BLOG POST

Evolution of HR in the GCC Region

HR GCC Region

The changing landscape of HR in the GCC and MENA regions

The People Management function is one of the most important elements behind the success of an organisation, and just like all other areas of business, it needs to evolve to suit changing times and new challenges. HR in the GCC Region is evolving fast.

In the past, People Practices in the GCC region were often influenced by Western thinking. There was an increasing trend of talent migration to UAE and other GCC countries for jobs. The HR strategies that were developed were best suited in those times, but now in the present, different regions have evolved their HR practices. This has led to a much better and improved People Management function.

The Middle East is one of the exciting new places for the People Management profession, with its unique challenges and broad range of characteristics. People Practice in the region are multi-faceted and globalisation has added increased pressure to the mix.

According to a KPMG survey of Saudi Arabia-based human resources executives, a majority believe that this  “new reality” has been spurred on by the post-Covid-19 era. Almost 40% of organisations are currently and overhauling their HR strategies to meet changing demands. Half of human resource functions have shifted their focus from short-term Covid-19 firefighting to more and/or new strategic HR initiatives. While working towards Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030, the KSA is focused on preparing organisations and people for the future’s reality of human resources: hybrid working models, increased focus on employee wellbeing, and equality.

This new reality impacts most facets of the HR operating model, and requires new priorities, skills and mindsets. This fact reinforces that HR practices and strategies are now based on the changing demand of the modern day.

The major challenges the GCC region now faces are:

1. Diversity and Cultural Differences:

Research proves that the workforce in the GCC region is becoming increasingly diverse, with cultural issues are becoming more noticeable. People Management leaders have to manage these issues delicately. It is not only the local cultural norms which are quite often a culture shock to foreign workers. The People Management function has to tactfully create awareness and minimise any potential conflict, working towards harmonisation and inclusion.

2.Onboarding of Expats:

People  Practitioners in the region have to consciously aim to enhance the expatriate employee life cycle experience. The onboarding methodologies should ensure that the employee is well settled into the location – it’s the first impression that is the last one – it makes or breaks the relationship.

3. Resolution of Legal Complexities:

All People Management practices need to ensure compliance to legislative complexities. The People Management system in the GCC region has to be compliant, inclusive and stay on top of any new changes. The good news the region has embraced this eagerly, ensuring diversity, inclusion and ethics are kept at its core.

In summary

People management in the GCC Region has developed incredibly quickly in recent years due to globalisation, organisation taking ownership of practices and strategies, and Covid-19. The industry is now experiencing tremendous growth and innovation, and the sector is also speeding up. There is an increasing understanding of the challenges and issues facing the region in terms of People Practices, and organisations are paying a lot more attention to People Management. HR is evolving fast, and if you want to stay ahead, Oakwood can help you.

Saima Arfeen

Saima Arfeen

Saima is Oakwood's Associate Consultant and works in our Associate Team

Share this post

Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn
Email

You may also be interested in:

Evolution of HR in the GCC Region

The changing landscape of HR in the GCC and MENA regions

HR GCC Region
Saima Arfeen

Saima Arfeen

Saima is Oakwood's Associate Consultant and works in our Associate Team

Share this post

Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn
Email

WE’RE here to help you find the perfect qualification.

Enquire about our courses today...

Your future is in your hands with Oakwood. Our friendly team are on hand to help answer your questions and give you the information you need.

Complete the form and let’s get started.