I have written previously about working generations but the problem was that the working generations were focused mainly on people in the United States of America. Therefore I have dedicated adequate time to focus on this matter. And as a result, I ended up with “A Century in Saudi’s Labor Market”.
Below I will be expanding on the Scholarship Generation, Started Working (2010-2020)
This is the generation that has entered the workforce age during (and after) the Arab spring (2010 to 2020). This generation have grown up seeing their fathers and uncles work in offices with some responsibilities. They have seen the effect of higher education and specialization on careers. This generation have been having the opportunity to actually be Western educated and even get higher education e.g. Master’s Degree and professional certifications. They also have been witnessing even more women entering the workforce (including leadership roles). But what differs here is the internet. This generation have been observing the internet’s growth enabling them to explore even more information. Also, the rise and fall of the stock market have affected many Saudi citizens. Additionally, during (and after) the Arab spring the job market started to offer better salaries, and positions started to be made more available. And definitely the latest major impact this generation have seen was the introduction of Vision 2030 for Saudi Arabia (Apr 2016),
This generation has been influenced mainly by the internet and the speed of transferring information. Additionally, it was influenced by the Gulf War, the mobile phone, new millennium, terrorism events, and the rise and fall of the stock market, Moreover, it has been influenced by the establishment of companies such as Maaden, STC, SATORP, SADARA, the establishment of Saudi joint stock companies such as Tasnee, Sipchem, SAHARA, and Advanced Petrochemicals company, and the mass scholarship program initiated by King Abdullah. Absolutely the introduction of Vision 2030 for Saudi Arabia (Apr 2016) highly motivated and inspired the generation.
- Western Education: the mass scholarship program initiated by King Abdullah was the driver here.
- Technology Savvy: Influenced mainly by the internet and the speed of transferring information. This generation have been growing up with technology reaching a point of dependency.
- Family Oriented: the openness of the world through the internet and the mass scholarship program initiated by King Abdullah led to this generation being more focused on direct family.
- Self-Development Focus: The high speed of transferring information aided the notion of self-development, organizations began to be stagnant and bureaucracy increased which significantly affect the development period.
- Global Awareness and Open-Mindedness: the openness of the world through the internet and the mass scholarship program instigated by King Abdullah have been effective factors in this period. The generation has got the opportunity to interact with the entire world, giving them a bigger picture understanding and open-mindedness.
- An increase of Speed and Multitasking: The speed of transferring information made it absolutely necessary to be able to multitask.
- Career Focus: The internet has opened up the world of possibilities, and the focus on a career became more important than focusing on a job.
- Easy Distraction and Quick Boredom with Short Attention Span: Globally and from a psychological point of view, the internet would be the major contributor to the aforementioned negative traits.
- Job Hopping: Being focused on their self-development resulted in loyalty towards organizations that provided jobs.
- The Desire for Fast-Tracked Management Roles: The speed of transferring information created a culture of impatience within this generation that can be felt in this attribute.
This is the time when the job market has started to offer better compensation and benefits. Positions have been starting to open up (due to the huge expanding projects, and the retirement of most of the Aramco & Boomer generations).
Additionally, Vision 2030 for Saudi Arabia (Apr 2016) was set to be the major player in diversifying the country’s economy and developing public service sectors such as health, education, infrastructure, recreation, and tourism. Goals include reinforcing economic and investment activities, increasing non-oil industry trade between countries through goods and consumer products, and increasing government spending on the military, manufacturing equipment, and ammunition.
- Work Philosophy (why they work):
The notion that an organization knows better what should be an employee’s career path has been taken out (if not entirely). That has come to fruition with a combination of recently graduated (from across the world) Saudi students who have been entering the workforce with a change in mind due to the easy connectivity of mass information the internet has brought in. That has been giving this generation the opportunity to take control of their destiny and future.