horizons logo
Start hiring
hire employees in

Dubai and the UAE,
made easy.

SALARY PAYMENT IN Emirati Dirham (AED, Dh)

CONTRACT LANGUAGES Arabic / English

PAYROLL TAX 12.5%

PAYROLL CYCLE Monthly

TIME TO HIRE 24 hours

Hire and pay talents
with Horizons in
180+ countries

Simple, compliant hiring with Horizons PEO

Hire Employees in Dubai and the UAE — Overview

Dubai and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has one of the most favorable environments for doing business in the world. Dubai — the largest and most well-known city in the UAE is a hub for international business, and businesses in the UAE have access to a highly educated and skilled workforce.
Businesses hiring in Dubai and the UAE enjoy a number of benefits such as a stable political environment, a pro-business government, low taxes, access to financing, and a young and educated workforce. The UAE also has an excellent infrastructure and is strategically located between Europe, Asia, and Africa.

Facts & Stats

Population 10.08M (16.5M labor force) Capital City Abu Dhabi Languages Spoken Arabic (5th most spoken in world)
Currency UAE Dirham (AED) GDP per capita $36,285 Ease of Doing Business 16th in the world
Minimum Wage None, but wage must cover basic needs of employees Average Wage 25, 718 AED/month Paid Leave 12 days-30 days from 6 months, depending on length of employment

Dubai and the UAE: Business Environment

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is an attractive destination for businesses looking to expand their operations overseas. With its robust economy and sophisticated infrastructure, the UAE offers an ideal business environment for companies of all sizes.

One of the biggest benefits of doing business in the UAE is access to its highly developed infrastructure. The country boasts well-developed roads, airports, ports, and other transportation systems that make it a great place to set up shop. This makes it easy for businesses to get their products and services to where they need to go quickly and efficiently.

The UAE also has a competitive corporate tax rate, at 9% (from June 2023), compared to the global average corporate tax rate of 23.37%. This means that businesses can retain more profits without having to pay hefty taxes. Additionally, the country has signed double taxation agreements with over 90 countries worldwide, which helps businesses save money on taxes when trading internationally.

In addition to these benefits, the UAE offers access to world-class talent from around the globe due its diverse population and vibrant job market. There are also many different types of visas available for both short-term visitors and long-term residents who want to work in the UAE. This makes it easy for businesses looking for talented workers from abroad who are interested in relocating there permanently or temporarily.

Finally, setting up a business in the UAE often involves less paperwork than in other countries; making it easier for businesses to start operating quicker than they otherwise would have been able to do elsewhere. The government also provides various incentives such as grants and loans which can help businesses get started on their feet more easily than if they were located somewhere else.

Business outlook in Dubai and the UAE

The UAE is a rapidly evolving business hub in the Middle East, and according to recent estimates, the UAE GDP is forecasted to grow by 6.2% in 2022 and 6.7% in 2023, bolstered by a surge in oil prices.

The government has also implemented several policies to encourage business expansion and attract foreign investment into the country, which has further bolstered economic growth prospects. These include measures like tax incentives, subsidies and other forms of financial support for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) as well as initiatives aimed at creating jobs for nationals and boosting investment in new industries. Additionally, there have been efforts put into place to improve infrastructure development.

UAE non-oil GDP is also predicted to grow by 3.9% in 2022 and 2.5% in 2023 – bolstered by government policies for expansion coupled with an increase in oil prices due to high global demand from both developed and developing economies alike. With such encouraging figures projected over coming years, it appears that now may be an ideal time for business owners looking to hire employees or invest capital within UAE’s economy – providing them with ample opportunities to reap maximum benefits from this period of rapid growth ahead.

Business regulation in Dubai and the UAE

The business environment in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) is governed by federal laws and regulations. These laws and regulations are enforced by various government agencies, including the Ministry of Economy and the Department of Economic Development, All businesses operating in the UAE must comply with these laws and regulations.
  • Ministry of Economy The Ministry of Economy is responsible for developing and implementing economic policies in the UAE. The Ministry also regulates businesses operating in the UAE to ensure compliance with federal laws and regulations. In addition, the Ministry provides various services to businesses, including licensing, registration, and inspection services.
  • Department of Economic Development The Department of Economic Development is responsible for promoting economic development in the Abu Dhabi and Dubai respectively. It does this by encouraging investment, overseeing commercial activities, and providing support to businesses operating in the UAE. The Department also regulates businesses to ensure compliance with federal laws and regulations. The primary purpose of business regulation in the UAE is to protect businesses and consumers from unfair or deceptive practices. Business regulation also promotes competition by ensuring that all businesses have a level playing field. In addition, business regulation helps to prevent businesses from engaging in activities that could negatively impact the economy or society as a whole.

Business culture in Dubai and the UAE

Although the UAE is a relatively young country, it has rapidly become one of the most important global business hubs. The traditional Emirati business culture is based on values of respect, honesty, and courtesy, which are essential for doing business in the UAE.

One of the most important things to understand about doing business in the UAE is that relationships are everything. The Emirati way of doing business is based on building strong, long-lasting relationships with partners, suppliers, and customers.

Business meetings in the UAE are generally formal affairs. It is important to dress conservatively and to avoid any show of public affection such as kissing or hugging. When greeting someone, it is customary to shake hands and wait for the other person to initiate conversation. Meetings usually begin with small talk before getting down to business. Emiratis tend to avoid making direct eye contact during conversations as this can be seen as confrontational.

The UAE may be a young country, but it has quickly established itself as a major player on the global stage. For businesses looking to expand into new markets, the UAE presents a fantastic opportunity

Recruiting employees in Dubai and the UAE

Recruiting employees in the UAE — Overview

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has experienced tremendous growth over the past few decades and is now home to many international businesses. The UAE offers a variety of benefits for businesses, including a stable political environment, a diverse economy, and a strategic location.

The UAE has a young population with a median age of 30 and a variety of skills and experience, providing a large pool of potential employees to choose from.

Most important recruitment tools in Dubai and the UAE

  • Dubizzle
    dubizzle UAE Classifieds
    Dubizzle is a popular job search platform in the UAE. It connects employers and potential employees from all over the region. With its user-friendly interface, employers can create job postings and search for qualified candidates.
  • LinkedIn
    LinkedIn
    LinkedIn is an invaluable tool for recruiting in UAE. The platform offers extensive networking opportunities and allows employers to reach potential candidates from around the world. LinkedIn also provides employers with detailed analytics about their job postings and allows them to target specific groups of people.
  • Indeed
    UAE Jobs | Indeed.com
    Indeed is a global job search engine popular in the UAE which enables employers to find candidates from around the world. For employers interested in finding individuals with skills that meet their specific needs, Indeed offers sophisticated filters and settings so they can narrow down their results

Interviewing candidates in Dubai and the UAE

Interviewing candidates in Dubai and the UAE – Overview

The United Arab Emirates is a country with a rich and diverse culture. When interviewing candidates for a position in your company, it is important to be mindful of cultural differences so that you can conduct an effective interview. Here are some tips to keep in mind.

Interviews in the UAE are typically conducted in a formal setting, often with more than one interviewer. Employers should outline the job expectations, the company’s core values, and any other criteria they are looking for in advance of the interview.

When meeting someone for the first time, it is customary to shake hands. Greetings are generally formal, and it is considered impolite to ask personal questions (such as questions about someone’s age or income). The best way to create a rapport with your interviewee is to ask questions about their professional qualifications and experience.

The United Arab Emirates is a country with its own unique culture and customs. When conducting interviews for positions in your company, it is important to be mindful of these cultural differences so that you can create an effective interview process.

Can I ask the candidate’s previous salary in Dubai and the UAE?

There is no legal restriction on asking a candidate about their previous salary in the UAE.

What is the typical salary increase at a new job in Dubai and the UAE?

The amount of salary increase a person can expect to receive at a new job in the UAE will vary depending on the industry and the job role, but typically employers offer between 10-20% more than their previous salary.

Onboarding employees in Dubai and the UAE

Onboarding employees in Dubai and the UAE – Overview

There are a number of important steps that employers must successfully complete when bringing a new employee into their organization in the UAE, including obtaining work visas and related documents, ensuring that all legal requirements are met, and providing necessary training to ensure the successful integration of the newcomer into the workplace.

In addition to the legal and bureaucratic elements of onboarding, employers must also be aware that cultural factors may play a role in ensuring smooth integration. Cultural differences can cause misunderstanding and friction between employees from different backgrounds, making it important for employers to provide adequate training on local customs, norms, language, and values.

Best remote working tools to use in Dubai and the UAE

In the UAE, a number of remote working tools can be used to facilitate effective collaboration and communication among employees. A few of these are:

  • Slack — Slack is an instant messaging platform which allows for both real-time conversations as well as asynchronous collaboration on projects. It also offers powerful search capabilities that make it easy to locate information.
  • Microsoft Teams — Microsoft Teams is a collaboration platform designed to facilitate remote working, with features such as task management, file sharing, and video conferencing capabilities. It integrates seamlessly with other applications in the Office 365 suite of products.
  • Zoom — Zoom is a popular video conferencing tool which allows for meetings to be held in real-time, and includes features such as screen sharing, whiteboard collaboration, and breakout rooms.

Holiday season in Dubai and the UAE - 2024

The two main religious holidays are Eid al-Ftr, which marks the end of Ramadan, and Eid al-Adha, which follows the Hajj pilgrimage and has great religious significance. In addition to these two holidays, there are also other recognized public holidays in the UAE such as Islamic New Year in August.

UAE has a range of national public holidays that are celebrated annually. In 2024 these holidays are:
Date Holiday name
1 Jan Monday New Year’s Day
8 Apr to 9 Apr Eid al-Fitr Holiday (Tentative Date)
10 Apr Wednesday Eid al-Fitr (Tentative Date)
11 Apr to 12 Apr Eid al-Fitr Holiday (Tentative Date)
15 Jun Saturday Arafat (Hajj) Day (Tentative Date)
16 Jun Sunday Eid al-Adha (Feast of Sacrifice) (Tentative Date)
17 Jun to 18 Jun Eid al-Adha Holiday (Tentative Date)
7 Jul Sunday Al-Hijra (Islamic New Year) (Tentative Date)
15 Sep Sunday Mouloud (Tentative Date)
30 Nov Saturday Commemoration Day
2 Dec Monday National Day
3 Dec Tuesday National Day Holiday

What is the typical salary increase employees in the Dubai and the UAE expect?

The amount varies between industries and experience levels, but employees in the UAE can expect a typical salary increase of between 3 to 5 percent each year.

FAQs

The decision of whether to hire freelancers or employees in the UAE should be based on your particular business needs. Freelancers can provide short-term, specialized skills and expertise, while employees may offer more stability and long-term growth potential for your business.

Yes, you can hire foreign nationals in the UAE, but they must obtain the necessary visas and permits before they can start working. It is important to understand all legal requirements when bringing foreign employees into your organization.

In addition, the UAE government has recently increased its efforts to increase the number of Emiratis in the private sector, introducing a suite of new laws. Employers with over 50 employees must recruit UAE nationals at a rate of 2% per year, with fines for non-compliance.

Opening a subsidiary or branch office in the UAE requires obtaining the necessary permits and licenses from relevant government departments. It may also involve submitting documents, such as business plans, to demonstrate that your company has the required financial resources and expertise to successfully operate in the UAE. The exact process can very depending on the emirate.

For most emirates, the first step in setting up a branch or subsidiary office is to choose the legal structure that best suits your needs. The most common types of business entities in the UAE are limited liability companies (LLCs), civil companies, and sole proprietorships. Once you have chosen the legal structure for your business, you will need to obtain the necessary licenses and permits from the relevant authorities. To incorporate on the mainland, you will need to obtain sponsorship from a local investor or service agent.

The next step is to find suitable office space. The good news is that there are many options available, from serviced offices in Abu Dhabi and Dubai to more affordable coworking spaces in other emirates. Once you have found suitable office space, you will need to obtain approval from the Department of Economic Development of the emirate, open a local bank account, and register a trading name before you can move in and start operating.

There are a number of ways to find potential employees in UAE. You can use online job boards, social media platforms, recruitment agencies, or headhunters. Using multiple channels will help you cast a wide net and increase your chances of finding the right candidate for the job.

Once you’ve found some potential candidates, it’s important to conduct thorough screenings before making any offers. This includes reviewing resumes/CVs, conducting interviews, and running background checks.

In most cases, the most efficient and compliant way to get operations started in the UAE is to hire your first few employees with a global EOR like Horizons.

Hiring in Dubai and the UAE, Made Easy

Your business can easily hire employees in Dubai and the UAE without opening a local entity. We handle local employment law, complex tax regulations, and international payroll in 180+ countries worldwide. All you need to do is focus on your business.

Success stories from businesses we’ve helped enter and grow in new markets.

Client Testimonials

Get started with Horizons