>So, I think that somehow people hear things on the news and fail to dig any deeper. I read articles about how the “Middle East” is fairly recession proof and wonder which Middle East they mean. And, people’s ability to delude themselves simply astounds me. Let me give you an example. About a year or a year and a half ago, we posted a position on bayt.com. In the month that the position was open, we received about 150 resumes. Last month, we posted a similar position and received the same 150 ON THE FIRST DAY! A few weeks into the posting, we’re sitting at 650+ applicants. Of the postings the first time, the majority were folks from outside the UAE looking for career opportunities and fame and fortune, or something like it. Now, the lion’s share are from inside the UAE. They are people who had been working in banking and real estate and are now searching for positions as their employers lay off thousands.
And yet, for so many outside the UAE, they still harbor a romantic fantasy of Dubai. We had a fellow (American might I add) who applied. His last salary was listed as $8,000/month. He was looking to make $30,000/month. Hello… there’s a recession going on here. And, he’s not alone. people the world over are applying for our little job asking for salaries that are not only far beyond what they currently make, but are far beyond the market rate for their skills. I really don’t get what bubble they live in. If you long to live in a locale, I would think you read about it, do research, and understand that the expat hardship package of the past has fallen on hard times as well. Gone are the days when a young person with one year of solid experience could dream of making $4,000/month PLUS housing and car. Okay, I’m not sure there ever WERE those days, but some people think there still are.
So, forgive me if I sound insensitive, but grow up. Dubai is a shadow of its former self. And while I’m sure it will bounce back, I doubt it will ever reach the heady go-go heights of 2007/8. If the Emiratis have sense (and I believe they do), I expect Dubai’s return will be more grounded in reality and less over the top. So, for those from outside Dubai looking for that dream expat package, stay home. Your expectations aren’t realistic and you are bound to be disappointed. While the opportunity to make a good life is definitely still there, the expat dream of tripling your salary is gone, and I think gone for good. If you’re in it for the money, find a job at home. And if the jobs at home aren’t thick on the ground, maybe that should be a sign in and of itself, no?