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Thu 29 Jul 2010 01:02 PM

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Gulf schools failing to feed private sector - recruiter

Recruitment agency chief urges gov'ts to step in to raise standards.

Gulf schools failing to feed private sector - recruiter
FAILING MARK: A leading recruiter says schools and universities in the Gulf need to raise standards to ready students for the private sector workforce.

Schools and universities in the Gulf are failing to teach nationals the skill set required to enter the private sector and government intervention is needed, a leading recruitment agency said on Thursday.

Thousands of graduates are being left unable to take on jobs in areas such as IT and banking and finance, Sanjay Modi, managing director of Monster India, South East Asia and Middle East, told Arabian Business.

“What you have to look at is education and employability. What the corporates and the employers are finding a challenge is the skill set and I think that is where government support is required," said Modi.

"I would say it has to be tripartite part of arrangement which needs to move forward between employers, government and education institutions,” he added.

“I think it is a Gulf wide issue. Everyone is facing the [same] challenge because post-2009 things are improving, the market is moving up…. but most of the requirements are coming from the technical area,” he said.

About four percent of UAE nationals are employed in the private sector while 52 percent work in the public sector, according to the Abu Dhabi Tawteen Council.

In 2009 Saudi Arabia’s government estimated that 10 percent of its national workforce was unemployed.

Employing graduates is the biggest challenge, said Modi.

“The connect between the employers and the education institutions is not that strong. This is the kind of area we believe the government can play a huge role by bringing these two parties together.

“What they (the governments) have to look at is engaging the employers and the education institutions in some dialogue in order to understand what it is that the employers need and how the curriculum can be revised.”

The region’s job market has been showing signs of recovery since October but has increased considerably in the last four months, largely driven by Saudi Arabia, Abu Dhabi and Qatar, said Modi.

“In October on an average we had about 1,200 jobs (on Monster Gulf), which has moved to 3,8000 jobs [today] so that’s about 220 percent increase.

“The UAE, Saudi Arabia and Qatar are leading [but] we are also seeing a good amount of growth coming in from Jordan, Lebanon so it is a collective growth.”

US-based Monster is the world’s largest job search engine and has more than a million job postings at any time. In February the firm acquired HotJobs from Yahoo! for $225m.

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Dorothy 10 years ago

Today, more than ever before,Education it is extremely important that prior guidence is given. To educate one's self in an area where there is a demand for employees is not only is crutial but necessary. In my humble opinion, the governments inclusion will lead to a better prepared person upon graduation. The inclusion of practical business courses to help graduate have the tools for successful application to seek and gain employment, will be most helpful. The testing of students will help in the guidence of areas where they would be best suited. Incentives should be made available to those who excell in their studies prior to collage or university. Not everyone is collage or university material, this is where trade schools and apprentice programs will help to employe thoses who do not go on to collage or university. Schools could have a working arrangement with business who seek to fill positions within their businesses. Language courses should be offered at all levels. A second and third language would further anyone entering the business world and be an asset to any employer who hires such a knowldgeable person. Any investment the government makes in education can further the stability and enhancement of any country and it's people. I applaud those in the Gulf that understand education is the way to success and the betterment of an already forward thinking people who care about the future. Who better to implement and oversee education than the Government. This is just my humble opinion, I mean no disrespect of any person or government. Thank you

Nikhil James 10 years ago

Hi, I would like to know where you've sourced the 4% and 52% for the UAE pvt and public sector workforce. Thanks, Nikhil James