This week’s international HR headlines: HR jobs creation in the UAE, Malaysia’s ageing workforce and flexible working in Hong Kong

The top stories from People Management’s international websites

1. Number of HR roles expected to rise in the UAE

New research by recruiter Robert Half has revealed that there is likely to be increased demand for HR professionals thanks to the impact of large-scale national projects in the UAE next year, such as the implementation of VAT and the region’s focus on digital transformation. However, the increasing demand for specialist professionals is not being matched by supply, which means the number of jobs in certain areas is expected to grow next year.

2. Malaysians increasingly working beyond retirement age

A growing number of Malaysian employees are planning to work for as long as their health permits them to, in what is becoming a growing trend across the globe. Close to half the respondents aged 60 and over in a survey by the University of Malaya’s Social Security Research Centre are still in employment, with most believing their savings are insufficient for them to enjoy retirement at the minimum age for private sector workers, which is 60 years old.

3. The future of work in the UAE is about self-employment

Essa Al Mulla, chief of the National Workforce Development, Knowledge and Human Development Authority, told the Khaleej Times that the future of employment in the Emirates is about innovation and self-employment. He said the biggest challenge today was not unemployment, but competition for available jobs and a level of pay that candidates are happy with, so an entrepreneurial spirit could work to people’s advantage.

4. Flexible working valued equally by Asian men and women

Hay’s 2017 Asia Gender Diversity Report has found that flexible working is valued almost equally by male and female employees, with nearly a third stating that it was a ‘very important’ organisational benefit. However, while only a small minority said they viewed flexible working as ‘very much’ a career-limiting move, most anticipated some negative impact, with men more concerned than women.

5. Employers must offer staff more than just pay in Hong Kong

A survey by the Hong Kong Institute of Human Resource Management has found that average staff turnover rose 1.8 per cent to 12.3 per cent in the first half of 2017. Employment experts suggested that, if employers focused on more than just salary, concentrating on things such as employees’ growth and development as well, it could help them retain staff for longer.