hrtech.sg’s recently released Global HR Tech Investments and Start-up Funding Report found that 2022 was the second biggest year for HR tech investments and the Middle East and India were the two regions leading the charge.
The report revealed that investments in tech increased due to global events like the pandemic, political tensions, and the war in Ukraine. Such circumstances heightened the organisational need for technology, forcing companies to establish a stronger digital infrastructure for hybrid workforces.
2021 was a better year for tech start-ups, as they acquired $15 billion in funding and closed 330 deals. But 2022 wasn’t too far off—companies started with $2 billion in funding in January alone and ended the year with a total of $12.4 billion in funding and 440 total deals. And when it came to mergers and acquisitions, 2022 saw 30 more deals (160) than 2021 (130), marking a 56% year-over-year growth.
Whilst North America dominated in global funding, it decreased from 2021, possibly from the growth seen in the Middle East, EMEA, and India.
Last year, investment in the Middle East grew by almost 58% to $354.7 million, up from $205.5 million in 2021. India’s growth was even more substantial—the country saw a total of $756.6 million in funding, up from $391.6 million in 2021. It also had more than 55 deals in 2022 alone.
hrtech.sg’s founder and CEO Sriram Iyer told Economic Times that both the Middle East and India have a very bright investment future ahead. “India and the Middle East saw a significant increase in both investments and number of deals,” he says. “Whilst this can be attributed to a lower base and lesser maturity of the HR tech ecosystem, this clearly indicates that India and Middle East are bound to be the growth regions over the next three to five years for the sector.”
According to the Saudi Gazette, the country’s Minister of Human Resources and Social Development, Eng. Ahmed Al-Rajhi, launched five initiatives intended to provide training and development to local workers. In fact, the Ministry hopes to create 2.31 million private sector training opportunities by the end of 2025.
The news comes just after Al-Rajhi announced the National Training Campaign (Waad), another programme aimed at boosting training through the private sector. This campaign has already proven to be successful, the minister confirms, and will be doubling the number of trainings within two years. “The promises of commitment to training reached 1,155,000 training opportunities until the end of 2025, through the participation of 14 Saudi companies,” Al-Rajhi told the Saudi Gazette.
Another programme that the minister plans to roll out includes the National Programme to Stimulate the Private Sector that will not only develop current employees but will also equip students and graduates for future jobs. Further, Al-Rajhi aims to partner with the private sector to establish 12 sectoral councils for skills and plans to build national occupational standards for more than 300 professions.
Each programme will support the empowerment of Saudi Arabia’s human resources and social development systems and the goal to train future talent for participation in the workforce.
Dubai’s Government Launching Strategic HR Plan
The government of Dubai’s human resources department has launched a three-year plan that aims to develop the HR sector by providing government employees with necessary skills to keep up with local and global changes. The plan is slated to go into effect between 2023 and 2026.
Some of the proposed outcomes include upgrading the government’s work systems to be high performing, better management of HR legislation, and establishing Dubai’s government as a regional leader.
In a national speech, the department’s Director General Abdullah Ali bin Zayed Al Falasi, who launched the plan, says its purpose is to ensure the department is always prepared for challenges. This is only possible by empowering workers with skills that will enable them to innovate, create, and plan for the future.
The plan supports HR’s overall vision not just for the government, but for the entire country. The strategy will also focus on attracting quality national and international talents to make the Dubai government the ideal environment for work.
Another aim is to assist the National Strategy for Talents in reaching their targets in global talent competitiveness indicators, including:
- consolidating the UAE’s position as one of the top 10 countries in the field of global talent competitiveness;
- ensuring the availability of talent in the country’s strategic sectors, enabling the knowledge economy; and
- consolidating the image of the UAE as a preferred destination for global talent.