Working week is long in construction

Long hours are the usual for industry professionals

Long working hours are the norm, according to the Construction Week salary survey
Long working hours are the norm, according to the Construction Week salary survey

Working more than 50 hours a week is the norm for 38.5% of the construction industry professionals who took part in the salary survey.

A huge majority of the 1221 respondents to the online survey (91%) work more than 40 hours a week, confirming that the region’s construction industry is one of the hardest working.

“This has always been the case,” said Simon Hobart, managing director of Millennium Solutions, a recruitment company. “Rough hours are the norm when a project is going on at full speed, seven days a week, 24 hours a day. Hours are determined by the construction programme. You can’t miss opportunities on site, they have to go round the clock.

“I would say the real figure is probably closer to 70-80 hours per week.”

The survey showed that salary, position, age, country of origin and country of work all make little difference to this statistic. Work hours in the GCC are just long for everyone.

According to the other results, the average salary of a ‘white-collar’ construction worker in the Gulf is US $6047 per month.

The top three countries of origin for survey respondents were India, the Philippines and the United Kingdom.

Respondents work in all the GCC nations, but a large majority (77%) work in the UAE.

Despite the impact of the recession, the results show signs of optimism. Opinions on the likelihood of securing a pay rise, or even just retaining a job, are surprisingly positive. A staggering 61% of respondents believed they would receive a pay increase at some point within the next 12 months.

Responses were voluntary and passively solicited online. Respondents were not asked to provide their names or any contact details. Results were collected and collated by a third-party provider.

Full results and analysis from the survey will be published on Saturday 21 November, in issue 297 of Construction Week.

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