Sie sind auf Seite 1von 21

Research Project

Foreign workers are unhappy in Dubai


(An investigation of 100 outside labourers to learn the issues they confront while working in Dubai)
By:

Dissertation submitted to:

Page 1

Research Project

CERTIFICATE
This is to certify that .. is a student of the who has done this project work Entitled: Foreign workers are unhappy in Dubai (An investigation of 100 foreign labourers to learn the issues they confront while working in Dubai)

Place: Dubai, U.A.E Date:

Page 2

Research Project

DECLARATION
I, ..hereby declares that the project work entitled Foreign workers are unhappy in Dubai (An investigation of 100 foreign labourers to learn the issues they confront while working in Dubai) is a bonafide work done by me under the guidance and supervision of , faculty at, Dubai, U.A.E. Place: Dubai, U.A.E Date: Signature _______________________

Page 3

Research Project

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT

I am very grateful to all those who have helped me in completing this work

Page 4

Research Project

PREFACE
The following report highlights the plight of foreign workers working in Dubai. Almost all of the workers who come to Dubai come to look forward to a good life. However, the data collected over the time has painted a completely different story. The literature review states that almost 90 % of the foreign workers working in Dubai are not happy with the work environment and the remuneration they are getting. This was evident in the primary research conducted for the same purpose too. The suggestions mentioned at the end of the report highlight the need for better human resource management policy throughout Dubai and the need to have better employee centric policies.

Page 5

Research Project

Table of Contents Chapter 1:Introduction. .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 Chapter 2: Review of Literature .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 Chapter 3: Research Methodology .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 Chapter 4: Data Analysis and Interpretation .. . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 Chapter 5: Findings .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .12 Recommendations .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . .13 References .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . 14
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

.. .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Page 6

Research Project

Chapter 1: Introduction
It is a well-known fact that Dubai offers world class work environment and the best remuneration to its foreign workers. It is specifically because of this reason that the number of foreign workers in Dubai are increasing steadily. The two main areas where foreign workers are employed are the construction industry and the housekeeping industry. Foreign workers are getting attracted towards working in Dubai because of the world class conditions and they are indeed arriving in droves. However, everything is not fine with the foreign employees which are working Dubai. Dubai despite being very accommodative and an attractive location for foreign workers is an Islamic law following state. This means that there are certain rules and regulations which might be unknown to the workers who come to Dubai and they might end up in trouble in case they cross the line. At the same time, managers in both the construction industry and the housekeeping business are not very well trained in managing a multicultural work force. The result of this inability of the managers to manage the diverse work force is huge discontent amongst the foreign workers. Around 90 % of the workers are unsatisfied with the work environment and the interaction they have with their managers. This dissatisfaction tends to mar the image of Dubai as a favourite destination for foreign workers. This research is based on both primary as well as secondary sources. Around 100 individuals were selected from a group of workers belonging to the construction as well as housekeeping industry in Dubai. They were interviewed to ascertain the level of discontent amongst the workers and the reason for the discontent. At the same time a literature review was conducted to find out the current research on the topic and how has other authors described the issue. This issue gains significance as in the recent times the output of the organisations that employ foreigners in Dubai is going down steadily and the main reason that the employees are putting forward is that their managers are unable to manage the work force owing to their different culture. Therefore the extend of the issue has to be ascertained and the possible solutions that can help resolve the problem will be discussed.

Page 7

Research Project

Chapter 2: Review of Literature


There is no point in denying the fact that Dubai is seen as the most preferred destination for foreign workers. However, in the recent times, the discontent amongst the working foreign workers in Dubai is increasing significantly. It is important to state that foreign workers are mostly found in two industries in Dubai; although they are found in almost all industries, but two industries that have the highest number of foreign workers is the construction as well as the housekeeping industry. However, 90 % of the individuals who work in these industries are unhappy with the condition of the work, they are faced with a culturally different place of work where the managers are unable to understand their needs and thus the experience of the workers is not entirely positive. For example Buckley (2013) states that amount of discontent in the foreign workers is growing steadily and they are revolting at the next possible instance. Workers strikes and labour unions were never heard in Dubai as the employees were very happy with the work conditions. However, due to inability of the managers to properly cater to the employees the number of strikes by foreign workers is increasing and this is leading to a downfall in productivity (Buckley 2013). The Arabia 2000 newspaper published an article on the 23 July 2008, in which the manager of the construction firm was under review by the police as he was responsible for the death of workers. The article stated that the manager did not care for the safety of the workers and the result was death of the construction workers due to the uncaring and irresponsible attitude of the manager. The employees in the construction industry have long been reporting about such lapses but they were never taken seriously (Arabia 2000). Similarly in the same newspaper an article was published on the 16th august 2009, in which the Dubai based manager of the construction firm was accused of endangering lives of construction workers. The probe again highlights the plight of the workers in the construction industry in Dubai and how the managers in Dubai are compounding the problems faced by the workers (Arabia 2000). Moreover, UPI Business (2010) reported the abandoning of 700 construction workers by their Dubai based firm. The workers were not paid any remuneration since the last 8 months and

Page 8

Research Project

were living a life of penury. This highlights the conditions the foreign workers are facing in Dubai and how they are being ignored by their employers (UPI Business 2010). Likewise, Ali (2011) states that foreign workers in Dubai are a harried lot and even the government ignores its part, No foreign national can get a permanent visa to live in Dubai and they have to live on temporary visas. This means that they have to leave and enter Dubai again and again and this makes them sad as they spend their entire life working in Dubai yet they cannot live their permanent as citizens. Workers see this as discrimination on part of the government and it adds to the problems faced by the workers (Ali 2011). Likewise, White (2009) states that the current problems of the migrant labourers in Dubai got compounded because of the economic recession in the world, Dubai was hit hard by recession and as a result the construction activities in the country slowed down. The impact of this slowdown was visible in the dramatic wage cut for the workers. The result was the workers who were already unhappy with the treatment meted out by their managers were left helpless. A good number of foreign workers left Dubai heavy hearted as they were left with no choice at all (White 2009). Moreover, Hamza (2008) states that even during the good times, the managers and their employers did care the least about the welfare of the workers. They are paid the bare minimum wages and are often made to work overtime without any extra payment. At the same time they are forced to live in cramped quarters where the supply of fresh water is limited. These conditions make it very difficult for foreign workers to properly adjust in this environment and save any money at all (Hamza 2008). The condition of housekeepers in Dubai is not any better, Walt and Singh (2008) state that housekeepers can be easily termed as most worried employees in Dubai. Most of the time they are women who come from very poor families and they arrive in Dubai with the dream of earning enough money for themselves and for their families. However, not only are domestic workers mistreated by their employers they are paid the bare minimum and sometimes not paid at all. These women cannot form unions and they rarely raise their voices against the treatment meted out to them. As a result they bear the maltreatment silently and become silent victims at the hands of their employers (Walt and Singh 2008).

Page 9

Research Project

Hence it is clear beyond doubt that not only are workers being mistreated in Dubai especially at the hands of unscrupulous managers and employers, the workers are also being discriminated against by the government. These conditions have demoralised the labour force that came to Dubai with golden dreams in eyes but they find themselves stranded in a place where there is hardly anyone who cares for them. This literature review is current and it helps in explaining the position that Dubai is a world class place to work but the conditions in Dubai and the treatment met out to workers in Dubai is taking the shine out of the image of Dubai. Hence concrete efforts have to be in place to ensure that the foreign workers are treated with respect and care so that they are able to not only live in Dubai but thrive also, as they are the ones who will carry on the message further to other individuals in the world and the image these individuals create on their fellow mates is going to be the real image of Dubai. Hence to avoid further loss of image or loss of foreign labourers, Dubai will have to revamp its complete infrastructure that relates to caring for the interests of the employees.

Page 10

Research Project

Chapter 3: Research Methodology


Significance of the Study The above paragraphs refer to secondary sources which are based on the data collected by researchers and then they arrive at the conclusion. However, a report is incomplete if it does not have a component of primary research in it too. Therefore to ascertain the ground realities, a primary research were conducted in the form of group interviews, where a total of 100 foreign workers, both from the construction industry as well as from the house keeping industry were selected. The research objectives The first and the foremost aim of the primary research is to ascertain the above mentioned facts which have been collected from the literature review. Secondly this research will try to go into extra details that might not have been visible in the literature review. Lastly the research will try to gather a view point of the foreign employees working in Dubai and how they want the conditions should be managed. The primary research A total of 100 individuals were selected for this research, all of them were foreign workers and were engaged in various industries in Dubai. However, most of the participants are from the construction industry as well as from the housekeeping industry. These individuals were asked a series of questions in one to one interviews and their responses were collected. In order to ensure that the identity of the participants stay hidden their names and other data was not collected. Only their responses were collected. Study Design This study investigated the issues they confront foreign workers while working in Dubai Universe

Page 11

Research Project

The survey was conducted on 100 foreign workers. Sampling Method Random Sampling Method was used. Sample Size The survey consisted of 100 foreign workers. Tools for Data Collection Survey Questionnaire Data analysis Data was analysed using percentage frequency

Chapterization Chapter 1 Introduction Chapter 2 Review of Literature Chapter 3 Research Methodology Chapter 4 Data Analysis and Interpretation Chapter 5 Findings, Conclusions and Suggestions.

The questionnaire used by the interviewers is as follows 1. Which industry do you work in? Construction Housekeeping Any other

2. What problems if any do you face in your work life?

Page 12

Research Project

Discrimination Low pay Maltreatment Excess work hours without pay

3. Who do you think is responsible for these problems? The manager The employers The government

4. Do you think that your fellow workers also face similar issues? Yes No

5. What can be done to manage these issues and ensure that Dubai remains an attractive workplace? Employee participation in management through unions Any other suggestion

All the 100 participants gave their replies and these replies were recorded and the results compiled and presented.

Page 13

Research Project

Chapter 4: Data Analysis and Interpretation

Data was collected from the above mentioned questionnaires and is presented in the following columns. All the 100 respondents gave their answers. The question Replies by 100

individuals in % 1. Which industry do you work in? Construction Housekeeping Any other 50 % 40 % 10 %

Industries in which participating foreign workers employed in dubai

Construction industry Housekeeping industry other

The question 2. What problems if any do you face in your work life?

Replies of 100 individuals in %

Page 14

Research Project

Discrimination faced Low pay Maltreatment faced Excess work hours without pay worked by

100 % 100 % 90 % 90 %

Problems if any, do you face in your work life in %

Discrimination Low pay Maltreatment Excess work hours without pay

The question 3. Who do you think is responsible for these problems? The manager The employers The government

Replies by 100 individuals

100% 100% 100%

Page 15

Research Project

Who do you think is responsible for these problems?

The manager The employers The government

4. The question Do you think that your fellow workers also face similar issues? Yes No 100 % 0% Replies by 100 individuals

Page 16

Research Project

Do you think that your fellow workers also face similar issues?

Yes No

5. The question What can be done to manage these issues and ensure that Dubai remains an attractive Replies by 100 individuals

workplace? Employee participation in management 100 %

through unions Any other suggestion 0%

Page 17

Research Project

What can be done to manage these issues and ensure that Dubai remains an attractive workplace?

Employee participation in management through unions Any other suggestion

Page 18

Research Project

Chapter 5: Findings
From the primary research conducted for the purpose of this report it is fairly clears that most of the workers who are of foreign origin work in construction as well as housekeeping industry. Moreover, almost all of them face various types of discriminations and low wages and they consider the manager as well as the government equally responsible for their plight. Lastly the only solution that is acceptable to all the workers is that they should have a representation in the management in the form of union representatives. Hence it is established that the facts found out through the literature review stand their grounds. Conclusions and Suggestions To conclude, the research is clear in establishing the fact regarding the plight of foreign workers in Dubai. Not only does the literature review gives a clear picture of the plight, even the primary research conducted for the same purpose gives a clear picture of the conditions on ground. This therefore is an unacceptable state both from the angle of the workers and from that of the managers and the Dubai government. On the one hand the current management and government rules and regulations are being held responsible for the condition of the workers. This is spreading not only discontent amongst the workers but it is damaging image of Dubai as the favoured destination for foreign workers. Moreover, the plight and mismanagement of human resource is leading to a steady fall in satisfaction level of the employees and their output. This situation is leading to a fall in the output as well as profitability of the organisations that hire the foreign workers. Suggestions The workers should be provided with a humane treatment as this will ensure a good morale amongst the workers. At the same time, the highlighted problems need to be managed amicably so that none of the two parties in the debate are affected in a detrimental manner. Unions should be allowed as they allow the workers to feel secure and they can present their demands in front of the management easily.

Page 19

Research Project

Lastly, regular surveys should be carried out to ascertain the needs and demands of workers and they should be appropriately managed.

Page 20

Research Project

References '11 workers escape death in six-story building collapse in Dubai' 2009, Arabia 2000, Newspaper Source Plus. '700 workers abandoned in Dubai' 2010, UPI Business, Newspaper Source Plus. Ali, S 2011, 'Going and Coming and Going Again: Second-Generation Migrants in Dubai', Mobilities, 6, 4, pp. 553-568. Buckley, M 2013, 'Locating Neoliberalism in Dubai: Migrant Workers and Class Struggle in the Autocratic City', Antipode, 45, 2, pp. 256-274. Dubai police probe manager over housing workers at building under construction' 2008, Arabia 2000, Newspaper Source Plus. Hamza, H, 2008, n.d., 'Plight of migrant workers blemishes image of booming city Dubai', Canadian Press, The, Newspaper Source Plus. Walt, V, & Singh, M 2008, 'The Dark Side Of the Dream. (Cover story)', Time International (Atlantic Edition), 171, 21, pp. 48-50. White, L 2009, 'Everyday Resistance in New World Cities: Low Wage-Earning Transnational Migrants in Singapore and Dubai', Conference Papers -- Midwestern Political Science Association, p. 1.

Page 21