggressively recruiting until the last quarter of 2017, once the full effect of Saudi Arabia’s and Abu Dhabi’s restructures have taken effect.
Michael Page's report said hiring in the Middle East during 2016 had been impacted by a number of factors including oil price, on-going regional disputes, Brexit, Donald Trump, a slowing China and a strong US dollar.
The agency said it saw 14 percent fewer recruitment assignments to work on last year while average salary packages of placed candidates decreased by 7 percent although December saw a rebound and was its best month for the year for actual assignments placed into new positions.
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