Debunking the myths of Contract Recruitment in MENA Job-Seekers Edition

In our Employers Edition, we shared that contract solutions are becoming a more attractive option for companies that require highly specialized skills. Although there are positive prospects in contracting, many Middle Eastern workers are still hesitant to accept contract jobs. Even when a contract position has been offered to them, many job seekers would still prefer to wait for a permanent role.

Why is this so?

  • Permanent roles provide a sense of stability both financially and mentally
  • Contractors are paid less, and valued less
  • Difficulties in cultivating long-term skills

The pandemic, digitalization, and automation have all intensified the trend towards new working models and made agility a central issue for businesses. Freelancers play an important role as agility drivers to react faster to problems and the needs of companies. This is able to happen because working freelance means being your own boss and enjoying flexibility – therefore make sure you’re aware of your value.

We will be debunking some of these myths that job-seekers possess when job-hunting below. With an increasing number of contracting job opportunities available in the market, perhaps you should consider contract jobs and the gig economy as an alternative career option instead of waiting on for a permanent role.


Myth 1: “Full-time employees are paid more than temporary or freelance workers.”

Perhaps the biggest concern for job seekers is the strong impression that non-regular employees and freelancers are underpaid. It is also true that there has been a disparity between full-time and part-time employees, not only in terms of wages but also in terms of overall treatment, but also the benefits.

Workers on fixed-term contracts generally have the same rights and protections under the Labour Law as other workers. In the case of outsourcing work as a freelancer, the remuneration also tends to be higher than the monthly income of regular full-time employees. This may be due to the social insurance premiums and other costs covered by the company for full-time employees.

Unlike full-time employees, freelancers have full control your own work hours. If your company pays you at an hourly rate, you have the chance to earn more efficiently than full-time employees as well.


Myth 2: “My income and role in the company is not stable.”

As mentioned earlier, the salary of freelancers varies greatly depending on the number of projects they receive. However, compared to full-time employees, who are basically guaranteed the same monthly income regardless of whether it is a busy season or a quiet season, the amount of work you do in contract-based jobs is directly related to your income.

In the case of skilled workers, contract workers are also allowed to have more than one job. The UAE Ministerial Decree (No. 31 of 2018) provides that skilled workers whose working hours with their current or “original” employer are less than eight hours per day or 48 hours per week, but at least 20 hours per week, may also work for one or more “additional” employers if granted a work permit to do so, without requiring permission from the original employer. This can also allow freelancers to diversify their income and have back-up options to remain financially stable.

In addition, while your time at a particular company may only be for a short stint, your chances of returning to the same company in future as a full-time staff is possible too. At Progressive Recruitment, we can help you find a permanent position with a company that you have worked for before. Progressive Recruitment can also assist you with permanent recruitment and career change.


Myth 3: “It is difficult to develop long-term skills as a temp or freelancer.”

One of the advantages of being a full-time employee is that the company invests in developing your skills through training. On the other hand, it should be noted that your development is also based on the company's growth strategy, and the skills you can acquire may not necessarily align with your personal aspirations.

For example, if you want to develop your project management or Python coding skills, but your company does not require those skills, you may not have the chance to pursue this under the company. As freelancers, you get the liberty to choose your own projects, and thus plan your own development by focusing on your preferred project. With materials and resources readily available on the internet today, individuals can acquire skills without spending a lot of money.


In conclusion…

The market for contract recruiting solutions is expected to grow more and more in the future. If you are a candidate who is interested in a more flexible and potentially higher-paying way of working, please feel free to contact us using the form below!


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Whether you’re a professional looking for a job or a business seeking highly skilled STEM talent, the team at Progressive is here for you.

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