Saudi job seekers encouraged to join private sector

Saudi job seekers encouraged to join private sector
Updated 05 April 2013

Saudi job seekers encouraged to join private sector

Saudi job seekers encouraged to join private sector

Despite incentives and mandates from the government regarding Saudization, the private sector continues to struggle to employ Saudis. 
Mansour Al-Shathari, head of human resource at the Riyadh Chamber of Commerce, said Saudi youth prefers government employment and only go to the private sector after failing to get a government job.
Private employers, however, say they cannot depend on young Saudi workers because they are not reliable and not bound by contract, so they can leave the job without prior notice, at any time.
“Unfortunately there is no effective system for protecting employers against job leakages, involving Saudis or expatriates, but the Ministry of Labor will launch a number of initiatives aimed at fixing this problem,” Al-Shathari said.
According to Al Shathari, we should educate Saudi youth about the culture of private sector employment. “Youth should understand there is more room for improvement in the private sector and we should show them that their discipline and self-improvement will bring them better career opportunities.”
Eyad Al-Rashid, VP of Marketing and Sales at Innovative Food Company, thinks Saudis lack respect for private sector employment because they know they will not be punished for their lack of commitment. “The highest leaks occur in the restaurant sector, where Saudis, sometimes work for only half an hour after we register them in the social security insurance. Then they leave”.
Low salaries are not the only cause of job leakage in restaurants, especially since they have been raised to SR 4,500. He called on the Ministry of Labor to create a program for individuals by which they will not be allowed to take on another job unless they get a disclaimer from their current employer. 
Fayez Al-Ahmari, legal adviser at Atheeb Holding, said, “The Labor Law regulates employment relations for sustainability and the protection of all, reflecting positively on the social and economic situation, but the current situation is not showing any progress toward achieving this goal, especially in the field of Saudization.”
Al-Ahmari said the Labor Law emphasizes the duties of employers and employees, granting the employer permission to impose disciplinary actions on insubordinate employees, but regulating and stating clearly the form of such punishment.
The law considers an employment contract is valid even if it is not written. In such cases, it is up to the employee to prove the contract and his rights by using any methods available to him. In any case employees should have a written contract to preserve their rights, because it is not easy to prove ones’ rights without a written document.