Workers on a footbridge in Dubai onFeb 14, 2018.
Karim Sahib|AAFP|Getty Images
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates–More than 2 months considering that the United Arab Emirates changed to a Monday to Friday working week to be more lined up with worldwide company partners, both the nation’s locals and its substantial population of expats are still getting utilized to the modification, although the majority of state it was a much required shift.
The nation’s longstanding Sunday to Thursday work week was formally dropped onJan 1. Government workers now work from Monday to Thursday with a versatile half day on Friday, which has actually long been a spiritual day for worshippers ofIslam Friday preachings and prayers, formerly held at twelve noon, are now held after 1: 15 p.m.
Schools have actually mirrored this shift and although no particular guidelines were provided to the economic sector, numerous right away did the same.
There had actually been murmurings amongst the UAE’s company circles for many years that the modification was coming, and it was seen by the majority of as unavoidable since of globalization. And yet, when the news broke unexpectedly in early December, it triggered a ripple of shock.
Overall, the brand-new UAE work week has actually been invited– with viewed benefits varying from increased ease of working to basic way of life enhancement.
For British expat Dan Fahy, handling director of Dubai executive search company NSI Talent, getting Sundays back as part of the weekend was great news all round.
“It has been fantastic for me as I’m now aligned with all the geographies I cover and feel like I have five solid days of work rather than a half-baked Sunday and constantly checking my phone on a Friday,” he informed CNBC.
He included: “I feel like I can fully switch off on a weekend and it’s great for watching sports and enjoying a traditional Sunday roast.”
At Dubai’s distinguished Moorfields Eye Hospital– a Middle East arm of the popular London eyecare center– the modification has actually implied being enabled to open 7 days a week.
“As a health care provider, we understand the importance of being accessible to the public and the new law has allowed us to make changes that bring more convenience to both local and international patients,” Elhadi Hassan, primary monetary officer and handling director at Moorfields Eye Hospital Dubai, UAE informed CNBC.
Communicating with worldwide contacts better has actually been the primary advantage seen by companies since schedules are now more in sync.
Laura Manning, the creator and CEO of the BRW Society– an online loose leaf tea seller in the UAE– informed CNBC it has actually enabled her group to delight in a much better work-life balance.
“In the past, we’ve had to jump onto calls on a Friday which ate into the weekend. But now we finish what we need to on a Friday morning. The move is helping the team strengthen relationships with suppliers and customers around the world without losing precious free time.”
But the passionate reception of this modification does not imply it hasn’t brought a couple of business headaches, as Annie Meikle, director at Dubai media company The Social Shop, informed CNBC.
“There have been one or two scheduling blips as we got our heads around a Monday rather than a Sunday start — such as setting up meetings on a Sunday accidentally or forgetting that Friday is a workday, that sort of thing … But there have been a few laughs because of this.”
She included: “But as we often deal with global contacts, we can now work more easily with other markets such as the U.K. and North America, which is a real bonus.”
For Dubai’s financially essential hospitality sector, the shift has actually been fairly smooth, although there were preliminary angst-ridden remarks online about what would take place to the famous Friday breakfast– an eye-popping all-you-can-eat-and-drink affair that the huge UAE hotels use.
To the relief of numerous, breakfast is still on the menu– it has actually merely relocated to Saturday.
“From a business perspective the transition has been relatively seamless, although it did take a couple of weeks for food and beverage operations to adjust to things like a Saturday brunch,” Marcus Sutton, basic supervisor at high end hotel Zabeel House by Jumeirah, The Greens, informed CNBC.
He included: “With Fridays also being a half day for many offices, and in particular for the schools, we have seen an upward trend in early afternoon business in our outlets on Friday which has helped create a long weekend benefit for the business.”
“From a spaces viewpoint, the modification has actually likewise seen the production of weekend need over a 3 day duration rather of the 2– offered the distinction now in weekend days in between the UAE and surrounding GCC [Gulf Cooperation Council] nations.”
“Overall, the change has been a positive one and appreciated within the hospitality sector,” he included.