Middle East job site Bayt.com and research and consulting organisation YouGov Siraj conducted a survey, “Millennials in the MENA”, on the labour pool in the region in order to gather information on factors affecting employment across various sectors.
Survey respondents in Egypt provided information regarding current and future career situations, income and remuneration, work environment and education, communication and technology, and aspects affecting the lives of employees at work.
According to the survey, 70% of respondents are currently involved in private companies, which is the preferred sector for their age group, as 49% of those believe that there is greater opportunity to learn on the job in that sector. Of those above the age of 35, 25% are employed in the government and private sectors.
The survey results revealed that 80% of respondents cite unemployment as a significant issue facing the labour market in the country. One-third of the respondents also stated that they had obtained their current jobs through referrals.
Approximately 60% of respondents stated that a “good work-life balance” is a determinant of their loyalty to their employer. Engaging and interesting work is an important factor that contributes to employee loyalty for respondents above the age of 35, while millennials, who the survey defines as working professionals aged 35 and below, cite “fairness in salary” and remuneration as significant determinants.
All respondents cited higher salaries as an improvement in their employment status.
Of the respondents aged above 35, 81% stated they prefer to own their business, while 77% of respondents aged 35 and below said they would “consider entrepreneurship”.
In Egypt, 92% of respondents over the age of 35 and 52% of millennials are the primary wage earners in their family. One-third of the younger respondents stated that they rely, to some degree, on supplementary income from their families.
Respondents over the age of 35 cited annual or regular bonuses, health and medical insurance and a transportation as preferable benefits. Younger respondents consider transportation facilities as most important, according to the survey.
YouGov CEO Sundip Chahal said: “31% of those below 35 years old in the MENA region claim they are just getting by, or find it difficult to meet expenses on their current income. This is highlighted by the fact that nearly 59% of those working in this age group are dependent on family for financial assistance.”
Approximately 30% of non-millennial respondents stated that their education had fully prepared them for the workplace, while 56% of millennials believe that it had done so to some extent. The majority of respondents stated, however, that pursuing a higher education is a way to enhance career options, particularly higher positions and promotions.
“Education is viewed as incomplete by many respondents,” said Suhail Masri, Vice President of Sales at Bayt.com.
She added that since most respondents aged 35 and below are planning to take time off work to pursue
a higher education, employers should take steps in order to minimise losses: “Companies offering on-the-job training would possibly see lower labour turnover. Professionals should start seriously looking at other methods of gaining knowledge to stay relevant, whether through further education, online resources, or training and workshops.”
The survey also covered the effects of communication and technology on employees in the workplace. Communication methods do not vary significantly among respondents in the two age groups, with 60% of millennials and 62% of non-millennials stating that they prefer to communicate in person.
According to 80% of respondents, technology is believed to make them more effective at the workplace, with 29% of millennials stating that their older counterparts do not “take full advantage of the available technology”.
The top three priorities of Egyptian respondents, regardless of age, are financial stability or independence, good health and a successful career. For those aged above 35, the education and happiness of children was also listed as a priority.
Respondents listed the lack of financial stability (57% millennials and 60% non-millennials) and increase in standard of living (66% millennials and 77% non-millennials) as main causes of stress.
Approximately 50% of millennials list the lack of work-life balance as a main cause of stress, while 53% of non-millennials are concerned with a lack of job security.
Bayt.com, an online recruitment website with 13,750,000 million registered job seekers, represents all career levels, industries, job roles and nationalities in the region. The company works with over 40,000 employer companies, including small businesses, large multi-nationals and governments, to attract and recruit qualified professionals and executives.