Job quality: what does it mean, what does it matter? Comparisons between Australia and the UAE
This review article considers research into job quality that was undertaken in Australia and Europe before discussing the very different labour market of the UAE with a particular focus on Dubai. The paper will also explore the role that HRM that can play in improving job quality for employees in both countries, despite their different contexts. Improving job quality is firmly on the public policy agenda in Australia and the EU. Recent labour market reforms have been justified in part on the basis that they would improve job quality. In the UAE the labour market is heavily reliant on expatriate workers, largely from the Indian sub-continent and Arab nations ( Tanmia, 2005). However, expatriate workers generally fall into two categories: white collar professionals and those who are working on construction sites and living in labour camps. As such, the analysis and discussion of job quality in the UAE takes place within a very different context from the OECD economies. It is concluded that there are a number of similarities between Australia and the UAE, such as labour shortages, a growing service sector, feminisation of the workforce and employee concerns about job security. However, as indicated in the article, the reasons why employees lack job security are different in each country.