Imdaad addressing widening gap of unemployment among young Emiratis

Jamal Abdullah Lootah

Dubai-based Imdaad, a leading provider of integrated facilities, environment and energy management solutions in the GCC, offered a vital platform for identifying and recruiting young, qualified and talented Emiratis at the recently held Careers UAE 2016.

At the event, the company focused on hiring candidates to reduce the rate of unemployed UAE youths, 18 percent of whom are women. Imdaad also threw the spotlight on its nationalization program, Elham, to attract Emiratis to join Imdaad and begin a career in the facilities management (FM) sector.

“Since Careers UAE is an exclusive fair for Emiratis, it allowed us to reach out to a large number of national youths and identify their talent,” Jamal Abdullah Lootah, CEO of Imdaad, told Gulf News Journal. “Through our various initiatives, including Elham, we wanted to address the widening gap of unemployment among young Emiratis and play a key role in developing their talent and training them to be successful FM professionals and corporate leaders.”

Elham, which means to inspire in Arabic, is Imdaad’s nationalization program that aims to motivate, nurture and train young UAE nationals, especially women, by offering them meaningful employment, professional growth and inspirational careers. Through this initiative, Imdaad aims to meet the nation’s goal of establishing diversity and equality in the local workforce as well as build future leaders who will set new benchmarks of excellence within the sector.

Elham primarily focuses on recruiting and training young Emiratis, particularly women, through a Graduate Trainee Program. This holistic initiative aims to inspire the youth to consider starting and advancing their professional journey within Imdaad by unleashing their potential.

"We have improved our Elham program by adding training courses that focus on facility management," Lootah said. " At the show, we highlighted some of our in-house courses that are delivered by certified senior technical trainers. We also featured a few professional courses that will be conducted in 2016 on intensive FM skills by coveted training suppliers."

In light of Elham’s success, a Diploma Trainee Program, and a Technical Trainee Program have been added to increase traction among young UAE nationals and boost the recruitment of Emiratis. So far, five young Emirati women were recruited and placed in strategic business units such as operations, finance, human capital, customer relations, marketing and business development. The program resulted in a 31 percent increase in UAE national walk-in applications in 2015 compared to the previous year.

“Imdaad remains committed to supporting the UAE National Agenda and UAE Vision 2021,” Lootah said. “We are confident that our nationalization program, which is in line with the government’s Emiratization policy, will contribute in harnessing the full potential of the national human capital.”

He said that one of the biggest challenges faced by FM companies when attracting Emiratis is the limited awareness about the concept of facilities management. Elham will offer deeper insights about the sector, career development opportunities and remunerations and benefits by actively visiting local colleges and universities to create awareness among Emiratis.

 “We want to throw more light on Elham, which began in 2014 as a pilot program, complementing Imdaad’s efforts to develop the nation’s future human capital in support of the national agenda,” Lootah said. “It is an investment on our part, which benefits not only the company but also the local business landscape.”

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Imdaad Dubai, Dubai

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