Quotes: US MENA   Enter Symbol: NewsLetter: Search: advanced

Banks not getting qualified Saudis to fill positions  Join our daily free Newsletter

MENAFN - Arab News - 12/11/2009

No. of Ratings : 0
Add to Mixx!


 


(MENAFN - Arab News) The national banking sector is struggling to find qualified Saudis to fill vacant positions. Last month, Reuters reported that international banks and financial institutions setting up in Saudi Arabia were unable to find qualified staff thanks to an outdated education system lacking business focus.

"There is a lot of truth to this but there are various reasons why banks are struggling to find local talent," said Faisal Alsayrafi, CEO and managing director of the Jeddah-based Financial Transaction House.

He said that headhunting has become disproportionately competitive as employers try to take advantage of the small number of experienced candidates.

Paul Gamble, head of research at Riyadh's Jadwa Investment, said banks are increasingly becoming complex in what they do and the services they provide.

"There is an explosion of banks in Saudi Arabia and there is a huge demand for people," he said. "It has been difficult to fill that locally. More training and qualifications are required."

Chairman of the Finance Department at the College of Business Administration Dr. Hassan Y. Hassan said that it is only recently attention was drawn to the labor market and college students were becoming more aware of the competition.

"Students didn't care much about developing their skills or qualifications in the past. But now that the job market is becoming competitive and tough, it's much more difficult to find opportunities. The number of qualified candidates to work in the banking or financial sector is not sufficient," said Hassan.

Graduating with a degree in finance is not unique anymore. Fresh graduates must enroll in training programs developed by local banks so that they can meet the job requirements. The associate Internal Auditor of Riyadh Bank Lamya Al-Fozan explained there is no communication between universities and banks in determining the minimum requirements or skills for vacancies.

"Banks are recruiting fresh graduates to develop their talents. Basically what they're trying to look for is people with potential. International banks might hire new entry-level employees trained in banks. It has been a struggle especially with the Saudization scheme," said Al-Fozan.

Ulfat bin Sawad, special services manger at the Arab National Bank in Jeddah, said international banks start small in the Kingdom, initially only offering retail banking services.

"And they don't offer really attractive packages for experienced bankers. I personally wouldn't leave my job for a lower wage or a lower position," Sawad said. As for younger talent, Sawad said in the past few years more men and women were expanding their knowledge into the financial arena. "There is a qualified cadre of Saudi men and women who either studied abroad or were trained extensively. I had to take many courses to develop my experience. Many things aren't taught in schools or universities," she said.

The National Commercial Bank, one of the Kingdom's leading banks, started a program in 2007 to develop Saudis who may be looking for a career in retail banking. The Management Associate Program enrolled 23 Saudi graduates, including women. The program, the first of its kind among all Saudi banks, is a nine-month training course taught in the classroom and on the job, tailored specifically for private banking. In July 2009, a report by GulfTalent.com, an online employment service for the Gulf region, stated the economic downturn has led to a significant slowdown of recruitment activity in the GCC region, although Qatar and Saudi Arabia's share of vacancies increased.

Global Investment House released a report in January 2009 confirming that the Saudi banking sector is an attractive destination for financial institutions worldwide despite dampening effects at the end of 2008. "This provides the Kingdom's banks with enormous future business opportunities," stated the report.

Therefore, there is an increase in employment opportunities locally, in addition to a booming financial sector. Alsayrafi says there is a solution for banks looking to hire highly qualified candidates without relying on overseas talent. "Shifting the focus from Western expatriates to the Middle East and focusing on young bilingual Saudis and Arabs," he said.

Many executives demonstrated leadership skills in companies although they may not have the specific skills required for banks, he said "Chief financial officers can also apply for positions in banks, although they might require some training. They make very good candidates. However, the unstable supply and demand of professional and capable individuals, lack of competitive pay and unclear career paths can lead to serious lack of loyalty," Alsayrafi added.

His advice to banks is to provide strong incentives for talented individuals, which will increase their loyalty and expand their horizons.

By Hassna'a Mokhtar

 






  MENA News Headlines
Apr 23 2014Kowait: 5938 illegal residents said 'rectified' status ,Arab Times
(MENAFN - Arab Times) Kuwait city april 5 (kuna): up to 5 938 illegal residents have modified their status since formation of the central agency for remedying illegal residents' status in 2011 ...

Apr 23 2014Kowait- 'All must join hands to save youth from strife' ,Arab Times
(MENAFN - Arab Times)  kuwait city april 9 (kuna): minister of information and minister of state for youth affairs sheikh salman al-sabah said tuesday the youth ministry has completed a study ...

Apr 23 2014Kowait- MoH boosts efforts to curb obesity rate ,Arab Times
(MENAFN - Arab Times)  kuwait city feb 3 (kuna): director of the health well-being division of the ministry of health dr abeer al- baho affirmed sunday that the ministry scaled up the efforts ...

Apr 23 2014UAE- Local international companies come out in force ,Khaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Cityscape abu dhabi has started showing stronger interest from property developers who have showcased their upcoming projects. the three-day realty show was opened by ...

Apr 23 2014UAE- ADCB NIC in Dh950 million deal ,Khaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Abu dhabi commercial bank or adcb this week inked a dh950 million term facility to provide national investment corporation or nic the developer of the breakwater area in ...

Apr 23 2014Galadari Automobiles unveils all-new 2015 Mazda3 in UAE ,Khaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) The all-new mazda3 was unveiled to the world at events held simultaneously in five cities where the consensus was loud and clear: ?mazda has done it again!? galadari ...

Apr 23 2014UAE- Cassation Court upholds' drug dealer's life term ,Khaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) The abu dhabi court of cassation on monday upheld the life sentence awarded to a gcc national for drug smuggling and trafficking. the court also upheld his one-year ...

Apr 23 2014Breaking an egg ... for charity in Abu Dhabi ,Khaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) The campaign which runs till the end of april features a live exhibition to the public and a private auction of the life-sized eggs. shaikh nahyan bin mubarak al nahyan ...

Apr 23 2014Kuwait- Five individuals tested negative for Coronavirus ,Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)
(MENAFN - Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)) The Health Authority of Abu Dhabi (HAAD) announced here on Tuesday that five more of the individuals who were in isolation in hospital with MERS Coronavirus ...

Apr 23 2014Kowait- Parliament refuses to lift MP immunity ,Arab Times
(MENAFN - Arab Times) Kuwait april 3 (kuna): the national assembly committee on legislative and legal affairs has turned down a request from the public prosecution on wednesday to lift the immunity ...

Apr 23 2014Kowait- Police deportation powers curbed ,Arab Times
(MENAFN - Arab Times) Kuwait city april 3 (afp): kuwaiti police will no longer be able to deport expatriates without interior ministry approval under new rules published thursday after officers ...

Apr 23 2014Kowait- Rationalization of water use in focus ,Arab Times
(MENAFN - Arab Times) Kuwait city april 7 (kuna): under the patronage of minister of electricity and water abdulaziz al-ibrahim kuwait environment protection society (keps) organized monday a ...

Apr 23 2014Kowait- MoI FM discuss visa issuance by embassies ,Arab Times
(MENAFN - Arab Times) Kuwait april 10 (agencies): officials of the ministries of interior and foreign affairs on thursday discussed implementation of a decision by the minister of interior to ...

Apr 23 2014Jordan complains to UNSC about Israeli "alarming" developments in Al-Aqsa compound ,Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)
(MENAFN - Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)) Jordan on Tuesday complained to the Security Council about the unhindered incursions into the Haram Al-Sharif compound by Israeli settlers and extremists, under ...

Apr 23 2014Over 86 pct of Syrian chemical weapons removed from country ,Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)
(MENAFN - Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)) The Director General of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), Ahmet Uzumcu, Tuesday welcomed delivery of a further consignment of ...

Apr 23 2014Arab League: Syrian Presidential elections contradict with Geneva I communique ,Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)
(MENAFN - Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)) Arab League Secretary General Nabil Al-Araby said Tuesday Damascus' decision to hold presidential elections on June 3 was a "contradiction of the Geneva I ...

Apr 23 2014China Calls for Inclusive Political Transition in Syria ,Qatar News Agency
(MENAFN - Qatar News Agency) ijing April 23 - China called on all parties in Syria to continue advancing the Geneva peace talks and start an inclusive political transition as soon as ...

Apr 23 2014Bahrain to establish USD multi bln energy projects - Min. ,Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)
(MENAFN - Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)) Bahrain is to establish multi-billion-dollar energy projects that would contribute to further development, Minister of Finance Sheikh Ahmad bin Mohammad ...

Apr 23 2014UAE- Dh154 billion for Arabtec projects ,Khaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Arabtec will spend dh140 billion on building one million low-cost houses in egypt and dh14 billion on five mixed-use residential projects in abu dhabi and dubai its chief ...

Apr 23 2014Counter-Terrorism conf. kicks off in Saudi Madina city ,Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)
(MENAFN - Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)) The second World Congress for Counter-Terrorism entitled "Intellectual Reviews, and Practical Solutions" kicked off Tuesday in the city of Medina. Saudi Press ...

more...


 
Click to Apply






Google

 
 

Middle East North Africa - Financial Network

MENAFN News Market Data Countries Tools Section  
 

Middle East North Africa - Financial Network
Arabic MENAFN

Main News
News By Industry
News By Country
Marketwatch News
UPI News
Comtex News

IPO News
Islamic Finance News
Private Equity News

How-To Guides
Technology Section

Travel Section

Search News

Market Indices
Quotes & Charts

Global Indices
Arab Indices

US Markets Details

Commodoties

Oil & Energy

Currencies Cross Rates
Currencies Updates
Currency Converter

USA Stocks
Arab Stocks
 

Algeria 
Bahrain 
Egypt 
Iraq
Jordan 
Kuwait 
Lebanon
Morocco 
Oman 
Palestine
Qatar 
Saudi Arabia 
Syria
Tunisia 
UAE 
Yemen

Weather
Investment Game
Economic Calendar
Financial Glossary

My MENAFN
Portfolio Tracker

Voting

Financial Calculators

RSS Feeds [XML]

Corporate Monitor

Events

Real Estate
Submit Your Property

Arab Research
Buy a Research

Press Releases
Submit your PR

Join Newsletters


 
© 2000 menafn.com All Rights Reserved.  Terms of Service | Privacy Policy | Contact Us | Advertise | About MENAFN | Career Opportunities | Feedback | Help