Emirates is most popular employer for UAE business students

Google is most favoured by engineering and IT students, according to Universum Global survey

Emirates flights will be subjected to further enhanced security screening measures as of October 26. Adam Schreck / AP
Emirates flights will be subjected to further enhanced security screening measures as of October 26. Adam Schreck / AP

Emirates Airline is the most attractive employer for business studies students in the UAE, while Google is the employer of choice for students of engineering and IT, according to a new survey.

The Swedish research company Universum Global quizzed 8,100 students from 28 universities in the UAE on their career goals and ideal employers between November 2016 and July 2017 as part of its Global Talent Survey.

Emirates, the world’s largest operator of A380 superjumbo aircraft, moved up from seventh in 2016 to upstage Google as top employer for UAE-based business and commerce students. Google maintained its position as the most favoured company for students in the engineering/IT field.

“This clearly proves how UAE is a real emerging market where many organisations, both nationals and multinationals, are engaging in a true war for talent in order to secure the best and the brightest” says Claudia Tattanelli, the chairwoman of the strategic advisory board at Universum. "One of the unique and interesting aspects about the UAE’s ranking tables compared to other countries is the near equal presence of national and regional firms versus international firms fighting it out for places within the top 10.


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This year, Google was the second most attractive employer for business and commerce students, followed by Apple, Dubai-based Emaar Properties, the emirate’s biggest listed real estate company, and Etihad Airways.

In last year’s survey, Google was followed by Apple, Emaar, Dubai Airports, the operator of Dubai International and Al Maktoum International airports, and Etihad.

For engineering and IT students, Google was followed this year by Emaar, Apple, Microsoft and Emirates. In last year’s survey, Google was followed by Apple, Microsoft, Emaar and the Abu Dhabi-based clean energy firm Masdar.

According to the Universum's survey, 14 per cent of the respondents said their preferred industry for work is management and consulting, followed by banks and arts, entertainment and recreation each favoured by 13 per cent and energy by 12 per cent.

The career preferences of Emirati students are starkly different from those of non-Emirati students, according to the survey.

Management and strategy consulting and finance services were the preferred employment sectors of choice for Emirati business students, while their non-Emirati peers prefer banking and financial services.

Emirati engineering/IT students favour the energy sector, followed by the industrial engineering and manufacturing sectors. Construction and civil engineering meanwhile is the top choice for non-Emirati students, followed by energy, and industrial engineering and manufacturing industries.

Universum's survey found that both Emirati and international students in the UAE are increasingly using social media channels as a means of researching prospective employers, said Ms Tattanelli.

“This renders it even more important for companies to have a well-defined, multi-channel digital strategy that can cut through the noise that currently exist on many platforms and utilise such platforms as Facebook, Instagram or Snapchat more effectively to enhance their attractiveness among their key target groups,” she said.

In last year’s survey, which polled 7,637 students from 30 universities, 16 per cent of respondents wanted to work in energy and 16 per cent wanted to work in engineering and manufacturing, followed by media and advertising with 15 per cent.

Updated: October 17, 2017 10:12 AM


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