& YouGov Survey: Top Job Attributes in UAE for 2021 Are Salaries, Job Security and Work Environment

Ola Haddad, Director of Human Resources at

Dubai, UAE: A new survey by and YouGov focuses on current trends in employee attraction, retention, and engagement from both the employee and employer perspectives. The Attraction and Retention of Talent in MENA survey revealed that the three top drivers of employee attraction are salary and compensation (60% of respondents), long-term job security (55%) and workplace environment (48%). The least important factors reportedly are positive media presence (22%) and overall aesthetics of the company such as the logo and website design (20%). 

Additionally, a whopping 74% of respondents in the UAE find an employer attractive if they follow good ethics and practices. 

“We work with more than 39 million professionals at, so it is important that we gain a clear understanding of their motivations and expectations. These factors are integral to attracting and retaining talent in the UAE,” said Ola Haddad, Director of Human Resources at “Multiple factors drive employees’ commitment to their work – including coaching and evaluation, work environment, opportunities for growth and development, and, of course, their relationships with their companies.”

Attracting talent is an important step that employers need to remain aware of and proactively work on. When asked to what extent UAE companies do a good job at exciting job seekers about their culture and attracting them to apply, 36% of respondents said ‘to a great extent’, 34% said ‘somewhat’, 12% said ‘very little’, and 3% said ‘not at all’.  

Online company pages targeting job seekers (30%) and social media (25%) were nominated as the mediums to promote a company’s culture to job seekers. When asked ‘what type of information would most excite you to join a company as an employee’, 64% of respondents voted for highlighting company’s perks and benefits, 54% voted for employee testimonials and reviews and 39% said company awards and milestones. 

What matters post hiring 

After being hired, the survey showed that the most important on-the-job attributes for UAE professionals are career development opportunities (according to 69% of respondents), followed by training and support (65%) and quality of work (57%).  

Similarly, training and development opportunities (43%), followed by job security (40%) and opportunities for long term career development (34%) are the major drivers of loyalty towards a company besides salary. 

Workplace culture is instrumental in retaining employees by improving motivation and organizational commitment. Positively, 56% of the survey respondents have been working in their current organization for more than two years. About 6 in 10 employees are happy at their current workplace and 63% would recommend their current workplace to someone looking for a job.

Further, 71% of the respondents said they would apply in the current organization for their current role if they had to do it all over again. 

About 6 in 10 agree that their company regularly takes feedback from employees to understand them and 59% agree that the leadership takes their feedback seriously. Additionally, 53% agree that the company takes efforts to generate good opportunities to retain talent.

Zafar Shah, Research Director at YouGov said: “The Attraction and Retention of Talent in MENA survey offers helpful indicators of what employees are looking for and not finding. Professionals in this region have diverse needs and priorities when it comes to their ideal job and work environment. Companies should continue engaging their talent and seeking their feedback to improve their ability to attract top talent and to drive up their loyalty.”

Data for the Attraction and Retention of Talent in MENA survey was collected online from November 17 to December 13, 2020. Results are based on a sample of 1,608 respondents from countries including the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Bahrain, Lebanon, Jordan, Iraq, Palestine, Syria, Egypt, Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Libya and Sudan among others.

About is the leading job site in the Gulf and Middle East, connecting job seekers with employers looking to hire. Every day, thousands of new job vacancies are listed on the award-winning platform from the region’s top employers. The portal is used by over 40,000 global employers and has a database of over 39,000,000 professionals.