UAE jobs: How gaming can help you land your first job

Study commissioned by YouTube offers some fascinating insights into hiring young job-seekers


Waheed Abbas

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Published: Tue 16 May 2023, 6:00 AM

Last updated: Tue 16 May 2023, 10:09 PM

Gaming is helping young workers in the UAE get their first job as 80 per cent of employers say that they would be more likely to hire a candidate that is a gamer and has developed a good set of problem-solving skills.

A study commissioned by YouTube and conducted by Censuswide found that recruiters look for communication, problem-solving and being calm under pressure as the most useful skills when recruiting Gen Z or someone for an entry-level job.

Gen Z is defined as those born between 1996 and 2012 – this generation is beginning to enter into the workplace.

Rima Al Osta said, a UAE-based gamer, said YouTube made her more confident, authentic and less shy. She added that gaming developed her ability to react swiftly – which has helped with her content creation journey and engaging with her audience.

The survey found that the majority – 63 per cent – of Gen Z gamers in the UAE say that gaming has given them the confidence to tackle problems in the working world. While 40 per cent will highlight it in an interview or on their CV.

Interestingly, a recent survey conducted in the US by ResumeBuilder showed other the other aspect of Gen Z workers. It revealed that 49 per cent of managers find it very difficult to work with Gen Z while 79 per cent claim that they are the most difficult generation to have in the workplace. Around 59 per cent of employers said that they had to sack a Gen Z employee while 20 per cent sacked them within the first week of their joining.

Jeron van den Elshout, business director at Hays Middle East, said skills learned from gaming can be applied in many professional contexts.

“With limited practical experience, highlighting transferable skills acquired through gaming can set Gen Z applicants apart from other candidates. For example, Gen Z gamers can showcase relevant accomplishments such as high rankings or awards earned in competitive gaming tournaments. They can connect their gaming experiences to specific skills required for the job by describing how gaming has taught them to think creatively, handle pressure, and work collaboratively,” he said.

Matt Barr, senior lecturer and associate professor at the University of Glasgow, said gaming helps players to learn how to cope with pressure and change their strategies on the fly.

“We get to see how new strategies might pan out, and we get to learn something that we can bring back to our own gameplay,” said Barr, who has authored the book Graduate Skills and Game-Based Learning.

“A smart gamer can see the parallels between what they're doing in a game and what they might have to do in work or at university or college, and feel confident that they have tools at their disposal to succeed because they've done something similar in their favourite game,” said Dr Matt Barr, senior lecturer of computing science at The University of Glasgow, Scotland.


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