Up to 50 per cent of UAE professionals are unhappy with their income, compared to just four per cent who are highly satisfied with what they earn, according to a new survey.
The study, conducted by jobs website Bayt.com and YouGov, found that 66 per cent of the respondents felt their salary is lower than what other companies in their industry offer.
It also stated that over half of UAE professionals are expecting a salary increase in 2015, although 40 per cent admitted that they didn’t receive one in 2014.
For those who did, 52 per cent are quite unhappy or very unhappy with their raise, while 25 per cent were either very or modestly happy.
The survey also found that the majority of respondents – 87 per cent – have seen cost of living rise in 2014, with 34 per cent saying that it grew by more than 20 per cent.
The rise was attributed to increases in the cost of rent (86 per cent), food and beverages (59 per cent), and utilities (56 per cent).
Up to 79 per cent further anticipate cost of living in the country to continue rising throughout the year.
However, despite the UAE’s high cost of living, 52 per cent of UAE respondents said that they are better off, in terms of quality of life, compared to other people of a similar generation in their country of residence.
“The 2015 Bayt.com MENA Salary Survey indicates that there is a growing gap between the cost of living in the UAE and salary earnings and propensity to save,” said Suhail Al-Masri, VP of Sales, Bayt.com.
“Employers must quickly address this widening disparity if they want to effectively tap into the local and regional talent pool.”
The survey also found that over the next 12 months, 59 per cent of UAE professionals intend to look for a better job in the same industry, while 39 per cent aim to find one in another industry.
According to 21 per cent of respondents in the country, the average length of time that they have held a job for is at least six years.
Elissavet Vraka from YouGov, said: “There is no doubt that the need for a salary boost, especially as prices continue to climb, is a very real one.
“After all, this is impacting employees’ loyalty to their company and encouraging them to jump ship. If they want to retain their employees, employers, on their part, will have to find new ways to improve their salary packages.”
Data for the 2015 Bayt.com MENA Salary Survey was collected online from March 30-April 6, 2015 from over 12,158 respondents across 13 countries in the region.