Project manager salary 2021

Explore the average project manager salary in Dubai and the wider UAE

  • Project Management Officer 
    US$130,750 – US$179,750
  • Project/Programme Manager 
    US$91,000 – US$138,000

Job prospects for project managers

Modernisation is a top priority for UAE organisations at present — the UAE is currently undergoing a digital transformation of services and its start-up ecosystem is booming. This has seen a huge rise in demand for technology professionals, with experienced IT project managers among some of the most sought after.

Organisations are hoping to use technology to help grow revenue, and digital transformation project managers are now one of the five most in-demand tech roles within the UAE. Organisations are looking to hire mid-to-senior level professionals who have the proven ability to add value from day one.

Professionals can help to increase the number of job offers they receive by ensuring they are upskilling in the right areas. Project or programme management skills are some of the most desirable technical skills for the technology sector, along with a computer science degree, AWS or Azure certifications.

Digitisation will impact the soft skills employers are looking for in new hires — this is something they have started to place much more emphasis on. To increase job prospects, IT project managers should have soft skills which complement the role. These include collaboration, adaptability, problem solving, and strong interpersonal skills.

Project manager salary opportunities

Professionals can enjoy a competitive project manager salary in Dubai and the wider UAE, due in part to demand rising higher than supply.

The war for talent has made it a challenge to hire qualified professionals for tech roles and, when combined with the fast evolution of roles and their requirements, has led to the need for regular salary benchmarking.

The average entry-level project manager salary is US$91,600 and can reach anything up to US$138,100 with the right mix of experience, technical and soft skills.

To reach the highest salary bandings, project managers should demonstrate a good grasp of emerging technologies, such as artificial intelligence and cyber security.

Professionals can increase their salary offering significantly if they choose to aim for a project management officer (PMO) role, which has a typical entry-level salary of US$130,800 and can go up to US$179,800 with enough experience.

To help attract new expat talent to the region, UAE organisations have started offering incentives such as cost-of-living support and relocation assistance to ensure they can beat the war for talent.

To access further salary projections and key recruitment trends affecting your sector download the Robert Half Salary Guide.