Inflation in UAE: Firms consider allowing employees to work from home

Recruitment consultants suggest that workers ask for more benefits



by

Waheed Abbas

Published: Wed 20 Jul 2022, 11:44 AM

Last updated: Thu 21 Jul 2022, 5:18 PM

UAE firms are considering inflation allowances for employees to offset the impact of inflation.

With inflation rising due to high fuel, food and rents rates, recruitment consultants suggested that employees can expect and should request to have more benefits, such as work from home days to help reduce fuel bills and provide training and development in additional skills that will increase their chances for promotions and increments in tough economic times.

Vineet Mehra
Vineet Mehra

Vineet Mehra, director of Sales at Adecco Middle East, a global recruitment firm, said companies in the UAE are still discussing inflation-related allowance internally in order to help employees beat inflation.

The UAE government recently introduced an inflation allowance for low-income citizens to support them against the rise in inflation occurring worldwide due to high oil and food prices. As part of this social support programme, the government doubled the budget to Dh28 billion.

Under this scheme, UAE citizens will get allowances for fuel, water and electricity and food.

“This is still being discussed internally and not confirmed yet. However, a few steps are being taken into consideration such as re-looking at the fuel reimbursement part for the employees who are out in the market. Companies are also ensuring that there is enough opportunity for the employees to plan their work from home, for the ones who can manage back-end operations from home,” added Mehra.

He said local firms are taking a wait-and-watch approach to understand how inflation is trending and then re-look at introducing any new incentives which not only benefit the employee but eventually give better results to the employer as well.

Waleed Anwar
Waleed Anwar

With inflation rising, Waleed Anwar, managing director of Upfront HR, suggested that it is definitely a good time to bring up and negotiate a pay increase with the employer.

He said employees can expect and should request to have more benefits, such as work-from-home days, training and development in additional skills for example in digital and technology to bridge the learning gap.

“High inflation doesn’t always justify increasing salaries or changing packages. For example, during negative inflation companies don’t reduce packages and vice-versa. Employees now are looking for better work-life balance, flexibility, autonomy and career progression. Companies who offer these types of conditions and benefits will have the best staff and attract the best talent,” he said.

Amidst high inflation and the cost of living rising, he said companies need to re-evaluate their employee packages in order to retain and attract new hires.

waheedabbas@khaleejtimes.com

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