The pandemic has shifted many focus areas across sectors and industries. In logistics, for example, it has shifted focus to viability and security, while in education and training, it forced us to change gears to adaptability and integration. Similarly, in workplaces across the world, the focus has shifted to flexibility.
In an effort to empower workplaces to be flexible and able to make the required amendments to their existing work models to accommodate the post-covid necessities, the UAE has recently taken an exemplary step.
We are talking about the implementation of the new labour law. The change to the legislation affects over 4.9 million workers in the UAE and is designed to create a conducive environment for both employers and employees to operate in the UAE.
Federal Decree-Law No. 33 for 2021 on Labour Relations came into effect on 2nd February 2022. Under the new law, the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation is now initiating fresh measures and procedures to allow employers to benefit from the capacities and productivity of their employees and effectively cut down on operational costs.
The amended law makes it possible for the employees to enjoy more schedule flexibility, while the firms will see much less red-tapism. Affecting the private sector the most, the new law will also translate into more security and stability for job seekers in the country, thereby contributing to strengthening the overall economy.
The new law would elevate the Emirati labour market’s standing in the world. The new law, which provides equal protection to both labour and relations parties, is notable for its agility, effectiveness, improved business climate, and effective talent recruitment. It will also provide businesses and employees with a variety of formal alternatives to choose from when choosing the method and procedure of working. Its executive regulations will establish criteria for various work models and will define the organisation’s responsibilities in detail.
Under the new labour legislation, employees in the private sector will be allowed to pick from six alternative work patterns—thanks to the availability of 12 types of work permits.
As per the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation, 12 types of work permits will be issued now, including a student training and employment permit, which will allow certified institutions to train or employ a student in the country, subject to specific controls and conditions. It also includes a work permit for citizens and children from Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) nations, which will enable organisations registered with the ministry to employ citizens or people from the GCC.
Additionally, the six work models now available in the UAE are: full-time, remote work, shared job model, part-time, temporary work, and flexible work.
Apart from this, there are additional amendments to the law that are welcoming and encouraging. The new law offers five-day parental leave to both parents for childcare. It also gives workers a 10-day study leave to continue or add to their educational qualifications through accredited educational institutions in the country. It also facilitates paid national service leave for citizen-workers in line with enforceable federal laws. The renewed law also gives people a chance to opt for temporary and flexible work options, freelance jobs, condensed working hours, and shared jobs.
All this is hinting towards a changed and flexible working environment in the UAE, aligning with the changing demands of the post-Covid-19 era. This flexibility will help the country meet different workplace demands and attract working professionals from all over the world.
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